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+ servings

Extremely Moist Chocolate-Beet Cake with Ganache

Ingredients

  • Chocolate-Beet Cake
  • 8 oz beets
  • 7 oz dark chocolate, 70% or greater, broken into small pieces
  • ¼ cup hot espresso
  • ¾ cup + 2 Tbsp butter
  • 1 cup + 2 Tbsp all-purpose flour
  • 1 ¼ tsp baking powder
  • 3 Tbsp cocoa powder
  • 5 eggs
  • Scant 1 cup superfine sugar

  • Ganache
  • 8 oz semisweet or bittersweet chocolate
  • 1 cup coconut cream (or heavy cream)
  • tsp coarse sea salt

Instructions

  • Chocolate-Beet Cake
  • Preheat the oven to 350° F
  • Lightly butter an 8 or 9-inch springform cake pan and line the base with a round of baking parchment.
  • In a pot of boiling, unsalted water, add the beets (whole and unpeeled). Cook until tender (~ 30-40 minutes)
  • Drain and rinse them with cool water. Slice off their stem, root, and peel them.
  • Process the beets in a blender or food processor until they're a coarse purée.
  • In a small bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder & cocoa.
  • Separate the eggs, putting the whites in a large mixing bowl and the yolks into a smaller bowl.
  • Gently whisk the yolks.
  • In a small bowl over a pot of simmering water, add the broken pieces of chocolate and allow it to melt. (Don't stir!)
  • When the chocolate looks like it's almost melted, pour the hot espresso over it and stir once.
  • Cut the butter into small pieces (the smaller, the better) and add it to the bowl with the melted chocolate.
  • With a spoon, push the butter below the surface of the chocolate, and allow to soften.
  • Remove the bowl of chocolate from the heat and stir until the butter has completely melted into the chocolate.
  • Let sit for a few minutes to cool before stirring in the egg yolks. After adding the yolks, mix until the eggs have blended into the mix.
  • Fold in the pureed beets.
  • Whisk the egg whites until stiff (it's far easier with a stand mixer), adding the sugar toward the end.
  • Fold the processed egg whites into the chocolate mix. (A large metal spoon is handy here; you'll want to work in deep, figure-eight movements, taking care not to over-mix.
  • Fold in the flour and cocoa mix.
  • Transfer the batter to the prepared cake pan and put in the oven, decreasing the heat immediately to 325 degrees F.
  • Bake for ~ 40 minutes.
  • How can you tell if it's done? The rim of the cake will feel spongy, while the inner part should still wobble a little when gently shaken. Test with a cake tester or toothpick too -- if it is still gooey in the center, continue baking just until moist crumbs cling to the tester.
  • Set the cake aside to cool (it will sink just a little in the center), loosening it around the edges with a thin icing spatula after half an hour or so.
  • The cake will be easiest to remove after it's completely cold.
  • Top with Ganache.

  • Ganache
  • Coarsely chop the chocolate. (A serrated knife is best for the job; its saw-like teeth grab the chocolate, breaking it up)
  • Over medium-high heat, bring the coconut cream just to a boil.
  • Pour over chocolate, and add salt. Let stand for 10 minutes (don't stir -- as doing so will cool the ganache too quickly, and make it grainy)
  • Stir with a whisk until smooth and shiny to break up any pieces and emulsify the cream and chocolate.
  • Chocolate will often settle on the bottom or sides of the bowl. Scrape the dish with a rubber spatula to incorporate all of it.
  • To make a whipped filling or frosting: Let the ganache cool to room temperature, stirring often, 45 minutes to 1 hour. Beat it with a mixer on medium-high speed until paler and fluffy (~ 2 to 4 minutes)
  • This will yield about 2 cups.
  • Spread evenly over the cake