I admit it, we clip coupons. (When did coupon-clipping become passé? Even with the new frugality kick brought on by the recession, coupon-clipping still is somewhat lagging. Frankly, I'd rather save money than worry about the Joneses.) Most of the coupons we find, to be honest, aren't coupons we can use, but every so often something pops up, like the day we found high-value coupons for Truvia and SunCrystals, low-calorie sugar substitutes that use stevia.
I'm not much for sugar substitutes. I find them really somewhat odd and artificial, even chemical. Yes, even the "natural" ones. Maybe it has something to do with the "substitute" part? Still, we don't get to have too many desserts because of the whole high-calorie sugar thing, much to my dismay.
Then I ran across this post for a flourless, black bean-based, supposedly fudgey, chocolatey and low-cal dessert. It reaches that low-cal by using Whey Granular sugar substitute. (I've never heard of this one, actually.)
A flourless chocolate cake made from beans? That I have to try. It's just so out there, at least to my mind, that I really want to see if it works and if it really, honestly, truly tastes like chocolate fudge cake.
Did I mention I love chocolate? Especially chocolate fudge and chocolate cake? That I've gone out with chocolate cravings that can only be assuaged by rich, dense chocolate cake? And that I have no idea how many pounds that's added to my ass?
Right. I just had to try this one. And we have these high-value coupons and wouldn't it be interesting to test out sugar substitutes?
Exactly. It's all in the name of science.
Of course, as I mentioned last time, it helps that I wanted a special dessert to go along with our anniversary, which we wanted to spend at home. (Frankly, we put together a better meal cheaper than going out to eat -- and we got to drink as much as we wanted since we don't have to drive. Cooking together is one of our great pleasures too.)
The verdict? Soft, fudgey and definitely chocolatey. Guilt-free chocoholism at its finest. The Truvia worked well, though I wonder if I cooked it even slower than might have been strictly necessary.
Adapted from Eating Well, Living Thin
Makes 1 9" cake
- 1 14.9 ounce can black beans, drained and rinsed OR 10 ounces cooked black beans
- 1 tablespoon strong coffee
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 6 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 6 tablespoons butter, softened
- 24 packets Truvia (about 1/3 cup + 1 tbsp)1 OR 1 cup granulated sugar OR Splenda (See note 4)
- 5 eggs
Preheat oven to 300F. Grease and flour2 a 9" cake pan.
Process or puree beans, coffee and vanilla until smooth. Cream together butter3 and Truvia (or sugar or other substitute). Add eggs and beat on medium until the color lightens and the mixture becomes fluffy (a few minutes). Add bean mixture and mix until combined, then add cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Beat until smooth and creamy.
Pour batter into the prepared pan and bake for 40 - 45 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean (cake test). Cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes, then remove from pan and cool completely on the rack.
Cake keeps best tightly wrapped or covered. (It started going stale for me about 24 hours later without being wrapped.)
- I used the conversions specified by Truvia on their site. If you don't want to use artificial sweeteners (and here I do not blame you), use 1 cup of sugar instead.
- The original recipe called for spraying the pan with nonstick spray. I did this, it failed miserably (about 1/3rd of the cake was left in the pan) and worse, the cake bits left in the pan were so greasy! My method of greasing and flouring the pan thus makes this not quite a true flourless cake, but it does get the cake out in one piece. I can live with that.
- I also managed to have problems getting my butter soft enough. I wound up with bits and chunks of butter instead of a nice, creamy mass. Next time, I'll remember to leave it on the counter for a couple of hours.
- To use Splenda, try 24 packets or 1 cup of the No-Calorie Granulated Sweetener, or 1/2 cup of the Sugar Blend.