September 29, 2012

Chocolate Cake (with beets...shh)

Of course, this is my favorite beet recipe so far - chocolate cake! There was just a hint of beet earthiness in this super moist cake, which gave it depth. I never told my husband the secret ingredient, and he said it was the best chocolate cake I have made. Also he gave a piece to a co-worker who said "This is so good I'm going to hug myself."

I'm overloaded on beets right now from my CSA, so to preserve them I think I'll make some more beet puree and store it in the freezer. That way, I can make this chocolate cake any time!

Here I made the ganache as posted by Naturally Ella, where I got the recipe. However, it was a little runny, and I'm not sure what went wrong. This cake would be excellent with any topping you'd like: powdered sugar, chocolate buttercream, ganache, etc. Pictured here is my favorite ice cream: salted caramel.

Chocolate Beet Cake
from Naturally Ella

1 cup butter
1½ cup brown sugar or sucanat
3 eggs
2 ounces semi-sweet chocolate
2 cups pureed beets (roughly 3 large beets)
1 teaspoon vanilla
1½ cups whole wheat pastry flour or white wheat flour
½ cup cocoa powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
¼ teaspoons salt

Pull butter and eggs and bring to room temperature. Also, butter and flour two 8″ cake pans.

First, peel the beets, cut into small pieces and cover with water (just enough that the beets are barely covered) and cook until beets are tender (30-40 minutes). If you have a lot of excess water left, drain so that only ½ cup remains with the beets. Puree beets in a blender until no large chunks are left. Set aside to cool.
While beets are cooking, combine ¼ cup of the butter with the ounce of chocolate. Melt and whisk the chocolate and butter together. Set aside to cool slightly.
Preheat oven to 375˚.

In either a large bowl or your stand-mixer bowl, combine remaining softened butter and brown sugar, beating with a paddle until well combined. Next, beat in eggs and vanilla until the mixture comes together, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Add in melted chocolate/butter and beet puree and continue to beat. Sift together the dry ingredients and add to the batter, beating until everything is well combined.

Pour evenly into cake pans and bake for 25-35 minutes (a toothpick should come out clean when the cake is checked.) Set aside for 10 minutes, then loosen both cakes around the edges and flip onto pieces of parchment to let cool.

To assemble the cake (once the cakes are cooled), take one cake and place on your serving plate. The cake is really moist and you may have to take a knife to loosen the cake from the parchment paper. Cover the first cake with a layer of desired topping and place the second cake on top. From here, take a healthy scoop of topping and crumb coat the cake with a thin layer. Place in refrigerator for 15 minutes, remove, and cover cake with remaining topping. If using ganache, keep in refrigerator until ready to serve.

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