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Ingredients In Dark And Sumptuous Chocolate Cake

Asked by maxigirl2901. Answered on 28th November 2016

Full question

I'm dying to make the Dark And Sumptuous Chocolate Cake. However I have a couple of questions about substitutions: I associate with some particularly health conscious individuals who will not drink coffee and avoid vinegar in all its forms like the plague. Would it be detrimental if I did not use the expresso powder in the icing or the cake? Or could I use something else? And could I substitute vinegar with lemon juice? I'd be grateful for some advice!

Dark and Sumptuous Chocolate Cake
Photo by Keiko Oikawa
Dark and Sumptuous Chocolate Cake
By Nigella
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Our answer

Nigella's Dark And Sumptuous Chocolate Cake is a very popular chocolate cake that is both very easy to make and also vegan. The cake contains some espresso powder but the flavour of the coffee is not overpowering. Instead it helps to enhance and deepen the chocolate flavour of the cake and the icing. However if you did want to omit the powder we would suggest using vanilla extract instead, as vanilla also has a similar complimentary effect on chocolate. We would suggest using 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract in the cake batter and a similar amount in the icing.

As the cake does not contain eggs, the rise comes from the reaction of vinegar with the bicarbonate of soda (baking soda). This means that an acid is essential. Some people will make an exception for raw (apple) cider vinegar so this would be a good alternative if it is acceptable. Lemon juice and vinegar have similar levels of acidity and we suspect that lemon juice, used in the same quantity, would work as an alternative. However as we have not tried this substitution we regret that we are unable to guarantee the results.

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