Sunday, 22 January 2012

WSC Blueberry Chocolate Cake

My mum had her birthday last week.  She came to look after Sylvia on the day.  It seemed only right to bake a birthday cake.  Not only does a birthday girl deserve a birthday cake, but I knew there would be hours of entertainment with birthday candles for Sylvia.  Being unorganised as usual, I only decided to bake the cake in the morning before my mum came.  I had blueberries and I wanted it to be healthy(ish).  Fat Free Vegan's Chocolate Blueberry Cake fitted the bill.

Sylvia and Dolly never say no to helping bake a chocolate cake.  It was a fairly straightforward cake to me.  Just blitz the blueberries, mix with wet ingredients, add to dry ingredients and bake.  There was no added oil and no eggs.  Even better for licking the bowl.  The main problem was that it was a 35 C day so I didn't bother pre-heating my gas oven.

The cake came out of the oven 5 minutes after mum arrived.  I was concerned that it didn't look at all appetising.  Flat and rubbery were the words that came to mind.  Well at least it would hold a few candles.  If I had remembered the chocolate ganache that is still in the freezer, I would have brought it out but I was rushing to head off to work.  Yet, my mum and Sylvia seemed to have enjoyed it when I got home.

I loved it.  I would even go as far as saying it is one of the nicest low fat cakes I can remember eating.  E also enjoyed it because it was not overly rich.  He thought it just needed a dollop of cream.  It was lovely on the first day but got even denser and slightly fudge after that.  I guess that Susan of Fat Free Vegan is a big fan, given that she has a picture of the cake on the banner of her blog.

She says it makes 8 servings.  I am more parsimonious.  I liked baking it in a square tin (rather than a round one like Susan) because it is easier to cut small squares.  Which is just as well because Sylvia decided to crumble up her piece while having a tantrum about not being able to eat the pieces I was photographing.  As you can see above, I experimented with eating it with fresh blueberries and some maple syrup. I agree with Susan that it is a delicious way to eat this cake.
 
Sylvia and I had fun making a birthday card for mum.  It was amazing that all I had to buy was some card (from Deans Art) because the rest of the material - glitter glue, sticky sparkly paper and stickers - were hanging around the house.  I think I could really get into making cards rather than buying them. Though I still haven't worked out about envelopes.

Yesterday we went to my sister Susie's house in Geelong for a birthday bbq.  We had a great array of salads.  I contributed a smoky potato, bean and corn salad.  For sweets we were rather restrained and merely had some cupcakes and mum's pav.  Erica made the GF white chocolate and chocolate mud cupcakes with pretty icing piped on top.  We put some candles in these to sing Happy Birthday.  It was a fun afternoon with the kids setting up shops in their bedrooms.

I am sending the chocolate blueberry cake to Chele of Chocolate Teapot for We Should Cocoa.  The theme this month is Healthy Conscious.  And for those who are interested in healthier baking, there is a great article on muffin makeovers from the Harvard School of Public Health.

Previously on Green Gourmet Giraffe:
This time last year: Chocolate cake - the way mum made it
This time two years ago: Cheese and Almond Loaf
This time three years ago: Birthday chocolate cake and crazy computers
This time four years ago: Coconut Chai Cake

Chocolate-Blueberry Cake
Slightly adapted from Fat Free Vegan

1/2 cup blueberries (I used frozen)
3/4 cup water
1/2 cup maple syrup (or date syrup, or other liquid sweetener)
1 teaspoon ground flax seeds (or chia seeds)
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
3/4 cup plain white flour
1/2 cup plain wholemeal flour
6 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
pinch salt

Serving suggestion:
1 cup blueberries and maple or agave syrup
OR
icing sugar
OR
chocolate ganache and cream

Blend blueberries with some of the water.  Add remaining water, maple syrup, flax seeds and balsamic vinegar.  (I did this in my little blender attachment for my hand held blender so I couldn't do too much water at once and then I just hand mixed the remaining wet ingredients but you could just blend them all together in a bigger blender.)

Mix the dry ingredients in a medium bowl.  Pour in wet ingredients and stir until just combined.  Pour into a lined 20cm square cake tin.  (Susan used a round 23cm cake tin.)

Bake 30 minutes in a moderate oven (180 C or 350 F) or until a skewer inserted in the middle comes out cleanly.  Turn out onto a wire rack to cool.. Keeps in an airtight tin for 4-5 days.

To serve you could top with fresh blueberries and drizzle with syrup OR dust with icing sugar OR spread with chocolate ganache and dollop some cream beside each slice.

On the Stereo:
The Trip - Various Artists: curated by Jarvis Cocker and Steve Mackey

27 comments:

  1. Mmmmmmm - that cake looks lush to me ... and being healthy means I can go back for two slices right?? Thanks so much for taking part in the challenge this month.

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    1. Thanks Chele - definitely you can have two slices (best to just cute smaller slices if you want to - works a treat)

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  2. This cake looks divine. As someone who loves chocolate and blueberries and generally finds healthy twists appealing - there's not much more I could ask for. My Mum's birthday is this week and she'll be getting something slightly less healthy I suspect, but I'll tuck this away to try :)

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    1. Thanks Kari - hope your mum has a yummy birthday cake and hope you love this cake - it is not really chocolatey but does the trick

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  3. I love blueberries - this sounds yummy to me!

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    1. thanks Rachel - you don't taste them much in the cake but just enough to justify topping it with all those berries

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  4. MMMM,...what a stunning looking cake, I say! :)

    I have all of the ingredients i the house so I am going to make this lusciously looking cake this evening! Thanks! :)

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    1. thanks Sophie - it is one of those cakes that use mostly pantry staples - enjoy

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  5. It looks and sounds gorgeous, and with a definite healthy slant too. I love the way you've arranged all those blueberries on top of the piece you've cut!

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    1. Thanks C - you should check out susan's photo of the blueberries on the wedge - looks even better than mine but I only cut small squares

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  6. Oh my Johanna! As you know, I am a savory girl, but how could I resist this combination.

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    1. Thanks Lisa - this isn't overly sweet and I think you might just love it

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  7. The cake looks and sounds delicious, I'm a sucker for blueberries. One of the first vegan cakes I attempted was from Susan's blog, I really love her recipes. I love the birthday card too!

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    1. Thanks Mel - I've made a few lovely vegan cakes from Susan's blog - it was one of the early blogs I read and always has great ideas

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  8. Sounds delicious! I had a feeling that Susan wouldn't let you down. ;-). And the white chocolate cupcakes look stellar as well. Glad that Syvlia enjoyed all the goodies (as did your Mum--happy birthday!).

    Still having trouble commenting--I'm not sure why some go through and others don't. Usually I just get a big white screen when I try to open up the post from Google Reader. Have you found out anything more about why some comments aren't working--?? (damn blogger!).

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    1. Thanks Ricki - yes Susan is a reliable source of fat free vegan goodies - sorry the commenting is still giving you grief - I have checked help in blogger and googled it but just keep getting advice about how to comment - a comment of mine was eaten by blogger recently and I thought of you in sympathy - the only possibility that might work is to open a blogger account that links to your blog (I've seen a few others do that so maybe they have had problems) but I know it is nicer when comments link directly to your blog.

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  9. Happy birthday to your mum Johanna! And I continue o marvel at how much Sylvia has grown! :)

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    1. Thanks Lorraine - yes she tells me quite regularly that she is big girl - even tells me that dolly is growing!

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  10. What a great way to use blueberries!

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    1. Thanks Lisa - great for a blueberry glut or realising that you aren't using the packet of frozen berries in the freezer

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  11. Mmmmm - low fat and delish - music to my ears. Happy birthday to your mum - hope she had a lovely day.

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    1. Thanks Cakelaw - am sure you would enjoy it - mum had a lovely birthday except that she left her mobile phone at our place

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  12. Love blueberries. Popped into a birthday cake? Even better.
    Happy Birthday to your mum :-)

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    1. Thanks Brydie - yep this cake is full of blueberries - how can you go wrong!

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  13. Oo I like how the blueberries are blended into the cake and your description of it being denser and fudgey the next day sounds so good! Don't they sell cards that go with the card stock? It's been a long time since I've bought them but I thought they did.

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    1. Thanks Ashley - I was pleasantly surprised by the texture - I don't usually make cards so was unsure where to look - my mum has suggested a place called spotlight that does lots of craft stuff and there is another art and craft place I must try

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  14. it's such a lovely surprise to find something you are doubtful about turns out to be really good. Really like the idea of a cake made of blueberries. Also love the idea of you being restrained having ONLY pavlova and white chocolate cupcakes for pudding ;-)

    Lovely entry for WSC.

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