Hello Sunshine: Gluten Free Lemon Cake

Oh baby. I had a slice of delicious lemon drizzle cake from Flour and Stone ages ago and became so obsessed with making it at home that I must have gone through half a dozen recipes before I got to one that I was happy with. Its like sunshine in a cake. This is not at all a recreation but just a damn good lemon cake which I think should be a staple in any baker’s repertoire. I mean, look at it…

A True Love of Mine: Gluten Free Lemon Cake

Delicious, moist cake with a super tangy, sugary icing. As if your mouth isn’t watering just thinking about making this. P.s. like how arty I am now? With that little lemon in the shot as well as the cake? Yeah, im a real pro.

Ive re-discovered the Nigella Lawson cookbook How To Be A Domestic Goddess and have a few more recipes coming from her in blog posts to come. And yes, they will come. Now that i’m on holidays and have finished a super stressful (but very rewarding) year, I have lots of time for blogging. Fourth post this month peeps! Yeah!

A True Love of Mine: Gluten Free Lemon Cake

The original recipe just uses normal flour but its such a small percentage of the whole thing that I swapped it with gluten free flour. That way I could make it for my friend’s birthday. I’m still a little wary of the ability of gluten free flour to properly emulate non-gf flour so i’m not quite game to use it in large quantities say for cookie dough or the like. Baby steps for me.

A True Love of Mine: Gluten Free Lemon Cake

As you can see, the cake is super dense so not for the faint of heart. But, for all its density it is wonderfully moist and the tangy icing sets it off beautifully. The best thing about this is that you can adjust the lemon flavour to your liking just by tweaking how much zest and juice you add. Although, I tend to think the more lemon the better. But hey, do what you like! I’m so glad that I re-discovered this baby as there had definitely been a bit of a citrus drought in the old Casa KB and this cake set us back in balance. And a slice counts as a serve of fruit doesn’t it?

So my lovelies, what old favourite have you re-discovered recently?

 

Hello Sunshine Lemon Cake (adapted from Nigella Lawson’s Damp Lemon and Almond Cake)

Cake Ingredients

225g soft unsalted butter

225g caster sugar

4 eggs

50g plain gluten free flour

225g ground almonds

zest and juice of 2 lemons

Lemon Icing Ingredients

2 cups icing sugar

1 scant tbsp warm water

lemon juice to taste

Cake Method

1. Cream butter and sugar until super super pale

2. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, adding a quarter of the flour after each addition

3. When everything is incorporated, gently stir in the ground almonds and lemon zest and juice

4. Pour mixture into a 20cm round cake tin and bake for roughly an hour at 180 degrees celsius (check after about 40 mins and if the cake is browning too quickly, cover with alfoil)

5. Boom! Moist and delicious cake. Ready for icing when its cooled.

Icing Method

1. Sift icing sugar into a bowl

2. Stir in lemon juice

3. Add the water in small additions until icing had reached desired consistency. You want it thick and lava-like rather than runny. That way it will coat the top of the cake but give you a nice thick layer of zingy icing.

4. Enjoy!

‘Tis the Season: Individual Cocktail Gifts

A True Love of Mine: Individual Cocktail Gifts

So, Christmas is creeping closer and so does the pressure of finding at least a passable gift – particularly for co-workers and neighbours. I find these people so difficult to buy for because I want to find something nice but not too pricey. If it’s cute too then that is a massive bonus. Ive learnt that with the flurry of work that happens at the end of Term 4, baking gifts for my teaching colleagues is definitely way too hard so that’s one stand-by option off the table. Then I hit on this. Individual cocktail gifts. Something all teachers definitely need at the end of the year! Perhaps even to keep in your desk in case of emergencies?

A True Love of Mine: Individual Cocktail Gifts
so here we have an individual Gin and Tonic!

Huzzah!

It started because I knew that one of my colleagues loves a good gin and tonic and, really, everyone needs a stiff drink by the end of the year. But I thought that giving everyone the same gift was 1. boring and 2. not great because not everyone is a G+T fan (poor souls). I put my thinking cap on and realised that the possibilities really were endless due to the range of tiny bottles of alcohol on sale and small cans of mixers. So I ended up with individual:

  • G+Ts
  • Jack and Gingers
  • Frangelico and Limes

A True Love of Mine: Individual Cocktail Gifts  A True Love of Mine: Individual Cocktail Gifts

A True Love of Mine: Individual Cocktail Gifts

The key to making a nicely wrapped gift out of this is the coaster on the bottom. This gives you some nice crisp edges and ensures that everything stays where you put it. I bought a bunch of them for $4 at KMart! Booyah!

A True Love of Mine: Individual Cocktail GiftsHere they are, all wrapped up and ready to go

Easy peasy!

And fairly cheap too if you’re making a few. The most expensive part of this present is the individual bottles of booze.

All up, depending on where you buy the glasses, this gift will set you back about $10 each.

How are all you lovelies going with your present buying?

Individual Cocktail Gifts – Ingredients

1 glass (doesn’t need to be fancy, just big enough to hold the can of mixer)

1 can of mixer of your choice (tonic, soda water, lime and soda, cola, ginger beer, lemonade)

1 lime – because lime makes every cocktail better

1 bottle of alcohol that matches your mixer

1 coaster

1 quantity of cellophane and ribbon

Method

Seriously?

‘Tis The Season: KB Spiced Rum

A True Love of Mine: KB Home Spiced Rum

 

Now that its December I can start to properly get into the spirit of the festive season. And that means carols, christmas decorations and cocktails. And gift buying. Or… gift making! My well-documented love of spiced rum meant that earlier in the year I figured i’d just try to make my own rather than fork out $40 every time I wanted a new bottle. Although this recipe probably doesn’t save that much money (on account of the fairly high price of good golden rum) the main attraction is that you can tweak the flavours to suit your tastes. They also make fabulous gifts as they keep well and look so cute and personalised while actually being very easy to make.

A True Love of Mine: KB Home Spiced Rum

This is all you need

Give or take some spices that you might like to add to suit your taste

And how is this for an easy peasy recipe…

A True Love of Mine: KB Home Spiced Rum

Chuck everything in a bottle.

Thats it!

A True Love of Mine: KB Home Spiced Rum

After a week of storage in a dark cupboard, the rum goes an even lovelier dark caramel colour and its smells delicious!

With at least a few more weeks until christmas, you could definitely whip these up for some gifts.

Easy Peasy!

KB Spiced Rum – Ingredients

1  500ml jar (you need one with a wide neck so that you can fish out the spices)

450 ml golden rum

2 cinnamon sticks

1 vanilla bean

6 cloves

2 star anise

6 little gratings of fresh nutmeg

Method

1. Pour rum into jar

2. Split open the vanilla bean and place, along with all other spices, into the jar

3. Seal tightly

4. Store in a dark place for 1 week (you can take a peek occasionally and give the bottle a good shake)

5. After 1 week, fish the spices out of the jar (you might need to decant the mixture and sieve it back in. If you are doing this, use a funnel or risk losing precious rum)

6. Store for as long as you like. Although you will want to drink this baby pretty soon.

Note: You can mess around with the quantities of the spices. I made a vanilla rum with just more vanilla beans. If you make it in a small batch you can always up the quantities when you find a mix that you like. Have fun!

Oh My! DIY: Potted Succulents

IMG_6882

Hubs has a habit of buying quirky and awesome things.

Last year, he bought me this cute retro bud vase for my birthday. I love this lady, just chilling on

the super cool, shiny conch shell. She’s a little bit flinstones, a little bit Gidget and a lot of awesome.

For ages I couldn’t figure out what to do with it. Then we hit on the idea of potting a succulent into it.

IMG_6883Soooo here we are! The plant as a whole was too big for the vase

so I just teased out the roots and divided the plant

and voila!

IMG_6885Lady lazing by succulent.

Sounds like the name of a classical painting doesn’t it?

Almost.

IMG_6886_2

Here she is, peeking around the plant.

I think its pretty nifty!

Now i’m sure i’m supposed to do something like drill a drainage hole

or pot the plant using proper potting mix rather than the soil that came with the plant but…

i’m lazy.

And this looks pretty spiffy.

I’m pretty sure you could do it too!

Have any of you lovelies done any diy-ing recently? I’d love to hear about it!