I am not a huge cake fan. In fact, I usually skip the cake entirely and proceed directly to the ice cream, preferably from Sebastian Joe’s. However, Valentine’s Day in Minnesota is usually not very conducive to ice cream parlor dates (not that I’ve let that stop me). But this year, we decided to skip the restaurant rush and postpone our Valentine’s date until Friday the 15th.
However, we needed to mark Valentine’s Day somehow. Luckily, I happen to have a heart-shaped cake pan and the best chocolate cake recipe ever. I discovered it when I had to make a birthday cake for one of Mike’s coworkers who doesn’t eat eggs, but it’s so good that I encourage you to try it even if you don’t have to deal with egg allergies or vegan preferences. The cake recipe as written is vegan; if you want to make the glaze vegan, just substitute margarine for butter and soy milk for cow’s milk. The best part? Since there's no risk of salmonella, feel free to lick the cake batter bowl to your heart's content.
Adapted from the recipe by aliciak
- 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup warm water
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/3 cup canola oil
- 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 4 tablespoons butter (or margarine)
- 2 tablespoons milk (or soy milk)
- 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- Sprinkles (optional)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. In a large bowl, combine dry cake ingredients (flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, and salt). Add wet cake ingredients (water, vanilla, oil, and vinegar) and stir until moistened, and then beat for two minutes.
Coat an 8 inch heart-shaped (or 8 inch square) cake pan with baking spray. Pour batter into the prepared pan.
Bake in preheated oven for 30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean. Turn cake out of pan and cool on a rack.
When cake is completely cool, it’s time to glaze it. Combine the sugar, butter, milk, and cocoa in a small saucepan and bring to a boil, stirring frequently. Reduce heat and simmer for two minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and continue to stir for another five minutes.
Add vanilla to mixture and pour over cake, spreading if needed. Add sprinkles if desired and allow to cool.
Enjoy with the one you love.
I'd like to add a special shout out to my husband Mike, on our fourth Valentine's day together and the four year anniversary of our engagement. I love you.