Friday, April 20, 2007

Conscious Gourmet Chocolate Cake with Chocolate Fudge Frosting and Raspberry Coulis

In the classes I took at Conscious Gourmet we learned how to make desserts without refined sugars that are also free of wheat, dairy and eggs and use only whole natural ingredients. This Chocolate Cake with Chocolate Fudge Frosting and Raspberry Coulis is one of the desserts we made. It uses ingredients such as spelt flour, agar agar, kuzu, coconut oil, and maple syrup. It was delicious and satisfying and this small slice was more than enough for me. In the past, I would have eaten a much larger slice of cake, and the leftover cake in the fridge would have been calling my name all night long. One of the big lessons that I learned was that I was addicted to refined sugars. With my new knowledge I know how to make desserts that will be tasty and satisfying without relying on refined sugars or refined ingredients. And, I also know ways to alter my diet if I find I am craving sugar. So far, I have not been craving sugar at all.

Below was my attempt to make at home the dish I featured yesterday. Instead of making the croquettes we made in class, I made one of the variations of that recipe that we learned, which was to add red lentils to the Red Bhutanese and basmati rices and to eat it as a simple lentil and rice dish. I made the cilantro sauce as a garnish. Since I couldn't find arugula, I made my salad with mixed greens, oranges, red onion and the orange-based dressing we learned how to make.

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Ana said...

Your vegetarian retreat sounds wonderfull, I would have loved to go to a thing like this!
The cake looks delicious, oh my!! And I am all in favor of using the least amount of refined foods possible. I do feel like I get into a much better mood when I don't consume sugar... but sometimes it is hard not to use it with a 5 year old around, he sure likes sweet things!
My birthday is coming, and the cake made my mouth water... do you have a recipe, could you share?

Kathleen said...

Hi Ana! You had mentioned before about the wonderful fresh coconuts in Brazil, and yes I did enjoy drinking the coconut water straight from the coconuts on the beaches when I visited there! I've seen fresh green coconuts at my local farmer's market, but haven't bought any, because I think I'll be disappointed, as coconut palms don't grow in my area so they can't be all that fresh.

In any event, Happy Early Birthday! It's close to my birthday too! The cooking class was my early birthday present! The chocolate cake was more complicated than any recipe I've ever used for making a cake. And, I'm not sure I'm allowed to share the exact recipes I learned at the class. So, for now, I'm not comfortable sharing it, and I feel bad because I want you to be able to taste it!! How about making a chocolate cake and making the raspberry coulis to serve with it, to give a similar presentation?

The Raspberry Coulis is very easy. You can just blend in a blender a pint of fresh raspberries with a pinch of salt and maple syrup to taste for sweetness. The amount of maple syrup will depend on how sweet your raspberries are. Then strain the mixture to remove the seeds. Have more fresh raspberries that are left whole to use as a garnish.

Ana said...

Hi Kathleen!
It is ok about the recipe, really! I perfectly understand your position and am glad you told me that!
And thanks for the couli recipe, I love raspberry sauces and coulis paired with chocolate dessert!!
So, maybe we have the same birthdate? Mine is on the 29, and I still have to figure out which chocolate cake I am going to make! Oh yeah, it has to have chocolate in it!!

Kathleen said...

Here is a link for a chocolate cake recipe I've used several times:

But the last time I made it, the cake didn't rise at all. The two layers looked like big flat pancakes. So, I made a new batch, and that batch resulted again in 2 big pancakes. So, I ended up using all four "pancakes" and turned it into a four layer cake. My guests were quite impressed and none the wiser of my snafu. It tasted great. I ended up needing more icing, so I used this recipe's icing for between the layers of the cake, and an alternate recipe for icing the top and sides. But, I don't remember which recipe I used!!

The cake needs to be stored in the refrigerator, and we like to heat up each slice a bit before eating it, so the icing just starts to melt. It makes it super delicious.

Ana said...

Thanks again!!!

Anonymous said...

I am a total sugar addict. If I eat sugar, I want more all day. If I go without sugar for a few days (RARE!) I don't miss it. Any tips you can post? --Karen

Kathleen said...

I can relate, Karen. It usually takes three days to break the sugar cycle. It's not easy to cut it off completely. So, I did it by sweetening things with natural, whole food sweeteners to get me through the three days. It helps a lot. Instead of using sugar, I sweetened things w/ real maple syrup, brown rice syrup. And, it also helped eating naturally sweet whole foods in some of my meals, like sweet potatoes, millet, bananas, coconut milk, and so on.