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Moist Chocolate Oil Cake

21 Nov

This amazing Chocolate Oil Cake also happens to be a one mixing bowl vegan cake – easy to make with no eggs or dairy. The water and oil in the recipe make it an incredibly moist yet dense cake for any chocolate cake lover.

The key to this recipe? Quality (unsweetened) cocoa powder. Seriously. Find the good stuff and never look back – it makes a tremendous difference. I found it at my local spice & grain store.

Chocolate cake

Moist Chocolate Cake (vegan & one bowl) | Sabraheart



  • Cake flour
  • Unsweetened cocoa powder
  • Baking soda
  • White Sugar
  • Filtered water (from my brita, not directly from the tap)
  • Canola oil
  • White distilled vinegar
  • Vanilla extract


Add the dry ingredients, then the wet ingredients into the bowl

  • Preheat the oven to 350F or 175C
  • Measure 3 cups of cake flour and sift (this is an important step) into a big mixing bowl
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (sift)
  • 1 cup of white sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

Mix the dry ingredients with a whisk or fork before you add the wet ingredients.

  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 tablespoons distilled white vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Mix by hand with a spatula until smooth. Pour into a 9×13 inch pan  and bake for 35 minutes. If you are using a smaller/larger baking pan, make sure the batter fills up just a bit over 1/2 of pan, but not more.

Insert toothpick into the center of the cake and it should come out dry. Let the cake rest before icing (if you want to).

I’ve also used this recipe for dairy-free cupcakes. I just poured 3 tablespoons into each cupcake and baked for 20 minutes. It makes 24 cupcakes .

*This cake does not need to be refrigerated.

**Inspired by the Chocolate Oil Cake recipe at All Recipes

Additional Recipes:

Rich Non Dairy Banana Bread 

Grape Leaves Stuffed with Goat Cheese, Walnut & Cranberries

Rita’s NY Style Cheesecake

Rice and Lentil Stew

15 Nov

My husband is a vegetarian and I am often on the hunt for new recipes with some version on non-gassy protein alternative. Often I end up making mujadra – a delicious rice and lentil dish. It is easy and takes about 30 minutes from start to finish.

Now luckily for me, I have a husband that is happy eating the same thing over and over. However, I love to experiment and make new dishes for the both of us. So tonight I made an experiment and it was deeeelicious.

I was inspired by mujedra and makluba (a hearty dish of rice, lamb/chicken, eggplants, cauliflower and rice).

The recipe is step-intensive as this dish is all about the layering of flavors. Read through the recipe at least twice.

Rice, Lentil & Eggplant Stew

Serves 4


I need to work on my food presentation


1 small eggplant

1 onion

1 cup of dry brown lentils (mine are not fast cook)

1/4 tsp coriander seeds

1/4 tsp  mustard seeds

1 tablespoon of turmeric

1 tsp of cinnamon

2 bay leaves

1 clove of garlic (or a bit more if you like garlic, or none if you don’t)

1 cup of brown short grain rice

Canola oil (or your oil of choice except olive oil)

Cooking instructions:

First pot/saucepan 

  • Pour one cup of lentils into a saucepan or small pot
  • Cover the lentils with water
  • Add the bay leaves.
  • Put a lid on the saucepan and let it cook on a medium flame for 20 minutes (or until they are soft)

Second pot/saucepan

  • Wash + dice the eggplant
  • Add eggplant into a bowl and sprinkle about 1 tablespoon of salt on the eggplant and mix with your hands. You want to dry out the eggplant a bit
  • Chop a whole onion + garlic
  • Place the saucepan on medium heat and add a tablespoon of canola oil. Give it a minute or two so the oil gets hot.
  • Add the onion + garlic and give the pot a good shake to coat the onion + garlic in oil. Leave until they turn a gorgeous yellow color (around 10 minutes). You do not want to mix for the first couple of minutes.
  • Once the onion is a rich yellow color, pour it out into a large bowl
  • Add another tablespoon of canola oil and add the diced eggplant. Mix it a bit to soften. You need to mix it once in awhile while it’s cooking so it does not stick and burn. (Cooking should take no more than 10 minutes).
  • Pour the cooked eggplant over the onion in the bowl
  • Now it is time for the gorgeous flavors. Add the spices to the pot – coriander seeds, mustard seeds, turmeric and cinnamon.
  • Stir the spices- by frying the spices in the remaining oil/hot pot, we are opening up the flavors
  • Add 1/4 of a cup of water, mix and scrape the bottom of the pot to make sure you got all the spices.
  • Pour the liquid over the eggplant and onions.
  • Transfer the onion and eggplant back into the pot and add the cup of raw brown short grain rice on the top.
  • Pour water until it just covers the top of the rice (around 2 cups), add the lid and let it sit on the stovetop for about 20 minutes on the medium flame.
  • Once you cannot see the water anymore, turn off the heat and leave the top on for another 10 minutes.

Now it’s time to combine the two pots.

  • Strain the lentils in case there is remaining water (I always have too much water).
  • Remove the bay leaves
  • Mix the cooked lentils well into the second pot with the rice,eggplant and onion.
  • Serve

**The dish does not need any additional salt since we never washed it off the eggplant

Brining & Cooking a NY Style Corned Beef

3 Apr

I decided to embark on a journey and make my own corned beef from scratch. And man, was it worth it. I semi-followed a bunch of recipes and below is my version.

About 3 kilos of beef brisket or navel (#3 cut of meat – ask the butcher to remove all of the fat)
2 liter of  water (enough to cover submerge the meat and then some)
8 ounces kosher salt, by weight
Pickling spices (recipe below)
4 cloves garlic (whole, smashed or pressed)
1 large food grade container to fit the meat and the water (cannot be metal, aluminum, garbage bag or cast iron)

To prepare: 

Step 1. Boil at least 1/2 liter of water

Step 2: Pour hot water into (cleaned) food container

Step 3: Measure the salt using a scale.

Step 4: Pour the salt into the water, stir

Step 5: Pour the pickling spices into the water

Step 6: Pour in the remaining COLD water

Step 7: Wait until the water is room temperature

Step 8: Submerge the meat and hold it there until it gets heavier and stays below the water line. You can place a plate on top of the meat to keep it submerged.

Step 9: Place in the fridge for 5 days

To cook:

Step 1: Spill out the liquid and rinse the meat

Step 2: Fill up a large enough pot and submerge the meat in clean water. On a low simmer, boil it for one hour

Step 3: Remove from stove top and pour out the water.

Step 4. Fill up the pot and meat with clean water

Step 5. Put the pot back on the stove top and cover, let it simmer for 3 hours.

Step 6: Pout our the water, let the meat rest in a clean container

Step 7: Refrigerate whole  or serve

Step 8: Cut AGAINST the grain. Pay attention to the grain.

Homemade Pickling Spices:

1/2 cup of mixed peppercorns (red/green/black)

6 Bay leaves

6-10 cardamon   pods

1 tablespoon of all spice berries

1 tablespoon of ground ginger

1 tablespoon of sweet paprika

3 whole cinnamon sticks

I hope y’all enjoy it!