Saturday, March 3, 2012

Let Them Eat Cupcakes

I haven't blogged in a while - I figured this would happen. After going into the full swing of campus ministry hasn't left me much time to think outside of ministry (which is completely fine to me)! Adjusting back to ministry has been a little bit of a challenge - including my first couples weeks coming home and crashing on the couch. I would barely want to cook, let alone blog about it!

Students at DCC
Though the work has been exhausting, I still am blessed and excited to have outlets to bake!

One of the new challenges this semester has brought in my baking has been baking dairy-free. Both my good friend, Hedy, and dear student, Meghan, can't have dairy - thus I gladly adjust! I could be selfish, look at all the recipes that need dairy, and tell myself, "Well, it's only going to be one person who can't eat them. Everyone else will like them!"

Hedy with her reason for not having dairy - totally worth it!
But what if I have that attitude in other areas of life? For example, almost any time I prepare for a talk either at Connect or at a retreat, I struggle with myself on whether I should or shouldn't share the Gospel - even if it's only a few verses on what Jesus did for us. "Everyone here is already a Christian, " I think. "They know this already. I could use the time to speak on the main point."

The main point?! Jesus IS the main point, right?! Why on earth would I leave out the Good News just because the majority already knows? Not to mention, should we as Christ followers ever be tired of hearing how God Himself came to earth, lived a perfect life in the midst of temptation, died for OUR imperfect lives, and rose HIMSELF from the grave to conquer death?! I think not! (If I were an old English man, I would say NEIGH!)

So, just like I would accommodate any talk I have to share the Gospel for even that one who needs Jesus' free gift, I will gladly find and bake recipes without dairy! And boy have I found some GREAT recipes!!

First, I said earlier how I would tell you about the Babycakes Mini Cupcake Maker - today is the day my friends.
Behold, the cupcake maker!

I REALLY LIKE my cupcake maker! Seriously, baking is so easy and fun. I don't have to worry about preheating and then, even more important, turn the oven off before leaving the house. You plug it in, let it warm up (which takes about 5 minutes or less), and then dump in your batter. You can make around 40 or so cupcakes for one cake recipe. In the summertime, it makes baking in the heat far more tolerable then turning on the oven. AND you can make more than just cupcakes! Sometime I'll add some of those recipes at a later time, but now, unto the dairy free goodness!!

Applesauce Cake
  • 2 1/2 cups flour
  • 2 cups white sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoons salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1 1/2 cups applesauce (I kind of make these heaping, or even add an extra 1/4 or 1/2 cup)
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup shortening (I used regular oil)
  • 2 eggs
I just dump it all in a bowl and mix, then bake it up at 350º! There is a frosting I tried once that you can also try that you can find on the link above. It's a little too tart in my opinion for the "spiceness" of the cake.  Make sure if you go off the website's recipe that you read the comments below.

Nairobi Chocolate Cake

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 3/4 cups white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 3/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 3 eggs, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup water (I used mint chocolate soy milk once and it was great)
1. Preheat oven to 350º and grease either your cake pans or line cupcake pan or do what you need to for what your making.
2. Combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, sugar, salt, cocoa powder, 3/4 cup water, and vegetable oil in a mixing bowl and beat it up (with a mixer not your fists). Then add the eggs, vanilla extract, and 1/2 cup water and beat it again.
3. Baking  it in oven should take about 30 minutes in cake form, and shorter as cupcakes I imagine (I make these in the cupcake maker, and they take about 5 minutes). Bake until an inserted tooth pick come out clean.

Then I made this frosting with it, which I changed from this recipe:

  • 2 cups sugar
  • ¼ cup (½ stick) shortening (Crisco)
  • ¼ cup chocolate soymilk (or almond milk, but I bought a mint chocolate soy milk)
  • ¾ cup unsweetened pure cocoa powder
  • ½ t. vanilla 
Mix it all together to where it's well mixed and fluffy looking.

Pie Cake:

  • 1 1/2 cups white sugar
  • 2 cups sifted all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts (optional)
  • 1 (21 ounce) can pie filling
Mix it together and bake in a greased pan at 350º for about 40 to 50 minutes. I really love this recipe! It's easy and tasty, and you can use any can of pie filling - I've used cherry and mixed berry so far. If you want more of the fruit, make sure you fold it and not use your mixer. I use the mixer - I like the broken up fruit stuff. 

Chocolate Crinkles Cookies:
(from The Great Cookie Book, but you can also find the same recipe here)


  • 1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 cups white sugar
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup confectioners' sugar
  1. Mix together cocoa, white sugar, and vegetable oil. Beat in eggs one at a time, then stir in the vanilla. Combine the flour, baking powder, and salt; stir into the cocoa mixture. Cover dough, and chill for at least 4 hours.
  2. Preheat oven to 350º.  I greased my cookie sheets. Roll dough into one inch balls. Coat each ball in confectioners' sugar before placing onto prepared cookie sheets.
  3. Bake in preheated oven for 10 to 12 minutes. Let stand on the cookie sheet for a minute before transferring to wire racks to cool.

Let me tell ya, these are AMAZING and a huge hit! PLEASE make them!!


  1. Leah! You are so awesome! I love how you think!!

  2. Leah! How do you come up with such things? You're so thoughtful!