I’m not really the type of person to pass on a piece of cake– the saying doesn’t exist for nothing, and I don’t think I’m alone in admitting that eating a piece of cake is a really easy (and delightful) feat. Cake is synonymous with indulgence and let’s face it, there’s something about being a little bit naughty that makes us feel good. In the grand scheme of things, eating a slice of cake is pretty harmless… but what if the cake we eat could also pack a punch of protein and could actually be the perfect fuel we need to start our day with vigour?!
Unlike the flour and sugar-laden cakes that probably come to mind when you hear the word, this one is made with beans. Yes, you read that right. Surprisingly, they’re completely flavour neutral and lend a lovely mousse-like consistency. They’re also full of fibre and slow-burning carbohydrates, so you can rest assured that this cake isn’t going to send you into a crazy sugar high! Packed with protein and good fats as well, this cake might as well be a meal.
On that note, something I’ve noticed when dining out, or at friend/family events is that I tend to just eat salads and vegetables. This is not by choice, but I also don’t blame a restaurant, friend or family member for not considering vegan sources of protein when everybody else is happy to eat the roast lamb they so lovingly prepared, BUT I do think that we should see lentils and beans and tempeh and hemp seeds and walnuts and tahini in more main dishes! These things are delicious and I’m sure that more people than just me would appreciate them.
In lieu of this lack of protein in the main meal offerings wherever I go, I’ve found that dessert offers quite a nice opportunity for compensation 🙂
A cake like this one, as previously mentioned is packed with protein, fibre and good quality fats, all of which really help us feel full and satisfied. The base is crunchy and lightly sweet and the filling (hopefully you have a high speed blender or food processor!) is deliciously creamy, without being super rich. So often, raw desserts, despite being rich and creamy and delectable, can feel very heavy and hard to digest. The beauty of beans in this recipe is that you can still achieve that creamy texture, without using nuts, avocado or lots of coconut. Don’t get me wrong, these ingredients are fantastic and definitely feature on my top 10 list, but sometimes you want something little lighter, ya know?
Enjoy the simple salad, or roast vegetables available to you at the restaurant, or family function, but bring this cake along with you too! That way you won’t feel hungry an hour later and you get to eat cake… Need I say more? An excuse to eat cake! You’re welcome.
- Base Ingredients:
- 1 cup coconut
- 1/2 cup buckwheat
- 1/2 cup sunflower seeds
- 5 dried figs
- 1 tblsp cacao
- 1 tblsp coconut oil
- 1 tblsp water
- 1/2 tsp vanilla powder
- pinch salt
- Filling Ingredients:
- 1.5 cups cooked black beans
- flesh from 1 young coconut
- 1/2 cup maple syrup
- 1/2 cup cacao
- 1/2 tsp vanilla powder
- pinch salt
- 1/2 cup raspberries (crushed with a fork)
- Using a food processor, process the coconut, buckwheat and sunflower seeds for about 1 minute, or until the ingredients resemble a coarse meal.
- Add remaining base ingredients and process again for another minute, or until all the ingredients come together and ‘stick’ when pressed between your fingers.
- Line a 20cm springform cake tin with baking paper, then press the mixture into the base of the tin and set aside in the fridge while you make the filling.
- Using the same food processor, process the black beans for a minute or so, just to roughly chop them up so that when it comes to blending the other ingredients through, you avoid finding pieces of un-blended beans in the mixture.
- Add the remaining ingredients except for the raspberries and process on high for a good 2 minutes. Taste for sweetness, and adjust to suit your liking.
- Remove the prepared base from the fridge and pour in half of the mixture. Gently fold through half of the smashed raspberries, then repeat with the remaining cake mixture and remaining raspberries.
- Place the cake into the freezer to set for at least 3 hours. If you’d like to decorate the top of your cake with some extra buckwheat and/or coconut, do so before placing the cake into the freezer. If you fancy a chocolate drizzle, do this after the cake has come out of the freezer and watch as the chocolate magically sets onto the frozen cake.
- Let sit at room temperature for 30 minutes – 1 hour before serving. The longer you leave the cake out, the more mousse-like the consistency.