Saturday, February 13, 2010
The biggest challenge I have had while adopting a Nourishing Traditions lifestyle is making a yummy birthday cake! I used to make all kinds of fancy, fun shaped, white sugar laden birthday cakes. When I committed to making healthy cakes I had no idea what a roller coaster ride I was in for! Since last March I have made so many BAD birthday cakes I had almost given up hope! My dear family has been so patient with me!
I am happy to report that I have finally found a way to make a GREAT birthday cake! I stumbled on the idea when I was making homemade breakfast cereal. (See my last post for that recipe.) The cereal is made by soaking a batter over night and then baking it in a 9x13 inch cake pan the next morning. Then you crumble that cake up, dehydrate it and you have cereal. One morning at breakfast time I had the batter baked, but not crumbled and dehydrated. I didn't have the time to do that so I just cut it up and served it with butter on it. It tasted great! I thought then that I could tweak the recipe a little, frost it and have a great birthday cake!
This week we had another birthday and I made the best chocolate cake! Here's what to do:
THE NIGHT BEFORE THE PARTY
3 cups fresh ground whole wheat flour
1 1/2 cups milk (raw is best)
1/2 cup water
3 TBLS yogurt (mine is homemade)
Cover the bowl you mixed it in and set it on the counter overnight or until you are ready to cook the cake.
WHEN YOU ARE READY TO BAKE
Preheat oven to 350. Butter two 9 inch round cake pans.
Add to the mix:
1 tspn baking soda
1/2 tspn Real Salt
2 tspn pure vanilla
Melt together (NOT IN THE MICROWAVE!)
1/4 cup butter
3/4 - 1 cup honey
Add this to the mix.
Mix this well. Add 1/4 cup cocoa powder and mix well. Taste the batter and see if it is chocolatey enough for your tastes. Add more cocoa powder 1 TBLS at a time until the batter tastes right to you. Pour the batter evenly between the two pans. Bake until they are springy to the touch and a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Mine take about 25 minutes, but every oven is different. Watch them closely and write down how long yours took to cook so you'll know next time.
While your cakes cool, make your frosting. You will need:
3 cups heavy cream (raw is best, don't use ultra-pasteurized)
1/4 cup (or so) sucanat
1/4 cup (or so) cocoa powder
1 tspn pure vanilla
Mix the cream with hand held beaters. When it starts to thicken a little add the vanilla and a few TBLS of the sucanat and cocoa while you keep beating. Taste this and keep adding sucanat and cocoa until it tastes right to you. Beat until it is thick, smooth, and creamy. Don't OVER beat it, it will become lumpy. The end result should be light brown in color.
Assemble the cake by putting one cake layer on your cake plate and spread a layer of frosting on top of it. Put the next cake layer on top of that and then frost the whole thing. We topped it off with organic M&M-like chocolates from the health food store.
I am so thrilled with this recipe! I hope you enjoy it!
Please remember that cooking with whole foods takes lots of trial and error. If you are wondering why soaked wheat is best, read my previous posts on that topic.