Those who have been following my blog for a while will now know my love for chocolate! If there is one thing that I simply can’t resist it has to be chocolate Knowing my weakness for it I try to avoid buying regular chocolate cakes and cookies. I can eat a dozen of chocolate cookies in minutes.
I am just not able to control my sweet tooth with all the mouthwatering bakes my fellow bloggers are sharing for Christmas. I can’t stop thinking about baking. Instead of trying to control my urges I decided to give in! But I was not ready to eat bakes full of calories.
I took my basic cake recipe which is vegan and tweaked around to make it healthier and made a batch of chocolate muffins. It turned out really great. I took pictures and I was all ready to share the recipe with you all. Then suddenly I realized that most of my bakes are very casual and rustic. I end up making things which are mostly snacks or breakfast type muffins/cakes. I decided that I have to try something different this time. Since festivity is all over, I thought I will bake a cake which is (though very healthy) fancy enough for a party table. I had to create something that looks tempting even for a person who is not really interested in the health factor . I asked my readers on my Facebook Page and Twitter and I was right, most people voted for a cake over muffins!
Within minutes I had made up my mind on what I was going to bake. I decided to make it an Orange Chocolate Cake as oranges are in season right now and I have a dozen in my fruit basket at any point. I simply LOVE oranges and when it’s in season I just have to eat a few everyday. I had never really tried orange and chocolate together but I was quite sure I will love it. Also I wanted to make a frosting which is creamy and rich which will compliment the cake.
Ever since I started vegan baking I just can’t get myself to bake any other way. I think I just like the taste better when it’s vegan. But I have never really tried baking with many different flours. I have tried sorghum flour earlier but it was always paired with whole wheat flour. This time I decided to try oat flour and chickpea flour. I was quite apprehensive about this combination but I went ahead anyway.
Now let me come to the healthy part which is my favorite thing about the recipe! A slice of this cake is actually good for you (well… almost) The main ingredients in this recipe are Chickpea flour which is high in protein and Oat flour for extra fiber in addition to its other goodness. It has pureed dates which are rich in several vitamins and minerals. Date puree in the recipe is used for moisture and sweetness which means there is a very small amount of sweetener and fat needed! I have used light olive oil for heart friendly fat and natural organic black jaggery as sweetener. You can use any oil of your choice and sucanat, unrefined cane sugar, palm sugar or any other preferred natural alternative to refined white sugar here. The cake also has flax seed meal as egg replacement which is considered as the biggest nutrient payloads on the planet! The only liquid used in this cake is fresh orange juice! I used freshly squeezed juices from 6 oranges which gives it a subtle and delicate orange taste to the cake which builds up as you eat.
Coming to the tastiest part of the cake, the frosting! The frosting on this cake is silky, rich, sweet and intensely chocolaty! But it has no butter or cream or even sugar! This awesome frosting is entirely made out of pureed dates, cocoa and orange juice and marmalade! No, you can’t taste the date at all in it. Chocolate easily overpowers other flavours and with orange flavor also added all you can taste is a fabulously creamy, sweet chocolate frosting.
Together this cake is a dream! I would confidently say that this is the best cake I have ever baked . I am more than happy with the results. Cake has fluffy soft crumbs and is not overly sweet. With the frosting together it tastes just right. All the people who tasted this cake loved it and most preferred it with vanilla ice-cream.
For the oat flour I dry roasted quick cooking oats and ground it into a fine powder. If you are Gluten Intolerant please make sure you use Gluten Free oat flour. I used fresh orange juice here but I think bottled juice (buy artificial colour, sugar and preservative free) would work fine. I also made my own date paste by soaking the whole dates in hot water for 3-4 hours. Make sure you skin them, deseed them and grind it into a fine paste. Sieve it if there are any lumps left.
So here’s my healthy cake for the festival season! Go ahead and bake this for your Christmas or New Year party and eat it too… Trust me when I say that you will be left wanting more. I baked this yesterday and I have none left
- 1 cup chickpea flour
- 1 cup GF oat flour
- ½ cup cocoa powder
- ½ tsp salt
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 2 tbsp flax seed meal + 6 tbsp water
- ½ cup powdered jaggery/cane sugar/sucanat
- ½ cup date puree
- 1 cup orange juice
- 1 tbsp orange marmalade.
- ¼ cup light olive oil
- 1 cup date puree
- 2-3 tbsp cocoa powder
- 1 tbsp orange marmalade
- 3 -4 tbsp orange juice
Pre heat the oven at 180 degree C.
Stir in the flax seed in 6tbsp water, mix well and keep it aside.
Dry roast the chickpea flour in low flame till slightly golden. If you are making the oat flour yourself, dry roast quick cooking oats in low flame for some time and grind it into a fine powder. Combine all the dry ingredients and mix well.
Mix the flax seed mixture and powdered jaggery well till the jaggery is completely dissolved. Now add the other liquids one by one stirring well.
Combine both the dry and wet ingredients and mix till there are not lumps left.
Pour it into a greased tin and place it in the preheated oven.
Bake at 180 degree C for 10 minutes and then continue to bake at 150 for 15 to 20 minutes. Keep a close eye on the cake and as soon as the cracks appear on the surface check if cooked by inserting a tooth pick right in the center. Do not over bake as it’ll result in a dry cake. Let the cake come to room temperate.
For the frosting simply combine all the ingredients and stir well. Make sure you have a smooth date puree as lumpy or grainy puree will result in a not so nice frosting. Sieve the mixture if necessary. Add orange juice to attain the desires frosting consistency.
To assemble simply pour the frosting on top of the cake and spread to cover complete cake and all the cracks. Decorate the cake with fresh orange slices.