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Bloodroot’s Sourdough Chocolate Devastation Cake

Noel Furie of Bloodroot made the restaurant’s signature chocolate cake with Chef Plum. Photo: Ryan Caron King/Connecticut Public

The Sourdough Chocolate Devastation Cake from Bloodroot is an easy-to-make rich, delicious vegan cake. You will need good quality unsweetened cocoa and a sourdough starter.

Bloodroot’s Sourdough Chocolate Devastation Cake

Selma Miriam, Noel Furie, and Carol Graham
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 8


For the cake

  • 3/4 cup unsweetened good quality cocoa powder
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 3 cups unbleached white flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons grain coffee
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 cup thick sourdough starter
  • 2-1/4 cups water
  • 2 tablespoons vinegar
  • 3/4 cup grapeseed oil
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla

For the chocolate frosting (Selma’s note: double the frosting recipe for Bloodroot’s Sourdough Chocolate Devastation Cake)

  • 1 cup good quality semi-sweet chocolate
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 3 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup grapeseed oil
  • 3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder


  • Lightly oil two 9-inch round cake pans. Preheat oven to 325˚F.
  • Sift dry ingredients into a bowl: cocoa powder, sugar, flour, baking soda, ¾ teaspoon salt, coffee, and nutmeg. Stir together with a dry whisk.
  • In another bowl, combine wet ingredients: sourdough starter, water, vinegar, grapeseed oil, and vanilla. Stir well with a whisk.
  • Combine wet and dry mixtures with as few strokes as possible. Some lumps are not a problem. Turn into pans immediately and bake 25-30 minutes, or until cakes begin to pull away from the sides of the pans and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Remove and cook the cakes on racks.

Make the chocolate frosting (The frosting sets up firm and protects the cake from becoming dry. Because of this, the cake will stay fresh about 5 days in the refrigerator if covered with plastic wrap. (Recipe by Mary Préjean)

  • Chop good quality semi-sweet chocolate to measure 1 cup. Combine with vanilla, maple syrup, grapeseed oil, and unsweetened cocoa powder. Place over the lowest heat or melt in a double boiler (a pan of simmering water with a heatproof bowl set over it). Don’t stir until chocolate is entirely melted. Alternatively, the pot of frosting mixture may be put in a warm place, such as on top of the stove, while the cake bakes. Once the chocolate melts, stir gently with a spoon until mixture thickens slightly. Frosting will be soft but it will thicken as you stir it.
  • When cakes and frosting are cool, spread frosting over cake.


Recipe published with permission from Selma Miriam and Noel Furie, owners of Bloodroot Vegetarian Restaurant and Feminist Bookstore in Bridgeport, CT.
Keyword Baking, Cake, Chocolate, Vegetarian

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