Chocolate olive oil cake
A chocolatey treat for everyone. Particularly useful when cooking for someone unable to eat wheat or dairy. Chocolate cake is always a winner. This olive oil version is a slight twist, on an all-time favourite.
150ml/5fl oz SkapEti Extra Virgin Olive oil, plus extra for greasing
50g/2oz cocoa powder, sifted
125ml/4fl oz boiling water
2 tsp vanilla extract
150g/5½oz ground almonds or 125g/4½oz plain flour (a gluten-free if required or on a low-FODMAP diet)
½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
200g/7oz caster sugar
3 free-range eggs
Preheat the oven to 170C/325F/Gas 3. Grease a 23cm/9in cake tin with a little oil and line the base with baking parchment.
Measure and sift the cocoa powder into a bowl or jug and whisk in the boiling water until you have a smooth, chocolatey paste. Whisk in the vanilla extract, then set aside to cool a little.
In another smallish bowl, combine the ground almonds (or flour) with the bicarbonate of soda and a pinch of salt. Put the sugar, olive oil and eggs into the bowl and beat together vigorously for about three minutes until you have a pale-primrose, aerated and thickened cream.
Pour in the cocoa mixture, beating as you go, and when all is scraped in you can slowly tip in the ground almonds (or flour) mixture.
Scrape down and stir a little with a spatula, then pour this dark, liquid batter into the prepared tin. Bake for 40-45 minutes or until the sides are set and the very centre, on top, still looks slightly damp.
Let it cool for 10 minutes on a wire rack, still in its tin, and then ease the sides of the cake with a small metal spatula and spring it out of the tin. Leave to cool completely or eat while still warm with some ice cream, as a pudding. Special or no occasion, this is always popular.