Cakes have gotten a bad rap. People equate virtue with turning down dessert. There is always one person at the table who holds up her hand when I serve the cake. No, really, I couldn’t she says, and then gives her flat stomach a conspiratorial little pat. Everyone who is pressing a fork into that first tender layer looks at the person who declined the plate, and they all think, That person is better than I am. That person has discipline. But that isn’t a person with discipline; that is a person who has completely lost touch with joy. A slice of cake never made anybody fat. You don’t eat the whole cake. You don’t eat a cake every day of your life. You take the cake when it is offered because the cake is delicious. You have a slice of cake and what it reminds you of is someplace that’s safe, uncomplicated, without stress. A cake is a party, a birthday, a wedding. A cake is what’s served on the happiest days of your life. This is a story of how my life was saved by cake, so, of course, if sides are to be taken, I will always take the side of cake.
Delicious nom carrot cake for Lou-face.
The icing makes more than enough for the cake, expect to have extra.
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C, with the rack in the center. Line the bottoms of 2 9” round cake pans and grease the sides.
In a large bowl (which will contain all the final mixture), beat together the oil, eggs, carrots, brown sugar, vanilla, walnuts and raisins (if using).
Whisk the remaining dry ingredients together in a medium bowl (flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking soda, salt).
Fold the dry ingredients into the wet until just mix - don’t overmix or the cake will be tough.
Divide the batter between the two cake pans, and place in the oven for approx. 25-30min until a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean.
When done, let cool in the pans for 10-15 min then turn out onto a wire cooling rack.
For the frosting:
Beat the butter and cream cheese together until smooth. Add the vanilla and icing sugar and beat until fluffy. Set aside at room temperature until the cake has cooled completely to ice it.
Refrigerate the cake for a few hours or days, best served at room temperature or slightly cool. This cake freezes and defrosts well (un-iced).
I’m hosting a cake party next month. I have several friends getting married and this way, they can try my cakes and if they like them - I can do them again for weddings. Otherwise, there are many other brilliant cake makers I’m sure could fill the void :)
The important part: Cake Party!
Isa Chandra’s recipe for Chocolate Cake is simple and delicious, I’ve made it several times and it’s definitely of Cake Party standard. I’m planning to pair it with white chocolate buttercream and perhaps a thin layer of white fondant which I might attempt to “quilt”. Ambition, anyone?
I’m really only posting it so I never have to hunt for it again. x
It’s my blog birthday! 5 years, let’s celebrate with a milkshake. This is for Priya, who had a below-average one from Moustache cookie shop on Monday.
Blend the milk, peanut butter, sugar and essence together first. Then add the ice cubes and blend again - if the peanut butter gets too cold right away it clumps up.
Add another ice cube and serve,
I only added sugar because the peanut butter I keep is really salty (no added sugar). You might like to add more milk to your taste.
Also good: adding a scoop of dairy free ice cream (vanilla).
Must be consumed through a straw, otherwise won’t bring all the boys to to yard.
How’s that for a title. Just dripping with SEO.
Anyway, last week I had cookies on the brain and spent some time sifting through internets looking for a recipe. I wanted peanut butter and chocolate, no eggs, no dairy, no gluten. Most recipes used dumb egg replacers, actual eggs or other undesirable too-exotic ingredients and things.
After much reading I tried this combo to a satisfyingly delicious result, fortunately it only made very few cookies because over the course of the week I ate all of them.
Notes on ingredients:
Flour: I used a store brand gluten free flour which is a combination of flours. I think seed based flours would hold up best rather than starchy ones in this recipe but hey, experiment away! I’d be curious to see what happened with rise flour for instance.
Peanut Butter: I love peanut butter with more salt than sugar, and my cookies turned out quite salty, because I added even more salt. This was delicious to me but be wary of this and consider adding no salt at all (if salt is listed before sugar in the ingredients of your peanut butter, you know it has more salt. If neither are listed, your peanut butter is healthier but probably less tasty!).
Oils and milk: coconut oil could be substituted for extra light olive or canola oil, and the milk could be swapped for anything or omitted completely, I just found it helped bind the ingredients.
Preheat your oven to 170°C and grease or line an oven tray with baking paper.
Combine everything except the chocolate chips and mix well. When all the ingredients are evenly distributed, add the chocolate chips. I found the mixture didn’t stick together particularly awesomely.
Spoon balls of mixture out onto the tray and flatten, I made 9 medium sized cookies and they spread about 15-20% during baking.
Bake for 12-15 minutes or until the edges start to brown.
I love love love Nice Blocks, in particular, the chocolate/coconut flavour. I recreated it last night with this combination:
Whisk ingredients together in a freezer-safe container. You want to almost whip some air through it so it will freeze into nice fluffy ice cream. Put it in the freezer for about 3 hours.
If you have an ice cream maker, I’m jealous - use that.
The mixture will freeze more quickly in a wide shallow container - i.e, if the liquid is spread over a greater area.
*I used homebrand coconut cream, which is more like coconut milk than cream, it’s thinner. The more expensive brands of coconut cream tend to have a thicker creamier consistency but this doesn’t really matter.
Some tracks from the upcoming release of The Great Gatsby are available for listens via Spotify: