No butter? No problem!

I am 187 years old when it comes to baking.  I use butter, unbleached, all-purpose flour and white sugar whenever appropriate.  I buy organic local eggs because I just think they taste better.   Nothing against the healthy creative folks who cook with whole wheat flour and agave nectar or whatever.  I just know what works for me and don’t branch out much.  Enter Tom, friend with food allergies.  Absolutely NO dairy.  What. The. Hell? Eggs are ok, but Dairy = Death.  And since I kind of like Tom, I had to find a way to make his going away cake death-free – at least death-by-cake free (it was a trapeze party after all…anything can happen).

I realized that one of my favorite cake recipes, the one pan cake from the Marlboro cookbook is already dairy free.  Hooray for small victories.  But then there was the frosting.  I was skeptical no matter how many stars a recipe received on the interwebs.  I mean, come on, it’s called BUTTERcream for a reason.  Not shorteningcream or margarinecream.  (um.  gross.)  BUT, I bought a vegan cupcake cookbook for a reason, so I broke it out and made the Vegan Chocolate Buttercream icing (they clearly use the term buttercream loosely).  Surprise, surprise…it was really good.  Even I liked it.

Tom requested chocolate on chocolate, but I made the executive decision that that was too boring and added sugared strawberries to the middle.

I made two full 13×9 inch sheet cakes and leveled them, so it made a pretty good-sized cake.  The vegan “buttercream” was remarkably creamy and easy to frost with, I was pleasantly surprised.

Even more impressive, in my personal, crafty opinion, was the trapeze I built out of sticks and wire (and a fishnet stocking) to go on top of the cake:

The whole package:

Those two little dudes hanging from the bar?  That’s a depiction of Tom and another flyer, Rich, catching Tom’s double flip for the first time ever (just this week).  That’s pretty freaking amazing.

Tom is a most fantastic flyer/trapeze coach who is leaving us to go perform in a show in South Carolina.  We are all tremendously devastated – Tom is one of those people who, once you know him, you can’t imagine your life without him.  His energy is infectious and he deserved a kick ass send off with a kick ass cake.  I think he got both.

And yes, that’s a full size trapeze in the background (and yes, Tom’s trapeze tights say Super Tom).

That, I believe, also qualifies as Photo of the day #4 – A Photo of My Night.  I wanted it to be a photo of me flying at night, but this celebration is the next best thing.

Vegan Buttercream Frosting
from: Vegan Cupcakes Take Over The World
(I doubled it for the 9×13 layer cake and barely had enough)

1/4 C margarine – softened
1/4 C Shortening
1/2 C unsweetened cocoa powder (sifted if there are clumps)
2.5 C powdered sugar, sifted
3 Tbsp soymilk
1.5 tsp vanilla extract

Cream together margarine and shortening until well combined.  Add cocoa powder and incorporate well.  Add cocoa powder and incorporate well.  Add confectioners sugar in about 1/2 C batches and beat well, adding a little splash of soymilk after each addition.  When all ingredients have been well incorporate, add vanilla and beat until light and fluffy (about 3 minutes with a hand mixer, 7 if mixing with a fork).

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6 Responses to No butter? No problem!

  1. The whole cake, send off party looks wonderful!! xxoo

  2. Steve says:

    reminds me of my favorite Eddie Izzard routine “Cake or Death!”

  3. Barb says:

    According to Dr Mary Enig, and the Weston Price Foundation, real butter is what we should be eating. Grass-fed butter is the best. Vegetable oils and trans fats are the problem. Saturated fats are actually good for us. When in doubt, eat like your ancestors did. Coconut oil is excellent too. I use palm shortening now instead of Crisco also. I find it all so fascinating, I’m actually attending nutrition school now. I just have to lose weight so people will take me seriously, lol

  4. Barb says:

    I know–I should have clarified. Basically I was applauding you for using real ingredients when possible

  5. Pingback: laziness is the mother of invention | Legally Delish

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