Tuesday, 31 March 2015

Far from penance - Chocolate olive oil cake

 it's like a fudgy brownie

In one of my recent blog posts I told you in no uncertain terms that I no longer give up chocolate for Lent.Forty days and forty nights without chocolate,chance would be a fine thing. In another recent post, I enthused about olive oil cakes and looked forward to experimenting with a Chocolate olive oil cake.Well here it is, and how far from penitence could it be? Lent is all but over but this is still sheer indulgence, as if chocolate never was? It's like a fudgy brownie, and talking of chocolate,surprise surprise this is a Nigella recipe. I seems it has been chopped and changed and messed around in order to accomodate  coeliacs and gluten free diets alike,but at the end of the day you´re going to be well pushed to find a better and more adaptable recipe.Knees up right proper moshing,here is the be-all and end-all chocolate olive oil cake recipe.The gluten free version is slightly heavier with the almonds - though not in a bad way - so if you want a lighter crumb, rather than a boom squish interior, and are not making the cake for the gluten-intolerant, then replace the 150g ground almonds / 1½ cups almond meal with 125g plain flour / ¾ cup plus 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour.To make it more of an occasion, serve it still warm from the oven with some fresh strawberries or raspberries and an indulgent dollop of cardamom requeijao cream.Alternatively serve it with a scoop of home made mascarpone ice cream.

Chocolate Olive Oil Cake
    2/3 cup regular olive oil, plus more for greasing cake pan
    6 tablespoons good-quality unsweetened cocoa powder
    1/2 cup boiling water
    2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
    1 1/2 cups almond meal or 3/4 cup plus 1 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
    1/2 teaspoon baking soda
    Pinch of salt
    1 cup superfine sugar
    3 large eggs

      Preheat oven to 325°F. Grease a 9-inch springform cake pan with a little oil and line base of pan with parchment paper.
      Sift cocoa powder into a bowl and whisk in boiling water until you have a smooth, chocolaty, still runny (but only just) paste. Whisk in vanilla extract and set aside to let cool.
      In a small bowl, combine almond meal (or flour) with baking soda and a pinch of salt.
      Put sugar, olive oil and eggs into bowl of a freestanding mixer with a paddle attachment (or use other bowl and whisk). Beat vigorously until mixture is pale-primrose, aerated, thickened and creamy, about 3 minutes.
      Turn down mixer speed a little and beat in cocoa mixture. Slowly add almond-meal mixture.
      Turn off mixer. Scrape down sides of bowl and stir a little with a spatula. Pour batter into prepared cake pan. Bake until sides of cake are set and very center, on top, still looks slightly damp, 40 to 45 minutes. A cake tester should come up mainly clean but with a few sticky chocolate crumbs clinging to it.
      Let cake cool in its pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Ease sides of cake with a small metal spatula and spring cake out of pan. Leave to cool completely or serve warm with ice cream.

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