I’m going to try something new:  a series!  I’ve put a reminder in my calendar and every month I want to post a recipe for something our family loves, made from all healthy ingredients.  (I’ve got several recipes I want to share–so maybe it’ll be more than one a month!)  Helen is really the expert here, so I’ll typically be getting the ideas and recipes from her, but I don’t think she’d take the time to actually sit down and type them in on a regular basis, so I’ll do the typing.

img_6930.JPGTo start the series off, something you wouldn’t expect:  chocolate cake.

I made this cake for Helen’s birthday just this week.  It was moist, deliciously chocolate, and vegan!  And it contains no wheat or sugar, two ingredients we avoid in our home.  I got the basic recipe here, but used all unbleached spelt flour instead of wheat flour.

Preheat oven to 350 F.  Grease and flour a 9″ springform cake pan.

Sift together:
1 – 3/4 cup spelt flour
2 t baking powder
1 t baking soda
1/2 t salt

In a saucepan on medium-low heat, bring to a simmer:
1 cup soy milk

Whisk in to the soy milk:
3/4 cup cocoa powder

Whisk cocoa and soy milk well until cocoa is dissolved, then remove from heat.

In another bowl combine and whisk well:
1/2 cup canola oil
1 – 1/2 cup pure maple syrup
1 t apple cider vinegar
2 t vanilla

Add the cocoa mixture to the other wet ingredients and combine, then add the wet ingredients to the dry.

Pour batter into prepared pan, bake at 350 F for 25 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.  Let cool 10 minutes on a cooling rack, slide a knife around the outside, remove the side of the springform pan, turn the whole thing upside down, remove the bottom of the pan, and set the cake rightside up again on the cooling rack.  Let cool completely and frost or dust with powdered sugar.

Tip 1:  To avoid having your cake collapse in the middle, avoid jiggling it until it’s completely done.  That definitely means avoid even opening the oven door to check on it until the full 25 minutes are up.  In our house I also put the kids in the bathtub while it’s baking, partly to clean off the chocolate they got in their hair while “helping”, but also so that they’re not running around the kitchen sending tremors through the oven!

Tip 2:  For our Calgarian readers and others at high altitudes, add 25 degrees F to the oven temperature, so in this case I baked the cake at 375 F.  I forget where I read that, but you’re supposed to add 25 degrees for every km above sea level, and Calgary is at 1048 metres according to wikipedia.