Sometimes you're baking for a big crowd or party and need a big cake. Sometimes you're only two and want to split a little treat over wine.
This cake is for the latter situation.
A fairly large portion of my favourite people are born in April. I celebrated the first of these birthdays in Istanbul with chocolate cake and wine next to the Bosphorus with some very lovely ladies. The second one I was unfortunately not present for (because she lives far away). And the third one was celebrated a few weeks early... with this mini cake!
The lovely lady for whom this cake was made for loves-loves-loves halva or any sort of tahini dessert. After experiencing baked halva together, and talking about tahini based desserts for hours, I thought a tahini cake would be perfect.
The texture of this cake is not very similar to normal cake... it isn't light and airy, but instead it has a slightly grainy tahini bite. To pair with the ever-so-interesting tahini flavour and texture, I chose a super creamy and perfectly sweet apricot frosting. The creaminess of the frosting brought back the birthday cake vibes to this treat.
My friend and I met under the rain by Cadet metro in Paris. It's a really cool area that I don't know so well, so I'm looking forward to spending more time around here this summer! We ran to a nearby cafe, ordered some wine, and ate this cake while we caught up on life. (Well, what had happened in life in the last week between Istanbul and now!)
Tiny vegan maple-tahini birthday cake with apricot frosting - what you need:
- 1/2 cup all purpose flour*
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/8 teaspoon salt (or a small pinch)
- 3 tablespoons tahini
- 3 tablespoons maple syrup (or honey or agave syrup)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil (if your tahini is very thick (vs: mine which was very runny) add an extra tablespoon of olive oil)
- 1 tablespoon water or non-dairy milk
- 1/4 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
*This cake is slightly dense, if you prefer lighter cakes, subtract one tablespoon of flour from this recipe.
Tiny vegan maple-tahini birthday cake with apricot frosting - what you do:
Preheat your oven to 180 degrees celsius (350F), and prepare two ramekins by coating them with (vegan) butter and dusting them with flour.
In a small bowl, mix the flour, baking soda, and salt.
In another small bowl, blend the tahini, maple syrup, olive oil, water, and vinegar.
Add the wet ingredients (tahini blend) into the dry ingredients (flour blend) and mix well. The batter will be thick.
Spoon the batter evenly into the ramekins.
Bake at 180C for 15-17 minutes, or until an inserted tooth pick comes out clean.
Allow the cakes to cool completely before frosting.
Apricot frosting - what you need:
- 1 cup confectioner's sugar
- 3 tablespoons (vegan) butter, softened
- 1 tablespoon apricot jam
- 1-2 teaspoons of (non-dairy) milk
Apricot frosting - what you do:
In a small bowl, beat the sugar and butter until creamy. Add the jam and combine well. If this is too thick, add one teaspoon of milk at a time until the desired consistency is reached!
To assemble the cake:
If necessary, slightly level the cakes. I only levelled the mini cake that would go on the bottom.
Drop a dollop of frosting onto the base cake, and then stack the second mini cake on top.
Frost around the cakes and the top of the cake. If your frosting starts behaving badly, pop the mini cake into the fridge and let the frosting set for 10 minutes. This will harden up the base frosting, and allow you to evenly finish off the rest of the decoration.
Add sprinkles, chopped apricots, or crushed pistachios for a finishing touch!
Even if the celebration was a bit early, I am so happy that we got to squeeze a mini pre-birthday celebration in this weekend with this mini cake! I love the mini cake concept because it really is the perfect way to share something happy with an important person. It's also much more personal this way.
Baking soundtrack - tunes to inspire your inner baker:
I feel like I should choose something more delicate because the birthday girl is literally like a small purple flower. She's beautiful and elegant, and always manages to stay politely diplomatic while speaking whatever is on her mind.
However, this song is awesome, and I love Kendrick Lamar, and ya know - he stands for things... as does the birthday girl! So in some weird way, it's totally perfect.
(Warning: some bad words!)