Today is my daughter’s 13th birthday! Woohoo! Another journey with a teenager. I am not sure if I am ready for it but what is a mom to do?
Celebrate with chocolate cake, that’s what we do.
We had my family over on the weekend to help celebrate. When making a cake for my family, I need to consider gluten-free, dairy-free and egg-free.
So this is what I came up with. (For you visual folks, I promised my daughter that I will make another one on the weekend so I will take step-by-step photos and post them here. Watch this space)
I had chickpea flour on hand and did not have time to go out to get brown rice flour and such so I decided to make the chickpea flour work.
I mixed it up with baking powder, baking soda, salt, coconut sugar and cacao powder.
I considered that chickpea flour is quite dry so to avoid a dry crumbly cake, I soaked some flax seed (as if I was using and egg) and shredded a zucchini (who doesn’t have tons of zucchini right now?!).
I wanted a rich tasting chocolate so I took my best bar of dark chocolate and melted it. Organic, 85% cacao .
Still thinking about the chickpea flour being dry, I thought that I would use olive oil. It makes a very smooth pesto so why not a smooth, creamy cake? I was worried about the flavour of olive oil taking over but then I considered that the chickpea flour flavour is also strong and so is chocolate so I decided that the flavours would likely blend together.
I put all the liquid ingredients in a bowl (minus the water) with the zucchini and flax and mixed them together with my hand blender to create a smooth mixture.
This I added to the dry ingredients and then slowly added the water to get the consistency of a thinner muffin batter.
Once baked, the cake was beautifully high and I was exited! Unfortunately, it did slowly fall. I know that there is a scientific reason for this but I am not sure what that is.
To make it a true birthday cake, I made an icing with cashews. I put all of the ingredients in the food processor and in a few minutes I had heaven. I put this on top of the cake and all around.
When I served the slices, I put a dollop of raspberries (defrosted from the freezer) and a little touch of the raspberry juice on each one.
p.s. 9 of us ate the entire cake! My brother eating most of it. HeeHee!
- 3 teaspoons ground flax seed, soaked in 3 Tablespoons water
- 2 cups chickpea flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- pinch salt, himalayan or sea
- ½ cup sweetener...raw cane sugar, coconut sugar, maple syrup, dates that have been soaked and pureed
- 2 teaspoons cacao powder
- Cashew Icing
- 1 cup cashews, soaked a few hours
- ½ cup coconut oil, melted
- ½ cup cacao powder
- ¼ cup maple syrup
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon lime juice
- 1 cup very finely shredded zucchini (courgette), that has been peeled
- 100g dark chocolate bar, melted (I used 85% cacao, organic)
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- ⅔ cup olive oil or ⅓ cup melted coconut oil and ⅓ cup olive oil
- 1 cup water (may need less if using a liquid sweetener)
- Preheat oven to 350F
- Prepare a 9" cake pan with parchment paper or greasing.
- In a small bowl, place the ground flax and the water. Stir and let sit to absorb.
- In a large bowl, combine chickpea flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cacao powder. If you are using a dry sweetener, add it to this mixture.
- Shred the zucchini in a separate bowl.
- Melt the chocolate in a double boiler.
- To the zucchini, add the flax, melted chocolate, vanilla and oil. If using a liquid sweetener, add this now. Mix until smooth. You will find it helpful to use your hand blender for this.
- Add this mixture to the flour and stir until combined. Add the water, ½ cup at a time until it is smooth. Consistency should be thinner than muffin batter but not runny.
- Place in a 9" cake pan and bake 25-30 minutes.
- The cake will rise up and look fluffy. Be prepared for it to fall and be a short cake. Doesn't change the taste though!
- While the cake is baking, make the cashew icing. Place all ingredients in your food processor. Start by pulsing until the mixture starts to break up. Then process for a few minutes. You may need to stop the processor a few times to scrap down the sides. Continue processing until it is smooth. Put in the fridge for about 30 minutes to firm up. Now it is ready to spread around the cake.
- When serving, top with a few raspberries, if desired