Vegan delicacies: desserts for enamel that aren’t too candy

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Is Sugar Vegan? The answer is “sometimes”. Bone charcoal, which is burned animal bones, is usually used to lighten sugar crystals. Although bone char does not end up in the end product, vegans generally reject the use of animal ingredients in food processing. Beet sugar is not processed with bone charcoal and is one of many vegan sugar alternatives alongside Turbinado sugar and Sucanat.

Vegans have different attitudes towards animal by-products. For some people, being vegan is an “all or nothing” lifestyle choice. For others, being practical is a consideration. Remember that plants are fertilized with non-vegan substances like animal manure.

Not all vegan foods are good for health, but there are still some delicious desserts that will delight your taste buds and won’t make your blood sugar soar. Here is a compilation of some of my vegan favorites, some of which are more healthful than others.

Baked apples. (Susan Alexander / For the News Tribune)

4-ingredient baked apples

Stir in some brown sugar before baking if you want a sweeter dessert. These baked apples go great with your morning oatmeal.

4 to 6 apples, skin and core removed, cut into pieces

1 tablespoon of melted coconut oil

1 teaspoon (more or less) ground cinnamon

a pinch of ground cloves

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Mix all the ingredients together. Bake for 10 minutes, stir, bake for another 10 minutes or until the apples are forked. Serve warm with a scoop of non-dairy vanilla ice cream or whipped cream, if desired. A little soy milk jug that is poured over hot baked apples is delicious.

Vegan chocolate peanut butter banana ice cream.  (Susan Alexander / For the News Tribune)

Vegan chocolate peanut butter banana ice cream. (Susan Alexander / For the News Tribune)

Banana ice cream

Here’s a delicious, health-promoting dessert. Basic recipe:

2 ripe bananas, frozen

Add-ins (choose one or more of your choice):

2 to 3 teaspoons of cocoa powder

2 to 3 teaspoons of carob powder

1 tablespoon of almond butter

1 tablespoon of peanut butter

3 to 4 pitted dates

¼ teaspoon of cinnamon

frozen strawberries or frozen cherries

6 mint leaves

1 tablespoon coconut flakes or coconut flakes

1 tablespoon of chopped ginger

¼ teaspoon vanilla extract

¼ teaspoon of almond extract

¼ teaspoon maple extract & 1 tablespoon pecan butter

Peel and halve the bananas and freeze them in a zip-lock freezer bag. When you’re ready to make banana ice cream, place the frozen bananas and add-ins of your choice in a high speed blender and blend until soft and creamy. (We like to thaw the bananas a little before we put them in the blender.) Serve the banana ice cream right away or put it in a container and freeze until it’s needed. (The frozen banana treat will be tough and may need to be microwaved about 20 seconds before serving.)

When making this dessert, we’ll make a large batch of six to eight bananas, freeze the mixture, and scoop out portions as needed. We’ve tried many combinations of this frozen banana treat and our favorites are almond butter / cocoa and cherry / almond butter. We’re pretty relaxed about measuring.

Vegan crockpot cake.  (Susan Alexander / For the News Tribune)

Vegan crockpot cake. (Susan Alexander / For the News Tribune)

Crockpot pudding cake

Dough:

1 cup all-purpose flour

½ cup) sugar

2 tablespoons of cocoa

2 teaspoons of baking powder

½ teaspoon of salt

½ cup of non-milk

2 tablespoons of vegetable oil

1 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract

Covering:

¾ cup of brown sugar, packaged

¼ cup of cocoa

1½ cups of hot water

Lightly oil the crockpot insert. Mix the flour, sugar, cocoa, baking powder and salt in a bowl. Mix the non-milk, oil and vanilla together until smooth. Pour the batter into the crockpot insert. Mix brown sugar and ¼ cup cocoa in the bowl (make sure there are no large lumps). Sprinkle over the dough. Pour hot water over the contents of the pot. Don’t stir! Cook on high for 2 hours or until the toothpick in the center comes out clean. Remove the lid of the pot and let it stand for 30 minutes. Spoons of cake in bowls. Pour the hot sauce over it. This dessert is delicious on its own, but each serving can be topped with non-dairy whipped cream or dairy-free vanilla ice cream.

Peanut Butter Cake (Susan Alexander / For the News Tribune)

Peanut Butter Cake (Susan Alexander / For the News Tribune)

Chocolate peanut butter cake

My daughter asks for this dessert every time she visits. One thing I’ve discovered over the years while making this cake is that not every tofu in this recipe works well. Some brands of tofu have a strong taste that makes the cake taste strange. I recommend Mori-Nu or House tofu. (Mori-Nu is the stuff that comes in 10-ounce boxes and doesn’t require refrigeration.)

1 oreo cookie crust (or any other vegan pie crust of your choice)

21 oz. firm silky tofu

1 cup vegan chocolate chips, melted

¾ cup of peanut butter

In a food processor, mix the tofu, chocolate, and peanut butter together. Pour this mixture into the pie crust. Chill for at least 2 hours.

Vegan chocolate pudding.  (Susan Alexander / For the News Tribune)

Vegan chocolate pudding. (Susan Alexander / For the News Tribune)

chocolate pudding

You may not think pudding is something to be excited about, but this pudding could change your mind. This recipe comes straight from the book “Tofu Cookery” by Louise Hagler. This makes 4 cups of pudding. Each serving contains 8 grams of protein.

1½ pound soft tofu (I like to use the Mori-Nu brand)

1¼ cups of sugar

1/3 cup cocoa

¼ cup of oil

1½ teaspoon vanilla

¼ teaspoon salt

Mix the ingredients in a food processor or blender until smooth and creamy. Pour into individual serving dishes or baked cake shells. Chill and serve. Sometimes I am carefully thrown into the wind and cover the pudding with a dab of Coco Whip.

Crazy cake.  (Susan Alexander / For the News Tribune)

Crazy cake. (Susan Alexander / For the News Tribune)

Crazy cake

According to my mother, the origins of this cake go back to WWII. This cake was popular during the war because of the lack of milk and eggs. This cake is also known as the crazy cake, depression cake, and joe cake. My dad and I loved it.

In the house I grew up in, this cake was never frozen. However, I defy tradition and frost it with a thick layer of chocolate fondant frozen from two plastic tubs bought in the supermarket. It’s topped off with a German chocolate icing with coconut and nuts.

There’s a lot to love about this cake. First, there is no need to clean bowls: the ingredients are mixed in the same pan in which the cake is baked. Second, slices of the cake will freeze well. Third, this is the most delicious cake in the world.

The secret to making a light, fluffy cake is not to beat the ingredients together. I use a fork to carefully fold the ingredients together until they are just combined.

This recipe makes about 12 slices.

3 cups of flour

2 cups of sugar

2 teaspoons of baking powder

1 teaspoon of salt

1/3 cup cocoa powder

¾ cup of rapeseed oil

2 cups of water

2 tablespoons of vinegar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Put the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and cocoa powder in an ungreased 9×13 baking pan. Mix together. Make three wells in the dry ingredients. Pour the oil into the wells. Pour the vinegar, water, and vanilla extract over everything. Mix together. Bake the cake at 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes. (Test for brandy with a toothpick.) Wait for the cake to cool completely before freezing or dusting it with powdered sugar.

Sunbeam biscuits.  (Susan Alexander / For the News Tribune)

Sunbeam biscuits. (Susan Alexander / For the News Tribune)

Sunbeams

To be frosted or not to be frosted? The controversy continues.

1½ cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon of baking powder

¼ teaspoon salt

½ cup vegetable fat

2 tablespoons of sweet potato baby food

1 teaspoon corn starch

2 tablespoons of orange juice

1 orange peel, grated

1½ teaspoons of sugar

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Mix the flour, baking powder and salt together. Cut crumbly into the shortening with two knives. Add baby food, cornstarch, orange juice, orange peel, and sugar. Mix well. The dough will be very crumbly, but go into it with your hands. The dough sticks together as it is continuously processed. Overworking the batter will make the cookies less flaky. Process into balls the size of golf balls, place on a baking sheet and flatten slightly. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes. If desired, frost on cooling. Yield: about 20 biscuits.

Sun rays before cooking.  (Susan Alexander / For the News Tribune)

Sun rays before cooking. (Susan Alexander / For the News Tribune)

Frosting: Mix together ½ cup of powdered sugar, 1 teaspoon of melted vegan margarine, 1/8 teaspoon of vanilla extract and 1 teaspoon of soy cream. If desired, add a drop of yellow food coloring. Add more soy cream or orange juice until the frosting is the desired consistency for the topping of the cooled biscuits. If desired, sprinkle with colored sugar crystals.

Did you know?

The BBC reported a 2020 study that looked at data from 30,000 adults followed for an average of 17 years and found that every half egg per day resulted in a 6% increased risk of heart disease and an 8% increased risk. increased mortality risk. (They monitored the subjects’ eating habits, general health, and physical activity to try to isolate the effects of eggs.)

Susan Alexander is an avid cyclist. She loves gardening, farmers markets and delicious meals made from whole grains, fresh vegetables and fruits.