I watch RuPaul’s “Drag Race” every Tuesday with my girlfriends, Berly and Elisabeth. We cuddle up on Elisabeth’s couch, we drink wine, eat pastries, and get really invested in our favorite and least favorite drag queens. Ru is elegant and charming. Her casts of seasonal queens are a mix of refined, elegant, sassy, and conniving. And we love them all.
Lately, I’ve realized more than ever how inspiring the women are who I share time with. I’m not sure if it comes with age, or if it’s only specific to a certain kind of woman – but these ladies always look out for and do whatever they can to motivate and elevate each other. We are guided by the immortal words of Molly Lambert – In Which We Teach You How To Be A Woman In Any Boys’ Club.
One woman I know, who also happens to be a pastry goddess, asked me to make something vegan, special, and decadent for her friend’s birthday – something sized just for her. She received a 4″ dark chocolate cake with coconut-chocolate cream, and black plum. I was so touched that she wanted to treat her friend to something special, and something just for her. Women looking out for, and honoring other women. These are the people I love.
Inspired by Ashlae, of Oh, Ladycakes.
3/4 cup unbleached flour (can use gluten-free, or all-purpose)
6 tbsp cocoa powder
1/2 cup dark brown sugar
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 cup oil, coconut or vegetable
1/4 cup soft, silken tofu, blended
1/2 cup water
2 tsp espresso powder
1 tsp vanilla
Preheat oven to 350F. Lightly oil a 1/4 sheet pan and line with waxed paper. Whisk together flour, cocoa powder, salt, baking soda, and brown sugar. In another bowl, whisk together blended tofu, oil, water, espresso powder, and vanilla. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry, whisking until just combined. Pour into prepared pan and bake until an inserted toothpick comes out dry, and the edges of the cake pull away from the side of the pan, about 12-16 minutes.
1 can Thai Kitchen, full fat coconut milk
3 oz good-quality bittersweet chocolate
1/2 tsp kosher salt
2 tbsp maple syrup
Refrigerate the coconut milk for at least 12 hours. Do not try to speed up this process by freezing. Open the can and scrape out the thick layer of fat. Whisk either by hand or with an electric mixer, just until smooth and fluffy. Melt chocolate, and cool until room temperature. Pour chocolate and maple syrup into the coconut cream, add salt. Mix to combine.
Cut 4″ circles from your cake. Spoon some cream between each layer. Add beautifully cut fruit to the top. Give it to a sweet lady friend.