Tuesday, March 13, 2012


I had been in the cake making business for about 6 years making the most delicious gluten-full cakes, breads, pastries and other yummy treats. While occasionally I would have the odd order here or there requesting an eggless cake or something dairy-free, I never thought for the life of me that I would EVER decide to really make dairy and wheat free cakes. I couldn’t imagine a wonderful cake lacking two of the most pinnacle parts- milk and butter! And let me tell you folks, I was a butter devotee when it came to cake. I had moist and airy cakes and luscious creamy butters that were comprised of the fattiest of fat creams and high quality butters. I even made an amazing bacon cake that little sis calls “breakfast in a cupcake.” Yes, Bacon, Cream and BUTTER! I digress….

So with kiddo’s birthday around the bend I HAD to make a GFCF cake, so I started hunting online for recipes that might look ok. After hours of looking and not really turning up anything that appealed to me I decided to reference the stack of GF cookbooks I had borrowed from the library (those are those buildings which they store books in and allow you to borrow them..). I had gone through most of them and was losing hope. Then I realized I hadn’t even opened one, Silvana Nardone’s Cooking with Isaiah. I opened it to find a beautiful layout and story about her journey with her son and his allergies to dairy and wheat. Much like her I wanted my kiddo to have all the things he ever wanted in a gluteny diet without tasting like it was gluten free. I wanted my kiddo to not know he was eating gluten-free. Reading through Nardone’s book, I finally realized that it was completely possible. The first recipe I tried was for chocolate donuts, something kiddo had been wanting for weeks. It was a total and complete success, they were amazing. After realizing that the GF flour blend she used was much like the one I was using, I thought that maybe I could actually make a cake that was GFCF AND tasty.

I was still pretty nervous, but I embarked on my cake making, starting off small by making cake balls to be used for cake pops if they came out well. So I mixed things together, using an equation I used for my conventional cakes but with the GFCF ingredients. I did a half batch to test it out. Then, as always, the test came- does kiddo like it? YES! He loved them and said that he wanted half his cake to be my new vanilla flavor and the other half “chocolate monkey cake” (a recipe combo from my cupcaking days). So then I was tasked with making a GFCF chocolate too. Geez, I love these kiddos, but they don’t take it easy on me!

By the morning of the party, I had both cakes (vanilla and chocolate) AND a GFCF banana custard filling ready to go. I stacked, decorated according to the predetermined design that kiddo approved and viola’!

It wasn’t easy and I may experiment more with the recipe and combinations, but the kids and adults at the party loved the cake and the cake pops. I promise once I get myself all together I will post the chocolate and custard filling as well.

Vanilla Cake
Makes 2-9” round cakes

2 ½ C GF flour blend (see recipe for flour blend)
2 tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
½ C margarine, room temperature
1 ½ C sugar
2 eggs, or egg replacement
¾ C Rice milk
1 tsp GF Vanilla

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease 2- 9” cake pans with shortening and dust with flour blend.

In a bowl, whisk together flour blend, baking powder and salt. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine margarine and sugar and mix on medium speed until grainy. Add eggs, one at a time while blade is still running. Stop machine and scrape the sides of the bowl to thoroughly combine the sugar mixture and eggs.
Combine rice milk and vanilla in a measuring cup. On low speed, add ¼ C of flour mixture to egg/sugar mixture. Allow the flour mixture to combine and then add ¼ C of rice milk to the bowl, while still running. Alternate wet and dry until all ingredients have been added. Scrape sides of the bowl and mix for 30 seconds to completely combine.

Pour the batter evenly into the prepared cake pans and bake approximately 30 minutes or until golden around the edges and the cake springs back when you touch the center.

Rest 10 minutes in the pan and then remove and cook on a wire rack and decorate.

CF Vanilla Icing
½ C shortening
½ C CF butter
2 lbs. powdered sugar
1/8 C rice milk
1 tsp GF Vanilla

Combine rice milk and vanilla together in a measuring cup.

In the bowl of a stand mixer with whisk attachment, beat together shortening and butter until creamy. With the mixer on low, gradually add powdered sugar, 1 C at a time. When it starts to get thick, with the mixer on, gradually drizzle the rice milk/vanilla mixture into the bowl. When it is completely combined, it should be a little wet, turn mixer on medium high and whip until the icing is a light consistency that holds a peak when you pull the whisk attachment up.  If the mixture is too wet to hold a peak, continue to add powdered sugar ½ C at a time until you reach the right consistency. 

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