Wednesday, March 7, 2012

GR's 12th Birthday and Cookies 'n' Cream Cake

GR's birthday was a few weeks ago, but for various reasons, we didn't have her party until this last Saturday.  What is fun about this birthday is she turned 12 on February 12th of 2012.  Pretty cool, huh?  So, following tradition we have the food with which we celebrated on display below.  The recipe for the cake is at the bottom.  Basically, I used the cupcake recipe from Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World and doubled it.  I also used special dark cocoa, instead of regular, and I upped the amount of vinegar.  I doubled the amount of cookie crumbs in the frosting, and I used whole cookies as garnish, instead of halfsies.  I changed the wording slightly to match my personal style.  We've made the cupcakes many times, but she wanted to try them as a cake.  It was so good, perfect for my girl.

Cookies 'n' Cream Cake partying down

On her actual birthday, GR picked Jimboy's Tacos for lunch.  So, here's my veggie burrito sans cheese along with their fries.  Since her birthday fell on a Sunday, she also brought in cupcakes I made for her Sunday school class.

We went out to dinner at that great Thai place that we all love but apparently whose name I got wrong the last time I wrote about them.  So, I put in a call to Mom, and when she calls me back, I'll update this properly.  This is our deep fried bean curd with dipping sauce.

My delicious bowl of Tom Kha: coconut milk soup

My Yum Tow Hu: tofu salad with medium spice - outstanding!

Hot tea, of course.  This took me at least five tries to upload this.  Does anyone hate Blogger as much as I do?

GR wanted to make her own birthday dessert on her actual birthday, so she made these creative, unique chocolaty cookies!  She loves being in the kitchen.

Here are the cakes cooling.  I actually forgot to mix in the cookies with the batter, so I kind of squished them on it before baking.  They still turned out great.

Here's a close-up of that yummy cake

GR blowing out her candles with JK looking on.  This was her first ever party at a park.  As a Winter baby, she's always had them indoors, except for the one time we celebrated a half-birthday just so she could have one outside.  The weather has been so dry, we decided to risk it this year, and it worked out great.  JK is wearing two of the prizes earned in a scavenger hunt I made for the kids: his hat and his bubble necklace.

Yes, 99 Cent store didn't have black decorations like GR wanted, so she went with green instead.  Here's a slice of cake.

What the cake looked like after it was mercilessly hacked into.

Cookies 'n' Cream Cake
For the cake:
Non-stick spray
Flour for dusting
2 cups soy milk
1 Tbs. apple cider vinegar
2 cups flour2/3 cup Hershey's Special Dark cocoa
1 and 1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 and 1/2 cups of vegan sugar
2/3 cup canola oil
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp. chocolate extract
2 cups of coarsely chopped Newman O's with white cream centers
For the frosting:
1/2 cup shortening
1/2 cup vegan margarine, room temperature
3 and 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 and 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/4 cup vanilla soy milk
1 cup cookie crumbs, Newman O's processed in food processor
11 cookies for garnish
For the cake:  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Spray two round cake pans with non-stick spray.  Shake around a tablespoon of flour or so in each pan to coat the spray.  Shake out the excess flour.   Set aside.   In a large bowl, whisk together the soy milk and vinegar.  Set aside as well - this is your "buttermilk."  In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour through salt ingredients.  To the buttermilk, add the rest of the ingredients, except the cookies - sugar through chocolate extract.  Whisk until well blended.  Add the dry ingredients to the wet and mix with an electric blender until well mixed, starting on low speed and working up to medium speed.  Stir in the chopped cookies.  Divide batter between the two pans.  Bake for 40 minutes, until an inserted toothpick comes out clean.  Cool in pans on cooling rack for fifteen minutes, then remove from pans to finish cooling.
For the frosting:  When the cakes have completely cooled, make the frosting.  In a medium bowl, cream together the shortening and margarine.  Add the powdered sugar and mix on low speed until well blended.  Add the vanilla extract and the soy milk and blend on medium speed for three to five minutes, until thoroughly mixed and fluffy.  Stir in the cookie crumbs.  Frost the top of one cake with a nice spread of frosting.  Then add the other cake on top.  Frost the sides first, smoothing with your knife or spatula as you go along.  You'll want enough frosting for the top to create a secure foundation for the cookie garnish.  As you frost the top, spread some extra frosting out to the edge of the cake.  When the cake has been frosted and before the frosting has set, line up your cookies around the edge.  Use the extra frosting to secure the front and back of each cookie, just slightly packing them in.  You don't want the frosting to go up the cookie; keep it subtle.  A fun recipe and delicious to boot.  Feeds five hungry vegans and some friends and family.


  1. Sounds like she had a great golden birthday! The cake turned out so well and Thai food is always good. :)

  2. Molly, she did, thank you. She said it was her best birthday yet, so that made me happy. The cake was delicious, and you are so right about Thai, especially at this place.

  3. Oh wow. Just wow. And a bit more wow. GR had some birthday feast!

    And yes, agreed on the blogger front.

  4. I would be blown away with a cake like that!! What happens when you up the vinegar? I imagine it enhances the flavor? GR is obviously following in your footsteps! Those cookies look sumptuous.

    So fun she got to have her b-day cake outdoors...good things come to those who wait, or so my mum never tires of saying. Looks like JK is ready for Paddy's day! :D

  5. Joey, thank you, I think she thoroughly enjoyed it. Now, what can we do about Blogger? :-)

    Rose, the vinegar curdles the soy milk, and I wanted it even a bit more sour, enhancing the flavor, as you say. GR is doing great in the kitchen. I just wish she would do clean-up, too. :-) It was perfect weather for an outdoor celebration; I was so glad for her - she had a blast. JK is definitely wearing a St. Patrick's day hat! It's so subtle, right? :-)

  6. Looks like GR is celebrating in grand style, and with a birth date convergence like hers, she should be! It's great that she loves to cook like her mom.

  7. Andrea, she had a blast, the best one yet she said. I love how all the numbers came together like that. And, I love how she handles a spatula and a measuring cup. :-)

  8. I would love to get a birthday cake like that. Both the Thai and Jimboy's food looks fantastic.

  9. Hey, SV, when you move to Sacto, I'll make this cake for you the first time you birthday rolls around. By the way, when is your b-day? You never mention it in all the food posts on your blog. Hmm.

  10. Oh that cake looks and I bet tasted divine. Great job Mom.

  11. Oh yum!!! You have my mouth watering! :D

  12. I have a whole long list of things you'll be cooking & baking for me once I finally decipher the address on that cat collar. Hope I get there before the radioactive waste from Japan gets there.

    My birthday falls on or around the worst day of the year: Thanksgiving;-(

  13. Impressive cake! And cookie crumb cookies - so smart! Happy birthday, GR!