I’ve finally found a gluten free cake that I actually like! Okay, so it hasn’t taken that long, but everytime I try a new recipe it’s always a little disheartening that someone hasn’t found the perfect recipe and spread it all around the world!
So hopefully, people other than me like this and we can spread it around the world! But hey, small steps.
Gluten Free Strawberry and Rose Water Cake with Watermelon (aka. the best gluten-free cake ever.)
see original recipe here
250g unsalted butter, softened
2 tsp rose water or rose water extract
1 1/4 cups (275g) caster sugar
3 eggs at room temperature
200g gluten free flour mix (I used Aldi’s brand)
100g almond meal
3 tsp arrowroot flour
3 tsp baking power (or whatever the box says to use)
3/4 cup milk
Strawberry Couli Ingredients:
about 200/250g strawberries (frozen is fine!)
2 tsp rose water or rose water extract
1 tbsp castor sugar or icing sugar
- Preheat oven to 180C or 160C if you’re oven is fan forced.
- Line the base of a 22cm springform tin with baking paper or line the whole tin with foil.
- Beat butter in an electric mixer until smooth, then add caster sugar and rose water and beat until light and creamy.
- This might take a little while depending on how powerful your mixer is and how soft the butter is. So in the meantime make the couli. Blitz the strawberries with a stick blender, or mash them with a mortar and pestle until you have a lumpy liquid – it does not need to be smooth. Add the icing sugar and rose water.
- Add the strawberries to a pan and heat over medium heat until it has reduced slightly and any sugar has dissolved. Set aside to cool.
- Return to the cake batter – beat the eggs into the butter mixture, one at a time.
- Then add the flour, almond meal, arrowroot flour and baking powder alternately with the milk (ie. a bit of flour, then a bit of milk etc.)
- Spread into pan and pour the couli on top and stir through very roughly with a butter knife – you don’t want to keep mixing the batter, so just be gentle. Bake for about an hour. But I recommend checking on the cake at 45 or 50 minutes and just keep cooking until the top of the cake is springy and a skewer comes out clean. There will be strawberry couli on top, so try to find a bit of exposed cake batter sticking through the couli to test.
- Leave it to cool in the tin for about 5 or 10 minutes before turning it out – this gives the cake time to cool down a bit, which helps the shape settle, and makes the cake a lot less fragile and easier to handle.
Lemon Drizzle Icing:
1 cup gluten free icing sugar (most are gluten free, but just check!)
rose water or rose water extract
- Place icing sugar in a small bowl and add a teaspoon of lemon juice and/or rosewater at a time until you have a good consistency – you want the icing to be thick! So it should NOT run off the spoon. It should cling to the spoon, but slowly drip off it. It needs to be thin enough to spread but thick enough to not run everywhere!
- Once you’re happy with the consistency, whack it all on top of the cooled cake *****never ice a warm cake! it will be disastrous!!*****
- Start spreading the icing around the top of the cake with a palette knife (like in the chocolate peanut butter cake). Edge it carefully towards the edge of the cake, but don’t spread it over the edge of the cake. If the icing is the right consistency then it will very slowly drizzle down the side of the cake without any help, and if you give it too much help you’ll get a massive ugly glob of icing – so just be gentle and patient.
- You should have something that looks like this (minus the strawberries):
Now you can decorate! Of course, you don’t have to use that icing I just showed you, you don’t have to use icing at all! You could also create layers if you want. But this is what I did:
Candied Watermelon with Rose Water, Strawberries, Lemon Rind and Sage Flowers
About 3 slices of watermelon – each slice about 1cm thick
1/2 cup water
2 tbsp lemon/lime juice
1/4 cup caster sugar
two handfuls of fresh strawberries
about 10 sage flowers – make sure they haven’t been sprayed!
zest of half a lemon – use this tool, not a grater!! That way you get nice long thin strips of rind that look a lot prettier than grated rind!
- Cut watermelon slices so that you have 1cm cubes
- Place sugar, water and juice in a small pan over medium heat and heat until sugar has dissolved and mixture boils.
- Add watermelon and cook for about 5-10 minutes, turning every so often. When cooked, set aside and keep the syrup if you’d like to.
- Next, place the lemon rind in some cold water in a saucepan and heat until boiling. Then discard water and repeat, twice. On the final time, add a little bit of sugar and cook lemon rind until translucent.
- Then cut up the strawberries – hull them and quarter lengthways
- Now put it all on the edges of the cake – I suggest starting with the strawberries, then add individual bits of watermelon. place curls of lemon rind on top of the strawberries and watermelon. It should look something like this –
Then finish with some sage flowers (or any other edible flower) – if you can, gently remove the leaves from the base of the flower and just use the purple flowers.