I love to bake, and I love to eat desserts. What I do not love are overly-sweet and/or rich desserts that make my teeth ache and my conscience wish that I had said “no” after I begin digestion. That is where this recipe comes in: a moist cake, rich with cocoa flavor, made indulgent by the addition of coconut milk and flakes, and sweetened with nothing but fruit, but won’t cause a heart attack.
I will admit that the batter is a bit on the thick side which can make it a bit difficult to work with. Knowing this ahead of time allows you to set aside extra patience for this very deserving indulgence. Topped with toasty bits of crunchy coconut I think that it would make for a great breakfast with a cup of coffee or snack with a glass of milk.
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
4 very ripe medium bananas
8 dried mission figs
1/2 cup light coconut milk
2 tablespoons water
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/4 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
- Preheat oven to 375. Line an 8-inch square baking pan with parchment paper and set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk together cocoa, both of the flours, salt, baking powder and baking soda. Whisk or sift thoroughly to eliminate any lumps. Set aside.
- Put the bananas, figs, coconut milk, water and vanilla into a blender. Blend until figs are chopped very small and the mixture is thick and smooth, about a minute.
- Fold the wet ingredients into the dry until just combined, taking care not to overwork the batter. This batter will be very thick. Pour/scoop the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top evenly with a spatula. Sprinkle the coconut on top. Bake until the top is firm and a toothpick inserted in the cake comes out clean, about 45 minutes.
- Let the cake cool in the baking pan on a rack for 5 minutes, then remove from the pan and cool completely. Slice into 16 even pieces.