This chocolate olive oil cake is very nearly a naturally gluten-free recipe: Nigella Lawson writes: "...I first came up with this recipe because I had someone for supper who - genuinely - couldn't eat wheat or dairy". What makes it wheat-free? Nigella Lawson's clever use of almond flour to replace white flour. The result? A sinfully delicious cake that has left my mouth watering as I compose this post...
Nigella Lawson suggests adding a dollop of mascarpone or ice cream to your slice of cake- I decided this was the perfect opportunity to try my hand at making vegan whipped cream (cashew cream). Note: while cashew cream is delicious, be aware that it is very different from the original whipped cream!
Nigella Lawson's Chocolate Olive Oil Cake
2/3 c. olive oil
6 tbsp. unsweetened cocoa
1/2 c. boiling water
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 1/2 c. almond flour
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 pinch of salt
1 c. superfine sugar
3 large eggs
1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Grease a 9 inch springform tin with a little oil and line base with baking parchment
2. Measure and sift the unsweetened cocoa into a bowl or jug and whisk in the boiling water until you have a smooth, chocolatey, still runny (but only just) paste. Whisk in the vanilla extract, then set aside to cool a little.
3. In another smallish bowl, combine the almond meal (or flour) with the baking soda and pinch of salt.
4. Put the sugar, olive oil and eggs into the bowl of a freestanding mixer with the paddle attachment (or other bowl and whisk arrangement of your choice) and beat together vigorously for about 3 minutes until you have a pale-primrose, aerated and thickened cream.
5. Turn the speed down a little and pour in the cocoa mixture, beating as you go, and when all is scraped in you can slowly tip in the ground almond (or flour) mixture.
6. Scrape down, and stir a little with a spatula, then pour this dark, liquid batter into the prepared tin. Bake for 40-45 minutes or until the sides are set and the very centre, on top, still looks slightly damp. A cake tester should come up mainly clean but with a few sticky chocolate crumbs clinging to it.
7. Let it cool for 10 minutes on a wire rack, still in its tin, and then ease the sides of the cake with a small metal spatula and spring it out of the tin. Leave it to cool completely or eat while still warm with some ice cream, as a pudding.
Chocolate - Covered Katie's Cashew Cream (adapted)
1 cup raw cashews
1/3 to 3/4 c. water, depending on how thick you want your cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1. Soak raw cashews in water for at least 3 hours; drain post-soak.
2. Combine soaked cashews with desired amount of water and vanilla extract in a food processor and blend until perfectly smooth. Be sure to scrape down sides as necessary.
3. Add dollop to your favorite dessert and refrigerate the remaining cream for up to three days!