Happy Chocolate Week – Day 3! Back in my senior of high school, Mr. Stein, my AP English teacher, challenged all of us to write a hefty research paper on any topic we wanted. ANY topic. What did I pick? Chocolate! After months of research, and taste sampling, I produced a 40-page research paper about the sweet treat, ranging from its history, to its production, to the various types of chocolate. What a fun assignment that was. Anyway, now that I know so much about it, my love has only grown deeper. And for that I say, let’s eat chocolate cake! Try this one on for size…you won’t regret it.
My family celebrates all holidays, mostly because they end up being completely about the food. And fun times, of course. So for Father’s Day this year, my Oma and Opa offered to host dinner at their house, which is conveniently next door to my parents’. Opa grilled some Usinger’s Weisswürste, and threw some Paulaner Oktoberfest beer in the fridge, Oma made her famous potato salad, and I got to make the cake 🙂
Because my father LOVES chocolate – he’s addicted to it, no joke – and because Opa prefers desserts that aren’t too sweet, I made a chocolate-heavy cake, light on the sugar. Poured into a fancy bundt pan, the cake came out dense, moist and oh-so-delicious. Dad loved it because of the triple chocolate part. Opa loved it because the entire cake has less than 1 cup of sugar, and I loved it because it was secretly healthified with….drum roll please….AVOCADO!
Yep. This cake is made with half a ripe avocado. The green flesh plus a little vegetable oil acts as a substitute for what would traditionally have been a stick of butter. Avocado is a “superfood” with a lot of hype around it currently. Just this once: TRUST THE HYPE! It’s full of healthy fats and potassium and tastes pretty great as well. So why not bake with it? The taste is not altered, but perhaps even improved. And I like healthy cake – I get to eat more and not feel one drop of guilt.
I refer to this as “secret ingredient” cake because most people would be skeptical of a cake containing avocado. I served up the glistening chocolate dessert, let everyone take a few bites to form their opinion, and as soon as I heard an “it’s good” out of dad’s mouth and an “you can make this again” from Oma (the highest compliment a baker can receive from her skilled grandmother), I revealed my secret, and all were rather surprised. They couldn’t tell the difference, and I was as happy as can be.
So make this for your next family gathering! Don’t tell anyone what’s inside until they come back for seconds. It’s too much fun to trick people into being healthy.
Triple Chocolate Secret Ingredient Bundt Cake, based on a recipe from Ambitious Kitchen
For the cake:
- 3 oz semi-sweet baking chocolate
- 2/3 C strong brewed coffee
- 1 1/2 C all purpose flour
- 1/4 granulated sugar
- 1/2 C packed brown sugar
- 1/2 C cocoa powder
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 vegetable or canola oil
- 1/2 large, ripe avocado – mashed (learn from my mistake…make sure your avocado is SOFT)
- 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 3/4 C skim or non-dairy milk
- 1/2 C semi-sweet or dark chocolate chips
For the ganache:
- 8 0z (2/3 of a bag) semi-sweet or dark chocolate chips
- 1 tbsp unsalted butter
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 2-3 tbsp skim or non-dairy milk
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 12-cup bundt pan with flour baking spray, such as PAM for Baking.
In a small sauce pan, combine the baking chocolate squares and hot coffee. Heat over low heat and whisk until the chocolate is melted and combined with the coffee. Set aside to cool.
In a big mixing bowl, combine flour, both sugars, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt.
In a smaller bowl, mash avocado with a fork until completely smooth. Whisk in oil and vanilla. Whisk in the cooled chocolate and milk. Add this wet mixture to the dry mixture and stir until just combined. Fold in the 1/2 cup of chocolate chips. Pour into prepared bundt pan and smooth the top with a spatula.
Bake for 40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out almost clean.
Set on a cooling rack to let the cake cool, still in its pan, for an hour. Then invert onto cooling rack to cool completely.
In a small saucepan, combine the chocolate, milk, butter and vanilla. Heat on medium low until all ingredients are melted and combined, stirring often. Let this cool for 15-20 minutes (while the cake is cooling).
Transfer cooled cake to your serving platter of choice. Spoon ganache on top and spread down the sides and in the bundt hole. Cover and store in the fridge for the ganache to set up. I made this 24 hours before we ate it, and let it sit out on the counter for an hour before serving.
Happy Father’s Day, to my dad and Opa! I love you both so much.
For more chocolate recipes:
Day 1 – Double Chocolate Stout Cake with Chocolate Stout Ganache
Day 2 – Banana Bread Overnight Oatmeal