My grandmother was an amazing baker but back in her hey day, there wasn't a lot of knowledge about how refined carbs and white sugar could wreak havoc on your digestion, immune system - not to mention your face!
I used to LOOOOVE the Red Velvet Cake she used to make us around Valentine's Day. Little did I know it contained a truck-load of artificial dye and a ridiculous amount of sugar.
Given the fact that she lived around the corner from us and it was so easy to drop in and enjoy her treats after school, it was no wonder my face broke out so often.
It's only in the last 10 years that I've been really mindful about what I put in my body so I'm now verrrrry careful when it comes to sugar, gluten and especially desserts.
Making this cake is pretty much the yummiest, most healthy Valentine's treat you could make for anyone. I just love that the beets add so much colour, moistness and flavour.
Note that this recipe isn't my own. I found it in Chalkboard Magazine.
Photo Credit: Brittany Wood
8 ounces red beets (about 3 small)
7 ounces dark chocolate (we love this one)
¼ cup (blood) orange juice, plus zest of 1 (blood) orange (just use regular oranges if you don't have blood oranges on hand)
¾ cup plus 2 tbsp coconut oil
1 cup plus 2 tbsp gluten-free flour (we use this one)
1 heaping tsp baking powder
3 tbsp cacao powder
1 cup honey
Tart yogurt, (blood) orange juice and zest, honey, and pomegranate seeds, to garnish
- Roast the beets in foil at 450F until they’re soft enough to pierce with a knife. Let cool, peel, roughly chop, and whizz in a food processor until you have a coarse puree.
- Lower the oven temperature to 350F. Break the chocolate into pieces and melt in a saucepan on very low heat – you don’t want it to burn! When the chocolate is almost melted, add the blood orange juice and zest and give it a gentle stir. Turn off the heat, then add the pieces of coconut oil to the chocolate mixture and leave it to rest.
- In a medium bowl, add the flour, baking powder and cacao powder and give it a whisk to incorporate. Grab another medium bowl and a smaller bowl. Separate your eggs, cracking the whites into the medium bowl and the yolks into the small bowl. Give the yolks a quick whisk.
- Now stir the coconut oil and chocolate mixture until everything is fully melted (if the coconut oil isn’t melting, pop the saucepan over a super low flame for a few seconds to re-heat). Let the chocolate cool down for a few minutes if you’ve re-heated, then stream in the yolks and mix firmly. Then fold in the beets.
- In a small pot, heat the honey until it boils. Beat the egg whites until they’re frothy, then slowly stream the honey into the whites and continue beating until stiff peaks form. Fold the egg white and honey mixture into the chocolate mixture with a big metal spoon, making sure everything is incorporated, but being careful not to overmix. Then gently fold in the flour mixture until you can’t see it anymore.
- Pour the batter into a greased spring-form pan with a piece of parchment lining the bottom. Place the cake in the oven and lower the temperature immediately to 325F.
- Bake for 40 minutes; the edge of the cake should be springy and the center a bit wobbly. Set aside to cool. It’ll likely sink or crack in the center, and that is totally fine – it adds character. When the cake is cooled completely, remove it from the pan.
Serve it with a dollop of tangy yogurt mixed with blood orange juice and zest blended with a drop of honey, and a sprinkle of pomegranate seeds.
Makes 8 servings.
Don't curse me if you have to resist to urge to forgo second (or third) helpings.