Honey Honey

You didn’t see my valentine; I sent it via pantomime…” 
-Fiona Apple
O! Be still my “beeting” heart! 
Have you hoarded enough chocolate for your valentine yet?
If he or she is anything like me, the answer is firmly no.
Here is the solution: a batch of (cheesily heart-shaped) deep, dark chocolate cakes.
Soft, tender, and yet perfectly chewy, these will melt hearts like butter in a hot pan.  
Melt, I tell you, melt.
These are a winning combination of simple and delicious.  
The chocolate shines through, highlighted with notes of salt and umami; the batter is mixed up in 1 bowl with 2 utensils; preparation is 15 minutes, tops, and, if baked in a little heart pan or in a mini muffin tin, is cooked through in just 20 minutes.
Picked up on the hint yet?  Am I obvious enough?
If you have, good for you.  Give yourself a nice pat on the back, and an extra little cake, while you’re at it.
These perfect chocolate cakes are made with beets!
And honey and maple syrup!
And olive oil!
And whole-wheat flour!
Don’t be alarmed.  If you don’t like beets, I promise (pinky swear?) that you will love these cakes; the beets are undetectable.  
Beets are naturally very sweet (your sugar might actually come from beets, not sugar cane…), and carry a beautiful earthy note that is indescribable.
That very earthy note is what makes these cakes interesting; it’s a certain je-ne-sais-quoi that will leave your tastebuds humming with delight and wonder.
I personally love beets, so I grated mine slightly larger so I would occasionally get a little beet chunk in the cakes.  
My silver spoon has fed me good…” -Frank Ocean
These are too damn delicious to be as healthy as they are.  I made a light chocolate ganache to send them over the top.
Obviously, they’re health food.


Bears.  Beets.  Battlestar Galactica.
Chocolate Honey-Beet Cakes
adapted from Thyme, originally adapted from Green Market Baking Book
1 cup grated cooked beets (I used roasted beets; I needed about 2 medium sized beets)
4 tablespoons butter, browned
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup honey
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons maple syrup
1 egg plus 1 egg yolk
(big) splash vanilla extract
1/2 cup white-whole-wheat flour (you could use regular old AP here)
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup plus 2 heaping tablespoons cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  
Whisk the olive oil, honey, butter, maple syrup, vanilla, and egg and egg yolk together until a thick emulsion forms.  
Dump the dry ingredients on top of the wet, with the baking soda added last, so it is on top.  
Mix until just combined, then fold in beets.  
Pour into prepared pan (I used this one, you could certainly use an 8 or 9 inch round tin or mini muffin tin), and bake for 20-25 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean (this cake is so moist that you want to be sure to cook it all the way through).
For the ganache that you see, I actually made a regular old ganache, but swapped low-fat milk for heavy cream to make it a bit lighter.  I also whisked in about 3 tablespoons of honey to keep it shiny and smooth.  It worked wonderfully!  
I then topped the still-warm ganache with Swedish pearl sugar.

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