The ultimate chocolate cake (it's vegan too!)

When I say 'ultimate' chocolate cake, that's exactly what I mean. If you're in need of a truly irresistible chocolate cake recipe, one that is moist, rich and seriously chocolatey, then give this a go. Just make sure you're first in line to get a slice before it's all gone!


Adapted from Skinny Bitch in the Kitch:-
Chocolate Suicide Cake
Serves 12-16

- 180ml rapeseed or safflower oil
- 260g wholemeal flour
- 300g unrefined light brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon cream of tartar
- 2 teaspoons bicarbonate of soda
- pinch of sea salt
- 200g vegan chocolate chips
- 300ml soy milk
- 180ml unsweetened apple sauce*
- 1/2 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
- 115g unsweetened vegan chocolate, chopped
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 500ml Chocolate Fudgy Frosting**

*To Make Apple Sauce - (the easy way!)
Core, peel and chop three or four small apples. Place the pieces in a microwave-proof tub with a lid and add a few tablespoons of water and a little cinnamon if desired. Heat for about five minutes on full. Transfer to a bowl and use a hand blender to pulp until smooth, adding a little more water if needed. Done!

How To:-
1. Preheat oven to 180C/Gas 4. Oil a 32.5cm x 23cm baking pan, set aside.
2. In a large bowl, sift together the flour, sugar, cream of tartar, bicarbonate of soda and salt. Stir in the the chocolate chips. Set aside.
3. In a medium bowl, combine the oil, soy milk, apple sauce and vanilla extract, stirring until smooth. Place to one side.
4. Heat water in a saucepan and keep it gently simmering. Place a heat-proof bowl on top of the saucepan and put the chopped chocolate in the bowl. As it melts, stir slowly until smooth.
5. Add the oil mixture into the flour mixture, stirring until its a smooth consistency. Now add the melted chocolate, again stirring until everything is smooth and then stir in the vinegar.
6. Transfer the mixture to the oiled baking pan and smooth over the surface. Bake for 40-45 minutes, until the cake springs back when lightly touched in the centre and begins to pull away from the sides of the pan.
7. Let it cool thoroughly before frosting.


**Chocolate Fudgy Frosting (makes about a litre, or you could use the whole lot to very generously cover the cake)
- 14 tablespoons rapeseed oil or refined coconut oil
- 200g unrefined light brown sugar
- 175g unsweetened cocoa powder
- 240ml soy cream or plain soy yoghurt
- 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- pinch of sea salt

1. In a medium saucepan over a medium heat, melt the oil. Stir in the sugar and cocoa powder and then gradually stir in the soy cream.
2. Now stir almost constantly until the mixture is smooth and hot but don't allow to boil. Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla and salt.
3. Set aside to cool to room temperature or until thick enough to spread.

Notes: When sifting the wholemeal flour, really sift it thoroughly. If desired, discard the larger flakes left at the end and pop into your compost bin. I feel that this stopped the cake from turning into a bread but this is down to personal preference. With regards to the frosting, I didn't have any soy cream so I substituted it with plain soy yoghurt (Alpro works very well) and added a small bit at a time until I got the right texture and thickness. It seems that the bitterness of the dark chocolate I used, counteracted any tartness from the yoghurt and thus worked perfectly.


Quorn mince quesadillas & guacamole

This is a spin on the traditional quesadilla which bulks it out to be a more substantial meal and lowers the fat content too.


Serves 1 or 2 (depending if you want to share!)

- drizzle of rapeseed oil
- 1 wholemeal flour tortilla
- handful of grated cheese, I used chili mature cheese
- 50g quorn mince
- passata sauce
- 20g black or pinto beans, drained
- home-made guacamole to serve (optional)

To make the guacamole:-
Makes about 240ml
- 1 medium avocado
- 1 garlic clove, finely chopped or pressed
- Juice of 1/2 a lime
- pinch of sea salt
In a small bowl, use a potato masher or a fork to mash all of the ingredients together.
Use immediately.

How to:-
1. Cook the Quorn mince according to the pack, adding some passata sauce and stirring occasionally. Once cooked through, set aside.
2. In a frying pan over medium heat, drizzle the rapeseed oil over the tortilla and place in the pan oiled side down.
3. Sprinkle the grated cheese evenly over the tortilla, leaving a small border clear all the way around the edge.
4. Put the beans over the cheese and add the quorn mince in the same way, still making sure that there is a border.
5. Gently flip the tortilla in half like an omelette. Cook for about 3-4 minutes and flip over and cook for a further 2 minutes until both sides are golden brown.
6. Cut into wedges and serve with the guacamole.

To veganize this, simply choose vegan mince and cheese instead. Remember to serve the guacamole straight away as it turns brown very quickly due to its rapid oxidising.



In winter, I sometimes find it difficult to be motivated to eat fruit. Smoothies are a quick and easy way to get more fruit in your diet. I tried the four recipes in The Skinny Bitch in The Kitch book and loved them, here they are. Each recipe makes about 500-750ml depending on whether you want to add more soy milk/juice. Add the fruit and liquid, blend until you get the consistency you like. Add some ice cubes if using all fresh fruit. Enjoy!


Verry Berry Smoothie
I love the colour of this.
300g mixed berries (use frozen if out of season), 120ml soy milk and 120ml apple juice (or you can use all soy milk).


Tropical Orange, Banana & Ginger Smoothie
I've never tried Ginger before in a smoothie but it was quite surprisingly yummy!
300g chopped bananas, 240ml orange juice and 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh ginger.


Just Peachy Smoothie
Simple and smooth
300g chopped peaches, 120ml soy milk and 120ml apple juice


Berry & Banana Smoothie
Definitely a favourite
One banana chopped, 250g mixed berries and 240ml soy milk.

Scrambled tofu & black bean burrito

A hearty breakfast option that also works well as a light lunch. I used chili flakes to give a little heat but if you like it hot, just add slices of the real thing.


Adapted from Skinny Bitch in the Kitch:-
Bitchin' Breakfast Burrito
Serves 1

- 100g firm tofu, crumbled
- 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast flakes
- 1 tablespoon soy or tamari sauce
- 1/4 teaspoon turmeric
- pinch of sea salt
- pinch of pepper
- 1 tablespoon rapeseed oil
- 1 vegan sausage, chopped or crumbled
- 2 or 3 baby new potatoes, chopped
- handful of black beans (or pinto)
- 1 wholemeal tortilla
- Ketchup or other condiment (optional)

How to:-
1. Boil the baby new potatoes until tender (around 15 mins). Chop and set aside.
2. In a bowl, combine the tofu, garlic, yeast flakes, soy sauce, turmeric, salt and pepper. Set aside.
3. In a frying pan, cook the vegan sausage according to pack. Once cooked, chop/crumble into the tofu mixture bowl.
4. Heat the oil in the frying pan and heat the potatoes and beans. Add in the tofu mixture and stir occasionally for 3-4 minutes or until most of the liquid has evaporated.
5. Place the tortilla over the pan to warm it and then place on a plate and add your condiment is using.
6. Carefully transfer the food onto the tortilla, keeping everything in the middle.
7. Wrap around and fold the bottom to envelope everything.
8. Serve whilst hot.

Notes: This would be great with some vegan cheese, salsa, peppers, chilies, mushrooms, tomatoes..the list is endless!