The beauty of vegan baking and raw cake-making is that you can totally reinvent classic dishes. That way, you get to enjoy two versions: the more traditional, familiar recipe, and the new, tantalizing recipe. I didn’t want to recreate just any old walnut coffee cake—I wanted it to be something people had never tasted before. The brownie base is my cheeky wink to all the chocolate lovers out there: it makes this cake even more indulgent!
Raw Walnut Coffee Cake with a Brownie Base [Vegan]
- 3 frozen bananas, chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 7 ounces walnuts, soaked for 20 minutes
- 3 1/4 tablespoons water
- 2 espresso shots
- 3.5 ounces walnuts
- 1.7 ounces hazelnuts
- 3.5 ounces dates (pitted and chopped)
- 2 tablespoons cacao powder
- 1 tablespoon ground flaxseed
- A splash of water, as needed
- 1.7 ounces walnuts, some finely chopped and some roughly
- 1.7 ounces cacao butter
- 2 heaped tablespoons cacao powder
- 1 espresso shot
- 1/2 teaspoon stevia powder
- Soak walnuts, hazelnuts and chopped dates in water for 20 minutes to soften.
- Drain them and pulse in a food processor until they begin to form a rough batter.
- Add a splash of water to help the processor.
- Add the cacao powder and flaxseed, transfer to a bowl and knead for a few minutes with your hands.
- The batter should be quite tough but still pliable, and hold well together.
- Press into a lined 8" springform tin.
- Leave in the fridge to firm up.
- Again, soak the nuts and chopped dates for 20 minutes, then drain.
- Blend at high speed in the food processor or blender, adding the espresso, vanilla extract and water as you go.
- When the mixture is smoother, add the frozen bananas and keep blending until perfectly smooth and creamy.
- Pour over the brownie base in the springform tin and store in the fridge for at least 3 hours.
- Bring the kettle to the boil. Pour some boiling water into a pot over which you'll place a bowl. Roughly chop the cacao butter, place it in the bowl and let it melt. This will take about ten minutes. Vigorously whisk in the cacao powder, stevia and espresso, then set aside to cool for five to ten minutes.
- Carefully take the cake out of the spring form pan. Drizzle the cacao sauce over the cake in a criss-cross pattern, sprinkle over the chopped walnuts, and refrigerate for another 30 minutes or so.
Raw cakes are beyond easy to make, but unless you organize yourself, it may take a long time to make. Remember that the art of raw baking/cake-making relies heavily on soaking nuts and dates and leaving the cake in the fridge for several hours to firm up. So measure out all your ingredients in advance, soak what needs to be soaked, freeze what needs to be frozen at least a day in advance, and you will save yourself heaps of time. If you don't like the taste of banana in your cake, that's fine. Just double the amount of walnuts in the cake and maybe add an extra splash of water. It will add more fats and calories, but that's up to you. I know espresso isn't raw. It's the only non-raw ingredient of this recipe. If you know how to incorporate coffee flavor into this cake the raw way, do let me know in the comments below!