Chocolate and Beetroot Cake
Flavour-wise, beetroot is sweet, which is why even though its a vegetable it works really well in cakes. You can grate it by hand using a box grater, if you prefer, depending on how much time you have.
- 300g dark chocolate, 70% cocoa preferrably
- 250g beetroot
- 150g caster sugar
- 120g ground almonds
- 4 eggs
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
- natural yogurt, optional to serve
- Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/gas 4.
- Lightly grease the bottom and sides of a 20cm springform cake tin with olive oil.
- Use scissors to cut out a circle of greaseproof paper, roughly the same size as the bottom of the tin, and use it to line the base.
- Dust the sides of the tin lightly with flour, then tap the tin to get rid of any excess.
- Break 200g of the chocolate up into small pieces and add to a heatproof bowl.
- Place the bowl on top of a small pan of simmering water over a medium heat, making sure the bottom of the bowl isn’t touching the water, and allow to melt, stirring occasionally.
- Once melted, use oven gloves to carefully remove from the heat and put to one side – beware of the steam when you lift up the bowl.
- Peel the beetroot (you might want to wear gloves to do this), then quarter them on a chopping board.
- Push the beetroot through the coarse grater attachment on the food processor, then tip into a large mixing bowl (or grate it by hand).
- Separate the eggs, placing the whites into a large clean mixing bowl and adding the yolks to the beetroot, then wash your hands.
- Stir the sugar, almonds, baking powder, cocoa powder and melted chocolate into the beetroot and mix together well.
- Use an electric hand whisk to whisk the egg whites until you have stiff peaks.
- Use a spatula to fold a quarter of the egg whites into the beetroot mixture to loosen, then once combined, fold in the rest but try not to over mix.
- Add the mixture to the prepared cake tin and spread out evenly using a spatula.
- Bake in the hot oven for around 50 minutes, or until risen and cooked through.
- To check if it’s done, stick a cocktail stick or skewer into the middle of the sponge, remove it after 5 seconds and if it comes out clean the cake’s cooked; if it’s slightly sticky it needs a bit longer.
- Allow the cake to cool slightly, then carefully turn it out on to a wire rack to cool completely.
Optional: When you’re ready to serve, melt the remaining chocolate (in the same way as above), then serve each slice with some yoghurt and a little drizzle of the melted chocolate.