Lisa's French Chocolate Cake

Lisa Hjalt is a friend of mine and one of the site's super users. She is a mother of three young children, is doing her Bachelor's degree and she also has time to make amazing and healthy food for her whole family. She is one of those Icelandic super women who seems to be able to do absolutely everything. We often exchange recipes and every recipe she has sent me has been a success. None however more than the one you are hopefully about to make and enjoy. We had been sending it between each other for refining for several months (I suggested using less sugar, more dates, spelt, coconut oil....) and she went back to her kitchen and tried it out. She also made some changes herself (she added walnuts, dark, organic chocolate with raw cane sugar...) and the outcome is AMAZING. When I take a spoonful of this cake I can just feel extreme happiness run through me, it is sooo good. I have had several guests try it out and they all say they feel the same way. Maybe I should call this cake "The Happiness Cake"? It is best served slightly warm with some whipped soy cream or regular cream. Just remember one thing. Do NOT bake the cake for longer than 10-12 MINUTES. Obviously it depends on the oven you are using but for my oven which is fairly new and fan assisted it is exactly 12 minutes and even though it looks and feels not ready when straight out of the oven, it is supposed to be a little runny in the middle with a slight crust on the outside. This is one of the healthiest "real" chocolate cakes you could find because it has healthy fats and protein from the nuts (no butter), fibre from the dates and much less sugar than other similar cakes and of course only raw cane sugar, not white sugar. It also has spelt flour which I use in all my recipes. This cake is absolutely gorgeous...I rest my cake (I mean case).....

You will need a food processor to make this cake and a 23 centimetres (9 inches) and 5 centimetres (2 inches) deep.


This is a melt in your mouth chocolate cake

This recipe is:

  • Lactose (dairy) free

Lisa's French Chocolate Cake

Makes 1 cake

Ingredients

  • 80 grams (3 oz) pitted dates, chopped finely and soaked for 20 minutes
  • 70 grams (2½ oz) cashew nuts (50 + 20 grams), ground in a food processor
  • Small handful chopped walnuts (optional), chopped finely
  • 20 grams (¾ oz) dark, organic chocolate (with raw cane sugar) (optional), chopped finely
  • 4 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 155 grams (5½ oz) spelt flour
  • 4 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon aluminium free and gluten free baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt (Himalaya or sea salt
  • 120 grams (4¼ oz) Rapadura (or other raw cane sugar)
  • 1 egg (please use free range eggs)
  • 1 egg white (fplease use free range eggs)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract (from a health food store)

Preparation

  1. Chop the 80 grams dates finely and place in a small bowl. Soak in warm water for 20 minutes.
  2. Chop the handful walnuts and 20 grams chocolate (if used) finely.
  3. Place the 70 grams cashew nuts in a food processor. Mix for 1 minute or until very finely ground. Transfer 50 grams (1¾ oz) of the cashew nuts to a large bowl.
  4. Blend the remaining 20 grams (¾ oz) ground cashew nuts for a further 30 seconds or until slightly oily in texture (resembling peanut butter).
  5. Add 4 tablespoons coconut oil (tablespoon at a time) and blend for 30 seconds. (Leave in the bowl).
  6. Drain the liquid from the dates and place dates in the food processor. Blend for 30 seconds. You might need to scrape the sides of the bowl. Continue blending for 5-10 seconds or until the mixture is smooth. Transfer to the large bowl (containing the 50 grams cashew nuts).
  7. Now, in a medium bowl, mix together 120 grams raw cane sugar, 1 egg, 1 egg white and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract. Set aside.
  8. Next, into the large bowl, sift together the 155 grams spelt flour, 1 teaspoon baking powder, ¼ teaspoon salt and 4 tablespoons cocoa powder.
  9. With a large wooden spoon, fold the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Do this swiftly and fold approximately 8-10 times.
  10. Add the walnuts and chocolate (if used). Fold 2-3 times.
  11. Line a spring form cake tin, 23 centimetres (9 inches) and 5 centimetres (2 inches) deep with baking parchment.
  12. Pour batter ino the cake tin.
  13. Bake at 180 degrees Celsius/350 Fahrenheit/Gas Mark 4, for 10-12 minutes. DO NOT BAKE FOR LONGER OR THE CAKE WILL BECOME DRY. The cake should be soft and gooey in the middle but slightly crunchy on the outside.
  14. Remove from the oven and let cool slightly. If the cake is very underbaked you can bake for a further 3-4 minutes.
  15. Serve with whipped soy cream (or regular cream).

Tips

  • If you prefer a more brownie like texture (not as moist), you can bake the cake slightly longer or for 20 minutes.
  • You can use chopped pecan nuts instead of the walnuts.        
  • If the coconut oil is cold (in which case it becomes solid), place the jar in a bowl filled with hot water for a couple of minutes.
  • You can use whole wheat flour instead of the spelt flour.
  • You can use regular baking powder instead of the aluminium and gluten free one.
  • You can use maple syrup instead of the agave nectar.
  • You can use carob powder instead of the cocoa powder.
  • The easiest method for dividing eggs into egg yolks and whites is to crack the egg so that the yolk sits in one side of the shell. Then pour the yolk into your other hand, cradling the yolk in your fingers. The white should run safely away from the yolk. This might require some practise. It usually takes around 4-5 seconds for the whites to fully drip into the bowl. You can freeze the yolks for later use.
  • The cake keeps well for a couple of days.