Category Archives: Desserts

Sweetness with no fat!

No-fat Vegan Lemon & Cream Cake

No-fat Vegan Lemon & Cream Cake

Here is a light little cake that you can whip up very quickly with Bob’s Red Mill Vanilla Cake Mix and a few other ingredients.  This recipe calls for a simple lemon syrup to be poured over the warm cake, so if you make cupcakes, you will need non-stick cupcake baking pans.  Don’t use papers, the syrup will saturate them, making more mess than you will want to deal with.

No-Fat Vegan Lemon & Cream Cake

Cake

1 pkg. Bob’s Red Mill Vanilla Cake Mix
3 TBSP Flax Meal
Juice and zest of one lemon
1 C water
1 3.9 oz. container of Mott’s peach/apple medley (or 1/2 cup applesauce)

Syrup

1/2 C sugar
1/2 C lemon juice (juice of one lemon)

Stir ingredients in a large bowl with a mixing spoon until completely mixed.  Pour into a non-stick 8 x 10 inch pan or cupcake pan.  Bake at 325 degrees for 25-30 minutes (or 20 minutes for cupcakes) or until the cake springs back when pressed lightly in the center. Meanwhile, while your cake is baking, make your syrup.  Cook the juice and sugar on medium high in a saucepan until the sugar dissolves.  Remove from heat and let cool until the cake is ready.  Cool your baked cake 5 minutes, then fork lightly all over and pour lemon syrup evenly across the cake.  Allow the cake to cool completely.   You may glaze this with either a Lemon or Vanilla Glaze.

Lemon Glaze

Stir together 1 cup powdered sugar and 2-3 TBSP of lemon juice until smooth.

Vanilla Glaze

Stir together until smooth 1 cup powdered sugar, 1 tsp. vanilla extract, a pinch of salt and 2-3 TBSP of vanilla soymilk or non-dairy milk of your choice.

No-fat Vegan Chocolate-Walnut and Pear Tart

No-fat Vegan Chocolate-Walnut & Pear Tart

It is harvest time for beautiful, juicy pears, and I’ve got pear trees laden with fruit this year. There are so many delicious possibilities for fat-free and vegan pear dishes.  I’ve recently seen some amazing online recipes for Chocolate-Pear confections, but all of them share common ingredients that I do not eat: butter, milk, cream. I enthusiastically took on the challenge, and today I present an absolutely sumptuous fat-free dairy-free tart that you can serve proudly to anyone you know.

This tart is more accurately a pie, so it is deep, moist, and should be served in thin slices.  For the crust, I’ve adapted the wonderful pie crust from “Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease” that is built on apple juice and grape nuts.  I’ve added some unsweetened cocoa, creating a crisp hearty frame for the deep chocolate filling.  I’ve used a great gluten-free chocolate cake mix from Bob’s Red Mill and enhanced it with ground walnuts, resulting in a super moist center studded with vanilla-poached glazed pear.   Enjoy this and share it with your friends.  They’ll probably hug you, and their healthy hearts will thank you!

Chocolate-Walnut and Pear Tart

Crust

1 TBSP unsweetened cocoa
3 TBSP frozen apple juice concentrate
1 1/2 C Grape Nuts cereal (not flakes…they have oil)

Stir the ingredients together until well mixed.  Spoon all into a 9″ pie plate, pressing crumbs up the side to form a crust.  Bake at 375 degrees for 8 to 10 minutes or until beginning to brown on the edges and crisp.  Cool for 5 minutes while you prepare the filling.

Filling

1 C shelled walnuts
1 1/2 C Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Chocolate Cake Mix
1 TBSP flax meal softened in 3 TBSP of water
1 tsp. vanilla
1 C vanilla soymilk (or any non-dairy milk)

Grind the walnuts for about 1 minute in your food processor.  Add the cake mix and pulse until mixed.  Add the remaining ingredients and mix 30 seconds until fully mixed.  This will be a fairly thick batter.  Pour into the cooled crust.

Poached Pears

2 ripe Bartlett pears, peeled, cored, halved
1/2 C sugar
1 TBSP vanilla
1/4 water

Put all ingredients into a sauce pan and simmer for about 5 minutes.  Drain the pears and slice into 1/8″ thick pieces.  Press into the filling, fanning out somewhat for a pretty look.  Bake the tart for 15 minutes in a 350 degree oven.  If you wish, brush the pears with a bit of apple juice concentrate to glaze them. Return to oven and bake another 20 minutes or until a knife barely comes clean.  Do not over bake – you want this to be moist and fudgy.

Fresh Plum Upside Down Cake

No fat Vegan Fresh Plum Upside Down Cake

When I bought my house, I inherited portions of a 50 year-old orchard that once covered the vast hillside where our urban neighborhood now sits.  Pears, apples, grapes. plums, and of course, blackberries grace my kitchen every summer.  This year our plum crop is BIG. What to do? Well, my sis tells me to freeze ’em and worry about what to do later!  So after washing, pitting and halving and freezing a large bucket full, I’ve begun the creative part of the project.

First, I’m dehydrating some in my new Bosch oven.  The special dehydrate setting provides steady 140 degree heat with true convection for 24 hours.  I simply put the halved plums on a small barbecue rack, sprinkle with cinnamon sugar, and popped them in.  It took only about 8 hours to finish them, and I’m having fun finding different uses for them. which I’ll share later.

Next, I’ve got a sumptuous autumn cake that really makes plums shine! It is, of course, no fat and no animal, as are all my recipes.  I really think it is the kind of cake you could serve to any kind of eater and they would be most appreciative.  You’ll need a 9 ” non-stick cake pan, and a healthy appetite.  I served mine with a light cinnamon cream and it got the gone-in-minutes award of the week in my house.

No fat Vegan Plum Upside Down Cake

1/2 C packed brown sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon
7 to 8 medium plums, washed, pitted, halved

1 C flour
1/2 C sugar
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
pinch salt
1 TBSP. flax meal (ground flax-seed)
1 – 4 oz. container Motts peach apple medley (or 4 oz. applesauce)
1/2 C vanilla soy milk (or your favorite non-dairy milk)
zest of 1 lemon
3 TBSP vanilla soy milk

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Mix brown sugar and cinnamon together well and spread into the bottom of your cake pan.  Place your plums on top of the sugar, skin side down, forming a nice pattern. Depending on the size of your plums, you may need more or fewer halves to cover the bottom of the pan. Place the pan in the oven for 5 minutes or until the sugar melts.  Remove pan from oven and prepare batter.

Mix the remaining ingredients together in a bowl and stir just until well mixed.  Pour the batter gently over the plums and return the pan to the oven.  Bake 30-40 minutes until a knife or toothpick comes out clean.  Remove from oven and let sit for 2 minutes. Invert cake onto a large platter.  Spoon any extra syrup over the top of the cake and enjoy it warm with cinnamon cream (below).

Cinnamon Cream:

1/2 of a 1 lb. package of silken tofu (8 oz.)
1/4 C maple syrup
1 pinch salt
1/4 tsp. cinnamon

Process for 1 – 2 minutes in food processor and refrigerate at least 30 minutes.

Chocolate Mousse with Cinnamon Cream

No-fat Vegan Chocolate Mousse with Cinnamon Cream

One of my favorite quick and super satisfying sweet fixes is mousse. Using silken or firm tofu as a base, you can build a wonderful dessert in a couple of minutes.  Today, I’ve found a way to dramatically improve my favorite flavor – Chocolate.  Using Wax Orchards spectacular fudge sauce improves both the flavor and the texture, and served with silken cinnamon cream, it is beyond luscious, and a little goes a long way!

Vegan Chocolate Mousse with Cinnamon Cream

Chocolate Mousse:

1/2 of a 1 lb. package of firm tofu (8 oz.)
3 large TBSP Wax Orchard Fudge Sauce
1 pinch salt
1 TBSP agave or grade A maple syrup

Process for 1 – 2 minutes in food processor and refrigerate at least 30 minutes.

Cinnamon Cream:

1/2 of a 1 lb. package of silken tofu (8 oz.)
1/4 C maple syrup
1 pinch salt
1/4 tsp. cinnamon

Process for 1 – 2 minutes in food processor and refrigerate at least 30 minutes.

To serve, place 2 to 3 heaping tablespoons of chocolate mousse in a nice serving glass.  Drizzle 2 to 3 teaspoons of cinnamon cream over the top and garnish with mint or fresh berries.

Individual Almond Tart Crust

Individual Honey Almond Tart Crust

I’ve been looking for a way to make fat free crusts for tarts and pies. One idea is to make a cookie that can be molded into individual tart crusts while it is still hot. I’ve adapted this vegan fortune cookie recipe from Vegan Treats & Eats blog. This recipe works perfectly well without any oil, so give it a try and fill it with some luscious mousse for a sweet and healthy end to your next dinner party.

Individual  Almond Tart Crust

3 tsp. EnerG Egg Replacer + 1/4 C warm water, whisked together
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 tsp. almond extract
8 tsp. water
1/2 C all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp. cornstarch
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 C granulated sugar

Instructions

1. Cut out 12 5-inch squares of baking parchment paper.  You will be able to do 24 crusts, since you will use each paper twice by flipping it over to the unused side for a second crust. Preheat oven to 300 degrees.

2. In a medium bowl, whisk the egg replacer, extracts, and water together well. In a separate bowl, stir together the dry ingredients until well mixed and then combine with the wet ingredients, stirring until you have a smooth, runny batter.

3. Set a parchment square on a large cookie sheet. Pour 2 to 3 TBSP of batter onto the square, making sure that the cookie is not larger than the paper.  You are aiming for about a 4-inch diameter cookie. Repeat until your cookie sheet is has six cookies.

4. Bake until the outer 1/2-inch of each cookie turns a bit brown, or 11 to 12 minutes.

5. Remove one cookie at a time from the oven and working very quickly, peel the paper from each cookie and mold the cookie into a cup over an inverted 2″ diameter form (the bottom of a jelly jar, or a metal measuring cup).

6. Hold the cookie around the form for 30 seconds or until it begins to harden in shape.

7. Repeat the process, doing 6 tart shells at a time.  Hold at room temperature on a cookie sheet until just before serving, then fill with any delicious vegan no-fat mousse. The unfilled shells will begin to soften after 8 hours, so just pop them back in a 300 degree oven for 10 minutes to re-crisp!

These tart shells are delicious, but so are these variations:

Chocolate tart shell:
Add 4 to 6 TBSP unsweetened cocoa to the batter (good with chocolate flavored mousse

Faux “Coconut” tart shell:
Add 1/2 tsp. coconut extract to batter, and sprinkle 1 tsp. whole oats in the center of each cookie before baking (good with chocolate mousse or honey-vanilla mousse with fresh berries).

No-fat Vegan Creamsicle Mousse

No-Fat Vegan Creamsicle Mousse

I have been playing with flavor variations on a basic vanilla vegan mousse. This one brings the bright sweetness of oranges together with vanilla, and reminds me of those creamsicle ice cream cups we used to buy from the neighborhood ice cream man in summers past.  It is wonderful served in a parfait topped with fresh raspberries or strawberries, or you can make the almond cookie tartlet pictured above.

There are a number of recipes on the internet for tofu-based mousse.  This one differs only in that I use both firm and silken tofu to give the mousse good body, which helps it stand up well to whatever flavors you choose to stir in.

No-fat Vegan Creamsicle Mousse

Stir together and chill until serving:

1 Recipe Basic vanilla Vegan Mousse
1 C no-sugar orange marmalade

Basic vanilla Vegan Mousse

1 container firm tofu, drained
1/2 container silken tofu, drained
a pinch of salt
1 to 2 TBSP. vanilla, to your taste
1/4 to 1/2 C maple syrup, agave, or honey, to your taste

Instructions

1. Process all ingredients in food processor for about 1 minute, or until very smooth.  Taste and adjust flavor until you like!

You may add any number of extracts and flavors at this point. Try 2-4 TBSP Hershey’s Special Dark Unsweetened Cocoa, or some Amaretto!  Use your imagination and enjoy! This makes about 3 cups.

No-sugar Orange Marmalade

No-Sugar Orange Marmalade

I’ve used marmalade as the foundation for several recipes lately, and to save money, I decided to make my own. This recipe is a no-cook version, and it is delicious and simple to make.

No-sugar Orange Marmalade

2 large seedless oranges
4 TBSP. frozen grape or apple juice concentrate
1/4 C. agave or honey (optional)
2 TBSP.  fruit pectin for no-cook freezer jam (I used Ball brand)

Instructions

1. In a stewpot, cover your whole oranges with water and simmer (no lid) for 2 hours on very low heat, adding water as necessary to keep them covered.  Drain and cool.

2. Cut off the ends of each orange to remove the stem area. Place all ingredients in the food processor and pulse process until you have the texture of peel that you like.

3. Spoon into clean containers (the new screw on plastic containers work fine) & leave 1/2 inch headroom. Store in the frig for 3 weeks or in the freezer for up to 1 year.