Thursday, May 10, 2012

citrus kick

I've been on a real citrus kick in the kitchen lately. It started with a batch of Joy the Baker's orange and dark chocolate buttermilk scones, and then progressed to lemony zucchini goat cheese pizza and French-style yogurt cake with lemon.

One of our guests last weekend is vegan, and that can be a big challenge when it comes to baking. I'm not a big fan of the complicated vegan recipes that use a lot of weird ingredients (plus I'm sensitive to some of the substitutes used in things like vegan creamer and vegan cream cheese -- give me eggs and butter over that stuff any day). These orange cupcakes, however, were a big hit. They're moist and fruity, with a fine texture.
Remember that grade-school science experiment where you make a volcanic eruption using baking soda and vinegar? I loved that! Well, these yummy vegan cupcakes operate on the same principle -- baking soda and vinegar react and fizz, releasing carbon dioxide bubbles that make the cake rise. No need for eggs!

vegan orange cupcakes

makes 12 cupcakes

1.5 C. all-purpose flour
scant 1 C. sugar
1 tsp. baking soda
.5 tsp. salt
1 C. fresh-squeezed orange juice
1/3 C. vegetable oil (or fruity olive oil)
1 T. finely grated orange zest (use a microplane grater if you have one)
1 T. vinegar (white or cider)
1 tsp. vanilla

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line muffin tins with liners, or grease and flour them.

Whisk together the flour, sugar, baking soda and salt in a large bowl. Add the remaining ingredients and stir together until smooth.

Scoop the batter into the prepared muffin tin. Bake about 20 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Put the muffin tin on a wire rack to cool for 10 minutes. Remove the cupcakes from the tin and let cool on the wire rack.

I topped mine with a very basic frosting (Smart Balance + powdered sugar + OJ + vanilla), but I suspect that using a thin frosting of just powdered sugar and orange juice would have equally nice results.

adapted from the 1997 edition of The Joy of Cooking


Kristi aka Fiber Fool said...

I don't think I ever get enough citrus :-) Those cupcakes sound terrific!

Carrie K said...

I'm on a lemon kick but I'm willing to give oranges a try, that looks delicious!

Tracy Altieri said...

I adore citrus! I recently made some homemade pasta with lemon - it was delicious, as II'm sure are your scones!

Katie M. said...

Oooh, those look delicious!

Chris said...

I have some recipes from my grandmother like that, that don't use eggs - they were REALLY poor and I think eggs must've been quite the commodity.

Caffeine Girl said...

I will definitely be checking out these recipes. I love citrus, too, especially in the summer.

Nutmeg said...

This looks like a great recipe -- thanks for sharing! It reminds me of a wacky cake, which was my mom's standard birthday cake for us kids growing up. It wasn't until I started doing some vegan cooking that I realized a wacky cake is vegan.

Rachel said...

I may have to try this recipe just to 'see' the fizz! I seem to be way more drawn to citrus in the winter rather than summer. Maybe there are just too many other delicious tastes happening in the summer to compete!