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Vegan Choco Spice Cake

We are heading towards Spring, but it is still cold outside and we still seek comfort in a nice warm tea and why not a sweet treat to bring some heart felt warmth inside. This cake is not just a healthy choice for all tastes, it is also one of our favorites and one of the most required from our retreats’ treats. Here we reveal the recipe that hundreds of sunshiners have asked for.

Enriched with spices, it will stimulate your salivary glands and will take you to a journey of flavors. The main characters of this cake are the 4 Musketeers, highly appreciated in Chinese Medicine recipes, offered from the Earth’s pharmacy during this time of the year.

Nutritious information:

The classical Cinnamon is well known for its warming properties. Additionally this divine spice can regulate blood sugars, has anti fungal, anti bacterial and anti cancer properties, while boosts immune system, protects the heart and the brain and helps decrease inflammation. In Chinese medicine is often recommended to increase circulation and improve our Qi, the body’s energy, because of its heat-spreading properties. In herbal medicine, cinnamon is recommended for imbalances that address the heart, as well as skin and limbs of the body.

The super Star Anise is a popular spice that is notable for its distinctive star-shaped appearance. The most notable health benefits of star anise include its ability to promote healthy skin, prevent fungal infections, support respiratory health, lower risk of cancer, stimulate the immune system, optimize digestion, boost circulation and aid sleep. In Chinese medicine star anise is warm and pungent, thought to target the Spleen, the Stomach, the Kidney and the Liver.

The mythical Cardamom is the Queen of spices found in the form of a small pod with black seeds inside. The spice has an intensely sweet and savory taste. In traditional Chinese medicine, cardamom is considered warm and pungent, and is associated with the Lung and Stomach channels. Its functions are to remove dampness, promote the flow of Qi, warm the spleen and stomach, and arrest vomiting and diarrhea. It helps treat abdominal distention caused by poor appetite, can reduce the incidence of nausea and vomiting in children.

The fantastic Ginger is an incredibly powerful root, full of medicinal effects on healing the body. Prevents and cures cancer, diabetes and cholesterol. It is a natural antibiotic and excellent for gastrointestinal issues, nausea, arthritis, inflammation, sore throat, infections and toxicity. In Chinese medicine, ginger is considered a warming herb and acts specifically on the lungs, spleen and stomach. It is a Qi tonic, promotes circulation and treats phlegm in the lungs accompanied with cough.

This super powerful mix of goodness plus chocolate is a direct ticket to heavenly comfort, and the success formula is below:

Prep time: 15 minutes
Baking time: 40 minutes

Ingredients:

2 cups of gluten free flour mix
3/4 cup of cocoa
1 tbs baking powder
1 teaspoon cardamom powder
1 teaspoon ginger powder
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/3 teaspoon star anise
3/4 cup olive oil & coconut butter,
1 ½ unrefined brown sugar
Zest from 1 orange
Juice from 4 oranges
1/3 cup of rice milk

Method:

Mix all dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, cocoa & spices) and the wet ingredients plus the sugar separately in 2 bawls Add slowly the wet to the dry and stir until the batter comes together. Pour it in a cake pan and bake in a preheated oven at 180°C for about 40 minutes or until toothpick inserted comes out clean. (12-15 servings)

Extra tips:

* You can make a more juicy version by adding on top a sauce made by melted chocolate (½ couverture bar) & ½ cup vegan cream,½ teaspoon coconut oil and vanilla extract. In that case you may reduce sugar quantity at the main recipe. (naughty)

* You can add raisins soaked in brandy when your batter is mixed. (super naughty)

* You can add to your flour mix some roasted and blended hazelnuts for extra flavor. (a bit naughty)

Attention:
Every flour is different, so be aware that you might need to add some more liquid-can be rice milk or orange juice. You can also make your own gluten free flower mix –buckwheat, dinkel, coconut, rice, amaranth etc.

Chinese Medicine Energetics:

Warming and qi stimulating, perfect for a cold winter afternoon accompanied by ginger tea.

Breathing in, I eat my cake with all my senses.
Breathing out, I am grateful for this experience.

And remember… sharing with friends is caring for friends.