Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Chocolate Beet Cake, Grain-Free!

I'm back! I had to take some time off to help care for my grandmother (94 and still going strong!) and play chauffeur (chauffeuse?) for my kids this summer while they enjoyed camps on Cape Cod while I drove around.

I did get to eat local food on the Cape, mostly lobster and lobster rolls. Lobsters were an insanely cheap, $4.99 a pound at the supermarket, and I really should have eaten more than I ended up ingesting.  I also got an abundance of fresh produce from our wonderful neighbor Jim across the street. I made kale chips (parmesan cheese and garlic powder were divine), tzatziki sauce and chocolate zucchini muffins.

Jim also gave me beets with the tops attached. After washing the tops three times to get the sand out, I sautéed them in bacon grease as a nice green side. But what to do with the beets themselves? I knew I could roast them, but that wouldn't get them into my kids. I knew from the past that they will eat chocolate beet cupcakes because I called them cupcakes.

I wanted to make a grain-free version so I could also enjoy them. These do contain almond flour, so obviously if you have an almond or tree-nut allergy, please don't eat these.

2.5 cups puréed beets
1/4 cup melted butter
3 eggs
3/4 cup coconut sugar (or plain sugar)
1 T vanilla
2 cups almond flour
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1/4 cup tapioca flour
1.5 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup Chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 400F.

Boil peeled beets until soft. Retain cooking water. Place beets in blender or food processor and purée. Add as much water as necessary to thin the beets enough to easily purée. You don't want beet soup, so it should be a thickish consistency.

Let the purée cool somewhat in a bowl. Whisk in three eggs, melted butter, sugar and vanilla. If you don't let it cool, the eggs with cook and then you'll have beet custard. Actually, that may be pretty good!

In a separate bowl, combine almond flour, tapioca flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt. Stir until mixed.

Pour beet mixture into flour mixture. Stir until well mixed. Stir in chocolate chips. Pour into greased 9x13 baking pan.  Bake at 400 about 30-35 minutes or until cake is firm and slightly pulled away from edges.

Cool on rack. Refrigerate for best consistency.

Buttercream Frosting:
1 stick butter, softened.
1 pound confection sugar
1 T vanilla
1 T reserved beet water for color (more or less depending on color desired)
1/4 tsp salt

Cream everything together in mixer. Ice cold cake. Eat entire cake because it's so good.

I separated the batter into two cakes, one iced, one plain. Here's a picture of the plain cake:

The plain cake isn't as sweet without the frosting, but it is very rich. The consistency is almost brownie like in that it's thick and gooey.

Here's a comparison of the two cakes:

If you have leftover liquid from the boiled beets, feel free to drink it. It's quite yummy after it's been refrigerated. That way you get all the nutrients you may have lost from boiling the beets. You can add it to smoothies, too!

How do I figure out how many beets make up 2.5 cups of puréed beets? I overestimate. Three or four really large beets make that much or 12 really small beets. It's better to overestimate than underestimate because you can eat the boiled beets in salads later.

I hope you enjoy this! This is my very first original recipe that I've published, so please feel free to link to my site, but remember that I retain all copyright to this! 

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