Thursday, 15 March 2012

Beetroot and Chocolate Cake

This is another Good Food recipe, this time one recommended by Foodycat (or should that be Mr Foodycat?).  It has the features I need in a chocolate cake - dark, moist and low in saturated fat. It wasn't quite as easy for me as the 'blitz and bake' technique described in the recipe, as I don't have a large food processor, but it was fairly simple to make in a bowl with a hand-held electric mixer, once the beetroot was puréed in my mini-chopper.

Or, it should have been fairly simple! I had carefully lined my deep loaf tin and scraped all the batter in; the cake had even been in the oven 5 minutes before I realised I'd forgotten to add the baking powder! My language would have disgraced a gang of navvies! Out the tin came from the oven. the batter was scraped back into the mixing bowl, and the baking powder was stirred in as quickly and thoroughly as possible. By now, the lining paper and the baking tin were a real mess, and the only option was to quickly line an alternative loaf tin. This was much longer and shallower than the one I intended to use, and I think in the end this resulted in the cake being a little over-cooked, as I didn't take the shape into account, and reduce the cooking time. But at least it rose!

I took note of some of the comments saying how bitter the cake was, so used milk chocolate chunks to add to the cake, as the only alternative I had available was quite strong and dark.

I have tried another recipe using beetroot in a chocolate cake - it was raw beetroot in that recipe - and once again I found that I didn't notice any flavour from the beetroot at all. Puréeing cooked beetroot meant that there wasn't even the texture of grated vegetable in the cake, as there was in the other cake. This cake wasn't quite as rich, but it was much more economical than the first recipe I tried. This is quite a good chocolate cake, but I prefer beetroot cakes to have more evidence of the beetroort - even if it means leaving out the chocolate!  Here, the beetroot seems an unnecessary gimmick, although I guess it helps retain moisture and adds to the sweetness in a natural way.

One point which I thought quite important - with some oil based cakes there's a certain blandness which tells you the cake is made with oil rather than butter, but that wasn't noticeable here.


Foodycat said...

I'm impressed that the cake looks as good as it does, after that treatment! I liked the texture the chocolate chunks added.

Chele said...

Some days in the kitchen can be a real trial can't they! I've always wanted to try a chocolate beetroot cake, this looks a good place to start ;0)

C said...

I'm impressed you can add the baking powder at such a late stage and get such a good looking cake. I know what you mean about the depth that butter seems to give, and nice to hear that its lack isn't obvious in this cake. I think I'd quite like this, as I'm not really a fan of beetroot! Perhaps it would be a gentle introduction!

Gloria said...

the cake look really nice!

Choclette said...

Oh Suelle, i would have been swearing alongside you. I've really liked the beetroot & chocolate cakes I've made - not so much for the flavour of beetroot, but it does add an additional colour, texture and depth of flavour as well as keeping the cake moist.

celia said...

Suelle, it looks very nice. I've never made a beetroot cake - maybe I should try one sometime. The only advantage of having sons who were never interested in cooking is that I can be fairly sure they didn't learn all their swear words from me. :)