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No Eggs – No Butter? Peanut Butter Scones And Lemon Lime Sunshine Cake From My Sweet Vegan

Baking without eggs and butter past midnight a couple of days ago…"Why would that be?" you might be wondering. Did I run out of baking supplies when a sweet craving hit? Was I cramming in homework at the last minute? None of the above…although I did in fact re-do a post just to update the pictures as Santa finally delivered my present and accessories. Looking at the old shots could not do these baked good justice anymore. So I decided to bake them again and pretended today was December 25th…any excuse to stay in my pjs on my day off is a good one in my opinion. But why out of all the things I could bake, did I decide to make vegan scones and cake?

Well, a couple of months ago, I received a copy from my dear friend Hannah’s first cookbook, aptly titled My Sweet Vegan. I got to baking her Lemon Lime Sunshine Cake that very same day and about every other weekend since then. Same with the Peanut Butter Scones, they are on B’s list of most requested breakfast items. I feel bad because I have been telling everybody about this book, promising Hannah and her publisher a review of the recipes I have tried so far and in the end I keep it all to myself. No more! The book is a perfect reflection of Hannah’s personality, warm and friendly, inviting you to try new things and be opened to the world around. When I first got to know her, I had no idea this very mature soul both in her writing and approach to food, came in such a young and cute package.

Look at that breakfast of champions! That is one awesome Peanut Butter Scone! I love to make these for brunch and take them (minus the glaze) to the gym when the 4 o’clock sugar craving hits. In that spirit, the book is written with the whole spectrum of dessert lovers in mind, vegan or not, and it reads like a novel. Hannah generously gives us her tried and true, favorite recipes as well as tips and tricks to achieve the best tasting treats. Reading through it is like spending time with a good friend over a good brownie or a cup of coffee. Did I say brownie? Yes…and many more like Strawberry Love Muffins, Butterscotch Blondies, Whoopie Pies, Mocha Devastation Cake, Ginger Dream Pie, Five Minute Coconut Fudge….and I am just scratching the surface.

Although not vegan, B. and I do respect the animals that feed us, giving them the day off once in a while. I am more into tofu, soy milk agave nectar, with a weakness of vegan "cream cheese" than he is, but he is a good sport and when I told him I was going to bake from Hannah’s book, he took it upon himself to give me the "Carnivore opinion". So far, everything has been a hit and when he asked about all these alternative items, I handed him the book where Hannah explains in detail her vegan ingredient guide at the begining. I added that if he flipped a couple more pages, she had a section entitled "Tools of the trade" where she explained everything anybody needed to know for baking. His response "I might have agreed to try vegan, but am still not ready to step into the kitchen, meat-lover or not…nice try!" Ah well, can’t blame me for dreaming!

See my midnight snack right out of the oven…? That’s the Lemon Lime Sunshine Cake baked in individual portion instead of a Bundt pan, so I feel even more virtuous stuffing my face eating dessert. I have stopped counting the number of times I have taken this to our weekend oyster roasts with the neighbors. Everytime I make it I end up skipping the glaze that is supposed to go on top because somehow the yogurt, lemon and lime juice and sugar in the batter end up forming their own curd around the edges so that just a dusting of powdered sugar suffice.

I made the big mistake a couple of weeks ago to lend it to my friend "Lucy-The Vegan"…I thought I would never see it again. It appeared she was baking her way through it with great success and that is no small testimonial to Hannah’s recipe when you know that Lucy is not much of a dessert person and a novice baker. I love baking from it because I can relax, kick back, knowing that Hannah has tried her recipes several times and gives us only her favorites. I can open the book at any category (sweet tarts, cookies and bars, cakes and cupcakes, pies and tarts, miscellaneous morsels and desserts) and just make up a treat. Some items take a little longer than others but are by no means daunting or intricate. I also really like the food allergy index at the end of the book. I have more and more clients with food allergies or dietary restrictions so I know that I can bake something without second guessing if I did not sneak in something they could not have without even paying attention.

What is next on the baking list from My Sweet Vegan? Well, I am baking the Triple Threat Chocolate "Cheese" Cake to a friend’s baby shower tomorrow and the Cookies and Creme Pound Cake for my mother in law’s garden club next week.

What? No recipes? In the spirit of supporting writers and young writers out there, I strongly encourage you to buy the book. I have already gotten a couple more for wedding and birthday presents and both recipients fell in love with the recipes, feel and gorgeous pictures taken by Hannah.

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Cannelle Et Vanille February 23, 2008 um 12:34 am

I will definitely buy her cookbook. I am not vegan but I do try to go meatless a few times a month and I need to learn to bake vegan, gluten free and so on. Thank you for sharing this. Also, those little dishes you baked the cake in are beautiful! Love them!

BitterSweet February 23, 2008 um 12:55 am

Simply gorgeous! My recipes never looked or sounded better. ๐Ÿ™‚

LyB February 23, 2008 um 2:15 am

Such great pictures, you are an artist Helen! That was a wonderful post, I will definitely put My Sweet Vegan on my(long)wish list of cookbooks.

Mandy February 23, 2008 um 2:50 am

congrats on the new camera! That’s the first thing I notice when I saw your photos on flickr. ๐Ÿ™‚

Sarah February 23, 2008 um 3:51 am

Yum! Peanut butter scones? What a great idea. I’ve made scones pretty much every weekend for the past couple months…maybe I’ll try peanut butter next.

Still waiting for a few cookbooks in the mail, so this one might have to go on my wish list!

LisaRene February 23, 2008 um 8:27 am

I’m a lacto-vegetarian motivated by animal cruelty issues. There is no right answer for everyone but it feels great to know that non-veg/vegan bakers/cooks are willing to give vegan/vegetarian a try. Thank your for this respectful post.

Rosa's Yummy Yums February 23, 2008 um 8:37 am

Peanut Butter Scones. Now that sounds very interesting! Great recipes! I’m not a vegan, but I like such kinds of foods…



MyKitchenInHalfCups February 23, 2008 um 10:16 am

I guess I must have at least two copies: one for me and one for the vegan son! I have to try the scones!!

Anonymous February 23, 2008 um 11:36 am

you have convinced me, im a believer. those cakes and scones looks amazing! i cant wait to get my hands on a copy of that book…

Gretchen Noelle February 23, 2008 um 11:41 am

These look great. I am about ready for breakfast…have any of those PB scones left over?

Anonymous February 23, 2008 um 3:18 pm

I’m eyeing your beautiful blue pots you baked those cakes in, where did you get them from? Your photos look gorgeous as usual

Obsessive Foodie or Food Addict….You Decide February 23, 2008 um 3:28 pm

I am not vegan or a veg-head but those look wonderful. Perhaps I should check the book out…I am ALWAYS looking for a healthier way to make things….although some of those vegan ingredients out there scare me. Always up for something new though!!

Rachel@fairycakeheaven February 23, 2008 um 4:50 pm

This looks fantastic, hope I can get the book sent to Ireland.

And I got the same camera this week, it’s an early birthday present for me am going out tomorrow to try my hand with my macro lens.

And as always your photos are a dream!

LizNoVeggieGirl February 23, 2008 um 6:19 pm

I have already tried an ABUNDANCE of recipes from 'My Sweet Vegan,' all with such fabulous results – so glad that you too love Hannah’s incredible cookbook!! And kudos for sharing just how amazing baked goods can be, without butter or eggs :0)

Anonymous February 23, 2008 um 8:02 pm

Congrats on the new gear. Your photos look great..and so do the baked goods ๐Ÿ™‚

Rasa Malaysia February 24, 2008 um 1:36 am

I love those little pans you have…sure make the cake so much more prettier (and cuter) than baking it in a bundt pan. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Chris February 24, 2008 um 2:24 am

See, now? You’ve made me have a reason to ignore my self imposed cookbook ban! I saw the book in the store a few weeks ago, but…
Oh well….what so good about a ban anyway?

I love the first picture. Love the poka-dots and funky napkins! ๐Ÿ™‚

Anita (Married… with dinner) February 24, 2008 um 3:38 am

When you come to SF to visit, you have to give me a tutorial on the 50/1.8 lens — I have the same one and every last shot I take with it is blown out, especially in the highlights. Yours, though, are gorgeous.

AngiePangie February 24, 2008 um 4:29 am

"Although not vegan, B. and I do respect the animals that feed us, giving them the day off once in a while."

I love this quote from your post, it’s an absolutely perfect way to describe how I feel. You’ve just managed to put it into words much more eloquently than I ever have.

For a while, I was really ill and was forced to eat vegan, in an attempt to control my pain. I went into the diet resentful of giving up so many things. I came out of the diet with an understanding and new respect for a different life style.

I’m putting this cookbook on my wish-list for Mother’s Day. And I’m sending you a big *smile* for making me say "Yea! What she said, too!"

Peabody February 24, 2008 um 6:17 am

I almost make the sunshine cake. You should try the fruit focaccia bread…even my picky hubby ate that!

Anonymous February 24, 2008 um 2:56 pm

the lemon sunshine cake looks delicious, and i love a good scone. PB scone with some good jam? bring it on.

Ben February 24, 2008 um 5:24 pm

I am not vegan either, but this recipe sounds interesting, maybe? Hehehe. I’ll have to see more recipes like this to decide if I make it.

I am always here, too, ever since that time we met over at Kelly’s kitchen. And I hope my site loads faster now, I did something wrong but I think I already fixed it. Thanks for letting me know ๐Ÿ˜€


Veron February 24, 2008 um 6:37 pm

Great review of the book! I am admirer of Hannah’s bittersweet blog. She is so talented and at such a young age!

Cookie baker Lynn February 24, 2008 um 10:05 pm

It sounds like a wonderful book. Everything you made looks delicious!

Anonymous February 24, 2008 um 11:29 pm

I’m not a vegetarian but I could not have anything but admiration for such delicious looking scones made without egg&butter.

Cheryl February 25, 2008 um 3:40 pm

That is so awesome that you make these vegan things for her. I would love to try to make some of those for my vegetarian friend but she doesn’t like sweets.

Kelly-Jane February 25, 2008 um 7:17 pm

All the recipes look lovely, but peanut butter scones, oh yummy!

Madeleine March 9, 2008 um 7:30 pm

Where did you find those adorable little blue dishes? I’ve seen them in a number of posts and haven’t seen them anywhere but France. Any idea where I can find them?

Helene March 9, 2008 um 8:39 pm

Fahran and Madeleine: I found the dishes at a store called Tuesday Morning. They only had these 4 and since their prices are cheap they don’t keep much stock but I also saw them at World Market, Pier 1 and other places of the sort.

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