Friday, October 15, 2021


Cakes have always been a fascination of mine, ever since I was a child. I very vividly remember how happy I was when I was called to help in making a cake, by holding a mixer to blend the ingredients together. Many, many years have passed since that moment, but I still absolutely adore the sound of a hand-held mixer.
The charm and joy of cake baking are not measured by how complicated it is or how intricate the decoration might be; the charm lies in being involved in the process, seeing the ingredients come together, seeing the transformation from a liquid batter to a baked cake, ready to be frosted. And still, just like all those years ago, to me, there is nothing quite like baking a cake.
This little pumpkin mud cake is what I consider essential for autumn baking. Dense, fudgy, rich, and perfect for a cup of coffee or tea. And nothing really says cold weather comfort food like the combination of pumpkin purée, warm spices, and white chocolate. The dark chocolate glaze not only makes the cake stand out with its contrasting colour, but it balances the flavour so very beautifully.
I do need to emphasise, though, for this charming little vegan cake to be fudgy and moist, it has to be monitored closely while baking. Every oven is different, and I do recommend checking for doneness before the time written in the recipe. If a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out with just a few moist crumbs on it, the cake is done, no matter what the timer says. If there is still wet batter on it, bake it for a few minutes more, and test again. That way, the baked cake will always be soft and tender, perfectly welcoming for a cosy afternoon treat.

For the white chocolate pumpkin mud cake
120 grams vegan block butter
100 grams vegan white chocolate
120 millilitres water
100 grams light brown sugar
100 grams pumpkin purée
2 teaspoons vanilla bean paste
150 grams plain flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
For the double chocolate frosting
50 grams vegan white chocolate
50 grams dark chocolate (at least 70% cocoa solids)
30 grams vegan block butter
50 millilitres soy milk
bronze vegan food colouring, optional

To make the pumpkin mud cake, take a medium heavy-bottomed saucepan, add in the vegan block butter, chocolate, water, sugar, pumpkin purée, and the vanilla, and place it over medium heat. Softly stir until everything is melted and blended. Remove it from the heat, and let it cool down slightly. Sift in the flour and the baking powder, and gently whisk until only incorporated.

Line a small round baking pan (16 cm) and line it with baking parchment, bottom and sides. Pour in the batter and bake immediately in a preheated oven, at 180°C, for about 15-20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the very centre comes out with only a few moist crumbs. Let the cake cool down to room temperature, and then place it in the refrigerator.
To make the double chocolate frosting, melt together the chocolates, vegan butter, and soy milk over low heat or in the microwave. Add in the food colouring, if using. As soon as everything is melted together, remove from the heat, and stir for a few moments, until it starts to thicken. Take the cake out of the refrigerator, glaze it generously, and return it to the refrigerator for at least 8 hours. Yields 8 rich servings. © TINA VESIĆ 2021