2013-02-15 05.32.54supplied by Nicole Sartini, fabulous mom, Jozikids helper, student, baker and so much more

This is a very easy and versatile recipe – make it for a vegetarian or vegan* friend if you aren’t one yourself!  Eggs and dairy are a standard in most homes and commercial baking, denying many veggies the opportunity to partake in much cake eating.  This is a delicious cake that everyone can enjoy, so stop excluding your chicken, cow and tree hugging friends from your dinner table today!  It is also so easy your kids can help you mix and decorate it.

Group 1:
2 c vanilla yoghurt / milk /soya or rice milk*2013-02-14 06.00.21
2 T vinegar / lemon juice

Group 2
1 c oil (canola / coconut)
1 ½ c brown sugar
1t ground vanilla bean
½ t ground nutmeg
½ t cinnamon

Group 3
½ c carob powder, sifted
¼ t salt
2 t baking powder
1 t bicarb
1 c cake flour, sifted
1 c polenta
1 c ground almonds (or mix almonds and walnuts)

1. Mix the first group of ingredients together in a large mixing bowl.

2. Add the second group of ingredients to the mixing bowl and mix briefly with a wooden spoon.

3. Combine the third group of ingredients well before adding to the wet mixture.

4. Mix well, but quickly and pour into a greased and floured roasting pan.

5. Bake at 180’C for about 30 minutes or until a knife inserted comes out clean.

CAKE  TOPPING

For cake toppings I prefer sauces which are quick and easy to make and also look good.  For this cake prepare the topping when the cake is about to come out of the oven:

Group 1
½ c butter / coconut oil*
3 T carob powder, sifted
A pinch of ground vanilla
or vanilla extract/tsp vanilla essence
A pinch of nutmeg
A pinch of cinnamon
1/3 – ½ c brown sugar

Group 2
¼ – ½ c coconut milk
3 T cornstarch

Group 3
¼ c ground almonds and or toasted coconut

1. Mix the first group of ingredients together in a small saucepan over a moderate heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar.

2. Mix the second group of ingredients together and pour into the saucepan gradually, then raise the heat and stir continuously until the sauce thickens.

3. Pour over the cake (either in the pan or having removed it and placed it on a serving dish).

4. Sprinkle with ground almonds or toasted coconut (have fun – make patterns!) and cut into squares.

I often add fresh flowers (what have you got growing at the moment in your garden?), mint and berries as decorations and you could substitute the carob powder for cocoa powder if you prefer, but the flavor won’t be as subtle and you might want to add extra spices if you do.

For a wheat free cake you can use the cake flour in the Nature’s Choice range – I love and use their polenta often.

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