We all know how annoying it is when you or someone you know has a dietary requirement. Some of you might also know that most store-bought gluten-free cakes have the taste and texture of cardboard. This cake contains no gluten, no dairy and can be made nut-free, so no matter what dietary requirements you or your friends have, there is no need to compromise on taste. Whether you are celebrating with friends or you need to cater for a society event, this light, indulgent cake is perfect for everyone. Whilst it is best eaten on the day of making, this cake will stay moist in a sealed container for up to three days (if you have the restraint to let it survive for that long)…
For the cake:
- 500ml unsweetened dairy-free milk (I recommend almond milk, but if you want to make it nut free then any milk substitute will do.)
- 150ml melted coconut oil or light vegetable oil
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 325g gluten-free plain flour (you can find this in any supermarket’s ‘free from’ section)
- 300g caster sugar
- 75g cocoa powder (DO NOT use hot chocolate powder, it doesn’t work)
- A pinch of salt
- 1 tsp cider vinegar (It seems weird, but trust me, this is where the science magic comes in)
- 2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
For the butter-free buttercream icing:
- 85g dairy-free margarine (I recommend using Flora dairy-free spread (not a sponsor), as you can usually find this in supermarkets for a reasonable price)
- 175g icing sugar
- 3 tbsp cocoa powder
- ½ tsp vanilla extract
- 2 tbsp dairy-free milk (again, I use almond milk)
- Preheat the oven to 180ºC.
- Line two 20cm cake tins with baking paper (you can just use one deep cake tin, but your cake will need longer to bake. If you are planning to cater for a lot of people, baking the cake in a rectangular tin will make your life easier when you have to divide it evenly. If you don’t want to share the cake, ignore this advice and bake it in whatever you want).
- Apart from the vinegar and bicarbonate of soda, mix all of the cake ingredients together in a bowl until smooth.
- Add the vinegar and bicarbonate of soda and stir just enough to mix it into the batter. Stirring too much will result in your cake not rising well.
- Pour the batter into the tin(s) and bake for 25-40 minutes. After 25 minutes, test the cake by inserting a sharp knife or skewer. If the knife/skewer comes out with cake batter on it, bake for another 10 minutes and test the cake again.
- For the icing, cream the sugar and dairy-free margarine together until well combined.
- Add the dairy-free milk, cocoa powder and vanilla extract and continue to mix until smooth.
- Refrigerate the icing whilst your cake cools.
- Once the cake is cool, turn it out of the tin and spread the icing over it. If you want to have icing in the middle of the cake as well as on the top, this can only be achieved by baking the cake mix in two separate tins. The cake will fall apart if you try to cut it in half (I learned this the hard way).
- Let them eat cake!
Featured image courtesy of Celeste Adams.
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