Ruth from Makey-Cakey was our March 2013 Daring Bakers’ challenge host. She encouraged us all to get experimental in the kitchen and sneak some hidden veggies into our baking, with surprising and delicious results!
Celebrate, celebrate, dance to the music! I not only got my challenge done on time (which I most often do) but I actually made two items for this month’s challenge. Woot! Woot! I haven’t been able to do that for a while.
Earlier this month I made Sweet Potato Streusel Quick Bread. It had been pinned to my pinterest board for MONTHS and I knew when I first saw this challenge that I was going to make it for my first baked item. Well, really I was thinking my first item was going to be a dairy free lemon pudding. I mean who would think that you could make a dairy free pudding and that it would have cauliflower in it! Definitely a hidden veggie. But, just as I got that brilliant idea I realized that lemon pudding is not a baked item (at least not this variety) so I didn’t think it would qualify for a daring “bakers” challenge entry.
Back to the Sweet Potato Bread. I also struggled a bit with including this one as well because as you can see in the title of the item the sweet potato veggie (can you even call it a veggie) was not exactly hidden. And that was the theme of the challenge, hidden veggies. I decided to go ahead with it and then make a second item that actually had something hidden in it.
The Sweet Potato bread is easy to make and tastes delicious. It actually lasted for at least 4 or 5 days on the counter wrapped in plastic wrap. It was great to add to a smaller breakfast or just shave off a slice when you wanted a snack. I was really happy with this recipe and will most definitely make it again.
I will be posting the recipe at a later date, but if you would like it early here is a link to the site I found it on. Sweet Potato Streusel Quick Bread
So . . . the other item I made was chocolate cake. Yum! I have to admit right up front though that just like the Sweet Potato Bread didn’t quite follow the challenge (not having the veggie hidden), this one also didn’t quite match up to the challenge. You see, my hidden ingredient turned out to not be a veggie but a legume. That’s right, I made a black bean chocolate cake!
My husband was a bit skeptical and my unsuspecting book club members were my guinea pigs. All of the members thought it was a very moist cake and didn’t even have a clue until I told them that it had a secret ingredient. I thought the cake tasted great, but I will have to mess around with the frosting a bit because that wasn’t really to my liking. Nobody else complained, but it just wasn’t quite right for my taste buds.
It was pretty funny though that the leftovers sat around for a day or two before my husband finally broke down and tried it. Usually he can barely wait until they leave the house after our book club meeting to check out the leftovers. Turns out he actually liked it and amazingly he couldn’t taste any bean flavor. Go figure, I don’t know what the man was thinking. That I would serve bean cake to my friends and family.
I will also post the recipe, but it will have to be later. I have a full day of conferences tomorrow and just finished up my report cards so this is as much as I can scrape out before I collapse into bed. You can go to this site to see what the recipe looks like until I get it posted.
Healthy Chocolate Cake
Source: Healthy Indulgences
1 (15 ounce) can of unseasoned black beans or 1 1/2 cups cooked beans, any color
5 large eggs
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
6 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
6 tablespoons unsalted butter or coconut oil
1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons honey + 1/2 teaspoon pure stevia extract
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Spray a 9″ cake pan with cooking spray or grease it with a thin layer of butter. Dust cocoa all over the inside of the pan, tapping to evenly distribute. Cut a round of parchment paper and line the bottom of the pan, then spray the parchment lightly.
Drain and rinse beans in a colander. Shake off excess water. Place beans, 3 of the eggs, vanilla, and salt into blender. Blend on high until beans are completely liquefied.
Whisk together cocoa powder, baking soda, and baking powder.
Beat butter with honey and stevia until light and fluffy. Add remaining two eggs, beating for a minute after each addition. Pour bean batter into egg mixture and mix. Finally, stir in cocoa powder and beat the batter on high for one minute, until smooth. Scrape batter into pan and smooth the top. Grip pan firmly by the edges and rap it on the counter a few times to pop any air bubbles.
Bake for 40-45 minutes. Cake is done with the top is rounded and firm to the touch. After 10 minutes, turn out cake from pan, and flip over again on to a cooling rack. Let cool until cake reaches room temperature. For BEST flavor, let cake sit overnight.
If you are stacking this cake, level the top with a long serrated knife, shaving off layers until it is flat and even. If you want a two layer cake you can cut the single layer in half, width-wise and stack the semi-circular halves on top of each other. Frost immediately before serving.
Makes a one layer 9-inch cake
Healthy Chocolate Buttercream Frosting
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
1/4 cup xylitol, powdered (see directions below for turning to powder)
5-6 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
pinch of sea salt
2 tablespoons half and half or coconut milk
1 egg yolk (only if you want a glossy finish)
pure stevis extract, to taste
Cream the butter in a small bowl until fluffy. Powder xylitol in a coffee grinder or blender for a minute or two, until extremely fine in texture (similar to powdered sugar). Let sweetener settle in grinder before opening the top.
Stir powdered sweetener into butter with a spatula, then beat until smooth. Slowly blend in the cocoa powder, vanilla, and sea salt. Beat in the half and half and egg yolk, if using. Add stevia, starting with 1/16 teaspoon. You’ll probably use less than 1/4 teaspoon. Just keep tasting and adjust sweetness to your liking.
Immediately frost cake.