Chocolate Beet Cake
I can’t imagine a better way to live through a harsh and cold winter season than indulging in chocolate. Hot chocolate, chocolate truffles, chocolate cookies or a gloriously moist chocolate cake, it doesn’t really matter. As long as it’s luxorious and sweet with a soothing and calming effect on the mind and soul.
There is something incredibly relaxing and comforting in a piece of rich chocolate cake. I cannot explain it. It just feels so natural to seek peace and relief in something as simple and basic.
This cake really is as simple as that. Do not be alarmed by the fact it’s packed full of vegetables. You will not taste beetroot at all. It is here to add moisture and sweetness to the cake and it’s doing a hell of a good job, if I may add.
Pairing chocolate and beets my seem a bit strange, I give you that. But, trust me, the two were ment to go together. One bite of this fudgy chocolate cake will reassure you make you forget all your troubles.
Chocolate Beet Cake
60ml hot espresso (or water)
200g butter (at room temperature), cubed
240g cooked beets, pureed
5 large eggs, separated
pinch of salt
200g superfine sugar (castor sugar)
3 tablespoons cocoa powder
1 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
some mascarpone cheese, to serve
In a large bowl set over a pan of barely simmering water, melt the chocolate, stirring as little as possible. Turn off the heat but leave the bowl over the warm water. Pour in the hot espresso and stir. Then add the butter pieces and press them into the chocolate gently. Allow the butter to soften without stirring.
Sift together the flour, cocoa powder, and baking powder in a separate bowl. Remove the bowl of chocolate from the heat and stir until the butter is melted. Let sit for a few minutes to cool, then stir the egg yolks together and briskly stir them into the melted chocolate mixture. Fold in the pureed beets.
In a stand mixer whip the egg whites with a pinch of salt until stiff. Gradually fold the sugar into the whipped egg whites with a spatula, then fold them into the melted chocolate mixture, being careful not to overmix. Fold in the flour and cocoa powder.
Scrape the batter into the prepared cake pan and reduce the heat of the oven to 160°C. Bake the cake for 40 minutes, or until the sides are just set but the center is still is just a bit wobbly. Do not overbake. Let cake cool completely, then remove it from the pan.
Bring water and sugar to a boil in a small saucepan, stirring constantly until sugar dissolves. Remove from heat and add beets. Let it soak for 30 minutes. Transfer the beets to a baking sheet and bake until firm, about an hour. Transfer to rack and cool completely. Store in an airtight container.