This rustic chestnut and almond cake is similar to Castagnaccio, the traditional cake of some regions of northern Italy and Tuscany, made with chestnut flour, water, olive oil, pine nuts and raisins. Although some ingredients are the same as a Castagnaccio, my recipe is different and involves the use of dark chocolate, Italian amaretti cookies (which gives a sweet aroma together with the dark chocolate) and almonds. This greedy soft cake is suitable for people suffering from celiac disease because chestnut flour does not contain gluten and is rich in minerals, including magnesium, iron and calcium. They have anti-inflammatory properties thanks to the presence of phenolic acids, which have an antioxidant action.
Chestnut and almond cake: Ingredients
200 g (7 oz) chestnut flour
50 g (2 oz) white almonds flour
1 tsp organic baking powder
2 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
Pinch of sea salt
50 g (2 oz) Amaretti cookies
300 ml (11 fl oz) water, at room temperature
2 organic large free range eggs, at room temperature
80 g (2 oz) raw sugar
80 ml (3 fl oz) mild extra virgin olive oil (or organic cold pressed sunflower oil)
150 g (5 oz) dark chocolate 60%
1 tbsp almonds flakes
Chestnut and almond cake: Method
- Preheat the oven to 180° C (350° F / gas 4).
- Sift the chestnut flour into a bowl, mix with almond flour, baking powder, cocoa, pinch of sea salt and crushed Amaretti cookies. Add water, stirring with a spoon. Add the eggs, raws sugar and oil.
- Melt the dark chocolate in a double boiler and add to the mixture.
- Pour the dough into a baking pan, lined with parchment paper, add the almonds flakes and bake for 30 minutes.