I am a lazy baker. Pretty much all of my bakes are one-bowl makes, that can be whipped up in under an hour. I also love using seasonal ingredients in my baking wherever possible! So this week at work when a kind colleague brought in some surplus courgettes from their allotment to share round, I thought: what’s better than a chocolate courgette cake?
This cake is a real winner. The courgette makes it deliciously moist, it’s sweet but not sickly, and is topped with a delicious quick chocolate ganache. It’s perfect for entertaining, or for simply treating your friends and family with a seasonal baking treat!
You don’t have to use courgette – root veg like carrot or beetroot would work well too!
Equally, if you can’t find or don’t want to use cacao powder, feel free to substitute with cocoa powder, but reduce the amount to 1/3 cup. I just personally love the mellow richness of cacao powder.
I feel like kids would really love both making and eating this cake! Plus, it’s a great way to hide vegetables in a delicious form.
2 cups flour (I used plain flour, but you could use wholemeal, spelt or a mixture!)
1 cup soft brown sugar
1/2 cup cacao powder
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp ginger
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
a pinch of salt
2 cups grated courgette (approx 2 large courgettes)
3 tbsp extra virgin coconut oil
300 ml oat milk
1 tsp vinegar
For the ganache:
50 g good quality dark chocolate (I used Green & Black’s 70%), broken into pieces
150 ml oat milk
Coconut chips (for topping, optional).
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees celsius. Lightly grease a 9 inch spring form cake tin or a loaf pan.
In a small bowl, whisk together the oat milk and vinegar and set aside. In a large bowl, sift together the flour, sugar, cacao powder, baking powder, baking soda, spices and salt. Mix in the grated courgette.
In a small pan, melt the coconut oil over a low heat, then add to the oat milk and vinegar mixture. Pour the liquid ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir everything together well.
Spoon the batter into the cake or loaf tin and spread out evenly. Bake for 60 minutes, or until a sharp knife inserted into the centre comes out clean. Leave to cool while you make the ganache.
To make the ganache, heat the chocolate and oat milk together in a small pan until the chocolate starts to melt. Remove from the heat and stir together briskly with a wooden spoon, until it forms a glossy, thick ganache. Leave to cool, the ganache should thicken even more. Spoon over the cake and spread out evenly. Decorate the top with coconut chips.
Like all chocolate cakes, this tastes even better the following day!