Friday, July 1, 2011

Flourless Beet Chocolate Cake & Farmin' Friday

For my birthday I really wanted to blow out candles. I wanted some tradition this year. Oh, I got candles. I got the ones that don't blow out. Ever. I yelled "die!" and dropped them to drown in my glass of water.

OK, I wanted some tradition. What I didn't want was the traditional sugar/flour overload. The hubs wouldn't be up for making a raw carrot cake, and besides, that's boring. I wanted chocolate! I've never liked chocolate cake. Until, I had beet chocolate cake. It was so amazing. But while the one I refer to was made with whole wheat flour, coconut oil and without eggs, it was still sugary and well.. full of flour?

I've never tried to make a raw beet cake (ooh, challenge!). I know that may not sound so great, but I love beets. They are naturally sweet, healthy and I'm pretty much sold on the impossibly vibrant hue. I love how it stains my fingers.

What I've found with many gluten free recipes is they are full of butter and eggs. We do have a lot of eggs around, but after many years of baking without them, I just don't use them. Why? I'm used to vegan cooking and baking and so I just do what I'm used to when I make say.. zucchini bread or something.

I googled healthy beet chocolate cake, wheat free chocolate cake, flourless chocolate cake.. and most recipes were full of butter, cream and eggs. While, I could indulge in adding egg, I wasn't ready for the full hit on my cholesterol. So, this was a huge experiment. And, yeah, I kind of made my own birthday cake...

I was determined to add beets. Overall it was successful. I couldn't get it out of the pan very easily, but it tasted pretty good. I loved the not so sweet taste.. but my guests may have preferred it sweeter since they covered it in vanilla ice cream!

Flourless Beet Chocolate Cake
1-2 oz. melted Dark Chocolate or about 1/2 C Cocoa powder
6 Tbs Coconut Oil
3/4 Tbs Vanilla
1/2 tsp dried Stevia
2-3 Good squirts Agave
3 Beets, medium, shredded
3-4 eggs
pinch of salt
pinch of cayenne (yeah baby)

So.. a few notes:
*I used part (half of each amount shown) melted chocolate and part cocoa (raw cacao has been giving me headaches).. because I was just experimenting. You can do either, or both.
*I didn't want it that sweet and still wanted ti healthy, so I used stevia.. then I thought.. ok.. just a couple squirts of agave... soo...
I used 4 medium eggs.. if you have large eggs, use 3.. I didn't say this was vegan right? You can keep in mind when purchasing eggs (support your local egg farmer!), that free range eggs are lower in cholesterol and higher in healthy omegas. I heard it here. That's just my biased opinion. Why eat eggs that came out of an unhappy, abused animal? Some say, why eat eggs at all? Yeah, I was there once.

Back to your normal programming: CAKE.
1) Shred the beets (I used a food processor). Simmer on the stove, covered, until tender.. about 20 minutes. You won't need to add liquid.. the beets have enough.
2) In another bowl, combine melted coconut oil, and all other ingredients, stir.
3) When beets are done, transfer to food processor, puree, add the bowl of remaining ingredients, blend a bit more, scraping if needed.
4) Pour into greased (grease it better than I did) and maybe dusted with cocoa powder- cake pan. I used a 9 inch (I think.. I finger measured). You can use muffin tins too. It was thinner than I had planned. Next time I will double the recipe, or use a smaller/deeper dish.
5) Bake @ 350 for about 10 minutes. No, really. I looked in and the cake had a volcano growth on one side.. it was done. My oven runs hot.. and it will depend on your pan.. but start checking at 10 minutes.

Let cool.

Chocolate Icing
1 Tbs Cocoa powder
3 Tbs Coconut oil
1 tsp Vanilla

I whipped this together in a food processor. Then pour into a bowl, and chilled so the coconut oil would harden a bit, making an icing consistency.

Once cake is cool, ice, top with whatever you want (I did strawberries and coconut) and chill until ready to serve.

Farmin' Friday!
Dinner, one of my funny white chickens that does things like this:
Dust Bath in a Pot Full of Dirt
and was missing for a week? Story here.

Well, she is still alive! The last few days, every time I come in to feed her, she tried to stand up like "See? Don't give up on me!" and then falls back over. But today, she stood! Really, really stood! Using both feet. She's has been more aggressive with her daily strawberries (flinging them in the air) and eggs and is even eating feed now. So happy!! I think she's going to make it for sure. Every time I get that bad feeling, they prove me wrong. Except for the baby barred rock that died in my hand in May. :( I had a good feeling and she just, didn't.
Here she is in all her dirty glory..
Lost weight huh?
A lot going on. A lot growing. Fireweed is about to bloom, Lupine, Wild Iris (pictured below) Yarrow and Comfrey are out. Currants are green and I'm waiting like crazy for the strawberries on the beach to be ready!

The last photo is our 'surprise!' rooster. Silver Leghorn if I'm not mistaken. It messes up our roo to hen ratio a bit, especially given we will likely lose a few hens over the course of the year to various causes (i.e. hawks). He is very friendly and calm. I knew he was a roo when he was a few weeks old, but hoped against it anyway. He lets out a lil baby crow at sunrise (3 am or so) and when he hears me come to open the coop. Just a couple more weeks and they should be big enough to let loose with our adult flock.

I'll let pictures tell the rest:

Surprise! I'm a Purty Roo!

3 comments:

  1. The cake looks great! I am keen on trying making cakes and treats without flour and this is a great one to try. I also like the idea of making cous cous or polenta cake xx

    ReplyDelete
  2. beets? really? it looks delicious and i want to try it, but....beets?? :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. Beet sugar was used during the World Wars. That's how Red Velvet cake became red! Not so unusual as it turns out.

    ReplyDelete

Thanks for your input!

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