Healthy Baking

Let Her Eat Cake

IMG_5561Living without chocolate can make a girl go crazy! A woman needs her fix, that marvelous indulgence to calm her need for something sweet (and I don’t mean a Fiber One bar). As you may have found, there is a comforting addiction in the rich goodness of Ghirardelli chocolate. Whether it be in cake or candy form, it’s simply magical.

As my birthday approaches, I need a good old-fashioned chocolate cake recipe. One that not only LOOKS like a genuine cake, but one that TASTES and FEELS like the real stuff, without all the sugar and dairy. And while we’re at it, why not melt a Chocolate Ghirardelli Bar into the mix? While the bar is 100% Unsweetened Cocoa, you won’t know the difference! When all is said and done, you’ll never guess this cake is good for you. Yes, it’s true. Now let the woman have some cake! After all, life is like a box of chocolate cake… (or something along those lines.)

Chocolate Indulgence Cake w/ Whipped Coconut Cocoa Frosting:

Serves 10-12

For the Cake:

2 C. of Gluten Free Flour (King Arthur’s)

1 1/2 C. of Coconut Palm Sugar

2 tsp. of Baking Soda

1/2 tsp. of Cream of Tartar

1/2 tsp. of Sea Salt

1 C. of Earth Balance Butter (Soy Free)

1 1/2 C. of Almond Milk

1 Tbsp. of Apple Cider Vinegar

3 Large Eggs

1 1/2 tsp. of Vanilla

1 Ghirardelli 100% Cacao, Unsweetened, Chocolate Baking Bar (Melted)

 

For the Frosting:

2 Cans of Refrigerated Coconut Milk

1 1/2 tsp. of Vanilla

2 tsp. of Honey

3-4 Tbsp. of Cocoa Powder

1 Tbsp. Coconut Sugar

10 Drops of Liquid Stevia English Toffee Flavor (optional, but recommended)

15 Drops of Liquid Stevia Chocolate Flavor (optional, but recommended)

 

CAKE INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a bowl or stand mixer, combine Earth Balance butter, eggs, vanilla and coconut sugar. Beat on medium speed for two minutes.
  3. Add almond milk, apple cider vinegar and melted Ghirardelli bar. (If melting in microwave, stir every 30 seconds as to not scorch the chocolate.)
  4. Beat for 1 minute.
  5. Add flour, baking soda, cream of tartar and sea salt. Mix on low to medium speed until well combined.
  6. Spread into greased and floured cake pans.
  7. Bake 18-20 minutes.
  8. Cool completely in pan.

 

FROSTING INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. In a standup mixer with whisk attachment: empty the solidified coconut milk into your mixing bowl (set aside the coconut water which has separated in the can. This is great for adding to smoothies!)
  2. Add vanilla, honey, cocoa powder and liquid stevia(s).
  3. Beat on medium/high until peaks begin to form.
  4. Add coconut sugar (melted, with a tsp. of water in the microwave.)
  5. Continue to beat until the cream is peaked and fluffy!
  6. Store in the refrigerator until ready to frost cake.
  7. Frost between cake layers, as well as the outside, using a spatula. Spread liberally!
  8. After frosting, refrigerate cake until ready to eat.
  9. Indulge!

Notes: Liquid Stevia can be purchased at your local health food store or here http://sweetleaf.com/products/sweet-drops-products. This cake is delicious with toasted walnuts and bananas, served alamode with Vanilla Coconut Bliss Ice Cream!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If Friends Were Flours, I’d Pick You.

Arrowhead Mills Gluten Free All Purpose

Arrowhead Mills Gluten Free All Purpose Baking Mix

Just thinking about the scent of freshly baked bread makes my tummy rumble. There is nothing like filling your home with the comforting scent of bread baking in the oven. However, for us to enjoy this heavenly scent, we have to have one crucial ingredient in our cupboard: FLOUR.

Being Gluten Free (GF) brings a whole new challenge to the baking scene, particularly when it comes to flour. Not able to reach for your generic all-purpose, you are faced with a slew of foreigners: coconut flour, amaranth flour (what is that, anyway?), gluten free mixes, almond and tapioca flour, brown rice and potato flour, etc. How do you know which kind to use? What brand is best?

After having tried all of the above, I have thus far narrowed it down to three go-to flours: Almond Flour, Coconut Flour and a Gluten Free All Purpose Flour Mix by Arrowhead Mills. Word to the wise: while Bob’s Red Mill has a number of good products, unfortunately their Gluten Free Flour is not one of them. I made the sad mistake of using it for dessert one day and unless you want your ooey-gooey cookies to taste like little iron orbs, go with Arrowhead Mills!

Almond flour is probably my favorite with its nutty, yet slightly sweet flavor, rustic texture and nutritional benefits. It is great used in cookie, muffin and even pancake recipes. For bread recipes, Arrowhead Mills’ GF Flour is ideal. Coconut flour is also great and can be combined with other flours; it can stand on its own, too, but keep in mind that it has a drier consistency when used alone.

You can find these flours at your local health food store, such as Earth Fare or Whole Foods, as well as some regular grocery stores. In fact, Publix and Walmart have started to carry more GF products! Each have their own Gluten Free section where you can find various GF flours and mixes.  If you can’t find them at your local market, below are some links for ordering on-line.

When it comes to storage, I keep both my Gluten Free Flour Mix, as well as my Almond Flour, in the pantry (both should be stored in the fridge or freezer if kept for a lengthy period of time). However, I have found that Coconut Flour is best kept refrigerated right away.

If you have any questions or simply want to share about your own discoveries in baking, feel free to comment!

Happy flour picking!

For more information and on-line ordering, visit these helpful sites:

Coconut Flour:

http://www.amazon.com/Coconut-Secret-Flour-Gluten-Canister/dp/B003XB3NNE/ref=sr_1_8?s=grocery&ie=UTF8&qid=1392935822&sr=1-8&keywords=gluten-free+flours

Almond Flour:

(Remember: Almond Flour and Almond Meal are not the same thing. Almond flour is made using finely ground blanched almonds, while Almond Meal is made with the almond’s skins still remaining and is not always as fine as flour.)

http://www.nuts.com/nuts/almonds/flour.html?utm_source=bing-ads&utm_medium=cpc&utm_group=90-AlmondFlour[3030]&utm_campaign=1-Nuts&utm_term=almond%20flour&utm_type=Exact

Arrowhead Mills All Purpose Gluten Free Flour:

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00061EMNE/ref=pd_lpo_k2_dp_sr_1?pf_rd_p=1535523722&pf_rd_s=lpo-top-stripe-1&pf_rd_t=201&pf_rd_i=B000LKUTUK&pf_rd_m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_r=19AASKQZJN7JPA2H49Z7

Find Your Nearest Health Food Store:

https://www.earthfare.com/

http://www.wholefoodsmarket.com/?reloaded=true

http://sprouts.com/

http://www.naturalgrocers.com/

http://orgharvest.info/