For those of you who follow me on Twitter, you may remember this excitable mid-essay tweet. Whilst getting all my work done before the deadlines (all over now - phew!) I was often in my favourite cafe, which also happens to be quite vegan-friendly. I'm not actually a big fan of cake, but after slugging through an hour of mind-numbingly boring material with a frantically growling stomach, the need to re-fuel won out. I sidled up to the counter, intrigued by a delicious-looking cake entitled Chocolate Banana Beetroot.
It was a good choice: moist, sweet, light yet rich and with these fantastic subtle, rustic, almost earthy undertones from the beetroot. I was so delighted with it, I had to try out the combination myself.
Chocolate Banana-Beetroot Cake
Prep Time: 15-20 mins
Cook Time: 30-35 mins
Ingredients (1 2-layer 8-inch cake)
- 1.5 cups spelt or wholegrain flour (225g)
- 1 cup coconut sugar (150g) (Brown sugar should work fine too)
- ½ cup cocoa powder (50g)
- 2 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp salt
- 2 medium beets
- 2 large bananas (150g)
- 1 cup non-dairy milk (I used unsweetened soya)
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
- 1/2 cup golden sultanas (50g)
- 100g coconut butter
- 1 ½ cup milk
- 1 ½ cup powdered sugar
- ¼ cup cocoa powder (25g)
- ½ tsp vanilla
1. Combine dry ingredients (first 6) in a large bowl and mix very well.
2. Slice beets and bananas and add to blender along with wet ingredients. Blend until smooth. (You’ll end up with a smoothie. Try not to drink it.)
3. Pour wet into dry and whisk until you have a wonderful sludgy gloop.
4. Stir in sultanas and divide batter into 2 oiled or lined 8-inch pans. Bake in pre-heated oven at 180C for 35 mins, or until a knife inserted into the centre comes out clean.
5. Let cakes cool completely before trying to remove.For Frosting:
1. Place coconut butter, vanilla and cocoa powder in a bowl, keeping the cups of milk and powdered sugar at the sides.
2. Begin to mix, gradually adding in the milk and sugar until all the sugar is used up and desired consistency is reached. (You may not use all of the milk.)Assembly:
1. Place one cake flat-side up on a plate. Spread a thin, even layer of frosting over this, then place the other cake, also flat-side up, on top of this, ensuring the two sides fit together snugly.
2. Frost the top and sides.
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- As you can see, I didn't have enough frosting to cover the cake properly - I've compensated for this in the actual recipe, so you should have enough. If not, however just increase the quantities of everything and continue mixing in until you reach the desired amount.
- I used coconut butter for the frosting as it needed finishing - it works well, but leaves a slight coconut flavour (and melts easily!). If you don't want this, just sub with a vegan butter-type spread:)