Friday, September 2, 2011

Eating My Words: Chocolate Crumb Cake From BabyCakes

Okay, so does this look gluten-free, sugar-free, and vegan?

It doesn't taste like it either.

BabyCakes in the Lower East Side is pretty much the place in the city to get your snack on if you have certain dietary restrictions. They carry cupcakes, scones, donuts (!), and other delights that are either vegan, dairy-free, sugar-free, soy-free, name it, they have it.

Now....I don't usually like vegan baked goods; let's be real, I loathe them. Greasy with oil, very heavy, off tasting...give me butter, sugar, and eggs any day of the week, please. But after I had tried their mini donuts at their boardwalk location on Rockaway Beach, I decided to relent a bit, and expand my horizons. Because those donuts were really damn good. Moist, cakey, and light, with gooey icing. You really can't go wrong with that.

This Village Voice review encouraged me to do just that, and I picked up a slice of this cake. First thought: this is thing is HUGE. When I opened the clamshell case, all I could smell is chocolate. A good sign.

My first bite: oh dear Jesus. Gooey, dense chocolate goodness. The chocolate sauce drizzled over the top was delightfully sticky, the crumb topping, slightly crunchy. It's sweetened with agave nectar and pears, but you can't really taste them very much. I'm gonna guess that they use a really intense cocoa powder, because this was as rich and complex as any chocolate cake I've ever had. I ate half and saved the other piece to have with my lunch the next day, and it was still pristine.

So, don't worry, I'm not abandoning my precious eggs, milk, and sugar. No way, no how. But it's nice to know there are tasty, quality options for folks that want them.

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