Tag Archives: cake

Gluten free Birthday Cake for Kay

We were flying back from Lima on Kay’s birthday and then I was in Hong Kong, but by late November, it was time to make the boy a cake. Or two, considering this was only the “shareable cake” and not his beloved, private cheesecake that I would make later on.

After two years eating gluten free, making cakes is not quite so scary any more. The recipes from The Everything Gluten-Free Baking Cookbook seem to work very well. I decided to make a standard white cake and then spice it up to be a pseudo spiced cake.I added in spices like cardamom and cinnamon, as well as a pinch of cloves.Frostings usually confound me, but this time I made a delicious, delicious, delicciooooous maple cream cheese frosting, recipe below.Prepping the cake for frosting.Considering that we were getting close to Christmas, it made for a really nice, wintery cake.We had a belated dinner for Kay at his father’s house and I brought the cake along as dessert.This one turned out a tad denser than other cakes I have made from this book, but still perfectly acceptable. 🙂It was only a shame that Kay had a stuffed up nose and could barely tastemy yummy creation. Oh well, too bad for Kay!

Maple Cream Cheese Frosting:

  • 113g butter
  • 8oz/200g cream cheese (1 pack Philadelphia)
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp maple extract
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon

Cake Cake Cake (Gluten Free)

Back in July, I bought a new, taller cake tin in preparation of having to maybe transport a dessert to my FIL’s house for Swiss National Day August 1. We ended up doing the meal at our house, but I still wanted to test some cake to see how it stores in my new toy.

Having made a couple from my Blackbird Bakery book already, I wanted to try out the easier and simpler recipes from my Everything Gluten-Free Baking Cookbook. I decided to try a basic yellow cake, because everyone needs a reliable cake for future birthday parties and events!I did, however, decide to try out a coconut frosting from Blackbird Bakery, which while it was delicious… it was again not that easy to make and it was quite liquid even a few days later. It was not the most pretty icing. I am not sure I will make it again because it requires a lot of multi-tasking in three different containers and cooking liquids to the just perfect, not boiling temperature, before adding to the other ingredients. So much room for error!But look at that cake below! The yellow cake turned out fabulous. I made two cakes in my 8″ pans and then frosted. I was a little unsure how much frosting there really was, so I didn’t do as much as I could have and I ended up putting a thick layer on top to take care of it.

The cake itself was light and airy, which is uncommon for gluten free cakes. Normally they are extremely thick and dense, especially the store bought ones which are closer to rocks.For Swiss National Day, I decided to make a new attempt at chocolate cake with the Everything GF book because the recipe from Blackbird Bakery did not turn out so well for me.This was for a mocha chocolate cake, so I made a cup of coffee from our automated coffee machine (so quick and fast) which was the perfect amount for the recipe.I made the mistake of licking the spoon above because it LOOKS like chocolate syrup, but it was pure cocoa powder with coffee and it tasted disgusting! 🙂This time I just made a chocolate frosting from the Everything GF book instead of trying something difficult and it turned into a much nicer frosting. I could have put a bit more water in to make it smooth on better, but it was fine.I decorated the outside and top with almonds. I also left the top layer puffy and round. Both cakes puffed up more than the yellow cake, but I didn’t want to cut too much away, so I trimmed the flatter layer for the bottom and left the more round one on top. It was a pretty sumptuous cake. Again it was light and airy and you couldn’t tell at all that it was gluten free. I wanted to make a really nice gluten free cake while my BIL was in town to show him that just because something is GF, doesn’t mean it has to have a terrible texture or taste. We made a pack of store-bought pasta in the summer at my FIL’s house with minimal toppings and he really wasn’t impressed, so I hope I made up for it with this cake. 🙂

If you are interested, check out the books!

Gluten Free Strawberry Shortcake

Last year for my birthday I received The Everything Gluten-Free Baking Cookbook and while I haven’t made so many recipes from it, instead relying on Cooksmarts and Pinterest, I decided to turn to this book when I came up with the idea to make strawberry shortcake for my FIL’s birthday.

It was a pretty good cake, so while I won’t post the recipe here, I will recommend you buy the book and make some yourself. The book also has lots of othe recipes for things like waffles, pancakes, cookies, and more. I plan to try out some more of the cake recipes and see if they are good.The cake itself set up nicely in both the muffin cups and in the baking dish. Below, it looks very similar to the pound cake my mother would make for strawberry shortcake.We enjoyed it the whole week of my FIL’s birthday by heaping strawberries and fresh raspberries from the garden on top, finishing with whipped cream and fresh peppermint.Of course below is how I really ate it… my family knows how obsessed I can be with whipped cream. If only we could buy Cool Whip here!To be fair, at the end of the week, the cake was drying out more, so I needed that extra whipped cream.

Are you a fan of strawberry shortcake?

First Gluten Free Cakes

I am not a big cake baker because cakes are too much dessert for just Kay and myself, and it’s always tricky arranging Swiss expat schedules to help finish a cake off. (Surprising, no?)

Gluten free baking is also tricky because flour, baking, rising… all that acts differently without gluten, so I was a bit afraid to attempt my first cake. But I knew for my Swiss citizenship party that I wanted to make a real, chocolate cake!

I decided to make Blackbird Bakery’s chocolate cake and frosting, and as you can see, it did turn out OK. (I made a little mistake, so it wasn’t perfect.)

Most of the recipes in this book are pretty complicated and the chocolate cake had about seven different flours in it. This is by far the most complicated cake I had ever made and i was really nervous that the whole thing was going to turn out poorly.It had been over a year since I had made a real gluten cake and since then I had gotten rid of most of our cake pans in the de-glutening, so I had to buy another spring-form pan. I baked two pans of cake, although I could have left them in the oven even a little longer, because they were still a bit gooey in the middle when I cut them in half the next day.

The frosting is where I made my mistake… we don’t have cornstarch syrup in Switzerland, so I tried to substitute sugar and water, but I didn’t dissolve the sugar properly into the water before mixing it in the frosting because Kay and I were both in the kitchen trying to finish a million and one things the night before the party. Failing to do that made the final frosting a little crunchy from the sugar, which was a shame because I took so much care with all the other steps of the frosting.

It was still very yummy though and very chocolatey! This cake is brushed with chocolate liquor before frosting and it gave it a definite alcohol flavour. I loved it!

The party was a success and it was great showing off all the gluten free food we made for the night. We also had bite-size cordon bleu, bacon wrapped potatoes and dates, veggies with hummus and dill dip, guacamole and tortilla chips, dried meat, coconut and chocolate date balls, Kay made his gluten free tiramisu, and plenty to drink.

The next day, Kay and I were invited to his parent’s house for a lunch with some Brazilians from out of town who had attended our wedding. I told Kay’s father I could bring a gluten free dessert, which he was happy to accept because he always struggles coming up with gluten free desserts for me. I decided to try out Blackbird Bakery’s German chocolate cake with my own pecan coconut frosting.

I cut the cake recipe in half since it really called for three pans and I thought the final cake would be too tall for my cake carrying case, so I made a half recipe in one spring form pan and then cut that in half to frost.

On this cake I didn’t make any mistakes and it turned out pretty well. Success! Everyone thought it was really tasty and Kay has been going nuts for the pecan frosting ever since then. It is his favourite frosting of mine. 🙂

I was really pleased with my cakes. Even if I made a few mistakes, they turned out as well as my normal cakes would, or were even prettier in some cases.

Life gluten free is not the end of the world and even if I cannot have the office birthday cake, they don’t know how much of that chocolate cake I devoured every evening as we finished the cake after the party. It was so rich that even with 20 guests, we still had half of the four layer cake leftover afterward!

Happy Swiss National Day!

Ok, this is a bit late because we were so busy yesterday celebrating. August 1st is the equivalent of Independence Day in Switzerland, so we invited Kay’s parents over for a traditional Swiss brunch.

We started Wednesday evening by preparing Zopf (traditional Swiss bread), rösti (Swiss potato pancakes), birchermüesli (fruit and muesli), coconut cake and cheesecake. I started my bread by beginning with a sponge:

Afterward I let the dough rise while I whipped up the cheesecake. While that was in the oven, I rolled out the Zopf and tried to braid it into a Swiss cross because Kay had sent me a cool Zopf picture earlier in the week that I wanted to replicate.

Once the Zopf was rolled out and rising, Kay began shredding his cooked potatoes for the rösti and chopping up fruits for the birchermüesli. I popped the Zopf in the oven and then ran around the house like a mad woman trying to clean it up enough to make it presentable for the in-laws’ first visit to the new place.

The Zopf turned out pretty well! But it’s a little more of an X shape than a cross shape. Oh well.

On the day of, we got out the cheeses and meats and stuck little Swiss flags in some of the food and hung up Swiss flag balloons. We are a very patriotic household. 😉

With the röst, eggs and bacon in addition to all this (and the cakes!) it was WAY too much food for four people. We were all completely stuffed after awhile.

The rösti with spring onions, chives and parsley, topped with an egg and a side of bacon.

And my mom’s cheesecake recipe, topped with red currants.

Mmmmm. After the brunch we were so stuffed that I passed out on the couch in a food coma.