This spicy and sweet cookie cake is flavorful and fun, but also happens to be vegan and gluten-free. Start making the vanilla frosting before you make the cake because it takes about 4 hours for the base to set up in the fridge. Recipe courtesy of Allison Lubert, Baking You Happy.
The frosting recipe takes at least 6 hours to prepare, including freezing and refrigeration time. Plan accordingly.
The frosting recipe yields enough to frost 48 cupcakes or 4 8-inch cakes. Frosting can be stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container with a lid for several weeks, or frozen for several months until ready to thaw in the refrigerator and be used. Stirring the frosting well post-storage is recommended before using.
Recipes © Allison Lubert
Excerpted from Baking You Happy: Gluten-Free Recipes from Sweet Freedom Bakery Peter Pauper Press.
In a medium saucepan, heat the coconut milk, agave nectar, and sea salt and simmer on medium heat for exactly 10 minutes.
In a separate small bowl, combine 3 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon of the arrowroot, and water to form a smooth paste. Begin to beat the saucepan contents with a hand mixer while slowly drizzling in the arrowroot mixture to avoid lumps forming. Continue to beat the contents of the saucepan with a hand mixer until they come briefly to a boil.
Remove the saucepan from the heat and very gradually mix in the melted coconut oil, using the hand mixer on low to medium speed, over the course of 10 seconds (the end result should be an even, gel-like consistency). Transfer the frosting base to a 2-quart container and place it into the freezer until the frosting solidifies, about 4 hours or overnight (the mixture will turn white).
Remove the container from the freezer and place it in the refrigerator until the frosting base softens (this will take about 2 hours in the refrigerator, or you can leave it at room temperature for about an hour to achieve the same results).
To finish the vanilla frosting, mix the base until fluffy (preferably with a standing mixer or hand mixer on medium speed). Slowly add in the vanilla extract, food coloring (if using), sweet rice flour (½ cup at a time), and 1 cup of the arrowroot (¼ cup at a time). Mix together until the frosting reaches a creamy and smooth consistency.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease an 8-inch round cake pan with coconut oil, and then line with parchment paper.
In a medium bowl, sift the flour, coconut sugar, cocoa powder, flax meal, xanthan gum, baking soda, sea salt, and cayenne pepper, and mix them together.
In a separate large bowl, mix together the coconut oil, applesauce, vanilla extract, lime zest, and lime extract. Using a rubber spatula, carefully add the dry mixture to the wet mixture and stir them until a grainy dough is formed.
Gently fold in the chocolate chips until they are evenly distributed throughout the dough. Pour the prepared dough into the baking pan.
Bake the cookie cake for 33 minutes. Let it cool completely.
Decorate the cake with the frosting. Garnish with lime zest, if using.