What's Happenin'

A Sidelines blog

Good Food Hunting: Lemon Chia Seed Cake

January 09, 2014 By: janwest Category: What's Happenin'

By Kat Nielsen

Lemon chia seed cake is an alternative to lemon poppy seed cake only with no grains!

Lemon chia seed cake is an alternative to lemon poppy seed cake, only with no grains!

Lemon chia seed cake is an alternative to lemon poppy seed cake with  a ton more nutrition and get this, no grains!

My personal blog, Eat Your Tarte Out is a place where anyone can come to learn more about cooking and baking. On occasion, I’m presented with challenges by individuals, and that’s exactly what happened in this recipe. My rider friend and colleague wanted me to create a version of lemon poppyseed cake, but with no grains. At the end of my experimenting, I was so surprised with the results- it tasted absolutely phenomenal!

What I came up with in this recipe was a way to combine what most people had in their homes, with a few specialty ingredients. I’m not trying to reinvent the wheel, just make things a bit more healthier and tailored to this person’s diet.  Take chia seeds for example, they’re one of nature’s nutritional powerhouses. Packed with tons of Omega 3’s, protein, vitamins and minerals, and with a unique gelling ability, chia seeds should become a staple in your pantry for all the benefits!

Chia seeds provide a complete amino acid profile including Lysine and Proline. Proline is a key constituent of collagen. Chia's antioxidant content is higher than blueberries.

Chia seeds provide a complete amino acid profile including Lysine and Proline. Proline is a key constituent of collagen. Chia’s antioxidant content is higher than blueberries.

For the flour components of this recipe, I opted for almond flour and quinona flour. Almond flour rarely gets fine enough unless bought for commercial use, therefor you’ll have to try and find almond meal or make it yourself from slivered almonds. You start off by baking the almonds at 350 degrees on a baking sheet, in a single layer for about 10-15 minutes. The almonds can brown slightly, but be careful not to get too much color on them. After they have cooled, you put them in your food processor to get a fine ground meal. Over processing a nut that has excess moisture will turn into butter, so this method of drying works well to help you achieve your desired meal. In this recipe, I also opted to use quinoa flour. Because of the grittiness of almond meal, I wanted to make a more desirable texture in the end cake so I needed a non-grain flour preferably packed with tons of ingredients. However, if you haven’t used it yet, beware. The first time I used it and had it activated with butter, I almost ‘lost my lunch’ due to the smell and taste. Non-cooked quinona emits a very bitter smell and taste to ward off prey in the wild. When it reaches a certain temperature, that bitterness gets removed. It was after much research I gave it another shot in my cake recipe. If you can maintain your sniffer through putting the cake together and baking it (DO NOT try the batter), the results will be well worth it.

If you have any questions or comments, please let me know, but I look forward to you trying this no grain recipe!

To full plates and eating your tarte out!

Lemon Chia Seed Cake

1 cup of unsalted butter, room temperature
3/4 cup of sugar
1/2 cup of almond meal
3/4 cup of quinoa flour
1 teaspoon of lemon zest
2 teaspoons of baking powder
2 tablespoons of chia seeds
1/4 teaspoon of salt
2 eggs
Juice from one freshly squeezed lemon
1 teaspoon of vanilla
2 cups of confectioners sugar

Position oven racks to the middle and reheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 9″ cake pan and set aside.

In a small bowl, combine the lemon zest, baking powder, quinoa flour, almond meal, chia seeds and salt. Set aside. Cream together the butter and sugar until pale in color, about two to three minutes. Scrape down the sides and add in the the eggs, mixing till combined. Add in the flour mixture and mix until just incorporated.  Spread out evenly into the buttered pan and bake until golden brown on top, 20-25 minutes.

In another small bowl, combine the lemon juice, vanilla and powdered sugar to make a glaze. Keep stirring to remove lumps. Pour the glaze onto the warm cake and spread out evenly. Let cool completely before cutting.

About the writer: Author Kat Nielsen is a horse enthusiast turned food blogger. She maintains a day job in the horse world handling marketing and brand support to various companies while enjoying her evenings and weekends writing recipes and blogging all about her culinary experiences. Visit her blog at EatYourTarteOut.com or email her at tartechic@eatyourtarteout.com.