Showing posts with label gluten-free chocolate cake. Show all posts
Showing posts with label gluten-free chocolate cake. Show all posts

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Coconut chocolate birthday cake from @AveryAames

Say cheese!

I'm gearing up for the next Cheese Shop Mystery release: As Gouda As Dead. For the month of January, every Wednesday, if you leave a comment, you'll be entered to win one of these Cheese Shop Mystery titles: THE LONG QUICHE GOODBYE, LOST AND FONDUE, CLOBBERED BY CAMEMBERT, TO BRIE OR NOT TO BRIE, DAYS OF WINE AND ROQUEFORT.
See below for details...

By the way:
Have you signed up for my newsletter? Big giveaway Feb 2.
Goodreads giveaway? One going on right now.
Facebook contest? Big giveaway Jan. 31

Get ready for some cheese-y recipes for the rest of the month of January!

But today, I must share a fun and easy birthday cake. No cheese!

My son, my step-son, and my nephew's son all have birthdays in the next week. [My dad did, too, the same day as my son and nephew's son. What a coincidence, right? Or do you believe in coincidences? May he rest in peace.] 

Yep, January, in my world, is packed full of Capricorn men!  I don't know if any of you read or adhere to horoscopes, but a Capricorn is responsible, patient, ambitious, resourceful, and loyal. Yep, the three boys (young men) are all that! They can also be dictatorial and inhibited. I have to say, yes, they might shows signs of those traits, too. They can be melancholy and crave structure. But they are loyal friends and fun and intelligent, and I adore them! 

So back to the birthday cake...I wanted to try coconut in a cake. I had a craving. I discovered a yummy recipe in a Bon Appetit Magazine, March 2014, that I saw in the doctor's office, of all places. What else was I going to read? I forgot to bring a book. And the wait was lo-o-o-o-o-ong. 

Like I said, this recipe is EASY-PEASY! Coconut is so good for you. And this tasted like a big Mounds bar. I bet if you added almonds, it would taste like an Almond Joy. It was delish!


Regular Recipe
 *Gluten-free substitution possible


1/4 cup unsalted butter
1/2 cup virgin coconut oil, room temp
1 1/2 cups sugar
3 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2/3 cup buttermilk
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (*if using gluten-free flour, add 1/2 teaspoon xanthan gum)
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon kosher salt
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 cup unsweetened coconut flakes

I went simple and used packaged Betty Crocker chocolate frosting. Sprinkles, if desired


Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Butter an 8 x 4” loaf pan; line with parchment paper. Make sure some of the parchment paper hangs over the side. This makes it VERY easy to remove the cake from the pan.

In a small bowl, mix the flour, cocoa powder, salt, baking powder and coconut flakes and set aside. [*If using gluten-free flour, substitute it for the regular flour and add 1/2 teaspoon xanthan gum.]

In a medium large blow, using an electric mixer, beat the butter, coconut oil, and sugar on medium-high until it’s fluffy, about 5 minutes. It takes a while for the coconut oil to mix so be patient. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating each time. The mixture will get very light and fluffy. Add the vanilla. Mix.

Reduce the mixer speed to low and add in the dry ingredients, one-third at a time, alternating with the buttermilk, just until incorporated. Do not overmix as it will cause the cake to split. Pour the batter into the loaf pan. [I like to run a spoon down the middle of the cake to make a bit of a "furrow". This seems to help the cake rise evenly.]

Bake cake for about 60 -70 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean. In my oven, it took 60 minutes. Then I turned off the heat and let it sit for 10 minutes more. Remove the cake from the oven and let sit for 20 minutes before removing from pan.

Let the cake cool completely before frosting.

This will keep for a good week. Keep at room temperature.

Note: The Bon Appetit recipe asked for the coconut to be put in at the last (not in the dry ingredients) by making a canal in the middle of the cake batter, pouring in the coconut and topping with 1 tablespoon of sugar. I missed that instruction - oops! - which is why my coconut flakes were incorporated in the dry ingredients. 

Happy birthday, Jackson, Craig, and  Chase!

And now for that giveaway, tell me what your favorite birthday cake is and leave your email so I can reach you if you win. If you don't feel like leaving an entire email, you can try to go cryptic and I'll try to figure it out. I am a mystery writer, after all. I will not use your email for any other purpose other than to contact the winner. 

I'll pick a name tomorrow morning. The winner will have 48 hours to contact me or else I'll pick another winner.

Good luck!

Savor the mystery!


Friend Daryl on Facebook
Friend Avery on Facebook
Follow Daryl on Twitter
Follow Avery on Twitter
Follow both of us on Pinterest
Check out our website.

NEXT BOOK OUT: AS GOUDA AS DEAD, coming February, 2015
pre-order here

STIRRING THE PLOT is available for order: order here.

If you haven't done so, sign up for the mailing list 
so you can learn about upcoming events, releases, and contests! 

Monday, March 26, 2012

Fat-Releasing Cake?

I have been counting calories in an attempt to shed some weight.  Yes, I know I posted a cookie recipe last week.  That was an unfortunate two day setback that I justified in a hundred different ways.  If you don't have a treat now and then, you won't stay on the diet.  If you don't eat normally during your diet, you will eat everything in sight after the diet and gain it all back.  Okay, that's not completely irrational.  One of my friends told me about the time she finished a liquid diet and zigzagged down the street eating every piece of fried chicken she could find.

Besides, those cookies are great.  They may be my new favorites!

So then, I happened to see an article about dieting mentioned on the cover of my mom's large print Reader's Digest.  I expected the same old thing, but there's an interesting new twist.  They analyzed years of weight-loss studies and came up with their own diet.  They put a bunch of their staffers on the diet with great success.  A dozen staffers lost 151 pounds in three weeks! The book about it is about to come out.  They claim there are foods that help us lose weight. They're calling them "fat releasers."  Music to my ears!

I hear you out there saying, sure -- iceberg lettuce and bird seed.  Wrong.  Well, maybe not completely, but there are some other foods that are especially good for us, too.  Like dairy.  They cite a study that indicates nonfat milk after exercise and again one hour later helps us retain muscle and shed fat, while strengthening bones!  Hmm.  They even advocate small amounts of walnuts and chocolate!  Perhaps of particular interest to many of you, red wine is a fat releaser, too.  Wow, permission to eat great food!

In The Diva Digs Up Dirt, there's a muffin recipe that makes use of walnuts ground into flour.  (I'll be posting it eventually -- it's my favorite muffin recipe ever!)  I'd been thinking about flourless cakes for Passover and it suddenly dawned on me that there are a lot of fat releasers in a flourless cake.  Eureka!  Chocolate, walnuts, and eggs.  It's all good!  (Okay, so there's still sugar, but you gotta live, right?)
Now this may not be exactly what Reader's Digest had in mind, but here's my stab at a fat releasing cake.  It turned out to have a nice light crumb.  Naturally, there's no sugary frosting and no butter except to grease the pan. 

Warning: this cake is bittersweet.  My mom is in love with this cake because it's not super sweet.  If you're one of those people who thinks cakes are generally too sweet, you'll love this.  If you prefer a sweet cake, you may want to double the sugar.  On the other hand, if you would generally rather lick off the frosting and leave the cake, it's definitely not for you. 

By my calculations, a small to average slice would run 150 to 200 calories.

What's your favorite weight loss tip?  

Fat-Releasing Cake
1 9-inch springform pan

1/8 tablespoon butter for greasing pan
1 1/2 cups walnuts
3/4 teaspoon Kosher salt
1 1/2 cups dark chocolate chips
8 tablespoons sugar, divided
1/4 cup hot water
2 teaspoons instant coffee or espresso
6 eggs, room temperature

Preheat oven to 350.  Grease the springform pan. 

In a food processor, combine the walnuts with 4 tablespoons sugar and the salt, and pulse until the walnuts are tiny (don't let it become gummy like walnut butter).

Melt the chocolate chips in the microwave in short bursts, stirring in between.  Set aside to cool.

Boil water and stir coffee or espresso into it.  Set aside.

Separate the eggs.  Beat the egg yolks with 4 tablespoons of sugar until thick (about 2 minutes).  Add some of the walnut mixture, the cooled chocolate, and the water gradually, alternating until they are all combined. 

Beat the egg whites until stiff enough to hold a peak.  Fold 1/4 of the egg whites into the chocolate mixture to lighten it.  Fold in half of the remaining egg whites, then the other half.  Pour into pan and bake 40 minutes or until the center is firm.

Serve with strawberries as a garnish.