Cacao Sponge with Caramel & Choc Ganache

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Contributed by: Cassandra Law

Serves: 10

Time: 2-3 hours

Luxurious chocolate cake which is gluten free and refined sugar free!
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Luxurious chocolate cake which is gluten free and refined sugar free!
More Information >>



Cacao Sponge:

½ cup hot water
6 Tablespoons cacao powder
1¼ cups almond meal
2 Tablespoons coconut flour
½ Teaspoon baking soda or 1½ Tablespoons baking powder
½ teaspoon sea salt
3 free range eggs or 4 flax eggs if vegan
½ cup melted coconut oil
⅓ cup raw honey or brown rice syrup
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Raw Caramel:

8/9 medjool dates, pips removed soaked for 10 minutes
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 Tablespoon water
2 teaspoons mesquite powder (optional, gives an extra caramel flavour)
2 Tablespoons coconut oil

Chocolate Ganache:

½ cup coconut milk
2 Tablespoons raw cacao powder
1 Tablespoon maple syrup, honey, agave or brown rice syrup


Cacao Sponge:

  1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Line a 20-22cm springform pan with baking paper or grease with coconut oil.
  2. Combine the hot water and cacao powder in a small bowl. Stir well to dissolve the cacao powder and set aside. Combine almond meal, coconut flour, baking soda/powder, and sea salt in a medium bowl. Stir well and set aside.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or I used my food processor with the bread/plastic blade to combine eggs, coconut oil, sweetener and vanilla extract. Mix on medium high for 2-3 minutes, or until pale yellow and fluffy. With the mixer on low or your food processor, add in the melted cacao. Then add the reserved dry ingredients in two shifts, making sure to mix well in between each. The resulting cake mix should have no large lumps apparent.
  4. Pour the batter into the greased springform pan and bake for 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Set aside to cool whilst making the caramel.

Raw Caramel:

  1. Place all ingredients (except the water) in the food processor and blend until smooth - the caramel will become thicker. Then gently, add water a bit at a time to the desired consistency. Spread the caramel onto the cacao sponge with a spatula and leave to cool.
  2. Chocolate Ganache:
  3. In a small saucepan, heat the coconut milk and sweetener slowly and gently, stirring it every now and then – you want this to be thick so give it time. Mine took 30-40 minutes to reduce. You want it to look like condensed milk.
  4. Once it's thick, add the cacao powder and stir for another few minutes untll well combines. Then place it in the fridge for 20 minutes or so to cool and thicken some more. When the ganache is cool, spread it on the top of the caramel of the caramel. You can decorate with any berries, nuts, seeds or shredded coconut!
Gluten Free
Gluten Free
Wheat Free
Wheat Free
Cane Sugar Free
Cane Sugar Free

Recipe Questions

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