A healthier, and very easy vegan chocolate cake. Olive oil and tahini lend a nutty and fruity aroma and compliment its chocolate taste.
I have a vegan chocolate cake recipe that’s the answer to some of my problems and an olive oil brownies recipe that’s the answer to the rest of them. I posted this melt-in-your-mouth olive oil brownies recipe a while ago, so now it’s time for the chocolate cake. I make it when I’m down, I make it when I’m happy (or want to make someone else happy), I make it when I want to go on a picnic, I make it when I want a healthier cake for breakfast and I make it when I need a quick and easy dessert to please my guests!
This cake is very easy because it doesn’t even need a mixer! All you have to do is warm some olive oil and tahini in a pot, melt the chocolate and stir in the rest of the ingredients with a whisk or a fork. All that remains after that is 45-50 minutes baking time! And of course, since it’s a chocolate cake, a bit healthier (due to the good fat from tahini and olive oil) and vegan, everyone is pleased. Win-win situation I tell you!
Tahini and the Mediterranean cuisine
Tahini is a very popular ingredient in Mediterranean cuisine, and it has been used in many recipes especially during Lent and other fasting periods. When people fast or avoid certain food categories, it is very easy to be deprived from essential nutrients, necessary for our health and well-being. Eating foods rich in nutrients, like tahini, can help maintain a balanced diet.
In Crete, during Lent, many women add tahini in their afternoon coffee since it saturates their hunger and helps them feel more energized. I remember my Grandma stirring slowly but steadily a couple teaspoons of tahini in her mug, while gradually adding some hot coffee. You want to add the coffee gradually, to give the tahini a chance to emulsify correctly, in order to achieve a smooth and lump-free beverage. Unfortunately, I’ve tried tahini-coffee and it’s not something I enjoy!
The last time I made this cake, was for a picnic in the woods. Since it’s made in a loaf pan, it is very easy to cut it into slices and store it into a container, but you can also transfer it inside the loaf pan, because due to its shape it fits very well into many picnic baskets. I also made a quick fruit salad by chopping some strawberries, bananas and apples and mixing them with a little bit of sugar and a splash of brandy. The sugar melts and absorbs part of the moisture from the fruits creating a very nice syrup/sauce that you can spoon over the cake slices along with some fruits. This is happiness.
I have also eaten this cake with a scoop of this bee pollen golden milk no-churn ice cream and was amazed at how well these two went together!
- Use a dark chocolate, at least 55% cocoa, that contains no milk.
- Making everything in a pot minimizes clean-up!
- This cake is tender, soft, moist, nutty, and chocolaty!
- Serve this cake with a fruit salad on the side made of chopped fruit, some sugar and a splash of brandy, cognac or vodka! (Skip alcohol for kids)
- 2 cups (280 grams) all purpose flour (measure unsifted)
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- Pinch of salt
- 1/4 cup (60 grams) tahini
- 1/4 cup (55 grams) olive oil
- 1 cup (250 grams) water (or orange juice)
- 2 tablespoons brandy/cognac
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- 1/2 cup (50 grams) dutch processed cocoa
- 3 oz (80 grams) chopped dark chocolate, 55% cocoa, no-milk
- 1 1/3 cups (280 grams) sugar
- One loaf pan approximately 10 x 4 inch (25cm x 11cm)
Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C) and oil and flour (or line with baking paper) your baking pan.
In a medium pot over low heat, warm tahini, olive oil, cocoa and chocolate, stirring constantly until chocolate is melted. Remove from heat and add the water, sugar, brandy, lemon juice, and vanilla. Stir to combine.
Mix the flour with the baking powder and baking soda and add them to the chocolate mixture. Stir until just combined and pour mixture into the loaf pan.
Bake for approximately 45 minutes or until a cake tester inserted in the middle of the cake comes out clean. Let it cool in the pan for 10 minutes and invert onto a rack to cool completely.
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