Featured Ingredient: Avocado
When it comes to celebration, a chocolatey treat is always welcomed. And I recently received news that definitely called for a batch of muffin tin chocolate goodness. For several years now, I’ve been working away as a nutrition and food writer for a number of publications. And last weekend I was lucky enough to receive a James Beard Award in New York City for Food Journalism. They have been lovingly called the Oscars of the food world. It’s an amazing honor and definitely made these chocolate cakes taste that much sweeter.
Infused with avocado and adorned with a quick raspberry sauce, the taste can only be described as guilt-free decadence. You’ll also notice that with the absence of eggs or dairy, the cakes are vegan. But they manage to be wonderfully fudgy and only get better after a day or two. My suggestion is to serve the cakes warm.
Avocado owes its mega benefits to the fact that the creamy flesh is rich in ticker-friendly monounsaturated fat and a range of nutrients including folate. While raspberries are among the highest-fiber berries you’ll find.
Chocolate Avocado Coconut Cakes
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 teaspoons instant espresso powder (optional)
2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon cayenne or chili powder (optional)
1 large ripe avocado
1/2 cup coconut milk
1/3 cup pure maple syrup
1/3 cup melted coconut oil or other oil of choice
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
3 cups frozen raspberries
2 tablespoons sugar of choice
2 teaspoons cornstarch
Place cocoa powder and espresso powder if using in a heat proof bowl. Pour in 1 cup boiled water, stir to dissolve and set aside to cool.
In a large bowl, stir together whole wheat pastry flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, cayenne or chili powder if using, and salt. Place avocado flesh, coconut milk, maple syrup, oil, vanilla, vinegar, and steeped cocoa in a blender container and blend until smooth. Add wet ingredients to dry and mix gently.
Divide mixture among 12 standard sized greased or paper lined muffin cups and bake for 20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of a cake comes out nearly clean. Let cool several minutes before unmolding.
To make the raspberry sauce, place frozen raspberries, sugar and cornstarch in a microwave safe bowl and heat on high for 2 minutes. Stir and heat for another 2 minutes.
Serve cakes topped with raspberry sauce.