With this cake I’m celebrating my 26th birthday! I can hardly believe a whole quarter of a century has passed already, wasn’t I just blowing out the candles to a white chocolate persimmon cake? With my birthday so close to the new year, this has always been a time of introspection, reflection and looking forward. In the weeks between December 7th and January 1st, it’s a time where I like to give gratitude to all that’s come to be in the year and create intentions for the coming year. I celebrated not only with this cake, but with a gathering of friends to share it with and some meaningful conversations of life and where we hope to see ourselves in the coming year.
With the holidays around the corner, I think this cake is wintery and festive enough to bring to any gathering – from a birthday to a Christmas dinner. I made it three times before perfecting the vegan version, one time without cacao and two times with. I’m a chocolate lover, so a doubly dark chocolate anything is my favorite, but you can give this a try without the cacao powder in the cake batter for a lighter option. Eggs, of course, can also be used to make this a rich and fluffy cake, but I’ve found that the flax+apple sauce substitute worked just the same with no real difference in texture for a vegan version. The ganache is a modified version of my favorite frosting recipe – I swear I could just put a candle in the bowl of this frosting and be completely satisfied!
ROSEMARY OLIVE OIL CAKE WITH ORANGE CHOCOLATE GANACHE
2 cups spelt flour (or a preferred gluten-free flour)
1 cup coconut sugar
1 cup raw cacao powder
3 tbsp ground flax
1 ½ tsp baking powder
1 ½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp Himalayan pink salt
½ cup apple sauce
1 cup almond milk
½ cup olive oil
1 tbsp vanilla
2 tbsp rosemary, finely chopped
1 tbsp orange zest + orange juice
¾ cup boiling water
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Mix the dry ingredients together in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, mix the wet ingredients. Add the dry ingredients to the wet bowl and mix together. Whisk in the boiling water until well combined, the batter will be watery. Pour the batter into a 9-inch springform pan lined with parchment paper or greased with olive oil. Bake 40-45 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool until you can remove from the springform pan. Spread the ganache evenly over the cake.
Note: For a double layer cake, double the recipe and divide the batter in half when baking.
2 avocados, pitted
1 cup raw cacao powder
½ cup raw honey
5 soft dates, pitted
2 tbsp virgin coconut oil
1 orange, juiced & zested
Combine all ingredients in a high-speed blender or food processor. Blend or process until creamy. Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days, however it’s best enjoyed the day it’s made.
1 orange, sliced thinly in rounds
2 tbsp honey + 4 tbsp hot water
In a small bowl, whisk the honey and hot water. Dip the orange slices in the syrup mixture until well coated. Place evenly on a reflex-lined tray and place in your dehydrator. Dehydrate for 24-36 hours, or until fully dried. If you’d like to use your oven instead, place the orange slices on a baking sheet and bake at 200 degrees for 2-3 hours. Store in an airtight container.