Rich, dreamy and very, very chocolatey. This gorgeous Dark Chocolate Banana Cake is a decadent dessert, rich with wonderfully healthy ingredients - yes you can have your cake and eat it too!
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Wow - that is all I have to say about this amazing, flavourful, gorgeous chocolate cake.
Okay, maybe I have a bit more to say.
The hubster and I are on a mission to eat better but as a food blogger, I face the challenge of creating not only just healthy but also beautiful and tasty dishes as well - and today's recipe does not disappoint!
There's a lot of goodness in this cake thanks to the star ingredient that makes this cake taste so rich and luscious, and that ingredient is ceremonial cacao.
Okay, confession time, I LOVE ceremonial cacao, I even sell it on my website www.goddessbyferitta.com because I believe so strongly in its wonderful health benefits so strongly. Traditionally used in spiritual ceremonies, at a lower dose it is a wonderfully nutritious daily beverage. Since putting coffee on a temporary hiatus, it has become my go-to morning treat. Known as the "food of the Gods" in Aztec and Mayan culture, the benefits of organic ceremonial cacao are impressive. It is filled with protein, antioxidants and theobromine which supports energy levels and mood. It also provides protective heart benefits and contains a host of minerals including copper, iron, phosphorus, magnesium and zinc. It's the easiest and yummiest way to improve your mental and physical health - I promise you!
In an effort to reduce our dairy intake, organic coconut milk and cream have been a brilliant and delicious substitute in baking, allowing me the freedom to create delicious dishes that leave us feeling satisfied and nourished.
The health benefits of coconut products include heart-protective properties. That is thanks to their MCTs or medium-chain triglycerides - fatty acids that enhance weight and health management. Additionally, they contain a host of vitamins and minerals including folate, niacin, vitamin C, manganese, iron, magnesium and potassium. It is also lactose-free.
The next ingredient that makes this special is my favourite ancient grain - spelt flour. Spelt is an amazing grain, that can facilitate digestion, help control cholesterol levels, improves blood circulation, help regulate hormones, boost bone health, improve immunity and help control diabetes. I love to use organic spelt flour in my baking and try to always use it in place of white flour if I can because it is just so much more nutritious and gut friendly.
Even the sweetness in this recipe comes from nutritious sources - dates, coconut sugar and maple syrup. I will say though, that the overall flavour of this cake is not overly sweet, which is perfect for me because it allows the clean flavours of the chocolate and banana to come through perfectly. I will say the banana and caramel topping with the bitter-sweet chocolate cake base is a fabulous combination and the bananas are also an excellent source of potassium and soluble fibre.
Ensure you use a regular cake pan that is sealed. DO NOT USE A SPRING FORM PAN that can leak for this recipe otherwise you run the risk of your caramel dripping out of your cake pan and all over your oven.
You can thin down some coconut cream with a little water to make your own coconut milk
Use a sharp knife to be able to easily cut your bananas length-wise
This cake can be eaten room temperature or cold - I actually love the flavour and texture profile of it cold straight out of the fridge
Add some roasted hazelnuts for some beautiful crunch if you desire texture
This cake will keep for 2-3 days in the fridge sealed in an airtight container
DO NOT be tempted to substitute cocoa powder or even organic cacao powder for the ceremonial cacao, you will simply not get the rich depth of flavour
If the caramel top is not brown enough, use a brulee torch or place the cake carefully onto an oven-safe plate/dish and pop the cake under the grill/broiler on medium-high heat for several minutes to allow the bananas and caramel to become golden brown.
YOU WILL NEED
Coconut Caramel Sauce
1 cup coconut cream
1.5 tablespoons maple syrup or coconut sugar
2 ripe bananas (sliced LENGTH WISE in 2-3 slices)
125g | 4.4 oz spelt flour
75g | 2.65 oz ceremonial cacao (smooth blend that loosely resembles cocoa powder)
1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoons baking soda
A good pinch of salt
1 ½ cups coconut milk (or milk of your choice)
40g | 1.4 oz coconut sugar (or natural sweetener of your choice)
90g | 3.2 oz pitted dates
30g | 1.1 oz butter (at room temperature)
1/2 tsp vanilla bean paste
Dried rose petals and coconut flakes for decoration (optional)
Preheat the oven to 150C | 300F. Grease and line an 18-19cm | 7 inch cake pan.
Put the coconut cream and maple syrup in a small non-stick saucepan and cook over medium heat. Allow it to simmer and bubble gently, stirring regularly for about 10 minutes. It should reduce about 50% into a thick creamy “caramel”. Don’t worry if it doesn’t look too dark.
Slice your bananas length-wise into 2 or 3 slices and then place them CUT (FLAT) SIDE DOWN into your lined cake pan.
Pour the caramel evenly over the bananas and the bottom of your cake pan.
In a large bowl add the spelt flour, ceremonial cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt and mix to combine.
In a blender, blend the coconut milk, sugar, dates, butter, and vanilla bean paste until smooth and then add to the dry mix and mix until just combined.
Pour the batter into the cake pan and bake for 40 minutes or until a skewer or sharp knife runs clean.
Once baked, allow to cool for 10-15 mins before carefully flipping onto your serving plate.
If you desire more colour on the top of your cake, use a brulee torch to caramelise further or place the cake under your grill/broiler to allow the caramel and banana to go a deeper golden colour.
Allow to cool before serving.
Finish with rose petals and coconut flakes if desired.
DOWNLOAD THE RECIPE BELOW
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