300g raw beetroot, peeled, finely grated and drained
¼ cup (25g) cocoa, sifted
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
200g ground walnuts
1½ teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon salt
Orange cream cheese icing
160g cream cheese, softened
60g unsalted butter, softened
1 teaspoon orange zest
3 cups (480g) icing sugar
Candied beetroot (optional)
½ cup (110g) caster sugar
½ cup (125ml) orange juice
150g beetroot, peeled and finely sliced
Preheat oven to 160°C (140°C fan-forced) and lightly grease a 20cm deep round spring form cake tin and line with baking paper.
Pour boiling water into a small saucepan, about a third full and sit a small bowl on top. Add Haigh’s Dark Chocolate Pastilles and stir occasionally, until chocolate melts. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly.
Meanwhile, using an electric mixer, beat eggs, sugar and vanilla together for 5 minutes or until pale and fluffy. While the mixer is going, slowly add the oil, beating until emulsified and well combined.
Add the drained beetroot, making sure it is well squeezed to remove excess moisture. Add cocoa, cinnamon, ground walnuts, baking powder and salt, stirring until well combined. Finally add cooled chocolate, stirring until combined.
Pour mixture into prepared cake tin and bake in preheated oven for 1¼ - 1½ hours or until a skewer comes out of the centre clean. Remove from oven allow cake to cool in tin for 15 minutes before turning out onto a wire rack.
To make the icing, using an electric mixer beat cream cheese, butter and zest together until light and fluffy. Add icing sugar, beating until icing is smooth. Place in a bowl, cover and refrigerate until required.
For the candied beetroot, place sugar and juice together in a small saucepan over a low heat, stirring until sugar dissolves. Add beetroot, bring to the boil and simmer for 10 minutes or until beetroot is tender. Place beetroot slices on a baking tray lined with baking paper and allow to cool completely.