Beetroot, Chocolate & Orange Cake

Released late last year, talented cook, dietitian, former MasterChef winner and founder of My Food Bag, Nadia Lim, takes us on a journey through vegetarian and vegan cooking. Chock-a-block full of recipes for delicious dishes (including the delectable delicacy below) this book also includes a handy seasonal guide.

Nadia Lim: Vegeful | RRP $55 | Nude Food Inc

Beetroot, Chocolate & Orange Cake

This light, almost sponge-like cake is one that is great as a morning or afternoon tea-type cake by itself (as it’s not overly sweet or rich), or you can make it more decadent and special with the chocolate ganache and fresh berries. Gluten-free and dairy-free: use coconut oil and cream and dairy-free dark chocolate.

Serves: 8–10
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 1 hour

Ingredients (cake)

350–400g beetroot, peeled and chopped
1/4 cup coconut oil or melted butter
1 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla essence or extract
1 cup (100g) ground almonds
1 1/4 cup (100g) desiccated coconut
Finely grated zest of an orange
3 1/2 tablespoons dark cocoa (Nadia uses Dutch cocoa) or cacao powder
1 teaspoon baking powder
5 medium free-range eggs

Ingredients (ganache)

85g dark chocolate, chopped
1/3 cup cream or coconut cream
1 punnet fresh berries, to garnish

Method

Preheat oven to 170°C. Lightly grease and line the base and sides of a 20–21cm cake tin with baking paper. Boil beetroot for 10–15 minutes until tender. Drain beetroot well and place in a food processor or blender along with coconut oil/butter, brown sugar and vanilla. Blend until smooth.

If using the food processor, add ground almonds, coconut, orange zest, cocoa, baking powder and eggs, and continue blending until mixture is smooth and well combined. Otherwise, pour mixture into a large bowl, add other ingredients and whisk until smooth and well combined.

Pour into prepared cake tin and bake for an hour or until cake is just set. Leave to cool for at least 10 minutes before removing from tin and transferring to a cake rack, then allow to cool completely before icing.

To make ganache, place chocolate and cream/coconut cream in a heatproof bowl and melt together in the microwave in 30 second bursts, then stir until smooth and glossy.

Alternatively, place bowl above a small pot of barely simmering water and stir gently every now and again until melted. Allow ganache to cool slightly before using. Spread ganache over the top of the cake and a little down the sides and top with fresh berries.

For more of Nadia’s recipes, visit nadialim.com.