Gluten free Sticky Pumpkin Spiced Cake

My secret love affair with pumpkin spice continues.  Who knew there was an actual spice that is based around a pumpkin!?  It really does add an extra element to a cake or bake. It’s not just for coffee.

This is a variation on a theme. Gingerbread cake meets sticky toffee pudding. Sticky Pumpkin Pie Spiced Cake. I guess you could even have this as a pudding if you thought about it enough…….

This one requires a little planning and forethought.

Preheat the oven to gas 3, 170c, 150c fan and line 2 x 7” cake tins.

250g stoned and chopped dates

250ml water

90g butter

90g soft brown sugar

90g Black treacle

90g golden Syrup

1 egg

100ml milk – I used semi skimmed

225g gluten free self raising flour

2 teaspoons pumpkin spice

Stage 1 – place the chopped dates and water into a pan, bring to a gentle boil, heat for a minute, then switch off and leave to cool. This could take around 15 minutes.

Stage 2 – in another pan – heat gently the sugar, butter, syrup and treacle until the butter has melted and the sugar has dissolved. Leave this too cool, again for around 15 minutes.  If these last two stages are too hot, the egg mix will scramble before it’s had a chance to even cook in the oven.

Stage 3 – whisk the egg and milk and set to one side.

Stage 4 – sift together the gluten free flour and the spice.

Stage 5 – once everything is in place and done and cool enough, add the egg mix to the date mix. Add this then to the sugar and butter mix and stir well.  Finally fold in the flour mix. Stir until everything is completely mixed in.

Pour the mix into the 2 tins and bake for 30-40 minutes, or until an inserted  skewer comes out relatively clean, with some crumb attached. The remaining heat will finish the cooking off. Leave to cool in the tins, before removing to fill.

For the filling;

130g soft butter

260g icing sugar

30ml milk (optional)

100ml caramel sauce

Beat the butter until light and fluffy, stir in the icing sugar, milk and 80ml of the caramel sauce. Beat further (I used a hand electric whisk) until you have a piping consistency.

Fill and decorate as you desire and drizzle the final 20ml of sauce over the cake to finish.

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Gluten Free Movie Cake

Before I go too far, I do take my hat off to those bakers that make themed cakes for a living. It is a skill and an art. It takes a lot of patience and time. Practice is what I definitely need. But I did have some fun 😀😀😀

I started a couple of days before baking the actual cake. Which for an Anniversary.

Using Renshaws Modelling Paste, I rolled and cut the box sides out for the popcorn box and the sides of the cake decoration that will make up the camera film. Oh, and the film reel. Also using red modelling paste, to use as the red stripes on what will become the finished popcorn bag, once rolled and cut they were left for 2 days to dry out.

Once set firm, I spray painted the film reel using Dr Oetker Gold Shimmer spray (both sides) and left to dry out again.

The day before decorating I made the cake;

The basic recipe is for 2 x 7″ round cake tins and making a basic sponge;

– 200g soft butter

– 200g caster sugar

– 4 eggs

– 2 teaspoons vanilla essence

– 200g gluten free self raising flour

Either make this as using the all in one method, or use the creaming method. Either way, make and bake your sponge and leave to cool.

Once ready to cover, the cake was filled with vanilla buttercream and jam and then covered in buttercream also. Some much-needed kneading of the packet of ready to use fondant was required with a tube of Dr Oetker black colouring.  Once the desired tone is reached, it was rolled out and the cake was covered and smoothed.

It was here that I needed to find some patience and stick the bits on the cake! Using a small paint brush and a dob of water the dried modelling paste pieces were attached to the cake – the film reel top and sides.

I had already covered the cake board in fondant and added some gold sugar pearls for extra decorations.

The tricky part was sticking the popcorn box together…. and with a little more patience and some melted white chocolate I eventually succeeded. Left to dry, the popcorn box stands on its own on top of the cake.

The popcorn was added just before the reveal as it would have gone soft.

 

 

Gluten Free Chocolate and Raspberry Torte

Before we all get side tracked into watching the new series of the Great British Bake Off and perhaps going a little off-piste with our baking, a little Torte to share with you.

The lovely people at Food Thoughts sent me a tub of their Natural Cacao Powder for baking, it’s also a Fairtrade product. Considered a natural and healthy product, with this much sugar in the recipe it might not be….but perhaps there is room to develop a healthier version? Ummmmm that’ll get me thinking.

If you can leave the Torte unsliced overnight, or for a few hours, the juice from the raspberries will seep out into the Torte and make it even more moist. If you can’t wait that long, a spoonful of half fat, creme fraiche or yoghurt (keeping it healthy) or a dollop of cream will do no harm either.

Relatively easy to make, you’ll need a couple of mixing bowls, one larger than the other, and pre heat the oven Gas 2, 160c, 155c fan. Line an 8″ deep cake tin, base and sides, with greaseproof.

5 eggs – separated

200g caster sugar

160g ground almonds

40g Food Thoughts Cacao Powder 

1 teaspoon Almond essence

100g fresh raspberries

Mix the ground almonds and cacao together and put to one side.

Whisk the egg whites until stiff peaks, using a stand mixer or electric hand-held whisk. Then pour in 50g of the caster sugar and continue to whisk until you have a soft sheen – not too dissimilar to making a meringue. This is where you get the air into the cake, so ensure you use fresh eggs and don’t rush this bit.

Using the same beaters (saving on washing up and it makes little or no difference) and in another larger bowl, beat the egg yolks, remaining 150g of sugar and the Almond essence until light in colour, roughly 50% more in volume and the mix thickens to get that ‘ribbon stage’ – if you pull the whisk out, it leaves a ribbon. Pour into this the almonds and cacao mix and mix well. This will be a stiff paste.

Fold into this a third of the meringue mix, this first third will lose some of the volume, but it’s important to mix well to loosen up the yolk and Almond mix and ensure any pockets of egg whites are dispersed. Fold in the next third, folding gently so as not to knock out the air. Fold in the final third, folding slowly and ensuring all the paste is evenly mixed.

Pour into your prepared cake tin and gently push the raspberries into the top of the mix. There is no need to push them fully down, just enough as you can see in the photo, they don’t sink. But don’t need to.

Bake for 40 – 45 mins.  An inserted skewer will come out with a little of the finished Torte, so you will need to judge for yourself how much is too much cake (on the skewer).

 

No Gluten Chocolate Caramel Cake

Wow! Who knew you could make a cake from a jar of chocolate spread! Mr Cadbury has done it again with not just a jar of fancy spread for your toast, but a spread to replace (ish) the normal addition of sugar..

This won’t take long to make and it’s incredibly moist.

Line 8″ (20cm) deep, round loose bottomed cake tin with greaseproof and pre heat the oven to Gas 4/180c/160 fan.

  • 1 x 400g jar of Cadbury Caramel Spread
  • 80g soft butter
  • 3 eggs
  • 70g ground almonds
  • 60g gluten free self raising flour
  • 1/2 level teaspoon gf baking powder
  • 20g cocoa
  • 80g melted milk chocolate

Beat the butter, 200g of the chocolate spread until well mixed. Then beat in the eggs one at a time and then mix in the gluten free flour, ground almonds, cocoa and baking powder.

Pour into the prepared tin and bake for about 20 – 25 minutes and leave to cool before removing from the tin.

To cover, pour the melted chocolate into the remaining 200g of spread and mix well, leave too cool and set a little before spreading over the cake and allow too cool.

Decorate as you feel.

This will also make a fantastic traybake, using a small brownie tin (roughly 28cm x 20cm). It’ll take about 20mins to cook.

Back to baking….at last! 😀

At last!

Its been a while but finally there is some end in sight and the kitchen is very nearly finished.  We have at last filled the new cupboards, emptied the boxes and have stopped going up and down stairs to do the washing up and to fill the kettle for a cuppa.

You get to miss the simple things in life and the things you take for granted. Like cooking (and indeed baking), one can only live off pasta and stir fry for so long.  The Andrew James multi-cooker certainly came in hand and did what we asked it to do..

Now its time to put the new cooker into action. We went for a Neff oven in the end. The option of the double oven and the seemingly easy to use knobs were a couple of the deciding factors. Now of course I have to get used to a new oven and new temperature range! Which I think should be too difficult. (famous last words)

Gluten Free Blackcurrant and Almond Crumble Cake

The first bake was a little bit of fun. Quick and easy and I had all the ingredients to hand. So little planning was required…

Now I baked this at 160c for about 50 mins, so pre-heat the oven and line a deep 8″ round cake tin with a loose base.

For the crumble – and this actually worked for me;

80g Rice Flour

50g Butter

50g Caster Sugar

For the Sponge;

180g soft butter

150g caster sugar

3 large eggs

2 teaspoons almond essence

30g ground almonds

120g gluten free self raising flour

1 tin of blackcurrant pie mix (c410g)

First up make the crumble, either rub the flour and butter together to fine breadcrumbs then add and stir in the sugar. Or blend it all together in a food processor. Leave to one side – ideally in the fridge – until it’s needed.

Next up the sponge base. Beat the sugar and butter until light and fluffy, beat in the eggs one at a time, adding a little flour if required to stop it curdling. Add in the almond essence, then stir in the gluten free flour and ground almonds. Mix well and pour into the prepared cake tin. Spoon the Blackcurrant pie mix onto the sponge batter, this can be gently stirred into the surface of the sponge, but not too much. Let it sit  on the top and some will gently sink into the top of the sponge whilst cooking. Sprinkle over the Crumble mix and spread evenly.

Bake! For approximately 45 – 50 mins, or until an inserted skewer comes out clean.

Allow to completely cool before removing from the tin and serving, perhaps with a dollop of cream.

Gluten Free Blackcurrant and Almond Cake

This is a busy home at the best of times. As most working parents know, trying to fit everything in around, school, work, out of school activities etc. plus trying to get cakespiration can be a bit of a squeeze.  Where possible I do try and use some store cupboard, ready-made solutions in some of what I do.  I do not see it as a cheap, lazy alternative, rather a time-saving alternative. Here is a packet of something, but how can I turn it into something that everyone may want to eat.  You should see what’s next with a packet of Schar Gluten Free Brioche …..

So that is my general theme, use what is available and see what good can come out of it.  Can I make a blackcurrant filling? Yes, but time in this here household is limited and keeping the blog going, also keeps me going.  The sanity in the everyday chaos 🙂

gluten-free-blackcurrant-and-almond-cake

Since a wee nipper I have enjoyed blackcurrants. Mum used to make the simplest of pies – blackcurrant, from a tin.  It never lasted long and whenever I’m back there, it’ll rear its head. At least once a year 🙂 I have just used this in cake, because it’s all about cake!!

Firstly line 2 x 7″ sandwich tins and preheat the oven to Gas 4, 180c

If using frozen blackcurrants, ensure they are defrosted first.

For the Cake –

200g soft butter

200g caster sugar

4 eggs – lightly beaten together

150g gluten free self-raising flour

50g ground almonds

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon almond essence

200g blackcurrants (washed and dried if using fresh)

1 Tin Blackcurrant Pie Filling

For the icing –

180g soft butter

360g Icing sugar

Drop of boiling water

Purple Colouring

Make the sponge by beating the butter and the sugar until light and fluffy, this can take about 5/6 minutes.  Slowly pour in the lightly beaten eggs a small amount at a time, so that the eggs are mixed in and the mixture doesn’t curdle.  If this starts to happen add a spoon of the flour to bring it back.  Beat in the almond essence, the mix in carefully the gluten free flour, ground almonds and baking powder.

Divide the mix in half and colour one half with a splash of purple colour (if using). Then stir in 100g of blackcurrants into each of the colours. Pour the batters into the prepared tins and swirl to mix the colours. But only a quick swirl!

Bake for 30 – 35 mins, until a skewer inserted comes out clean. Leave to cool before removing from the tins. Then cool completely before sandwiching together with the buttercream.

To make the buttercream beat the butter until light and fluffy. Gently stir in the icing sugar (to avoid the dust cloud) then beat again until light and fluffy. If you find the mix still a little stiff the spreading, add a spoon or two of boiling water. Add too, a teaspoon of almond essence,at this stage. Remove a third of the buttercream and colour with a squirt of purple colour.

Gluten Free Blackcurrant Cake Filling

Once the cake has cooled – assemble. Spread a small amount of the plain coloured buttercream around the middle of one of the cakes and fill with about a third of the tin of blackcurrant.

Place on the other cake and spread a thin layer of the plain buttercream all over (top and sides) to form the base layer from which to decorate. Let this set for an hour so in a fridge.

Once set, spread the remaining plain and purple buttercream around the cake and using a turntable and a straight-edged spatula, smooth the buttercream (and at the same time creating the merge of colours) down to form a flat and multicoloured surface.

To serve use the rest of the tin of blackcurrants and spoon them around the edge of the cake, so that they drip down the sides of the cake.

Best eaten within a couple of days or as I did share with the neighbours 😀😀🍰

gluten-free-blackcurrant-cake