Flourless Chocolate Coconut Cake

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This Saturday, I will provide tea and treats at my friend Todd’s piano recital during a short intermission between classical and jazz sets. Because I want to make this a zero-waste event, I’ll hand out each goodie on a homemade reusable napkin. That means everything I bake must hold together well (so no pudding, for example). Many people attending do not eat gluten, but they do eat chocolate. Gluten-free brownies seemed like a good option.

This recipe—although incredibly delicious—rendered a cake, not brownies. I need to figure out a gluten-free brownie recipe asap! I don’t have much time left. Just as my nerves have begun to unravel, today I had this entire not-quite-gooey-moist, rich, flourless chocolate-coconut-packed cake sitting on my kitchen counter…not a safe combination.

With her permission, I stole the recipe from my daughter MK. She created it for her old blog, The Plastic-Free Chef, which she no longer writes. (After she abandoned it, I asked her if I could take over but she said “No, write your own blog.” The Zero-Waste Chef was born.)

This recipe may not have resulted in the brownie I wanted, but the cake is fantastic (and long gone).

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 4 ounces bittersweet chocolate
  • 1/2 cup cooked black beans
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract*
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1 3/4 cups shredded coconut

I bought the chocolate, dried beans, sugar, salt and coconut in bulk; I buy milk in returnable glass bottles; the egg lady at the market accepts cartons for reuse; and I cure my vanilla. The butter does result in a bit of waste but as I have written before, I refuse to give up butter.

*I think my homemade vanilla does not contain gluten. I used Smirnoff Vodka to cure it, which from what I can glean, contains corn not wheat.

Directions

butter chocolate before after

1. Melt the butter and chocolate over low heat, stirring until melted. Allow to cool.

black beans and milk

2. Puree the black beans and milk in a food processor or blender until smooth.

how many eggs
I cracked only four eggs, but see at least six yolks in there…

beat sugar and eggs

3. In a large bowl, beat the eggs and sugar until light and foamy.

4. Add melted chocolate-butter to egg-sugar mixture. MK suggests tempering the eggs and chocolate—whisking a small amount of the warm melted chocolate into the eggs to avoid cooking scrambled eggs, then continuing to add the chocolate slowly while whisking until you’ve combined everything. By the time I reached this step, my chocolate had cooled sufficiently and I combined it with the eggs. If yours has not cooled, follow MK’s tip or wait.

5. Stir in the bean mixture, salt, vanilla and coconut.

pour into prepared pan

6. Pour mixture into a well-greased 8-inch by 8-inch pan. Use lots of butter. The cake really sticks.

baked cake

7. Bake at 350°F for 40 minutes or until an inserted fork comes out clean. A thick crust formed on mine which left me puzzled. I googled it and discovered that this is a meringue—a chocolate meringue. Yum.

My neighbors, younger daughter and I polished off the entire cake today. MK sent me a link to a flourless brownie recipe she found online and I’ll test that tomorrow. I wish I could just serve this delectable cake, but it requires plates and forks and I want to keep the food easy and simple (Todd expects about 100 people).

Flourless Chocolate Coconut Cake

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 4 ounces bittersweet chocolate
  • 1/2 cup cooked black beans
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1 3/4 cups shredded coconut

Directions

1. Melt the butter and chocolate over low heat, stirring until melted. Allow to cool.

2. Puree the black beans and milk in a food processor or blender until smooth.

3. In a large bowl, beat the eggs and sugar until light and foamy.

4. Add melted chocolate-butter to egg-sugar mixture. Temper the eggs and chocolate by whisking a small amount of the warm melted chocolate into the eggs to avoid cooking scrambled eggs. Continue to add the chocolate slowly while whisking until you’ve combined everything. If your chocolate has cooled to room temperature, skip the tempering and combine directly with the eggs.

5. Stir in the bean mixture, salt, vanilla and coconut.

6. Pour mixture into a well-greased 8-inch by 8-inch pan.

7. Bake at 350°F for 40 minutes or until an inserted fork comes out clean.

25 Comment

  1. Great to see a nut free brownie recipe! Interesting that you used beans rather than alternative flours. I have dabbled with recipes that use beetroot and dates until I realised that I actually prefer chocolate cake to brownies… 😉 Dates are what give sticky toffee pudding its chewiness so adding some of those may make your mix more gooey.

    1. Well, I thought I better stay away from nuts. A lot of kids around here have nut allergies and I expect many students at the recital. The beans add some substance without taking away from the rich chocolate flavor. Tasting this, you would never guess they’re in there. Thanks for the tip about the dates 🙂 I’ll experiment with some. Do you buy yours pitted? If not, how do you remove the pits?

      1. I just split the date length ways and pick the stone out. It’s no hardship and the dates need to be roughly chopped anyway. Or you could try some grated beetroot, which would make the brownie cake a bit more moist.

      2. Thank you! I like the idea of beetroot too. That would also give a chocolate cake or brownie a nice color.

      3. Will this recipe work using egg alternative? I usually sub out eggs with arrowroot in cake where the volume of the beaten eggs is not critical. It still hold together good. Thx

      4. The Zero-Waste Chef says:

        I haven’t tried it but I don’t see why not. FYI, it’s a very moist cake. I’m not sure if that will affect your arrowroot or not, but thought you might want to know.

    1. Thanks will give it a try

  2. That looks really good, and…my partner went gluten-free a few weeks ago. Time for this cake!

    1. Perfect timing! I think you’ll both really like it. I wish we had some left 🙁

  3. well looks good enough to eat and we will give it go having a few gf ers in the family.
    you are terrific you know.
    Sandra

    1. Aw shucks. That’s so sweet of you. Thank you 🙂 The cake is really good. I think your GF-ers will like it (and you too).

  4. Wow… This looks such a beautiful cake.. Shall try soon… 🙂

    1. Great! Please let me know how it goes. Thanks for checking it out 🙂

  5. Great recipe! Will have to try this one–I like to make a mess o’ black beans and always end up with extra. You can really taste the difference when you make them from dry beans instead of using canned. Which I know you don’t do on principle! 🙂

    1. I think you’ll really like it. You could use your homemade butter 😉 You’re right about the texture of the beans. The canned ones have an odd texture, a bit of a slimy coating and not much flavor. I don’t use my crock pot much for cooking meals, but I love it for cooking beans of all types (and for making broth).

      1. Go crock pots! The Seventies live!!! (PS, I have one, too. Not avocado green either. 😉 )

  6. Yum!!!!! oh my

    1. It’s very yummy. If I hadn’t given some away, I could easily have eaten the whole pan myself.

      1. M E Cheshier says:

        Sounds like something I would do! 🙂

  7. Reblogged this on Travels with Mary and commented:
    Oh my goodness! Now I am starved and craving chocolate!

      1. M E Cheshier says:

        Ditto!

  8. OMgoodness!! That looks like an awesome breakfast for this GF girl. 🙂

    1. That’s my kind of breakfast 🙂

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