With this recipe my project for this Vegan MoFo has became clear:
GMC (Genetically Modified Cupcakes).
I began with the azuki bean paste filled cupcakes with green tea and caramel frosting. This is the time for one of my favorite Italian dishes ever, eggplant parmigiana, to turn into a cupcake.
You can serve it as an appetizer or as an alternative for your sandwich time, I do suggest to warm the sauce a bit and fill the cupcakes before serving, otherwise the cake would get wet.
Ingredients (makes 10 cupcakes)
For the batter
1 1/2 cup all purpose flour
3/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup soy milk at room temperature
1/3 cup canola oil
For the frosting
1 cup soy cream at room temperature (I used Tofutti)
1/3 cup cashew nuts
2 tbsp soy milk at room temperature
basil leaves minced
For the eggplant sauce
5 tomatoes or canned tomatoes
1 garlic clove
extra-virgin olive oil
pinch of salt
For the decoration
10 thin slices of eggplant
canola oil to fry
basil leaves minced
cashew nuts minced and toasted
Start by soaking cashew nuts overnight, drain the next day and blitz in the blender with soy milk until creamy.
For the eggplant sauce, if you are using fresh tomatoes, slice the skin and put them into hot water for a few seconds. This procedure allow the skin to come off easily. Peel, extract and discard the seeds and cube.
Wash eggplant and cut into little cubes. Heat extra-virgin olive oil in a pan, add the garlic and gently sizzle for a couple of minutes. Add eggplant cubes and sauté until golden colored. Pour tomato cubes or canned tomatoes, pinch of salt, sugar and cook with a saucepan lid for 10 minutes. Take off the lid and reduce the sauce. Turn off the heat, add some basil leaves and let it rest.
Preheat the oven to 180°.
For the batter whisk in a bowl soy milk and canola oil. In another bowl measure out flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add dry ingredients to the wet and whisk until smooth. Scoop the batter into cupcake pans and transfer to the oven. Bake for 20-25 minutes, remove the pan from the oven and allow to cool completely.
For the decoration deep-fry eggplant slices and dry.
Cut a cone shape out of each cupcake and cut the point off the cone. Fill the hole with the eggplant sauce and replace the top.
I suggest to warm the sauce a bit and fill the cupcakes before serving, otherwise the cake would get wet.
Spread the frosting on the top of each cupcake. Garnish with a slice of fried eggplant and sprinkle cashew nuts toasted, fresh black pepper and basil leaves minced.