Sunday 28 March 2021

Vegan Edible Dish Sponge Cake | April Fool's Prank | Illusion Cake

vegan edible dish sponge cake

April Fool's day is just around the corner and who doesn't love a good prank? Throw food in the mix and even better! I first saw this illusion cake concept on Emmymade's YouTube channel, by way of Emma's Goodie's YouTube channel. I stored the video at the back of my mind, determined to make a vegan version some day. Now's the perfect time!

I used a 28cm by 21cm rectangular tin. You can also use a brownie tin. 


(makes approx. 8 "sponges")

- 4 cups self-raising flour

- 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda

- pinch of salt

- 1.5 cups caster sugar

- 2/3 cup sunflower oil

- 2 cups vegan milk (such as almond, oat or soya)

- 1 tsp vanilla extract or juice from half a lemon

- yellow gel food colouring

- green gel food colouring

- 1 tbsp golden syrup or maple syrup or marmalade

- 1/4 cup extra vegan milk (optional)

edible dish sponge cake


Preheat the oven to 160 degrees Celsius.

Combine the flour, bicarbonate of soda, salt, sugar, oil and vegan milk in a large mixing bowl. Fold gently to form a thick cake batter. Flavour with either lemon juice or vanilla extract. Mix to combine.

Divide the cake batter into two separate bowls in the fraction of 1/3 and 2/3. 

Add a few drops of green gel food colouring to 1/3 of the batter. Add 2-3 drops of yellow gel food colouring to 2/3 of the batter.

Pour the green cake batter into a 28 by 21cm cake tin that has been lightly greased and lined with baking paper. Bake for 12-15 minutes until a toothpick stuck in the middle comes out clean.

Pour the yellow cake batter into a 28 by 21cm cake tin that has been lightly greased and lined with baking paper. Bake for 20 minutes until a toothpick stuck in the middle comes out clean.

Take the cakes out of the tin and allow to cool completely. If the top of the cakes are a little bumpy, use a serrated knife to even them out.

Spread a thin layer of syrup or marmalade or jam over the yellow cake (this will act as a glue) and gently place the green cake on top so that all the edges match. Use a serrated knife to trim around the edges of the cake. Cut the cake into 8 "sponges".

To add to the illusion effect, whisk 1/4 cup vegan milk until frothy. Scoop some of the froth over the sponge to mimic soap suds.

Friday 26 March 2021

Lentils in the Style of Ewa Riro (Nigerian Stewed Beans)

Ewa Riro is the Yoruba name for one-pot stewed beans. The honey beans (also known as oloyin beans) are soaked overnight and then boiled for what can seem like hours until very tender/mushy. It is then cooked with palm oil and often a blend of red peppers and tomatoes. I have a recipe post for that if you want to check it out. 

But this post here is for my fellow lazy home cooks who can't be bothered (sometimes) to make Ewa from scratch. Red lentils are a great alternative because they take a fraction of the time. If you're into meal prep, I recommend making a big batch of this and freezing portions of this to have during the week.

Serve with a side of sweet fried plantain and you've got a winning dish on your hands.


(serves 6-8)

- 4 cups red lentils

- 4 cups red stew mix (blend of red bell pepper and tomatoes)

- 1 cup warm water

- 2 tablespoons palm oil or coconut oil

- salt to taste


Combine all the ingredients in a large pot and cook on medium-low heat for 20-25 minutes until the lentils are tender and the sauce has thickened slightly.

Serve hot with a side of fried plantain, a chunk of soft bread or a sprinkling of garri over the top.

Friday 12 March 2021

Cheesy Garlic Plantain Bread | Easy Vegan Recipe

When that craving for garlic bread hits, you just have to follow suit. I was minding my business one morning when I saw a recipe video for garlic bread pop up on my feed. Recipe videos are my guilty pleasure; I could spend hours watching them and that is no exaggeration. This particular video caught my eye because of the shape and construction of the garlic. Although a non-vegan recipe, I sat through the whole thing and resolved that a vegan version needed to be made. Even better if I could put my own spin on it and use up some old, neglected plantain we had lying around in the kitchen. 

I hope you enjoy this recipe. If you make it and like it, please share your photos with me on Instagram. I love seeing your creations and I love reposting them to my stories.

Recipe notes

  • I used a similar dough recipe as the one I used in my steamed buns recipe. Worked out pretty great, with a focaccia-style crumb. For a more chewy dough, you could use bread flour instead of regular plain flour. 
  • If you do not have access to vegan margarine, coconut oil is a fantastic substitute. Imagine the flavour if the oil is scented and coconut-ty too...yum!
  • I bought my vegan cheese from a local supermarket, but if you really cannot find any then you can make your own at home (there are so many amazing vegan cheese recipes online these days) or leave it out completely.


For the dough

- 3/4 cup vegan milk

- 2 tbsp caster sugar

- 2 tsp instant yeast

- 2 tbsp vegan margarine (melted)

- 2.5 cups plain/all-purpose flour

For the toppings

- 50g vegan cheese (cut into thin batons)

- 1 heap tbsp vegan margarine (melted)

- 1/4 red onion (finely chopped)

- 1 tsp dried parsley

- 10 cloves garlic (finely chopped or minced)

- 1/4 tsp salt


To make the dough, add the vegan milk, sugar, yeast and margarine to a large mixing bowl. Add the flour and mix to form a sticky dough. Knead the dough inside the bowl for a few minutes until it is smooth and less sticky (see video above for results).

Place the dough on a lined baking tray and use your fingers to flatten it into a thick, round shape. Cover with a clean cloth and leave to stand for 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 180C.

After an hour, gently press down the dough to remove any excess air bubbles. 

Cut deep lines along and across the length and width of the dough. Press the vegan cheese batons into the lines.

Make the "garlic butter" by combining the melted margarine with red onion, parsley, garlic and salt. Mix well then brush over the cheesy dough, making sure to cover the edges as well.

Bake for 30 minutes, then place under a grill for another 5 minutes for extra browning on top.

Serve warm and enjoy!

Tuesday 2 March 2021

Vegan Prosecco and Pink Lemonade Cake | 4 Layer Celebration Cake

I dreamt this cake up in my mind, knew exactly how I wanted it to look, and was curious to experiment with cake flavours I'd never tried before. Something about celebrating my birthday during lockdown made we want to go all out with my cake this year. Sure, I could have looked up vegan bakeries in my city and had something delivered, but I had the unquenchable urge to take on this cake project myself. Not only because baking is my idea of fun, but because I had all the ingredients I needed to bring this to life. 

If you try this cake at home, please share your feedback and pictures with me over on Instagram. Tag @vegannigerian for a repost!

Flavours, Textures and Inspiration

When you think of Prosecco, you think sparkles and bubbles and having a flipping social life. I miss attending those in-person events where copious glasses of Prosecco are handed out while you make awkward conversation with groups of people you just met. Sigh. A vegan Prosecco cake certainly has that air of sophistication about it, wouldn't you agree? 

Just as sophisticated as pink lemonade. I first came to know about this drink from watching The Sound of Music as a kid. There's a scene where the elegant Baroness Scraeder, Captain Von Trapp and Uncle Max sip this rose-tinted concoction on the terrace of the Von Trapp mansion. Très chic...though Uncle Max seemed to be put off by the colour. Seeing as lemon cake happens to be one of my all time favourites, I thought I'd elevate it slightly with this rosy twist, which includes whole fresh strawberries, fragrant lemon zest and lashings of freshly squeezed lemon juice. 

Once baked, the sponges were doused with their corresponding liquids to intensify the flavours and keep them moist during the decorating process. The cream-coloured layers were soaked with more Prosecco. The pink layers were soaked with more fresh lemon juice. 

The sponges are incredibly light, delicate, fluffy and aromatic. Each mouthful had me wanting to waltz across a bunch of soft, puffy clouds. 

The rich chocolate ganache drip topping and fresh berries are a beautiful addition. Think sparkling wine served with chocolate dipped strawberries, and you get the luxurious intention of this cake.

4-Layer Cake

The cake is ambitiously made up of four alternating layers of Prosecco and pink lemonade sponges, held together with thin layers of vanilla buttercream. If you are looking to make a more respectable two-layer version, simply halve the ingredients below.

The pink layer contains fresh lemon juice and strawberries. You can certainly stop there and have a pale pink coloured sponge, but I wanted to intensify the colour slightly, so I added a few drops of red gel food colouring.


I recommend giving yourself two days to make this cake. One day to bake the sponges, the second day to decorate. You could technically do both on the same day, but it will be a lot of work. Furthermore, refrigerating the cakes overnight help the sponges become a bit more solid, preventing them from potentially falling apart or splitting whilst decorating. Remember that these are going to be extremely moist, fluffy and delicate cakes when straight out of the oven.

Gluten-Free Version

I can't say for sure how this cake will turn out using gluten-free flour, but I would certainly encourage you to experiment. Try using a blended gluten-free self-raising flour such as this one. I would also recommend adding some xantham gum (2 tsp per cake batter) as a stabiliser.


To execute this cake, you'll need two 20cm sandwich cake tins. If you only have one at home, that's okay, but you'll have to do 4 rounds of baking instead of two if you're making four layers. 

Also handy to have an immersion hand blender to make the strawberry milk for the pink lemonade layer. 

Then your life will be a whole lot easier if you have a hand mixer for the buttercream, but you can use a good old wooden spoon to beat the margarine and sugar together instead. 

An offset spatula will make the decorating process a breeze.


For the Prosecco sponges

- 4 cups self-raising flour (or all-purpose flour mixed with 3 tsp baking powder)

- 3 teaspoons baking soda

- pinch of salt

- 1.5 cups caster sugar

- 2/3 cup vegetable or sunflower oil

-2 cups Prosecco (plus extra 1/4 cup)

For the Pink Lemonade sponges

- 4 cups self-raising flour (or all-purpose flour mixed with 3 tsp baking powder)

- 3 teaspoons baking soda

- pinch of salt

- 1.5 cups caster sugar

- 2/3 cup vegetable or sunflower oil

- 1.5 cups vegan milk (such as almond, oat or soya)

- 8 fresh strawberries (topped and roughly chopped)

- 1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice

- 2 tablespoons lemon zest (plus extra 1/4 cup)

- few drops of red gel food colouring (optional)

For the buttercream frosting 

- 2 cups vegan margarine 

- 4 cups icing sugar

- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract 

- 2-3 tablespoons Prosecco or vegan milk

- 3-4 drops red gel food colouring (optional)

For the chocolate ganache and fruit topping

- 2 cups dark or vegan chocolate buttons

- 1/2 cup vegan milk 

- 2-3 cups of fresh fruit such as strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, sliced mango, raspberries, etc.


1. Preheat the oven to 180 C. Lightly grease two round 20cm sandwich cake tins with some vegan margarine and line the bottom of each cake tin with a round of parchment paper.

2. To make the Prosecco cakes, add all the ingredients to a large bowl and gently fold until the mixture is well combined and smooth. Do not over mix and do not stir too vigorously - this is to ensure a light, fluffy sponge. Divide the batter evenly between the two prepared cake tins, smooth out the tops and bake in the middle shelf for 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean. Once baked, allow to cool in the cake tins for 15 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack to cool completely. Once cool, spoon the extra 1/4 cup of Prosecco over both sponges to soak them slightly.

3. To make the pink lemonade cakes, start by blending the vegan milk, fresh strawberries and lemon juice together in a jug using an immersion blender. You can also use a regular blender for this. Then add all ingredients into a large bowl, including the strawberry/lemon milk and fold gently until well combined. Do not over mix or stir too vigorously - this is to ensure a light, fluffy sponge. Transfer the cake batter into two prepared 20cm cake sandwich tins, smooth out the tops and bake in the middle shelf for 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean. Allow to cool in the cake tins for 15 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack to cool completely. Once cool, spoon the extra 1/4 cup of lemon juice over both sponges to soak them slightly.

4. Gently wrap all 4 sponges individually in cling film and refrigerate overnight. 

5. Make the vanilla buttercream by combining all the buttercream ingredients in a large bowl with a hand mixer. If you have a stand mixer, that works great too. I wanted a pinkish streak to my cake frosting and so I added a few drops of red gel food colouring to about a quarter of my frosting - this is entirely optional.

6. Assemble the cake on a cake stand or cake board by sandwiching the sponges with thin layers of buttercream. Frost the sides and top of the cake with a large offset spatula. The top doesn't need to be too perfect as you will be covering it with chocolate ganache, but make it as smooth as you can to avoid too many lumps. I don't like a lot of icing on my cakes, so the buttercream was spread pretty thinly around, almost resembling a semi-naked cake. (Note: if you want more buttercream frosting around your cake, by all means double the buttercream ingredient quantities)

7. To make the chocolate ganache topping, melt the dark chocolate in the microwave in 30 second intervals, stirring the chocolate after each interval. When you see it starting to melt, add the vegan milk and heat for another 30 seconds. Stir well until the chocolate is completely melted (you may need to give it an extra 20 seconds or so). You should have a smooth, shiny, thick but pourable ganache. Allow to cool for 2-3 minutes before pouring over the top of your cake. Use an offset spatula to gently spread it over the top, allowing some to naturally drip down the sides to create a drip effect. 

8. Decorate the top of the cake with chopped or whole fresh fruit. You can even sprinkle on some desiccated coconut or chopped nuts and seeds for added decoration. Totally up to you!

Enjoy! Remember to share your creations with me on Instagram

Monday 1 March 2021

Savoury Rice and Cassava Pancakes | Vegan and Gluten-Free


For pancake day last month, I thought I'd switch things up with this savoury pancake recipe. I've shared multiple sweet pancake recipes over the years, from sweet potato to banana to hemp to plantain to pounded yam pancakes. It's fair to say that I love my pancakes.

This particular recipe was a challenge. I've been on an oil-free kick and so frying was out of the question. Tough when you're working with a messy, sticky batter. So these are baked instead. Can they even be called pancakes anymore??

The cassava in this recipe is in the form of garri (grated, dried, fermented cassava) but I can see this working with fine cassava flour as well. If you try it this way, please share your feedback with me. Click here for the brand of garri I like to use.

Enjoy the recipe video above!


- 1 cup jasmine rice

- 1.5 cups garri (plus extra for dusting)

- 1/2 red bell pepper, finely diced

- 1 small red onion, finely chopped

- 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped

- 1 small aubergine, finely chopped

- 1 cup shredded cabbage

- handful fresh parsley, roughly chopped

- 1 teaspoon dried mixed herbs

- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

- pinch of salt


Pre-heat your oven to 200C.

Cook the jasmine rice with 4 cups of water until completely soft and most of the water has been absorbed. Allow to cool.

Blend the cooked rice in a food processor with one cup of water until smooth. Pour into a large mixing bowl. Add the garri, along with all the other vegetables and seasonings. Stir until well incorporated.

Prepare a baking tray by lining with some baking paper or foil. Scoop one heap tablespoon of the batter into into clean palm, dust with a little extra garri and gently shape into a medium-sized pancake. Place on the baking tray and repeat the process with the rest of the batter.

Bake for 30-35 minutes then leave to cool slightly before serving. I served mine with some Efo Riro (spinach stew), chopped parsley and more shredded cabbage.