Monday, 7 March 2016

Chocolate Cake and An Open Garden at Arundel

Some time ago I committed to helping my friend Helena with her open garden - yes, I would bake for the coffee and cakes stall, yes, I would be able to work on the weekend and yes I could make gluten free chocolate cake.

Gluten free, dairy free chocolate cake, just one of the many treats enjoyed by the visitors to Arundel.

And what a glorious weekend it was, the gardens at Arundel were picture perfect and the weather sunny

One of my favourite sections of the garden, the very unusual red ox tongue lily, heliotrope and the silvery grey green foliage of the lamb's ears, artemesia and succulents

There were lots of place to sit and admire the garden

This magnificent pumpkin caught my eye, not only an excellent example of Autumn harvest but doing duty to prevent anyone accidently walking off the edge of the deck.

A huge crowd (1400+), slightly bigger than last year enjoyed the beautiful grounds and gardens,

 partook of the coffee and delicious home made cakes and scones that were made and supplied by the Geelong Friends of the Botanic Gardens.

There were so many delicious cakes and scones to choose from and quite a few repeat customers!

The Friends Plant Stall did a brisk trade with those in the know arriving early to get a bargain. 

For those who got the timing right there were talks and selected guided tours from Helena, sometimes Bella joined in the fun

and opera on lawn from William

For a small donation to support Headspace you could model a fabulous headpiece from The Flower Dispensary 

Helena showing us how to wear the Autumn crown. 

Gluten Free, Dairy Free 
Chocolate Cake

1/2 cup Dutch cocoa
1/2 cup boiling water
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup grapeseed oil
3 eggs
1 cup caster sugar
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate soda
1 1/2 cups almond meal
1/4 cup gluten free flour (can be omitted, add another ½ cup almond meal)

Preheat oven to 160 deg C, grease and line base of a springform pan.

Combine cocoa and boiling water in a jug or bowl and mix until smooth, add vanilla and oil and stir together.

Beat eggs and sugar together until thick and foamy, beat in the baking powder and bicarbonate of soda. Beat in chocolate mixture and then the ground almonds and gluten free flour.

Pour batter into the prepared tin. Bake until cake is set and starting to shrink away from the sides of the tin, approximately 45 minutes.

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