Over the summer we spent a lot of time at farmer’s markets. There’s something about visiting each vendor and knowing they’re not just people selling goods – they’re community members too. The items are grown here and harvested here and processed here by each farmer’s own hand (or a hand they’ve chosen at least.) It’s comforting.
Our favorite farmer’s market is out in Millarville – a nice jaunt down the Cowboy Trail and you’re there (at least for us, being in the West.) We pack up the kids and head out early, for Saturday standards anyhow, because many vendors sell out of their most popular items. Last time we missed out on New York Strips because they had all sold. Sad. Sad.
But we did find a few extra large zucchini squashes were left and while that doesn’t make up for missing out on steak – this Chocolate Chocolate Chip Zucchini Cake most certainly does.
Rob is doing well and we’re all adjusting to new realities and one of those realities is that we are really watching what we eat. It’s the only way he can work on maintaining a healthy weight seeing as he can’t really exercise anymore. I had started this new regime before he got sick and he’s adapted it as well. It’s inspired by paleo which essentially means we aren’t eating grains or sugar or dairy. How then, are we talking about chocolate cake? Well, this one is made with almond flour and coconut sugar and dark chocolate!
- 1 cup Almond Flour
- ½ cup cocoa powder (unsweetened)
- ¼ cup coconut flour
- 1½ tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp vanilla
- ¼ tsp sea salt
- ½ cup coconut sugar
- 1½ cups shredded zucchini
- ½ tsp apple cider vinegar
- 1 cup almond milk
- ½ cup dark chocolate chips
- 3 eggs, separated
- Preheat your oven to 350F and grease a 9x9 cake pan with coconut oil.
- Grate your zucchini and set aside.
- In a large bowl mix both flours, chocolate chips, cocoa, baking soda, salt and coconut sugar - break up any lumps of flour with a fork.
- In a medium bowl, mix zucchini, egg yolks, milk, cider vinegar and vanilla.
- With a whisk, hand mixer or stand mixer, whip the egg whites until soft peaks form. They shouldn't be so firm that you can make meringue out of them, but you want them fairly firm.
- Now, you need to work kind of fast here. Once you pour the wet into dry ingredients the vinegar and baking soda will react and form bubbles which will help your cake to rise. If you leave this sitting on your counter while you answer the door the reaction will fizzle out leaving you with a flat cake.
- Pour your wet ingredients into your dry and mix fairly well but quickly - don't worry if there are a few lumps...that's ok. Once your batter is incorporated, add the whipped egg whites and fold them in. Again, you need to work quickly but the aim is to mix the eggs into the batter without letting them deflate all the way. These egg whites are also going to give you a soft and fluffy cake.
- Pour your batter into the pan and immediately pop that baby in the oven for 45 min. Test with a toothpick (note that your chocolate chips might make a mess on the tooth pick but your batter should be firm when fully cooked.)
If you wish to reduce the sugar even more, cut the amount of chocolate chips in half.
This is as healthy as delicious chocolate cake can get here people. I’m not saying you can eat this for breakfast…..but if you’re going to have a treat why does it have to be full of nasty things? Making things at home without wheat flour or other starchy flours (rice? potato? No thank you.) and without white sugar is one of the ways we’re working towards being in better shape and so far so good. But we still need treats. We’re human right?! I think so.
This cake reminds us that we are. Eat it. Enjoy it. Don’t feel guilty.