Roasted Chestnuts Bundt Cake
When the market gives you chestnuts…
I was lucky that afternoon. I went to the supermarket to buy some fruits for Mariana and found some shiny, glossy, deep brown chestnuts. Now, that’s something pretty rare around here. I immediately started grabbing them like there was no tomorrow. Mom and daughter kind of embarrassed on the side. Because you know me by now, it’s all about embracing what you have in front of you!
I was pretty sure I wanted those gems in a cake and let them shine. So this cake is about the nuttiness and creaminess of chestnuts and hazelnuts. I didn’t want to mask any of their nuances with strong spices. And as strange as it may sound, I thought that a light, bright and fruity glaze was the perfect contrast to such a warm and comforting cake. And I was not wrong!
The process of roasting the chestnuts was king of annoying to tell you the truth, mainly at the time of taking them out and then cleaning them up. So that you know, you have to make an X on each chestnut before baking them and then break that shell and take out the nut, which after roasting could have hard edges and you need to clean them up. But it’s the kind of things that you have to do at least once just for the heck of the season. If you don't want to have that trouble though, you may use walnuts, pecans or almonds. Just toast them a bit before grinding.
This cake is perfect for breakfast or midnight snacks with some hot coffee or tea. And with that blackberry color on top, I know you are going to love it as much as we do!
1. If you don’t have chestnuts you may use any of your favorite nuts. Just toast them on a skillet for a few minutes and then continue with the process.
2. Hazelnuts are optional. You may swap them for other nuts or just not use any at all.
3. Baking deep cakes in a 325° temperature is always tricky. Test your cake during the last 5 minutes to see if one side is done and another is still baking up. Rotate if necessary or leave it for an extra 5 minutes if needed. But a soft moist cake is totally worth the effort of baking in 325°.
4. If you don’t have a Nutri-Bullet or small blender to grind the blackberries, just mash them as much as you can on the strainer so you take out most of their juices.
Roasted Chestnuts Bundt Cake
Unbleached all purpose flour – 2 ½ cup
Baking powder – 2 Tsp
Roasted chestnuts, roughly chopped – about 1 cup
Eggs, large – 4
Raw sugar – 2 cups
Vanilla extract – ¼ Tsp
Fine sea salt – ½ Tsp
Full fat coconut milk – ½ cup
Coconut oil – 1 cup
Roughly chopped hazelnuts – about 1 cup
Blackberries – 1 cup
Raw sugar – 4 TBSP
Lemon juice – 1 TBSP
Powdered sugar, sifted – 2 cups
Total time - 1 1/2 hours Active time - 30 minutes
Equipment - Large food processor, Bundt pan, mixing bowls
To make the cake: Preheat oven to 325°. Grease a Bundt pan with plenty of baking spray.
In a medium bowl combine the flour with the baking powder.
In the bowl of a food processor already attached to its base, pulse the roasted chestnuts until finely ground. Add the eggs, sugar, vanilla, salt and coconut milk and pulse for 20 to 30 seconds until the sugar has mostly dissolved. With the food processor running start pouring the oil through the lid hole in a stream.
Make a well in the center of the flour. Pour the liquid ingredients into the bowl and using a wooden spoon start mixing gently until everything is well combined. Add hazelnuts and fold them in. Transfer the batter to the pan. Bake for about 1 hour, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean (see notes).
Remove from pan and let it cool down while you prepare the glaze.
To make the blackberry glaze: In a small saucepan combine blackberries, raw sugar and lemon juice. Boil for a few minutes, until the blackberries start to break down. Pass this mixture through a Nutri-Bullet or small blender for a couple of seconds (see notes). Strain the liquid.
Start by adding just a couple of tablespoons of the liquid to the powered sugar and using a hand whisk mix well. This should yield a very thick icing. Add more liquid to achieve one to two tablespoons at a time to achieve desired color and consistency. Pour glaze over cake immediately.