Tuesday 3 December 2013

Wacky cake - strange name, great taste

Recently one of my mummy friends put me on to a great recipe: wacky cake. It's egg free, soy free and dairy free and actually, it's not really so much of a recipe, but more of a guideline. You can vary it to suit tastes and I think it's one of those glorious mixtures that is hard to stuff up! Even better, it's not finicky at all, cheap to make and it's child friendly!

Taking approximately 5 minutes to whip up and 25 minutes to bake, this is a winner in my books.

Here's what I did:

  • 1.5 cups plain flour (I used one cup white flour, half a cup of wholemeal)
  • 1/4 cup raw sugar
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • pinch salt
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla essence
  • 5 tbsp vegetable oil *
  • 1 cup cold water
That's the basic recipe. You mix the dry ingredients, then add the wet, mixing gently until just combined. Put into your tin and bake at 175C until it springs back when touched. 

Now, as you can see, mine looks a little different from the ingredients indicated! I switched it up a little (because we know I can't help playing with a recipe to make it 'mine').

I added:
  • 2 tbsp cocoa powder
  • * approx 1/2 cup of apple puree (and then I reduced the oil and water added to compensate)
As with any vegan cake mixture, you need something to bind it instead of egg. As well as moisture, that's what the oil and water are doing in the original recipe. I used apple puree to make it a little healthier, and also reduce the amount of oil needed. As with regular baking, the tip is to mix the dry ingredients, then add the wet. Once that baking soda is wet, it activates and that's what helps your cake to rise so you want to avoid over mixing so you don't end up with baked concrete, and get it into the oven as soon as possible.

So, the verdict?

Delicious! Quick, easy, and a bit of a hit with both the adults and Ellie too. Hurrah! I'm going to add this one to my regular baking rotation and have some fun with it. 

I also think it would be great with some of the following added:
  • cherries
  • shredded coconut
  • pineapple
  • dates
  • berries
  • mashed banana (I have it on good authority from aforementioned friend that 2 bananas makes it a little stodgy so one sounds just right, although I don't care for banana myself)
  • sultanas
  • cacao nibs
  • apple pieces
Do you have a go-to baking recipe? Or one that you use as a basis for adding other flavours to? I'd love to hear about it in the comments!

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