We’re fortunate enough to live in an area that produces some of the best strawberries in the country. Since we live here, during strawberry season, there’s not a trip to family or friend’s where we’re not asked to bring boxes of strawberries. I don’t think we’d be welcome otherwise!
I love developing delicious strawberry recipes during the season. This one is a family favourite.
Being able to stop at the farmer’s house on our way home from the bakery to get strawberries that were just handpicked feels like an absolute luxury. This week we enjoyed the visit of our dear Icelandic friends. Watching the smile on their faces every time we fill our baskets with fresh fruits and vegetables at the farmer’s reminded us how lucky we are to live in this precious corner of the Mediterranean.
If, on top of that, one of those friends in Karl Petersson, one of the best food photographers in the world, how can we pass on the opportunity to have some fun? And so we bake a cake, with strawberries handpicked minutes before, with all the children running and playing around us. Karl had to be really fast with his camera because the children jumped on the cake as soon as it hit the table!
Today’s recipe is so simple and so beautiful. We bake this chocolate cake at home all the time. It is easy to make, rich, nutritious, sumptuous, and can be used in so many different ways: with fresh fruit, jam, cream, chocolate ganache, meringue. The possibilities are endless. We make our with coconut oil, but you can also use non-hydrogenated margarine or butter if you don’t mind the dairy. We make ours gluten-free, dairy-free, refined sugar-free, and, since we are using pure unsweetened cocoa instead of chocolate, it is also soy-free.
Cocoa and Strawberry gluten-free cake
55 grams of ground almonds.
55 grams of millet flour.
50 grams of pure unsweetened cocoa powder.
135 grams of non-hydrogenated vegetable margarine, or coconut oil, or butter, at room temperature. (if it is a hot summer day, I take it out of the fridge just minutes before using it, and let the whisking soften it up since coconut changes texture so fast).
110 grams of whole cane sugar.
120 grams of egg yolk.
180 grams of egg white.
60 grams of whole cane sugar.
The seeds of ½ vanilla pod, or a teaspoon of vanilla extract.
Preheat the oven to 170º.
In a bowl, mix the two flours, and sift in the cocoa. Mix well.
Prepare the rest of the ingredients separately.
Cream the butter/margarine/coconut oil with 110 grams of sugar. Add the egg yolk and mix until it is creamy. We add the vanilla.
Beat the egg whites and the rest of the sugar to a firm meringue. With a silicone spatula, we fold the meringue and the dry ingredients alternately to the butter mixture, with great care not to lose air and volume, beginning and ending with the meringue.
We put it in a 20 cm round baking tray with parchment paper in the base and oil on the sides, and cook it for about 45 minutes or until a knife inserted in the centre comes out clean. Let it cool before removing the side ring. Once cold, fill the surface with strawberries and serve it in a trickle of good quality maple syrup.