Chai Latte Lovers: Vegan Chai Tres Leches Cake

Tres Leches Cake

Indulge spice-loving dessert aficionados with this aromatic twist on a classic tres leches cake saturated with chai-spiced milk. Cardamom, cloves, and cinnamon permeate the tender cake layers with luscious whipped cream frosting for sweet vibes.

As a tea nut, I’m endlessly fascinated by innovative interpretations of recipes to showcase distinctive cultural flavors. Tres leches cake has its roots in Latin America, featuring sponge cake soaked with three kinds of milk – sweetened condensed, evaporated and heavy cream. This chai-inspired version infuses those creamy liquids with an aromatic blend of ginger, cinnamon, clove and black peppercorn. After soaking, the cake takes on a lovely masala chai hue.

While traditional tres leches use evaporated and condensed dairy milk, non-dairy milks like coconut and almond work seamlessly for the chai cake soak too. Steeping the aromatic spices directly in warmed non-dairy milk allows their flavors to fully bloom before being incorporated. Cardamom, clove and nutmeg subtly perfume the cake with hints of sweetness and spice. And since coconut milk adds natural sweetness, less sugar is needed overall.

Topped with billowing whipped cream spiked with more chai spices, one bite transports you to a cozy café in Mumbai as nutmeg and ginger linger on your tongue. Serve petite wedges alongside steaming mugs of freshly brewed masala chai for a flavor experience blending comfort with decadence.

Vegan Chai Tres Leches Cake with Masala Whipped Cream

Cake Ingredients:

  • 1 3⁄4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1⁄2 cup solid coconut oil
  • 1 cup plus 2 tbsp sugar, divided
  • 4 oz. silken tofu
  • 2 tbsp aquafaba (chickpea liquid)
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1⁄2 cup plain, unsweetened non-dairy milk
  • 1 tbsp masala chai powder

Chai Milk Mixture:

  • One 13.5 oz can coconut milk
  • One 14 oz can sweetened condensed non-dairy milk
  • 2 tbsp masala chai powder
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup

Masala Whipped Cream:

  • 1 cup coconut cream, chilled
  • 2 tbsp powdered sugar
  • 1⁄2 tsp vanilla
  • 1⁄2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1⁄4 tsp ground ginger
  • Pinch of nutmeg

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease a 9-inch cake pan and line with parchment paper.
  2. Whisk together flour and baking powder. With mixer, cream oil and 1 cup sugar until fluffy. Beat in tofu, aquafaba, and vinegar.
  3. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients in thirds, alternating with non-dairy milk combined with chai powder.
  4. Pour batter into the prepared pan. Bake 30-35 minutes until set. A toothpick should come out clean.
  5. For chai milk soak, warm all ingredients except syrup together until steaming, stirring to dissolve powder. Stir in syrup.
  6. As soon as the cake comes out of oven, use a skewer to poke holes all over. Gradually pour chai milk mixture evenly over the cake. Allow to soak for at least one hour.
  7. Make masala whipped cream by whisking all ingredients to soft peaks.
  8. Top soaked cake with whipped cream and garnish with cinnamon sugar before serving. Enjoy with masala chai tea!

Here is a non vegan variation on the recipe:

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