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Nut Cake with Chocolate Drizzle

from Ayurveda Today, Volume 24, Number 2, Fall 2011


Whisk together in one bowl (wet)

3/4 cup water, hot 1 cup maple syrup 3 Tbs. tahini (or almond/peanut butter) 1/2 tsp. salt 2/3 cup ghee 1 tsp. freshly squeezed lemon, lime, or orange juice

Sift together in another bowl (dry)

2 cups flour (spelt, whole wheat, brown rice and barley, or similar) 3 or 4 Tbs. arrowroot powder plus any dry spices used (see Optional ingredients below)

Stir into flour mixture

½ cup or more nuts, roughly ground in blender (walnuts, sunflower seeds, pecans, almonds, etc.)

Optional, select one

1/2 tsp. ground coriander 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract 1/2 tsp. lemon or lime rind, grated 1-2 Tbs. candied ginger, chopped


  • Gently whisk the dry ingredients into the wet. Add the chopped ginger, if using. Pour into a round cake pan lined with parchment paper. Bake at 350° for 45-55 minutes. Cool for 10-20 minutes, then remove from pan onto cooling rack.
  • Melt 1-2 oz. of a natural chocolate bar in a small pan on top of the stove, with a little ghee. You can also add a handful of coconut.
  • Spread the warm chocolate mix on top of the cake and run under a hot broiler for ½ to 1 minute. If you want a burnt chocolate effect, broil it a little longer.
  • Decorate with soaked almonds, pear slices, edible flowers, dried fruit, nuts, coconut, or whatever inspires you.
Note: Natural sugars, fresh ground nuts, whole grain flour, healthy oils, and a flavor spike from classic ingredients like ginger and coriander make this a cake you can serve anyone with pleasure.Of course, sugar, chocolate, flour, and nuts tend to increase kapha, so one slice should be enough for them. The ghee and nuts will be grounding for vata and the right spices such as vanilla extract or coriander would be helpful to pitta types. For the chocolate, use a bar that has at least 60% cacao. Dark chocolate has more anti-oxidants than milk as well as less sugar. A little goes a long way though and pitta types should be careful as should kaphas.
Vasant Lad BAM&S, MASc

Vasant Lad BAM&S, MASc

A native of India, he served for three years as Medical Director of the Ayurveda Hospital in Pune, India. He was Professor of Clinical Medicine at the Pune University College of Ayurvedic Medicine for 15 years. He holds a Bachelor’s of Ayurvedic Medicine and Surgery (BAM&S) degree from the University of Pune and a Master’s of Ayurvedic Science (MASc) degree from Tilak Ayurved Mahavidyalaya. The author of numerous books, Vasant Lad is respected throughout the world for his knowledge of Ayurveda.