This cake has been a labour of love; we wanted to create the perfect vegan chocolate cake that was moist and rich, but also gluten free. I’m very pleased to say we think we have mastered it!
DF, GF, VEGAN
1¼ cup ground almonds
2 cups plain gluten free flour
¾ cup cocoa powder
½ cup caster sugar
1 cup soft brown sugar
1 tsp baking powder
2 tsp baking soda
a pinch of salt
3 tbsp chia seeds
150g dark vegan chocolate, roughly chopped
3 tsp instant coffee
1½ cups boiling water
1 cup vegetable oil
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 small banana, well mashed
Poached Berries & Berry Ganache
3 cups frozen mixed berries
3 tbsp water
3 tbsp soft brown sugar
200g dark vegan chocolate
a mixture of fresh berries, for garnish
3 tbsp freeze-dried blueberries, for garnish (optional)
a handful of edible flowers (optional)
1. Preheat oven 170°C.
2. Grease and line the base and sides of a 23cm or 26cm spring-form cake tin with baking paper.
3. In a large bowl, sift together the ground almonds, gluten free flour, cocoa powder, caster sugar, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Mix until very well combined.
4. In small metal bowl place the chia seeds, chocolate and coffee. Pour over the freshly boiled water stirring until the chocolate is melted, then stir through the oil, vanilla and mashed banana.
5. Make a well in the middle of the dry mixture. Pour the warm wet mixture into the dry mixture and mix well until there are no lumps.
6. Pour the batter into the prepared tin and bake for approximately 1 hour or until the cake is springy to the touch and a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Allow the cake to cool in the tin for 20 minutes before turning it out onto a wire rack. Cool the cake completely before icing it.
7. To prepare the poached berries and ganache: place the berries, water and sugar into a small saucepan, place over a low heat and cook for 10 minutes. Don’t stir the berries too much or they will break apart. While the berries are cooking, finely grate (using a grater) the chocolate for the ganache into a small bowl.
8. Remove the poached berries from the heat and strain ½ cup of the hot berry juice into to the bowl with the grated chocolate. Set the rest of the berry compote aside to cool.
9. Using a fork or small whisk, stir the chocolate and berry juice together until smooth (if it doesn’t melt completely you can pop it into the microwave for 10 second bursts on high until melted). Leave the ganache to cool and thicken for 5–10 minutes.
10. To assemble the cake: place the cake onto a serving platter. Spread the ganache over the top and around the sides of the cake. Decorate the top with the fresh berries and freeze-dried blueberries or some edible flowers. Place the cake in the refrigerator to firm up for at leastan hour before cutting and serving.
Tip:Use a hot dry knife to cut the cake. Serve with the poached berries and your favourite coconut yoghurt on the side. This cake keeps well in the refrigerator for up to a week.
Ripe Recipes: A Third Helping by Angela Redfern and the Ripe Deli team, Beatnik Publishing, RRP $60.00, www.beatnikshop.com