Flourless Chocolate Cake

On Sunday, Celeste came over for a class we called “Learn to Love the Kitchen.” Given she had just been diagnosed with Hashimoto’s, I wanted to include something really delicious and easy to make so she wouldn’t feel it’s a diagnosis of labor and deprivation.

Sunday with Celeste
Sunday with Celeste

Celeste arrived after a morning of writing. Not very purposeful writing, and not even very useful, but full of flow and ease, and a healing making right with the world kind of sweetness.

You see, I was taught to write in a stream of consciousness: “Don’t think, just write.” “Put pen in hand and begin.” “Let it flow.” “Be uncensored.” “Afterwards,” they would say, “you can go back and edit.”

This way of writing has been like therapy for me. It helps keep me alive to the river of life. It restores my faith that all is flowing towards some ocean, symbolic in Yoga for expanded consciousness, the cosmic mind, our oneness.

It’s one reason I put this quote from Norman MacLean on my personal website ~ “But when I am alone in the half light of the canyon all existence seems to fade to a being with my soul and memories… Eventually, all things merge into one, and a river runs through it.”

Nutella Mousse

“Under the rocks are the words…” he goes on. And it feels that way to me. Writing helps dislodge the rocks, underneath which are buried the words. There, a river runs through, and everything fades to a being with my soul and the memories…

Hazelnut Mousse

Sometimes I think I write for my life. To unfurl the coiled and sometimes twisted emotion, energy, experience and restore balance, perspective, peace.

At least that is how it began. Now I write to cultivate a divine essence, or a relationship with that. It’s a relationship that includes food, Nature,  you, even my own spirit ~ elated as it is to now be so free.

Homemade, healthy Nutella

In his novel, A River Runs Through, MacLean writes: “My father was very sure about certain matters pertaining to the universe. To him, all good things – trout as well as eternal salvation – came by grace; and grace comes by art; and art does not come easy.” 

Which makes me think not only of writing, and blogging, but of the kitchen, and all that we do to maintain health. Maybe our work is our art, and even our diagnoses can be seen not as labor and deprivation, but as acts of art leading us towards grace.

Nutella Pie_4
The art of our labor came for Celeste and for me, in this Flourless Chocolate Cake, which I affectionately call, “Nutella Pie.” It is simple, with only about 5 main ingredients. It is also messy. MacLean promises all good things – trout as well as eternal salvation… and that must include chocolate cake, don’t you think?

This little delight is made with hazelnuts, almond milk, dates, eggs, and some spices. It is not made with sugar, flour, dairy, or any junk. I ran the nutritional data on it and it seems to have about 150 calories per slice, plus a lot of vitamins, minerals, fiber and good-for-you love. I served it with a Coconut Cream Coulis and strawberries, but raspberries would be pretty, too.

Flourless Chocolate Cake

Hazelnuts, 1 cup
Dates, 6 large, pitted and chopped
Almond Milk, 1 cup
Vanilla Extract, 1 Tablespoon
Coconut Oil, 1 Tablespoon
Eggs, 3 large
Pink Salt, a pinch or two
Raw Cacao, 1/4 cup scant
Cinnamon, 1 big shake
Cardamom, pinch
Maple Syrup, 1-2 Tablespoons, (optional)

Set your oven to 335F. Pit and chop the Dates, then soak them in pure water for at least ten minutes. Toast the Hazelnuts lightly (about 3-4 minutes in a toaster). Put the nuts in a Vitamix or electric blender and grind until it is a powder. Drain the dates and add to the hazelnuts, along with the Almond Milk, Vanilla and Coconut Oil. Blend until it is creamy. You might have to stop, stir, and blend a few times to get it to really come together.

In a small bowl whip the eggs with the salt. Add to the hazelnut mixture and blend some more. Once that is creamy, add the cacao, spices, and maple syrup.

Grease a 9″ round pan, or muffin tins,with a dab of coconut oil. Pour in the mixture and smooth with a spatula or the back of a spoon. Bake for 2o-25 minutes for the cake/pie, or 15-20 minutes for the minis.

Serve warm or at room temperature with plain yogurt or this Coconut Coulis.

Coconut Coulis

Coconut Milk, 1 can
Raw Honey, 1 Tablespoon

Chill the Coconut Milk for at least one hour. Spoon it into a bowl and blend with the Honey. Whip it until it gets a bit fluffy and thickens. Drizzle over your Chocolate Cake. It is also wonderful with fresh fruit.

Nutella Pie_1

“Study after study shows that cocoa flavanols can disarm cell damaging free radicals, preserve cell membranes, protect DNA, prevent the formation of artery clogging plaque, improve blood flow to the heart, lower high blood pressure, and prevent blood clots that can cause a heart attack or stroke. ~ Bharat B. Aggarwal, PhD

I hope you enjoy this delicious reminder that food is a love story, and that Mother Earth is always loving you!

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Namaste ~

30 thoughts on “Flourless Chocolate Cake

  1. You are beyond adorable! First no need to apologize! But to apologize with photos of chocolate – oozing and pouring forth with love…was awesome. I barely read the words just looking for the recipe to create what my mouth was already salivating for!!! This is a great recipe and I will be making it for my company this weekend!! Thank you as always I am most grateful.

    1. Oh Robyn, the very best thing to come out of this is a burgeoning friendship with you. You have been so kind and supportive. I look forward to watching Ayurveda grow in you, and to seeing how you express “the Vidya.” Thank you!

  2. With a name like Nutella Pie…anything will be forgiven…there is actually nothing that needs to be forgiven! Melting into the pictures….Happy Valentine’s Day! Buon San Valentino!

  3. Well, I am wondering what I missed when you accidentally hit Publish. 🙂 However, you have included one of my favorite all time quotes… “art does not come easy” so again, I love you Miss Laura. Oh, and this recipe looks Divine. 🙂

    1. I will one day hit “publish” again on that draft, but that time it will be AFTER reviewing and editing.
      Are you also a Norman MacLean fan? How many more treasures do we get to look forward to learning from, and about, you? You are so multi-talented, Stephanie. Thx!

  4. What do I love?
    Laura Plumb.
    A real, authentic, generous Goddess who makes me laugh, who makes me celebrate being alive, who graciously reminds me of Nature’s bounties and who turns a word into a feeling adventure.
    That’s what I love.

      1. Oh Mary, that is you! All the more: You Are Love, and Light, and Healing, and Pure Compassion. We are so fortunate to be alive in a world where there is you.
        Thank you!

  5. Beautifully written as always. Thank you for this new recipe,can’t wait to hear what my boys say after they finish eating their chocolate cake. Something very cool is going on~i have been repeating ‘a river runs through it’ since Sunday. 🙂 Much love to you Laura!!!

  6. The chocolate cake looks divine, but I’m writing to thank you for that mistake, it was ever so timely, and just the message that I needed! It didn’t occur to me while reading that it was unfinished in the least, so repost, please! When it feels ready, of course….

  7. I agree, no apology needed! Everything I’ve ever seen you do has been with a full heart, so regardless of the outcome, your intention is always in it purest form.

    Also, thank you so much Laura! “Learning to love the kitchen day” was a very special turning point in my very limited cooking experience. Everything that you taught me to make…when I ate it I said “yum” at least three time during eat dish. I can’t believe I can make these amazing, yummy, healthy dishes myself. On a side note, I know with each meal and bit I am that much closer to healing my Hashimoto’s (thyroid autoimmune disease) I FEEL LIKE I HAVE MY LIFE BACK!!! Food truly is our medicine! There aren’t enough words to express how grateful I am to you for all of your wisdom, guidance, and compassion!!! P.S. The chocolate cake is aaaaaah-MAZING!!!

  8. I love scanning your archives to see what I have missed over the years. I made this cake this weekend and it was simple and delicious. The best part is that it can triple as a breakfast, snack, or dessert because of the substantial whole ingredient base.

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