Decadent Chocolate Cake

Let me preface this by saying this cake may technically be paleo, but in no way would I pretend to say it's healthy. It's dairy-free, it's grain-free and it's sugar-free, but it has plenty of maple syrup and lots of palm shortening to compensate for no refined sugar. However, it is absolutely amazing, regardless of your dietary choices. Like it might be the best chocolate cake I've ever had and most definitely the best one I've ever made; I made it twice now and had lots of taste testers from a broad range of ages and lots of people asking for the recipe. Some day I'll get photos that show it off.

It began as an experiment, as most things do in our kitchen. At the beginning of the summer, which of course is the worst time ever if you ask my children, we started a sort of Whole-30/Paleo blend. However, we had my middle's birthday two weeks into it and he was a bit stressed as to what he'd eat for dessert. I also wasn't doing our food plan so much as an elimination diet as I was a kickstart to eating better and to see if it'd have an impact on our environmental allergies. I searched for some recipes on Pinterest and found many variations, but not the one. So I did what I do and combined bits and pieces from a few and it resulted in what I would consider a masterpiece. 

We're still continuing on our modified food plan, which I quickly nicknamed the dirty-30. To be honest, I don't want to give a name to it because I don't want to hold us down to some hard set rules, but essentially we're grain-free, legume-free, soy-free and sugar-free (we're already dairy-free and yeast-free due to allergies). The first ten days or so, I really noticed positive differences- smoother skin, better attitudes, happier tummies, but then things started to taper off. My oldest does seem to be doing better with his environmental allergies. He usually spends his summer on multiple meds, both prescription and supplements, and still coughs himself to sleep. While he is still reacting to things, it doesn't seem nearly as bad as his normal. While it's always a guessing game, we're continuing on this plan for now and hopefully will be able to update with more positive results...and we're eating cake.

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Decadent Chocolate Cake (paleo, dairy-free, sugar-free, grain-free)

4 cups almond flour

1 cup cocoa powder

2 teaspoons baking soda

1 teaspoon sea salt

4 eggs

1 to 1-1/3 cup maple syrup (taste batter to decide if you want more)

2/3 cup water

1 Tablespoon vanilla

1/2 cup coconut oil, melted

Frosting:

2 cups palm shortening (be sure it's sourced from eco-friendly sustainable resources)

1/4 cup arrowroot powder

2/3 cup cocoa powder

1 cup maple syrup

1 tablespoon vanilla

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease two 9-inch cake pans with lots of coconut oil.

2. Sift together dry ingredients.

3. Blend together eggs, maple syrup, water, vanilla and coconut oil.

4. Stir together wet and dry ingredients until just mixed. Don't overmix!

5. Pour into greased cake pans and bake for 30-35 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean.

6. Once you remove from the oven, run a knife around the cakes and flip onto a wire rack to cool.

7. While cakes are cooling, prepare frosting by mixing everything until it's at desired consistency. 

8. Frost and enjoy!

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