I couldn't stop thinking about Family Favourites. I would have loved to make a frozen chocolate crunch or shared around some mango coconut splice blocks, but they just wouldn't work at a picnic. Then I thought of nutella pudding. I didn't need to make more food at all, really, but I couldn't resist a go at veganising nutella pudding.
This one goes in the style of British self-saucing puddings, with the nutella in the sauce and a typical cake batter plonked on top of it. I tracked down a jar of biona dark chocolate spread, which was a little less sweet than nutella and completely lacking in hazelnuts, but it did the vegan silky chocolate job perfectly. Dairy cream became coconut cream, buttermilk begat vinegar-spiked soy milk, butter was replaced with margarine, and I switched the eggs for apple puree (I'll go for a mashed banana instead, one day).
For all those changes, it was the same pudding in every way that mattered. It's probably intended for mid-winter eating, still steaming with a scoop of cream or icecream on top. But it's day-after no-extras state holds just as much nostalgia for me, and that's pretty much how ate it at the picnic.
(adapted from this family recipe)
1/2 cup vegan chocolate spread
1/2 cup coconut cream
1/2 cup soy milk
1/2 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup castor sugar
1/2 cup apple puree
3/4 cup plain flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 cup cocoa
Lightly grease a baking dish and preheat the oven to 180°C.
In a large bowl, whisk together the chocolate spread and coconut cream. Spread the mixture over the base of the dish.
Mix together the soy milk and apple cider vinegar and set the aside. The milk will curdle into a buttermilk substitute.
Use the same mixing bowl to beat together the margarine and sugars. Beat in the apple puree. Sift over the flour, baking powder and cocoa, then mix them until just combined. Mix in the curdled soy milk.
Pour the cake mix into the baking dish and gently smooth over the top. Bake for about 35 minutes, or until a skewer comes out clean.