Chocolate Cake with Vanilla Cream

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Butternut squash adds healthy sweetness and moisture to this spongy chocolate cake. Top the vanilla cream with any other fruit – sliced bananas would be delicious.

  • 10 oz uncooked butternut squash, (285 g), peeled, diced (2 cups)
  • 1/4 cup(s) water, (60 ml)
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract, (10 ml)
  • 14 Tbsp powdered sugar, (210 ml) (3/4 c plus 2 Tbsp)
  • 2/3 cup(s) all-purpose flour, (150 ml)
  • 1/4 cup(s) unsweetened cocoa powder, (60 ml)
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda, (1 ml)
  • 1/8 tsp table salt, (0.5 ml)
  • 1 1/2 oz bittersweet chocolate, (43 g), finely chopped (70% cocoa)
  • 2 Tbsp light butter, (30 ml), cut up
  • 1 large egg(s)
  • 2 large egg white(s)
  • 1/4 cup(s) heavy whipping cream, (60 ml)
  • 1 Tbsp powdered sugar, (15 ml)
  • 1/4 cup(s) reduced-fat sour cream, (60 ml)
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla extract, (1 ml)
  • 1/2 cup(s) pomegranate seeds, (125 ml)

Preheat oven to 180°C (350°F). Line an 20-cm (8-inch) square baking pan with parchment paper or nonstick aluminum foil so foil hangs over edges a little bit (or coat pan with cooking spray).

Combine squash and water in a microwavable mixing bowl; cover with vented plastic wrap (or wax paper). Microwave on High until squash is fork-tender, 8 minutes. Mash squash with potato masher or large spoon; stir in 2 tsp vanilla extract and let cool until lukewarm.

Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, sift together 210 ml (14 Tbsp) powdered sugar, flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt.

Combine chocolate and butter in a small microwavable bowl; cover with wax paper and microwave on Medium until chocolate softens and butter begins to melt, 15 seconds; stir until smooth.

Stir melted chocolate into squash until blended; beat in egg and egg whites by hand. Gently fold in flour mixture just until blended.

Pour batter into prepared pan; spread into an even layer. Bake until a toothpick inserted in center comes out with a few moist crumbs clinging, 25 minutes. Cool completely in pan on wire rack.

While cake cools, in a small bowl, using an electric mixer, beat cream until thickened. Add powdered sugar; beat until stiff peaks form. Fold in sour cream and vanilla just until blended.

Remove cake from pan; remove parchment or foil. Cut into 12 pieces and serve topped with cream and pomegranate arils.

Serving size: 1 piece cake, 15 ml (1 Tbsp) vanilla cream and 15 ml (1 Tbsp) pomegranate arils

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