11 September 2012

Pants and Pomely Present: Salad Dressing Cake

A note in the introduction to Kris Holechek’s 100 Best Vegan Baking Recipes alerted us to the concept of salad dressing cake, id est, cake made with mayonnaise.

Breakfast of champions with a banana and coconut peanut butter.

According to an archivist friend who looked it up when Ownie Q  brought the cake into work in 2011, salad dressing cake is so-named because it was originally made with Miracle Whip.  Miracle Whip is too processed to be called a whole food which is why it is called salad dressing.  The mayo—or “nayo” in the vegan cake—replaces oil and eggs.  Making it vegan, and then amping it up to gluten-free, truly takes this cake in a direction it wasn’t meant to go.  However, its bouncy, moist texture allows it to stretch in whatever direction you desire.

Salad Dressing Cake
Modified (is perhaps too light a word) from http://www.food.com/recipe/salad-dressing-cake-190693

1 1/2 cups brown rice flour
1/2 cup sorghum flour
1/2 teaspoon xanthan gum
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 cup cocoa, unsweetened or Dutch or black

1 cup water
2/3-1 cup organic granulated sugar (your preference; don’t use less than 1/2 cup)
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup vegan mayonnaise (I always use low- or no-fat, and I’ve used canola and olive oil-based versions to rave reviews)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.  Grease and parchment or wax-paper line a 9*13-inch pan.

In a large bowl, whisk together flours, xanthan gum, baking soda, cinnamon, and cocoa.  In another bowl or a blender, whisk together water, sugar, mayo, and vanilla until uniformly combined.  Add dry to wet and mix well.  Transfer to pan and bake for 32-35 minutes or Bake for 30-35 minutes until cake springs back when touched, centre is dry, it passes the toothpick test, and it has begun to pull away from the edges.  Cool completely in the pan before removing.

1. A different flour blend
1/2 cup sticky rice flour
1/2 cup brown rice flour
1/2 cup sorghum flour
1/2 cup King Arthur Flour Ancient Grains GF blend

2. Use coffee or strong tea instead of water

3. Spice
Omit the cocoa and instead use:
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon ginger
1 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon cloves
1 cup mini chocolate chips

4. Add butterscotch chips to the chocolate version.  Grease the pan well and use waxed paper or parchment, and grease the paper, too.  Butterscotch chips, the Food Lion brand at any rate, tend to melt (which is why they are delicious).

5. Black and Butterscotch
Make the batter without cocoa.  Mix two tablespoons of cocoa and two tablespoons of hot water.  Add half the batter to the cocoa mixture and combine.  Add a cup of butterscotch chips to the plain part of the batter.  Dollop the butterscotch and the chocolate in the pan in alternating piles and tap the sides of the pan to smooth out.  Take a butter knife and run it through the batter zigzagging from one side of the pan to the other lengthwise, then switching the direction and zigzagging widthwise.

Why do Pants and Pomelilly present this?  Why not. Vegan mayo is already strange, and this  cake elevates it to another level of strange. Vegan mayo...it moistens your sammiches, binds yer mock-tuna salads, and springs up your cake. It makes for some very, very mysterious kitchen magick for a "natural" food.
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