I wish cakes and pastries were healthier, because they don’t last long at all in my house. The more healthy alternative I can come up with, the less guilty I feel.
Not that I’m gluten-free (and we try to avoid dogma and trend diets like paleo, gluten-free, raw, etc. here), but avoiding too much white flour is never a bad thing. So when I find something to bake that is as good as a conventional one but doesn’t have flour, I’m sure to make it.
We had a long weekend with the Presidents’ Day holiday. And I just got the new trove of cooking magazines.
Food and Wine calls this Chocolate, Cinnamon and Almond Loaf Cake, but I think Flourless Chocolate Almond Cake sounds better. I don’t usually take recipes word for word from another source, but this cake from the February 2017 issue of Food & Wine was definitely a hit.
It’s got a deep enough coffee flavor to be mysteriously appeasing, but not overwhelming. Chocolate also comes through, but it’s not a chocolate cake per se. And it’s moist enough to be eaten on its own, or spruced up with some sweetened whipped cream. Or if you want to keep it light, I suggest some plain Greek yogurt sweetened with a touch of honey. Oh, and if you put some mixed berries on the side it will make your plating look really nice.
The recipe calls for “superfine almond meal”. I just used regular almond meal from the supermarket and it worked out just fine, so I wouldn’t sweat this detail.
When preparing this recipe, two observations come to mind.
First, you can use either regular sugar or coconut sugar. I used the former and it came out just fine. When you put your sugar in with your egg yolks, be sure to begin beating immediately. Sugar left with egg yolks and not mixed with tend to harden up.
Second, be sure to clean your mixing bowl thoroughly before moving on to beating whites. The smallest speck of oil or fat will prevent your whites from beating up properly. I like to wipe out my bowl with a paper towel doused in vinegar before beating egg whites.
- Baking spray
- 1/4 cup alkalised cocoa powder sifted
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 2 1/2 teaspoons halfground cinnamon
- 6 large eggs separated
- 1 cup coconut palm sugar or regular sugar
- One half stick unsalted butter melted and cooled slightly, 4 ounces
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350. Spray or grease a 9” x 5” loaf pan. Lay a rectangle strip of parchment to fit the pan, with ends extending 2 inches on the short sides. Spray again. This will make removing your cake very easy.
Whisk almond meal with cocoa powder, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon.
In a mixer, using whisk attachment and sugar, then add coffee and vanilla.
Add dry ingredients into wet ingredients and stir to combine well.
In a clean mixing bowl, beat egg whites until just stiff. Add one third of the whites into batter and fold carefully, scraping from the bottom. Adding remaining whites and continue to fold until all whites are well combined.
Scrape the batter into the baking pan, and bake for 45 to 55 minutes, until a knife, toothpick, or cake tester inserted into middle comes out clean.
Allow to cool 20 minutes in pan, then remove and cool on it cooling rack.