Chocolate Cake from The Candle Cafe Cookbook by Joy Pierson and Bart Potenza with Barbara Scott-Goodman
I've used this recipe for cake layers a few times now, and I adore it. I will note, that I really like it because it's a lighter and sweeter chocolate cake then traditional chocolately ones.
1 cup unbleached white flour
1 cup pastry flour (I use whole wheat pastry)
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon sea salt (fine-grained)
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup unrefined sugar
1 cup soymilk
1 cup maple syrup (indeed use the good stuff)
1/2 cup safflower oil (I use canola since I have it on hand)
2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1/2 cup water
1. Preheat oven to 350F.
2. In a large mixing bowl, mix together the flours, baking powder, baking soda, cocoa powder, salt, cinnamon, and sugar. In another bowl, mix together 1/2 cup of water, the soy milk, maple syrup, oil, vinegar, and vanilla and almond extracts. Pour the wet ingredients into the flour mixture and stir well to combine.
3. Divide batter into 2 greased 9-inch cake pans. Bake for 35 minutes, or until a cake tester or toothpick comes out clean when inserted into the center of the cake. (I'm also a proponent of the batter-touch test). Remove from the oven and let cool on wire racks for about 30 minutes. I don't have wire racks, so it either sits in the pan on the counter or in the fridge if I'm rushing.
Ala this anniversary cake and the middle layer in the bottom cake:
I've never used this exact recipe, but the following is the accompanying recipe for Chocolate Ganache Frosting: Ingredients: 4 cups dairy-free chocolate chips 1 cup vanilla soy milk 1 tablespoon brewed coffee 1/4 cup maple syrup or agave nectar (I prefer the dark agave) 4. To prepare the frosting, put the chocolate chips, soy milk, coffee, and maple syrup or agave nectar in a double boiler over simmering water. Once the chips are melted, remove from the double boiler and set aside to cool. Transfer the mixture to a blender and blend for 1 minute. Cool for about an hour in the refrigerator. 5. Place one cake layer on a plate and frost about 1/2 inch thick. Place the second cake layer on top and frost the entire cake.
NOTE: If you have any frosting left over, it can be stored in the refrigerator for up to a week. Use as a topping for 'ice cream' and other desserts.