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Healthy Hazelnut Loaf with chocolate frosting (grain-free)

We went to visit some friends at the weekend, and I offered to take along a healthy dessert. I did think about making ‘baklava apples’ but I didn’t have enough apples. I couldn’t make sugar and wheat-free brownies because I didn’t have any cocoa powder, so instead I adapted my grain-free sultana and seed bread recipe to make this more cake-like hazelnut loaf with chocolate frosting. It turned out really well, I added dates to add that extra sweetness and make it even more like dessert. It was just the thing to add a bit of sweetness and chocolate after our main meal.

Grain-free Hazelnut loaf with chocolate frosting

(Grain-free, Paleo, gluten-free, dairy-free)

For the loaf:

  • 1 cup blanched almond flour/ ground almonds
  • 1/4 cup ground or finely chopped hazelnuts
  • 3 tablespoons melted coconut oil or ghee
  • 4 medium eggs
  • 1 tablespoon honey OR substitute with a sweetener of choice
  • 7 pitted dates finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon ground flax seeds
  • 1/4 cup arrowroot powder/tapioca flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • pinch of sea salt
For the frosting
  • 100g dark chocolate (at least 70%)
  • 5 dates
  • 1/4 cup hazelnuts
  • 1 tsp honey or sweetener of choice (xylitol works well)
  • 2 Tbsp coconut oil
Pre-heat the oven to 350°F/200 C.Line a 7 by 3-inch loaf pan with parchment paper.
In a large bowl, mix all the ingredients and pour the batter into the lined loaf pan.
Bake for 30 minutes on the bottom rack of the oven, until a knife inserted into the centre of the loaf comes out clean. Keep the loaf in the lined pan until after you have frosted it.
To make the frosting, finely chop ( I used a food processor) the hazelnuts and dates. Then melt the chocolate, coconut oil and honey together in a pan over a low heat. Once melted stir in the dates and hazelnuts. Spread the frosting on top of the loaf whilst the loaf is till in the pan. Allow it to cool and the frosting to set before removing from the pan and peeling off the lining paper.
With no refined sugar and packed full of nutrients and protein that other cakes lack, this cake will fill you up much quicker, and leave you feeling rather smug for being able to enjoy a slice of cake without the guilt.
Enjoy!
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