Chestnut flour is a lot of fun to bake with. It provides a nutty, yet sweet aromatic flavour to breads, tarts and cookies, which is very different from other nut flours. I use it a lot and have made the traditional Italian castagnaccio tart, pancakes, several breads, cookies, and even “peanut butter” cups. I also love to cook with the nuts themselves, making soups, adding them to dishes and purees.
For a listing of all my chestnut recipes, please click here.
Some weeks ago, I experimented with an eggless waffle made with chestnut flour and flax, whose flavour was really delicious. But the texture didn’t work out. I thought of recreating that for breakfast today, but I had added zucchini to the recipe and didn’t have any left. So, I’ll have to revisit that sometime soon…
But today, I wanted to make something between a bread and a cake. My first experiment (of which I posted a picture on Instagram) has a nice flavour, but the texture is not quite what I was looking for. While I was on my walk, I kept thinking of how I could change the recipe and make it better.
When I got home, I put out all the ingredients and then saw a recipe on the back of the chestnut flour bag that caught my eye: chestnut flour and cacao cake.
This is an adaptation of that recipe, making it gluten free, adding more eggs and fresh apricots instead of dried figs. I’ve kept it in grams, since it’s easier to adapt a recipe that way, but added cups for US conversion convenience. Therefore, some of the measurements seem odd, but are not really.
For me, it’s a keeper. I’m eager to know what you think!
Note: It’s better eaten the same day of baking or the day after. But after that, it tends to dry up a bit.
- 100g (1 cup + 1 heaping tablespoon) chestnut flour
- 50g (1/2 cup) ground almonds (almond flour)
- 3 eggs, separate
- 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
- 35g (1/2 cup) raw cacao powder
- 50g (1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons) coconut sugar (more or honey, if you prefer sweeter)
- 3/4 cup coconut milk
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 25g (3 tablespoons) pine nuts (optional)
- 3 ripe apricots, peeled and diced
- Preheat oven to 180C fan (350F).
- Grease a pie/tart pan.
- In a clean mixing bowl, beat the egg whites and cream of tartar until stiff peaks form. Set aside.
- In another mixing bowl, cream the egg yolks, chestnut flour, ground almonds, coconut sugar, raw cacao, baking soda and coconut milk.
- Fold in the egg whites and blend until the white is no longer showing.
- Fold in the apricot pieces.
- Pour into the pie/tart mold.
- Sprinkle with pine nuts, if desired.
- Bake for 35-40 minutes on the middle rack.