Warm and stimulating spicy hot chocolate, which is typically enhanced with ground cinnamon and chiles, provided the inspiration for this gluten-free cake. Chia gel helps bind the batter of this dark-chocolate confection, which is topped with chopped nuts and cacao nibs. Serve with a scoop of your favorite vegan ice cream on the side.
- 1/4 cup warm water
- 1 1/2 teaspoons chia seeds
- 3 cups almond flour
- 6 tablespoons cacao powder or unsweetened cocoa powder
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 3/4 teaspoon cayenne or chipotle chile powder
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/2 cup agave nectar or maple syrup
- 6 tablespoons canola or other oil
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1⁄3 cup coarsely chopped nuts (such as almonds, Brazil nuts, hazelnuts, pecans, or walnuts)
- 1/4 cup cacao nibs
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly oil a 9-inch square baking pan or mist it with cooking spray.
- Put the water and chia seeds in a small bowl and whisk vigorously to combine. Let rest for 10 minutes, until the mixture thickens into a gel.
- Put the almond flour, cacao powder, baking powder, cinnamon, cayenne, and salt in a large bowl and whisk to combine. Add the chia seed gel, agave nectar, oil, and vanilla extract and whisk to combine. The batter will be very thick.
- Transfer the batter to the prepared baking pan. Scatter the chopped nuts and cacao nibs over the top and use a spatula to gently press them into the batter. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let cool completely before slicing and serving.
Beverly Lynn Bennett
Book Publishing Company
PO Box 99
Summertown, Tn 38483