July 17, 2016

A more traditional (and flexible!) chocolate cake

Last weekend we had the whole extended family at our house for a family reunion.  There was everything to celebrate so we wanted a giant chocolate cake for dessert (there is always dessert with my family, always).
No-one in my family has allergies and so for a special occasion the 20+ of us range from ‘don’t care at all what’s in it unless its weird’ to ‘ooh that’s fun it’s healthier’ so I didn’t want to make a nut based paleo cake for that many people and wanted to go with spelt.  Sometimes paleo ingredients can be more expensive and I have no problem with grains, or good dairy occasionally so I made a more traditional version of a chocolate cake.  I know not everyone wants paleo so this is the age old family chocolate cake recipe that I grew up on and adapt to whatever ingredients I have on hand.  I’ve tried to note some of the different ways that I do it but the main one is what I did for the reunion because that was a hit!
Cake Ingredients:
1/2 cup grass fed organic butter (or 1/3 cup coconut oil)
1/2 cup good unrefined sweetener – I used molasses sugar last weekend for a nutrient rich sweetener and yesterday used a combo of that or maple but you can take your pick.
2 eggs at room temperature
1 tsp real vanilla
1/4 cup cocoa
1/4 cup ground almonds (this can be omitted and a flour used in it’s place, or another nut used but it does make the cake more deliciously gooey so I recommend it!)
1/2 cup whole spelt flour (this can be subbed for an oat flour or most other whole grain flours, or extra ground nuts to omit the grains BUT if you want a paleo cake I’d advise THIS one instead as its designed that way!)
2 tsp baking powder
pinch salt
Cream together the softened butter and the sugar or sweetener, and then beat in the eggs one at a time with the vanilla.  Mix all the dry ingredients together and then add them to the wet mix and gently fold it in until combined. Line a 6″ cake pan with parchment paper and bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes at 350 or until a skewer inserted in the middle comes out just clean. (i.e. it’s better undercooked than over – except beware raw eggs obviously – but personally, if theres a little bit left on the skewer I call it good to go!)
Fudge topping: 
(this will do two thin layers in the middle and on top, or a thicker layer just on top – double it to cover the sides or for thicker frosting layers.)
1 cup soaked dates
2T cocoa
2T date soak water
Pinch salt
This is an art and not a science so you have to use your eye a bit!  You’re looking for a date paste that you then add cocoa to to make a spreadable topping.  You can make the dates more soft by added a little of the soak water after initially blending, or if its too runny, add a little extra cocoa.  
Soak the dates in water for at least 3 hours then drain (but keep the liquid!) and blend them until they are smooth. Add in the date soak water as needed, then cocoa and blend again until it’s all combined and nicely smooth.  Adjust with extra cocoa/water as needed.
This frosting can be embellished with coconut cream, nut butter, vanilla, mint, and lots of other things but this is the most basic recipe that I start from. Enjoy!


3 Responses to “A more traditional (and flexible!) chocolate cake”

  1. Would raw cacao work? Also instead of grinding almonds, could you just use almond meal? I’m new to this way if eating and I SO appreciate your posts on Instagram!!!

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