23 October 2014

Delicious Cakes (Sugar-Free and Good for You!)

It's been roughly six weeks since we took the plunge and went (mostly) sugar-free.
Can I just say two things about that:
1. I have NEVER EVER successfully followed through on changing my diet before I did this
2. It has been easier - and more enjoyable - than I ever imagined

In case you're new round here, you should know that I am the self-confessed Lazy Mother who always looks for the shortcuts, and despite all appearances (i.e. my party posts) I have never thought of myself as a baker. Or a cook. Or anything else which required too much time in the kitchen on a regular basis.
True story.

But all that is changing. And I have never baked so much.
Never have my kids had such interesting, healthy lunchboxes on a consistent basis (which, might I add, they are still making themselves.) They are short on processed crap and filled with stuff like unflavoured milk, strawberries, pistachios, lemon-dipped carrot sticks, chicken salad sandwiches on grainy bread, and plain yoghurt flavoured with (homemade) berry coulis.

John Campbell's lunchbox nazi would find little to complain about here.

But best of all are the cakes. The Cakes. The CAKES.
Mostly from Petite Kitchen, my new favourite cooking-gal. I even bought the recipe book.

I have made these recipes more than once, sending multiple guests reeling in astonishment when I revealed that these drool-worthy delights are not only gluten-free but sugar-free too.

They are SIMPLE to make, and delicious to eat, as well as being so good for you.

First up, my version of Petite Kitchen's Simple Almond Cake.

Orange Almond Cake With Berries Gluten free and Sugar free

  • 2 cups of ground almonds
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/3 cup of runny honey
  • 60g butter (melted)*
  • the zest of one large orange
  • 1 teaspoon of baking powder
Preheat the oven to 160oC (not fan bake). Beat all ingredients together until smooth then pour batter into a round cake tin lined with baking paper. Sprinkle over the top:
  • half a cup of frozen blueberries (or mixed berries)
Bake for 25 minutes or until the top of the cake feels firm when lightly pressed.

Serve with homemade berry coulis and plain yoghurt (with just a dash of added honey)
Soooo good.

This next recipe would have been tricky to execute if I hadn't recieved, that very day, a special delivery from one of the companies my hubby does business for. See, I haven't had a food processor since I melted our old one in the dodgey dishwasher. I've been making do with a hand-held electric beater and a bit of elbow grease. But since hubby's points earned me this new kitchen Whizz, I now have a MACHINE to do all the heavy lifting. (for meeeeee, for freeeeeee).

This cake is to die for, and with my new magical Whizzer, so simple too. Truly.

So without further ado, here's my version of Petite Kitchen's Decadent Raspberry Torte.

Decadent Raspberry Chocolate Torte Gluten free and Sugar free

  • 1 cup of frozen raspberries
  • 1/4 cup of runny honey
  • 60g butter*
  • 5 eggs
  • 1/4 cup gluten free all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup dessicated coconut
  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/2 a teaspoon of baking soda
Preheat the oven to 150oC (not fan bake). In your (shiny new) food processor, whizz the frozen raspberries until they are as smooth as you can get them.
Melt the honey and butter together in the microwave and once melted, whisk together lightly before adding to the raspberries; add the rest of the ingredients and whizz together in the magical whizzer. Wahoo!

Pour batter into a lined cake tin and bake for 30 minutes or until cake springs back when lightly pressed.
Then enjoy with a friend, with a little coulis on the side and some honey-tinted yoghurt. 
Don't even bother to feel guilty, because it's ALL GOOD FOR YOU.

*To make dairy free substitute butter with 1/4 cup of coconut oil.

Easy Berry Coulis

2 cups of frozen berries
1/8 cup of water
1 Tablespoon of lemon juice (about half a lemon's worth)
2 Tablespoons of honey

Put all the ingredients in a pot, simmer on a low heat, stirring occasionally, until everything is soft and squishy. Now you can either serve as is, with berry bits (a simple berry sauce) or you can turn it into a "coulis" by mashing it through a sieve and discarding all the seeds and pulp.

Add it to plain yoghurt in place of those awful sugar-loaded pottles your kids have been guzzling that you used to think were healthy til you knew better. They will love it, trust me.

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