Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Chocolate Beet Cake

Some lovely friends of ours recently shared their harvest of beets with us.  I really enjoy beets, and was thrilled by their generosity!  That week, I made a beet and berry smoothie for lunch.  After tasting the smoothie, I admitted to myself that I had used too many beets, but served it up anyway.  My mistake.  My kids immediately identified there was an overpowering flavor and were not fans.  In a moment of sheer stubbornness and pride, I turned the smoothie into a battle; it wasn't really that bad and they had to finish the smoothie.  There was minor (excessive) complaining.  Eventually all the smoothie was consumed, but my kids walked away vowing never to enjoy a beet again.

I told them they would, and thus became the question before every meal for several days: "Did you put beets in this?"

Then this Chocolate Beet Cake happened.  I read through several recipes and came up with this combination.  It worked.  It's moist and lightly sweet.  I didn't mention the beet part until my kids had taken a bite.  We all agreed that you can definitely taste the beets in the cake, but paired with everything else, they were actually enjoyable.  Success.

1 cup whole wheat white flour
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp salt
1 cup beet puree*
2 eggs
3/4 cup warm water
2 Tbsp vegetable oil
1/4 cup apple sauce
1 tsp vanilla

*I put the equivalent of 3 large cooked and peeled beets in the vitamix.  I measure out the 3/4 cup warm water and then added enough to the beets until they were able to blend into a smooth puree.  It ended up being about 1/3 cup water and then the rest went into the bowl with the puree.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Whisk together flours, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl.  Whisk in beet puree, eggs, water, oil, apple sauce, and vanilla.

Coat a 9-inch round cake pan with cooking spray.  Pour batter into pan.  Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean, about 45 minutes.  Let cool in pan on a wire rack for 20 minutes.  Turn cake out onto a serving platter and let cool completely.  Serve with a dollop of whipping cream for a little treat!

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