Chocolate and orange just scream Christmas and winter don’t they. Since I was on cake duty for the family over the holidays, when I received a sample of the special festive edition Chocolate Orange Coyo (vegan coconut yoghurt), I knew I’d be putting it to use in some confection or other. Half my family are lactose intolerant or allergic to dairy products so I’m always looking for delicious dairy alternatives. As it’s also clementine season, I knew I wanted to use them for their sweet fragrance and flavour, slightly less in your face than orange.
Well you know me, it’s against the law to bake without vegetables being involved somewhere! I’ve seen several beetroot and chocolate cake recipes so figured why not carrot, which I know works well with orange. In the final cake, you can’t taste the carrots, they just add lightness and stop the cake being dense. The lovely clementine flavour really comes through in every bite. Cocoa and dark chocolate are full of antioxidants and flavonoids. Did you know one serving contains more than a similar serving of “superfoods” such as acai berries and blueberries?) So all in all this is pretty healthy cake – enjoy!
Recipe: Chocolate, Carrot & Clementine Cake
- 150g plain flour (I used 100g wholemeal and 50g white )
- 30g unsweetened cocoa powder (read here about the different kinds of cocoa powder and when to use what)
- 1 teaspoon bicarb of soda
- 1/2 teaspoon dried ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 150g brown sugar
- 2 eggs
- 65ml light olive oil
- 65g Chocolate Orange Coyo
- 1 vanilla pod (equivalent to 1 tsp vanilla paste)
- 2 large carrots grated
- 2 clementines (zest the peel and blend the rest after removing white bits)
- 100g Green & Blacks Maya Gold chocolate bar (dark chocolate flavoured with orange and spices so works well in this recipe, use whatever you fancy)
- 1 clementine (peeled and divided into segments)
- Orange liqueur (optional) – I used Mandarino, made from mandarin which my brother had brought back from holiday)
- Heat oven to 180°C
- Sift flour, cocoa, bicarb, salt and ginger into one bowl
- In another bowl, beat the sugar and eggs for approx 2 minutes
- Whisk in the oil, yoghurt and vanilla
- Stir the blended clementines into the liquid mixture
- Stir in the dry ingredients bit by bit until just mixed.
- Stir in the grated carrot and clementine zest
- If making cupcakes, bake for 20 minutes. If making a cake, bake for 35 minutes. Check that is is cooked by inserting a skewer or toothpick which should come out clean. If not keep baking and checking in 5 minute intervals.
- Leave to cool
- Pour orange liqueur on to cake and leave to soak in.
- Melt the chocolate then pour on top of cake and arrange clementine segments.