Sunday, 12 September 2010

Inspiration, creation, salivation!

But before that, a word about a mental week! Back to work, editing, a reporter off, a completely uninspired work experence kid... aargh! At least, I thought as I left the office on Friday, it's the weekend...

But that night, my laptop had a SECOND argument with a cup of tea (I'm such an idiot!) and it came off worse. So I had to buy another one yesterday : (

Then, a group of us went out last night for one friend's birthday and another one's "welcome back to the world" after having a baby. But the manager of the restaurant we'd picked said they couldn't guarantee anything on the menu was safe for me to eat. So I ended up with a bowl of olives for dinner! It didn't matter too much though as I made up for it when I got home. Possibly 1am wasn't the best time to shovel down baked squash custard with almond butter, followed by Cadbury's chocolate raisins but it definitely hit the spot...

Anyway - cake!

As well as my official job, my unoffical role at work is that of office cake-maker, which is fine with me!

It was our photographer's birthday at the weekend and I knew he'd be in today so I started thinking about what sort of cake I wanted to make and chocolate was the clear winner : )

I've made butter, flour and oil-free ones, using ground nuts, but suddenly wanted to see if I could make a completely fat-free chocolate cake...

And there it is!

I knew kind-of what I wanted to do but couldn't find a recipe anywhere so I guessed, estimated and hoped - and it worked...

Preheat oven to 180c and grease and line two 9-inch loose-bottomed sandwich tins

4 eggs, separated
95g flour (I used 60g rice flour, 35 cornflour and 1/2 tsp xanthan gum)
120g caster sugar
50g light brown sugar
2 tbsp cocoa powder
1tsp baking powder

Sift flour, xanthan gum, baking powder and cocoa powder together to make sure well blended and set aside.
In a large bowl, beat egg whites to soft peaks. In a separate bowl, beat yolks and sugar together till creamy. Gently fold in the egg whites, in about four goes, then gently fold in the flour/cocoa mixture, taking care not to over-mix. Pour into tins and bake for 20-25 minutes, until the cakes are starting to shrink away from the sides. Leave to cool in tins, then gently turn out on to a wire rack.


15g dark chocolate
100g cream cheese (I used Philadelphia Extra Light)
125g icing sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
Tiny pinch salt

Melt chocolate in the microwave and beat cheese till creamy. Add melted chocolate and beat again. Add vanilla and salt and blend, then stir in sugar and blend. Spread over the top of one cake and sandwich the two together.

WARNING: I used this recipe and it was A.Mazing. But it makes much too much for a cake this size and if you can resist shovelling the rest straight from pan to mouth, you've got much better self control than I have : )
I think 3/4 or 2/3 these quantities would be plenty and still leave enough for the cook to, erm, sample it...

85g dark chocolate, broken into pieces
4 tbsp evaporated milk (I used Sainsbury's own light version)
185g icing sugar

Put milk and chocolate in a thick-bottomed pan and stir over a low heat. Once chocolate has melted, stir in icing sugar until well blended, then pour over cake. It'll set to an amazing shiny finish...

(Obviously these toppings make this gluten-, fat- and dairy-free cake not dairy free at all! But I think blended silken tofu would make a brilliantly creamy filling if used in place of the Philadelphia. Also, I think coconut milk would make a perfect, and delicious, substitute for the evaporated milk)

Well, what can I say? The boys in the office are hard to please when it comes to cake but all of them said it was the best cake I'd ever made (although that could just mean the others were rubbish!) And not a piece was left...


  1. I have an incredible urge to attempt to veganize this recipe because it sounds lovely!

  2. Thank you! I thought it was... :-)

    I didn't think about veganising; I'm sure the icing and filling would be great but as for the cake itself... can EnRG egg replacer be whipped up like whites?
    If you try it and have any luck, let me know, I'm intrigued!