Yesterday really felt like it should have been Friday. Anyone else? These last few weeks have been doozies. It’s all go-go-go with mile-long to-do lists of business things and house things and…I need a nap. But I don’t take naps, because I can never fall asleep no matter how tired I am and even if I do drift off, I always wake up disoriented and somehow more tired.
Aaron and I both desperately need some time to unwind and disconnect from technology, and yet we’ve been so busy our planned vacation this coming week went something like this:
Early July: We need to take more vacations. Get out of the grind and let our minds wander. We should do something every quarter—one week where we go somewhere sunny and warm in winter and spring, somewhere beach-y in summer, and somewhere New England-y with beautiful foliage in fall. It’s hard to get away, but we’ll come back energized and more productive. Let’s do it!
Late July: We need to take more vacations. [insert same conversation from 3 weeks prior] Let’s plan that time off or it won’t happen.
August: We need to take more vacations. [checks calendar] Let’s take these dates off.
September: You took those days off, right?
Late September: We have a vacation coming up in 2 weeks. Where are we going?
Early October: I don’t think I can take a week off. How about a long-weekend?
Today: I think we’re taking a staycation? Maybe we can schedule the security system guy to come and we can paint that orange wall?
Does this happen to you too? It’s becoming more and more clear to me that I (we) need to guard our weekends and holidays better or else work and obligations continue to creep in and before we know it, we’ve been married and blogging for three years. ← Okay, so that’s pretty specific to me. This past Sunday marked my three year blogiversary, and Tuesday was my three year anniversary, both very, very awesome things!
I think we should eat some cake!
Just like I’ve been planning a vacation for the last few months (with serious room for improvement), I’ve also been testing and re-testing this cake. I wanted a recipe that’s simple, not too many ingredients, and not at all fussy. Just really delicious cake, without the eggs and dairy, that’s appropriate for a birthday or anniversary or Saturday morning baking party (those are the best!). And then I lightened it up a bit—less oil, more applesauce and non-dairy yogurt. The texture turned out even better than I imagined, with a more dense, moist crumb (sorry, sometimes there isn’t a way around that word), and a very vanilla flavor.
The 10-minute Vegan Buttercream from my last post takes it way over the top. Light and fluffy, sweet but not one-note, and extra chocolate-y, though you could certainly do a pretty vanilla cake with vanilla buttercream frosting.
I couldn’t resist a few rainbow sprinkles, which totally took me back to when I was little and had chocolate frosting and sprinkles on my face more days than not. Or at least that’s what I would assume based on my parents’ photo albums.
Bake some cake, make some frosting, and plan your next vacation, even if it is only a long weekend enjoyed at home. Because the times when life gets crazy busy are probably the times when we need those days off the most.
And with that, I’ll see you back here on Wednesday!
- 1 cup plain non-dairy yogurt
- 1⅓ cups non-dairy milk
- ¼ cup + 2 tablespoons unsweetened applesauce
- 5 tablespoons safflower oil (or melted coconut oil)
- 1½ cups natural cane sugar
- 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
- 1½ cups whole wheat pastry flour, sifted
- 1½ cups all-purpose flour, sifted
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- ¾ teaspoon fine sea salt
- 2 recipes vegan buttercream (chocolate or vanilla)
- rainbow sprinkles for decorating (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease two 8-inch cake pans and set them aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the yogurt, non-dairy milk, oil, applesauce, sugar, and vanilla.
- Slowly stir in the flours, baking soda, and sea salt. Mix until just combined (be careful not to over-mix!).
- Divide the batter between the two cake pans and bake for about 30-35 minutes, or until the tops are golden and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove from the oven and set on a wire rack to cool completely.
- Once cool, gently remove the cakes from the pans and spread a layer of buttercream frosting on the top of one of the cakes, then place the second cake on top. Spread a layer of frosting on top of the second cake and all around the sides of the cakes. If you find that you're picking up crumbs when you're trying to spread the frosting, I recommend applying a thin layer of frosting (don't worry about the crumbs), refrigerating for 20 minutes until cold, and then applying a second, neater layer of frosting.
- If you have extra frosting, feel free to pipe it around the edges of the cake, then decorate with rainbow sprinkles if you like. Slice and enjoy!
Photography by Aaron Scott
P.S. It’s been an amazing three years sharing my recipes and writing with you all in this space. Thank you for reading, sharing, and inspiring me to keep posting, learning, and improving. Your comments and emails truly make my days. xo