Monday, February 21, 2011

Chocolate Sapote Cake with Kumquat Orange Marmalade


I am like a kid in a candy store when I walk into the produce department.  I love walking down the rows of beautiful fruits and veggies. They inspire new dishes and baked goods, and help me decide what to make as I see what looks fresh and is in season.  I get especially excited when I come across new fruits or veggies that I haven't yet tried.  This was the cake the other day when I turned a corner and saw a basket full of round green fruit, the color of a lime but very smooth. 


It was labeled "black sapote", the "pudding fruit".  I love when they give descriptions on the produce, and this one said smooth custard like flesh with a light chocolate flavor.  It sounded delicious, and so I decided I had to buy some.  I bought one to eat, and one to create a dessert with.   When I cut the fruit open it was exactly like the description...smooth custardy flesh that almost melted in my mouth with a mild chocolate flavor.  Before I knew it the fruit was gone, and I was feeling pretty stuffed as it was pretty filling. 

It would have been delicious pureed with some cocoa powder and agave nectar to create a pudding, but I decided to puree it and incorporate it into a chocolate cake instead!  The puree looks exactly like melted chocolate, it is almost uncanny. 

A plain chocolate cake would not do however, I wanted another flavor element.  I was in a good mood, so I thought orange would be wonderful with the chocolate and tropical sapote!  When I was young my Mom told me the scent of orange is supposed to make you feel joy, and I would have to agree with her as an adult!  Chocolate and orange are even more joyful a combination. 

Somehow a few kumquats I had on my counter made their way into this cake as well, as I decided that a nice tart kumquat orange marmalade would balance out the sweetness of the cake and the frosting and add another dimension of tart flavor.  The finished cake was lovely. 


Rows of moist chocolate cake lightly scented with orange and sandwiched together with gooey fudgy frosting and tart marmalade.  It was heavenly, and I certainly had a feeling of joy as I devoured a piece.  The sapote kind of dissapeared into the cake, but it gave the cake a wonderful texture.  If you are fortunate enough to have a sapote, you should try making this cake!  If you are not, you should still try making it, just substitute mashed banana for the sapote.  If you don't want to mess with the marmalade, by all means use your favorite store bought.  So in other words, no excuses for you to not make this happy cake!  Here is the recipe:


Chocolate Sapote Cake with Kumquat Orange Marmalade
Makes 1 6 inch 4 layer cake
Cake:
1 1/2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
1/3 cup cocoa powder
1 cup maple sugar
1 Tbsp grated orange zest
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp sea salt
3/4 cup pureed black sapote
1/4 cup coconut oil
1 Tbsp pure vanilla extract
1 tsp orange extract
1/2 cup + 2 Tbsp orange juice
2 Tbsp lemon juice
Marmalade:
2 cups sliced kumquats (seeds removed)
1/4 cup fresh orange juice
1/2 cup agave nectar
seeds of one vanilla bean
pinch of sea salt

Frosting:
1 1/2 cup agave nectar
2 Tbsp coconut oil
1 3/4 cups cocoa powder, or more if needed
3/4 tsp sea salt
1 Tbsp orange zest
2 Tbsp orange juice
1 Tbsp pure vanilla extract

sliced kumquats for garnish
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees and position rack in center of oven. Line two six-inch-diameter cake pans with 2-inch-high sides with parchment paper. Coat parchment paper and pan sides with nonstick spray. Whisk flour, baking soda, spices, salt, and sugar in a large bowl to blend well. Whisk sapote, oil, orange extract, vanilla extract, and orange juice together in small bowl to blend well, then whisk into the flour mixture until well blended. Whisk in lemon juice and stir quickly (pale swirls will be in the batter, which is the baking soda reacting with the lemon juice, which allows the cake to rise since there are no eggs). Transfer cake batter to prepared pan and bake cakes until tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 25-30 minutes. Cool cake completely in pan on rack, about 1 hour. Cut around sides of pan to loosen. Turn cake out onto platter; peel off parchment paper. Let cool completely, then place in the fridge to chill until very cold to make slicing easier (since cakes with no eggs crumble easier). When chilled, slice cakes horizontally in half so that you have 4 layers.

To make marmalade, combine all ingredients in a medium saucepan over medium heat.  Cook until jammy, and liquid is reduced, about 15 minutes.  Let cool, and set aside.

To make frosting, beat together all ingredients in a large bowl until very fluffy and smooth, and well blended.  Add a little more cocoa powder if a stiffer consistency is desired (I usually end up doing this). To assemble cake, place a layer of cake on a plate, and spoon a heaping 1/2 cup frosting over, almost to the sides, then 1/3 of the marmalade, then top with another layer of cake and repeat with another 1/2 cup frosting and 1/2 remaining marmalade. Top with another cake layer, another frosting layer, remaining marmalade, then the top cake layer. Spread the frosting over the top and the sides of the cake, and use remaining frositng to pipe decoratively around the top edge of the cake, and around the bottom of the cake as well.  Chill the cake at least a few hours to set filling before serving.  Garnish with kumquats if desired!

*if you would like a 4 layer 9 inch cake, double this entire recipe and bake in two 9 inch cake pans.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

White Miso Ice Cream with Sesame Seed Brittle


I was watching the Cooking Channel recently and I saw a dessert that featured white miso.   It was peanut butter cookies, and they talked about them having a salty sweet dimention different than simply peanut butter could not give on its own.  To me miso is sort of salty and sweet, so I can see how it would be perfect in a dessert the way salted caramel is!  Now most people think of miso as simply being savory, but hearing about how it was used in peanut butter cookies inspired me to want to create a dessert of my own featuring miso!


  I thought it would be good in an ice cream because it was described as having almost a salted caramel flavor.  So I added a bit to a coconut ice cream base sweetened with maple, because I thought the maple would give it a nice caramelly flavor.  The ice cream base was delicious, and the finished product even better! 

It tasted like a salted caramel ice cream!  If you did a blind taste test not knowing ingredients you would have sworn it was butterscotch, or contained caramel.  I think this has got to be one of my favorite ice creams so far to date, the salty sweet caramel flavor in the smooth ice cream is simply heavenly!  I decided to make a sesame seed brittle garnish to go along with such a special ice cream and it was the perfect accompaniment!  To all of you skeptics out there try this recipe out, you will be hooked if you enjoy salted caramel!


White Miso Maple Ice Cream with Sesame Seed Brittle Garnish
Makes 4 cups

Ice Cream:
3 cups organic full fat coconut milk, chilled
1/4 cup plus 2 Tbsp white miso
3/4 cup maple syrup
1 tsp maple extract
1/4 tsp sea salt

Combine all ingredients except poppyseeds in a blender, and process until well blended.  Pour the mixture into an ice cream maker and process according to package directions (mine takes about an hour, and is still a little soupy like the consistency of a malt, but firms up in the freezer later). Once processed, mix in poppyseeds until evenly distributed.  Pour into freezable container with a lid, and place in the freezer for at least a few hours, or overnight to firm up for best results. Serve with brittle (recipe below)

Brittle:
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 tsp sea salt
2 Tbsp white sesame seeds, toasted
2 Tbsp black sesame seeds

Lay out a sheet of foil sprayed with non-stick spray.  Place the sugar and sea salt in a non-stick skillet over medium high heat and cook sugar, swirling the pan until melted and dissolved.  use a spoon to mix it a little once it is almost all dissolved to ensure uniform color.  Continue to heat until light caramel color, then add the sesame seeds stir in and remove from heat once it reaches medium caramel color.  Pour out onto foil and spread out.  Let cool completely then break into pieces.  Serve with ice cream, or as a garnish for another fabulous dessert!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Maple Fleur de Sel Brownie Tart


Laughter is contagious, and without it life would not be as sweet. Like the way adding a bit of sea salt to a brownie can make all the difference in it being just good or amazing! 


Today I was at work in the deli, and it was about a half hour before my long awaited break.  I was standing there chopping veg for a salad, in my own little world when suddenly I heard loud cackles of laughter from behind me.  It was my co worker who I was sure had lost it as she was standing there cracking up at what appeared to be nothing.  I asked her what was so funny and she replied "This song they are playing...what on earth are they singing?"  They play oldies at my work all day long, and often times we can't decipher the lyrics so we make up our own funny ones.  She had made up some new words to the song, and it was rather funny.  Suddenly we were all laughing and remembering all of the other wierd song lyrics we had mistaken in the past.  One example was the song "Bad Moon Rising" by Creedence Cleerwater Revival.  The Lyrics are "There's a bad moon on the rise", and we like to sing "There's a bathroom on the right... I guess other people have made the same mistake about the lyrics, but it is still pretty funny.  Today the mistaken song lyrics started off a train of laughter and songs that lasted well into the afternoon.  Needless to say, I was in a good mood when I left today!  I appriciate that I can laugh and joke around with my friends and co workers in the deli, and the way they make me smile! 


Laughter is needed, especially at work to get you through the day and make being there more pleasant.  A little goes a long way, but is needed to make life a bit sweeter.  It is not needed, but it certainly makes it better!  Kind of like fleur de sel on a brownie. 


You can make them without it, but if you add some it makes them all the more delicious.  I recently made a vegan maple fleur de sel brownie, because I was looking to healthify my original fleur de sel brownie recipe which was good, but pretty rich. 


I added the maple to be a little different, but it ended up being a delicious addition!  I baked them in a tart pan as well, because I thought a brownie tart would be beautiful!  Deep dark wedges of chocolaty goodness sprinkled with sparkly sea salt and that beautiful scalloped edge.  


 These brownies are so good, they brought a smile to my face.  Plenty decadent and rich without being unhealthy.  Here is the recipe if you would like some for yourself.  Share them with a friend and share a few smiles and laughs...it will make your life sweeter!


Vegan Maple Fleur de Sel Brownie Tart
makes 16 wedges
Brownies:
1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1 tsp baking powder
2 tsp baking soda
1 Tbsp fleur de sel
1 cup coconut oil
6 oz unsweetened chocolate
1 cup maple syrup
1 Tbsp pure vanilla extract
1 tsp maple extract
3/4 cup pureed silken tofu
1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar

1/2 cup cocoa powder
1/2 cup agave nectar
1 tsp maple extract
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
a large pinch of sea salt

fleur de sel
Preheat oven to 350 degrees with the rack in the middle position. spray a 9 inch tart pan with removable bottom with non-stick spray. Whisk together flour, baking powder, soda, sea salt and set aside. In a large bowl, place chcocolate and oil. Microwave in 30 second intervals, stirring in between to melt the chocolate, until the chocolate and oil are smooth and well combined. Whisk in maple syrup, along with vanilla, maple extract and tofu, and whisk to blend until well incorporated. Whisk in vinegar until well blended and there are pale swirls throughout the batter. Pour batter into pan.  Place in the oven and bake for 20-30 minutes until set, starting to pull away from the edges of the pan and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out fairly clean. Do not overbake! Let cool in on a rack. Let set for at least an hour, then cut into wedges.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Vegan Raspberry Chipotle Brownies



I would have to disagree with whoever said diamonds are a girl's best friend.  Many times chocolate is a girl's best friend.  Afterall, you can't eat diamonds, only look at them, and if you lose them you feel really bad.  You can always get yourself some good quality chocolate for a lot cheaper. Brownies are a fabulous way to enjoy it, and so I made some yesterday because I thought they would be the perfect dessert for me to enjoy on Valentine's weekend. 


I have to say, I would be far more impressed if a guy baked me some good brownies from scratch than simply gave me some diamond earrings.  Since I don't have a guy, I have to make my own brownies. That is ok, since I like to make them a little different than the usual plain chocolate. 


This time I decided to add raspberries, thinking little red berries would be beautiful in the rich brown dough as well as add little bursts of flavor throughout.  I didn't stop at the raspberries however, I added a bit of ground chipotle powder to spice things up.  I like a little kick to my dark chocolate and am always adding ground chipotle to my hot chocolate and mousse.  Raspberries also go wonderfully with the spicy chipotle powder.  You may be skeptical about this combination, but once you try it you will love it! 


I used my vegan brownie base which is enriched with coconut oil to give it a smooth sweetness and silkiness that oil and butter do not have.  I always add a little extra sea salt to my brownies as well, because it hightens the intensity of the chocolate.  So once the batter was all mixed, and poured into the pan I enjoyed what was leftover in the bowl and on the scraper.  Afterall it is a sin to not lick the bowl, and it is part of the enjoyment of being the baker.  I have to say, the batter was really good, rich and gooey like fudge...I couldn't wait to taste the finished product!  My kitchen smelled like Willy Wonka's chocolate factory, and I wanted to dive into the warm brownies as they emerged from the oven.


I had to wait unfortunately, because I wanted to cut them into cute little hearts with a cookie cutter so they needed to cool completely.  It was hard to practice restraint, but I sped up the process by placing them in my freezer to chill quickly.  Once they were cool, there was plenty for me to enjoy, since the hearts left lots of delicious scraps of brownie just for me!  The brownies were super decadent!  The deep intense fudgy chocolate base with a hint of chipotle that was subtle at first but then had a kick of an afterburn once it melted on my tongue.  The raspberries were tart sweet red jewels of flavor a perfect match for the chocolate and chipotle! 


It was my best friend as I enjoyed it and it brought me to my happy place.  Since I didn't want to be selfish...I have since shared some with some loved ones, and they enjoyed them as well!  If you have someone special in your life, you should whip them up a batch of brownies for Valentine's day.  They will definately feel loved.  Or even better make some for yourself! 


Vegan Raspberry Chipotle Brownies
makes 24

Brownies:
1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1 tsp baking powder
2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp sea salt
1 tsp ground chipotle powder
1 cup coconut oil
6 oz unsweetened chocolate
1 cup agave nectar
1 Tbsp pure vanilla extract
3/4 cup pureed silken tofu
2 Tbsp framboise
1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
2 12 oz containers raspberries

Preheat oven to 350 degrees with the rack in the middle position. Line a 9x13 inch pan with foil, and spray with non-stick spray. Whisk together flour, baking powder, soda, sea salt, and chipotle and set aside. In a large bowl, place chcocolate and oil. Microwave in 30 second intervals, stirring in between to melt the chocolate, until the chocolate and oil are smooth and well combined. Whisk in agave nectar, along with vanilla, tofu, and framboise, and whisk to blend until well incorporated. Whisk in vinegar until well blended and there are pale swirls throughout the batter. fold in raspberries until well incorporated, and pour into the prepared pan.  Place in the oven and bake for 25-35 minutes until set, starting to pull away from the edges of the pan and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out fairly clean. Do not overbake! Let cool in pan for about 10 minutes, then lift foil out by the edges and cool on a rack. Let set for at least an hour, then cut into 24 bars (or larger if you are like me).


Monday, February 7, 2011

A Weekend of Skiing and Citrus Poppyseed Ice Cream



How often do you get to stand at the top of a snowy hill wearing spandex from head to toe and hear a cannon go off?  In a nordic ski race of course! 


It is quite the sub culture really...spectators ringing cow bells at you as you ski past in your bright spandex racing suit yelling "Hya! Hya! Hya!"  or "Hup! Hup! Hup!"  as you ski up a hill (that's right not down...because real skiers ski uphill). 


At the starting line the skiers discuss what wax they put on their skis in order to make them go the fastest, or how many layers they wore.  This weekend I participated in the City of Lakes Loppet 33k ski race in Minneapolis, and it was a wonderful experience!  I used to be big into skiing in high school, and was pretty good, but have since become more of a runner than a skier, simply skiing for fun and as an alternative workout to running.  I decided to do this race this year (my third after taking a few off), and boy did I pick a good year to do it! 

Minnesota has gotten more snow than I can ever remember falling this year.  The conditions for the race were perfect, about 30 degrees...in past years there has been not enough snow or it has melted.  The course was beautiful, through the woods (with lots of hills), on the lakes and with gorgeous views of Minneapolis.  I wished I had a camera at some points...not that I would have stopped because I was not skiing super slow.  Just being out gliding over the snow was a wonderful feeling, and I felt at home. 


Of course during my race I had a lot of time to think...and of course I thought about what kind of dessert I could make that night.  I decided on a berry crisp, since I had some frozen berries, but if I made crisp, I had to make ice cream to go on top of it.  It is essential in my opinion.  So I was out skiing in the cold and thinking about ice cream...maybe I am crazy, or maybe not.  Ice cream can be for year round right?  I knew I had a bunch of citrus in on my counter so I thought Hmm...vanilla citrus ice cream?  But that wasn't exactly , so Iwhat I was looking for so decided that I needed to add poppyseeds. 

I love citrus and poppyseeds together, in muffins and cakes.  But I have never the combination in ice cream so I thought I needed to make some with it!  I used lemon and orange the juice and zest, to give it a light citrusy flavor on a coconut milk base, and added the poppyseeds.  I told my Mom what I was going to make, and she gave me a funny look.  "That sounds a little wierd, poppyseeds in ice cream."  She said.  But my reply was don't knock it 'till you try it!  Which was a smart thing to say, because it ended up being pure deliciousness!  It was so refreshing with the citrus, and the texture of the poppyseeds was wonderful!  So I sat enjoying my large portion of crisp and ice cream, which I had earned with all the skiing, and took in how heavenly it was.  My Mom has since taste tested the ice cream, and she had to admit she was wrong about the poppyseeds.  She loved it! 


Although this ice cream has citrus, which is in season right now, I would definately not limit it to this time of the year and make it year round!  I'll bet it is even more refreshing in the summer.  If you would like to experience the deliciousness of this ice cream for yourself, here is the recipe!


Citrus Poppy Seed Ice Cream
Makes 4 cups

3 cups organic full fat coconut milk, chilled
2 Tbsp organic lemon zest
1 Tbsp orange zest
2 Tbsp lemon juice
2 Tbsp orange juice
3/4 cup agave nectar
1 Tbsp pure vanilla extract
2 tsp lemon extract
1 tsp orange extract
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 cup black poppyseeds

Combine all ingredients except poppyseeds in a blender, and process until well blended.  Pour the mixture into an ice cream maker and process according to package directions (mine takes about an hour, and is still a little soupy like the consistency of a malt, but firms up in the freezer later). Once processed, mix in poppyseeds until evenly distributed.  Pour into freezable container with a lid, and place in the freezer for at least a few hours, or overnight to firm up for best results.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

If I Were A Cake...My Blogaversary!


A year ago today I published my first blog post on "Fragrant Vanilla Cake". When I started this blog I didn't know much of anything about food blogging.   I had a lot to learn about food photography, and I wasn't sure about what to write.  All I knew was I wanted to share my share my successes in recipe experiments trying to create desserts and baked goods that tasted decadent but were kind to the body as well.  My first post was actually a red velvet cupcake.  Here is the link if you are interested:
http://fragrantvanillacake.blogspot.com/2010/02/red-velvet-cupcakes-with-secret.html
It has sort of been a process, I have included more vegan recipes as of lately, and I have learned a lot about what works and what doesn't.  I have had some cooking disasters and cooking sucesses.  Mainly successes thankfully, and I have also begun to enjoy photography again, something I have not had to do since I was in college getting an education in studio art.  This blog has allowed me to enjoy myself through the art of creating delicious food, and sharing it with you all in the process!  I came up with the name "Fragrant Vanilla Cake" because to me there is nothing more heavenly than the fragrance of vanilla cake baking in the oven. 


In honor of my Blogaversary  I needed to create some dessert that was worthy of such an occasion.  Really, it is my blog's Birthday, so why not a Birthday cake. 


I have always loved princess cakes for birthdays, but never made one myself, but what better a time than now?  This princess cake would be different however, my own take on a princess cake.  If I were a cake, this is what I would be.  A vanilla almond base with a hint of coconut, marzipan and raspberry filling in between the layers and cream cheese frosting topped off with crunchy almonds. 


Of course the cake had to be a happy pink color as well!  It was delicious, the sweet cake with the tart raspberry filling and smooth marzipan.  The crunchy toasty almonds were a nice contrast to the silky cream cheese frosting.  It was something pretty to look at as well as devour. 


As I reflect back on my year creating this blog, I am happy with what I have learned in the process, and I look forward to my second year!  Happy Blogaversary!


Amy's Princess Cake
Makes 1 6 inch 4 layer cake

2 6 inch cake pans

Cake:
1 3/4 cups whole wheat pastry flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp sea salt
1 cup maple sugar or granulated sugar
1/2 cup coconut oil
1 cup lite organic coconut milk or almond milk
1 Tbsp pure vanilla extract
seeds of one vanilla bean
2 tsp almond extract
2 Tbsp lemon juice

Filling:
8 oz almond paste
6 Tbsp raspberry jam

Frosting:
2 8 oz pkgs tofutti cream cheese
1/4 cup agave nectar
4 Tbsp maple sugar
1 Tbsp pure vanilla extract
plant based red food coloring (if desired)

1 cup toasted sliced almonds (about)
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees and position rack in center of oven. Line two six-inch-diameter cake pans with 2-inch-high sides with parchment paper. Coat parchment paper and pan sides with nonstick spray. Whisk flour, baking soda, sea salt, and sugar in a large bowl to blend well. Whisk oil, milk, vanilla extract, vanllla seeds, and almond extract together in small bowl to blend well, then whisk into the flour mixture until well blended. Whisk in lemon juice vinegar and stir quickly (pale swirls will be in the batter, which is the baking soda reacting with the lemon juice, which allows the cake to rise since there are no eggs). Transfer cake batter to prepared pan and bake cakes until tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 25-30 minutes. Cool cake completely in pan on rack, about 1 hour. Cut around sides of pan to loosen. Turn cake out onto platter; peel off parchment paper. Let cool completely, then place in the fridge to chill until very cold to make slicing easier (since cakes with no eggs crumble easier). When chilled, slice cakes horizontally in half so that you have 4 layers.
To make frosting, whip cream cheese until smooth, then add agave, maple sugar, vanilla and beat until smooth. Beat in a few drops of food coloring until frosting is pink.
Divide marzipan into 3 pieces, and roll each into a circle the diameter of the cake (6 inches). 
To assemble cake, place one layer on a plate, and top with about 2 Tbsp raspberry jam. Spread out over cake layer but not all the way to the edge, because you don't want it to ooze. Top with one marzipan circle, then spread about 2 Tbsp cream cheese frosting over marzipan.  Top with another cake layer and repeat, then the next 2 layers ending with a top layer of cake. To frost cake, spread frosting over top and sides, smothing out as you go. Set remaining frosting aside, and use toasted almonds to coat the sides of the cake.  Use the remaining frosting to pipe decoratively onto the top of the cake using a pastry bag or plastic ziplock with a hole in the corner. I piped the frosting around the top edges of the cake, but feel free to be creative!

*if you would like a 4 layer 9 inch cake, double this entire recipe and bake in two 9 inch cake pans.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Winter Road Shortbread



I was driving home yesterday, stuck in traffic, staring at the road and thinking about what sort of delicious treat I could make when I got home to have for dessert that night.  Yes, I think about food a lot, even when staring at the road in rush hour traffic. 


Which is why I started thinking, the road kinda looked like dark chocolate cookie, the salt and ice some sort of sugar sprinkled atop it.  I guess when you are hungry, anything makes you think about food. Which is how I came up with the idea to make "winter road" shortbread. 


It would have a chocolate base with toasted coconut, dark chocolate and white chocolate chunks, and sprinkled with course sugar...I was starting to feel better about being stuck in traffic, my agression diminishing as I was looking forward to making shortbread when I got home.  Funny how something as disgusting as a salty snowy Minnesota road could inspire such a delicious cookie! 


They baked up quickly, and in the process filled my kitchen with the scent of brownies...and tasted just as satisfying as one!  Intense buttery chocolatyness that melted in your mouth with a slight toasted coconut flavor and jewels of sweet chocolate throughout...it was heavenly! 


Although this cookie was inspired by a drive home in the winter, I definately wouldn't limit myself to making them one time of the year!  This is definately a keeper...try some for yourself, no excuses not to, they bake up quick!


Winter Road Shortbread
(Intense Chocolate Shortbread with Toasted Coconut and White  and Dark Chocolate Chunks)
Makes 12 shortbreads

1 1/4 cups whole wheat pastry flour
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (I use Ghirardelli)
1 tsp ground cardamom
3/4 cup toasted finely shredded unsweetened coconut
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 stick plus 3 Tbsp Earth Balance vegan butter
2/3 cup plus 1/4 cup maple sugar
1 Tbsp pure vanilla extract
1 Tbsp grated orange zest
1 tsp fleur de sel
3 oz vegan  white chocolate, chopped
3 oz vegan dark chocolate, chopped
Turbinado sugar for sprinkling

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.  In a small bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa powder, cardamom, coconut, and baking soda.  In a large bowl, beat together butter, maple sugar, vanilla, orange zest, and fleur de sel until light and fluffy. Mix in dry ingredients until well combined, and then the chocolate until well incorporated.  Turn out into a 10 inch tart pan with removable bottom, and press firmly into the bottom to the sides, and flat.  Score the dough into 12 triangles, sprinkle with turbinado sugar (press in) and bake in the oven for 12-15 minutes until set.  When done baking, score again, and cool on a wire rack completely before unmolding.