Fudgy Chocolate Beet Cake with Chocolate Avocado Frosting (Vegan and GF)

Fudgy Chocolate Beet Cake with Chocolate Avocado Frosting (Vegan + GF)

Where oh where do I even start this post when that big hunk of chocolate is staring me in the face?

Luckily I planned ahead enough to save myself some, so I can nibble while I think about that question.

Fudgy Chocolate Beet Cake with Chocolate Avocado Frosting (Vegan + GF)

That’s better. The worst kind of food blogging torture is trying to write a dessert post when you don’t have any left to eat. Actually… the worst food blogging torture might be dish duty. But writing about chocolate without eating chocolate is clearly high up on the list.

How about reading about chocolate without eating chocolate? Sorry about that. Not to interfere with your evening plans, but I have to say that this cake is worth rushing home after work to make. Dare I say it’s even worth skipping the gym to rush home and make? I have, on occasion, been known to cancel my evening exercise plans for a reeeeally good-looking chocolaty dessert recipe. Not that I think you would ever sink to that level… but if you would consider it, now should be the time.

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Whole Wheat Pumpkin Spice Mug Cake

Whole Wheat Pumpkin Spice Mug Cake

Fall weather is upon us, and that can only mean one thing: pumpkin!

Let’s talk about pumpkin. Although I’m not the biggest pumpkin spice latte fan – too sweet! – I do enjoy almost anything else pumpkin-flavored. Pumpkin beer and pumpkin puree stirred into my oatmeal are two fall favorites. I’m not planning on bombarding you with pumpkin recipes this fall, but I do think that a quick and easy pumpkin dessert is in order. Enter this whole wheat pumpkin spice mug cake!

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Summer Squash Loaf Cake with Fennel and Almonds

Summer Squash Loaf Cake with Fennel and Almonds // Coffee & Quinoa

So you guys: Moving. Let’s talk about it, because it’s kind of taking over my life lately. Also, you’re so supportive.

I promise we will get to this cake in a minute.

Summer Squash Loaf Cake with Fennel and Almonds // Coffee & Quinoa

But first, moving. Moving is terrible.

I am at peace with the process now that we are fully moved in, only 2 walls of our living room are stacked with boxes (instead of the entire apartment), my kitchen is 90% organized, and some new IKEA furniture has even been assembled. But during the move, things were pretty painful.

Our new apartment is only about a mile from the old one, i.e. pretty much the easiest move possible. We signed the lease completely on a whim, and moved almost immediately. (Somehow my old landlord had no problem with this! Although I learned later that she was looking for a new place and ended up moving in when I moved out. Thaaaat might have something to do with it.) Anyway, I am about the least impulsive person imaginable., and definitely experienced some buyer’s remorse after signing the new lease.

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Coconut Rhubarb Cake

Coconut Rhubarb Cake

I couldn’t let the season go by without posting some rhubarb recipe. It’s no secret that I love colorful foods, and rhubarb is right up there with the prettiest of ‘em.

Coconut Rhubarb Cake

I hope rhubarb is still in season where you are! That way you can make this yummy cake.

Coconut Rhubarb Cake

Now I wasn’t raised on rhubarb; I don’t recall my mother ever making a strawberry rhubarb pie. In fact, I think last year was the first time I’d ever had rhubarb! It cracked me up when I first tasted it – looks like red celery, tastes like sour apples. What a funny little stalk!

I have a lot more experimenting to do with rhubarb, but let’s focus in on this particular experiment: coconut rhubarb cake.

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Blood Orange, Rosemary and Pine Nut Upside Down Cake

blood orange, rosemary & pine nut upside down cake

Nate is going out of town this weekend, and I plan on taking full advantage.

blood orange, rosemary & pine nut upside down cake

Starfishing in my bed. Drinking the whole pot of coffee. Parking in our one covered parking spot. And cooking all his least favorite foods.

Now, you can’t get much more easy-going than my partner in crime. He’s an adventurous eater, and happily eats anything I put in front of him. He never once complained during my 6 months of strictly vegan cooking – I think that pretty much says it all. But there are a few flavors he doesn’t prefer… and some of them happen to be my favorites.

blood orange, rosemary & pine nut upside down cake

That’s why I’ve had my weekend blog cooking menu ready since Monday. I won’t give it all away, but the general idea is this:

- Something with tahini.

- Something with horseradish.

- Something super spicy.

(Those are going to be different dishes, by the way. Not looking to make anything with so much horseradish that I cry.)

Anyway, I can’t wait. For the cooking, that is! I’ll miss Nate while he’s gone :)

But I’m getting ahead of myself… that tends to happen on Fridays when anticipation for the weekend is running high. In the meantime, I give you this glorious cake.

blood orange, rosemary & pine nut upside down cakeThis was inspired by my mom, who has taken to emailing or texting me whenever she eats something that I need to try. (Thanks Mom!) A while back, she emailed me a picture of a blood orange upside down cake she’d made, saying that she loved the idea of it, but didn’t think the recipe she’d followed had ended up looking or tasting as good as expected. She was sure I could do better! I wasn’t as sure… but I too loved the idea, and really, any excuse to cut into one of these beautiful blood oranges is enough to tempt me. Challenge accepted.

Blood Orange, Rosemary & Pine Nut Upside Down Cake | coffeeandquinoa.com

Mom said the recipe she used wasn’t flavorful enough. Luckily, I had long ago bookmarked a rosemary, pine nut and orange cornmeal cake to try at some point. This seemed like the perfect opportunity! And so this lovely cake was born.

blood orange, rosemary & pine nut upside down cake

If blood oranges aren’t available where you are, by all means use regular navel oranges. Opt for ones with thin peels, if you can, since you’ll be putting orange slices, peels and all, on the bottom of this cake. The peels do add a touch of bitterness, so you can cut them off before slicing if you’d like, but I do think the look with them on just can’t be beat. So pretty!

Blood Orange, Rosemary & Pine Nut Upside Down Cake | coffeeandquinoa.com

And if you’d prefer to use the oranges just as a garnish, you don’t have to eat them. I kind of like peeling them off and eating them first :) But be warned: you may want a sharp knife to cut this cake. Otherwise you run the risk of dragging the oranges all over like you’re eating a slice of pepperoni pizza. Just sayin’.

This cake is sure to impress, on both looks and flavor. The rosemary, pine nut, and orange combo in the base of the cake is delicious, and then topped with more oranges, butter and brown sugar? Don’t mind if I do.

blood orange, rosemary & pine nut upside down cake

5.0 from 1 reviews
Blood Orange, Rosemary and Pine Nut Upside Down Cake
 
Hands-on time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Yields: 8-12 pieces
Ingredients
  • 1 stick plus 3 Tbsp unsalted butter, divided
  • 2/3 cup dark brown sugar
  • 2 blood oranges, sliced 1/4-inch thick, including peel (I recommend buying a few extra oranges in case you're a messy slicer like me!)
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup finely ground yellow cornmeal
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/3 cup pine nuts, lightly toasted and coarsely chopped
  • 1 Tbsp finely chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1 Tbsp finely grated blood orange zest
  • 2/3 cup full fat Greek yogurt (I used Chobani)
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 1/3 cups granulated sugar
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 and position a rack in the center of the oven. Spray a 9-inch round cake pan and line bottom with parchment paper.
  2. Melt 3 Tbsp butter in the microwave. Stir in brown sugar until melted. Spread in the bottom of the cake pan.
  3. Arrange orange slices in an overlapping circle on top of the brown sugar mixture, with a few slices in the middle.
  4. Sift the flour into a medium-sized mixing bowl. Add the cornmeal, baking powder, salt, pine nuts, rosemary, and orange zest and stir to combine.
  5. Add the Greek yogurt to a large mixing bowl. Add the eggs one at a time, whisking thoroughly between each addition. Whisk in the sugar.
  6. Using a wooden spoon, fold the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients in two batches, mixing until homogeneous. Melt the remaining stick of butter and mix in.
  7. Pour the batter over the orange slices in the cake pan. Bake 40-45 minutes, until edges of cake are golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with moist crumbs.
  8. Run a knife around the edges of the cake. Cool completely on a wire rack. Once completely cool, invert onto serving dish and peel parchment paper away, if necessary.
  9. Serve and enjoy!
Notes
Adapted from FineCooking.com. Cake will keep for several days in the fridge. Bring to room temperature before serving.

 

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