Chocolate Cake

This recipe will make 20 cup cakes or one decadent birthday cake.

This Father’s day I wanted to make my dad a dessert that would be both decadent and diabetic friendly.   I was aiming for brownies by combining some ideas from a bunch of recipes I found on line and instead I accidentally made this moist and springy chocolate cake.  I love when that happens!  To sweeten the cake I used a few tablespoons of raw honey (we usually have some left over from making Fire Cider) and then rounded out the sweetness with a small amount of stevia.  I find that using a little bit of a flavorful sweetener like wildflower honey or molasses in combination with stevia takes the bitter edge off  the plant based sweetener without adding loads of sugar to the recipe.  We ate our cake, yes, it’s also gluten free, with whipped cream from the Jersey cows at Highlawn Farm in Lee.

The last piece of cake, great even without the whipped cream!

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

Combine the following dry ingredients in a separate bowl and work out any lumps of coconut flour:

2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

3/4 cup coconut flour

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

In another large bowl combine the wet ingredients, using a whisk, adding in order:

2/3 cup coconut oil, warmed to liquid

1/3 cup creamy peanut butter

2 Tablespoons almond milk (or soy/dairy milk)

2 Tablespoons strong coffee and/or coffee liquor

3 Tablespoons honey plus stevia to taste- add a little at a time and taste test in between.  If you added the liquor, which is quite sweet, use only 1 Tablespoon of honey.

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

6 eggs- I get huge farm eggs that are over 1/4 cup each so make sure your eggs measure at least 1 and a 1/2 cups all together.

Whisk all the wet ingredients into a smooth batter.

Add the dry ingredients to the batter in several stages, stirring well to combine in between.  The batter will be like thick brownie batter.  Bake at 350 for 22 minutes (or until just set in the center)  in a well greased 8×8 pan.  Be careful not to over bake, a knife inserted into the center should come out clean so check the cake after 20 minutes.  It should be springy, moist and really rather decadent with a dollop of freshly whipped cream and maybe some sliced ripe strawberries!

A half recipe will make 10 cupcakes, bake them at 350 for 16 minutes, until just done.

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Peanut Butter Jelly Granola Bars

These are traditional granola bars in the sense that they are made from oats and held together with brown rice syrup and flax.  Check out these if you want a Candida diet friendly version of sweet snack bars. I started making these for my husband when I smugly came to the conclusion that I could make something healthier, better tasting and cheaper than Cliff Bars, no offence Cliff.  This recipe is very easily customizable, so far I have made ginger almond, cranberry pecan and of course, peanut butter and jelly.  I adapted this recipe from Alton Brown’s basic granola bar recipe.

Crunchy, chewy granola bars, thanks Alton Brown!

Ingredients for Granola Bars

  • 2 cups Old Fashioned Rolled Oats
  • 1/2 cup raw or toasted sunflower seeds
  • 1 cup sliced peanuts, raw or toasted (you can use any kind of nuts, walnuts, pecans, pistachios, Brazil nuts, ect)
  • 1/2 cup ground flax
  • ½ cup of honey or brown rice syrup
  • 1/2 cup of nut butter, I used peanut butter this time but you can use almond, sunflower seed, ect.
  • ¼ cup dark brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus extra for pan
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 6 1/2 ounces chopped dried fruit, any combination of apricots, cherries, blueberries, cranberries, raisins or ginger, for these I used raisins.

The Procedure:

Butter a 9 by 9-inch glass baking dish and set aside. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Spread the oats, sunflower seeds and peanuts onto a half sheet pan. Place in the oven and toast for 15 minutes, stirring every 4-5 minutes. If you are using toasted sunflower seeds and nuts, just toast the oats!

In the meantime, combine the honey, brown sugar, butter, vanilla, nut butter and salt in a medium saucepan (large enough to accommodate all the ingredients from the recipe) and place over medium heat. Cook until the brown sugar has completely dissolved. Add the dried fruit last and then….

Gooey deliciousness

Once the oat mixture is done, remove it from the oven and reduce the heat to 300 degrees F. Immediately add the oat mixture to the liquid mixture and stir to combine.

peanuts, sunny seeds, flax and oats, next time I need to use a bigger sauce pan

Turn mixture out into the prepared baking dish and press down, evenly distributing the mixture in the dish and place in the oven to bake for 25 minutes.

It's sticky work so use a spatula to press the granola into the baking dish.

Remove from the oven and allow to cool for about ½ an hour or until they are cool but not cold. They will be too hard to cut if they are completely cold!  Cut into squares and store in an airtight container for up to a week.  Or, wrap the individual bars so you always have a healthy snack handy.

Another suggestion is to make a double batch, cut one into bars after it cools and spread the other one back out onto your half sheet pan, let it cool completely on the sheet pan and break up into bite sized granola for snacking or for breakfast with yogurt or your choice of milk.