Love is in the air.
Such a lovely time of year, when you are able to really connect to the ones you love, albeit in some cases, secretly. The trick here though, is how do you tell someone you love (like) them so much, you have baked them a cake! To then somehow get the cake to them without them realising it’s from you? Tricky. Get into the office, before everyone and leave it on the desk? Have it couriered over to them (knowing their address helps)? Or leave it on their doorstep (then hoping they don’t figure out who its from and label you a stalker!! 🙂 You could just send a card and post if from somewhere other, than the postcode area in which you live. But I rather like the idea of cake, of course.
Caution is required x
Valentines Day, is of course for everyone. No matter your dietary needs or limitations. Your only limitation is your own creativity. Pinterest is fantastic for a whole manner of ideas, but it’s then down to you ability. Here I have tried to keep it relatively simple. Bake the cake, cut it in half, fill with jam, cover with a smooth layer of buttercream, cover with fondant icing and then cut out some heart shapes with a cutter. Nothing too fancy. It’s the thought that means so much more 💋
You will need to line, the base and sides of your cake tin – I used a heart-shaped cake tin. Pre heat the oven to Gas 3/150c.
180g soft butter
170g caster sugar
3 large eggs at room temperature
180g gluten free self-raising flour
6 drops of strawberry flavouring (I used Foodie Flavours Strawberry)
3g Red Food Colouring (I used Rainbow Dust red gel – very bake stable)
1 Packet of White Fondant icing
150g more of soft butter for the buttercream
300g icing sugar
4 drops more of strawberry flavouring
4 tablespoons of Strawberry Jam
Pink Food colouring (‘Rainbow Dust’ again)
You can make this as an all-in-one. Place the soft butter, sugar, eggs, gluten free flour, colouring and flavouring into your mixer and beat well, until light and fluffy and fully combined – about 6/7 minutes on medium. I used a table top mixer.
Pour into the prepared cake tine and bake ‘low and slow’. It may take around 45 minutes. There is a lot of mixture in tin, so it needs time to cook and rise without over cooking and burning. Check with a skewer to ensure its cooked – it needs to come out clean – before removing from the oven and cooling then cooling in the tin.
Once cooled remove from the tin, by turning it upside down onto a wire rake and then flipping back around again. Cool completely before icing.
Meanwhile you can make the buttercream
Beat the 150g of soft butter, until its white, light and fluffy. Mix in the icing sugar by hand – so you don’t get a dust cloud – add the flavouring and beat again until its light, fluffy and easily spreadable.
Once the Cake has cooled, cut in half, and spread with jam, then put the top back on. Cover the sides and edges with buttercream and smooth down with a palette knife. A smooth edges here will help to ensure a smooth finish once the fondant goes on top.
Roll out the fondant icing – using icing sugar on the board and rolling pin, so that it doesn’t stick to the surface – to the desired thickness and cover the cake. Using your hands, gently smooth down the fondant over the top, then down the sides of the cake. Again using your hands, smooth down the sides to the base of the cake. Smooth down around the cake, to ensure you have the outline of the cake you have and there are no crimps and unnecessary edges.
Using a sharp knife, trim away any excess fondant and keep.
Place the cake on a board to finish off.
Take half of the fondant left and drop in some red colouring, knead until the desired colour has been achieved. Do the same with the other half, but with pink colour.
Rollout the coloured pieces of fondant and using your cutters, decorate your cake. I used a small brush and ‘painted’ the area with a little water to get the decoration to stick to the main cake.
Give yourself time to deliver the cake and for it to be enjoyed – but it certainly wont last longer than a couple of days – sadly the nature of gluten free baking 😦
Happy Loving x