Rita is a genius at gluten-free baking. And not just gluten-free baking, but gluten-free on a budget. Major problem—she is a truly creative cook and so almost never makes the same thing twice. I have been forcing her to write down her recipes so that I can copy and post them here (more coming soon I hope).
Her major investment in gluten free baking is Guar Gum, which she buys at Healthy U. As for rice flour, she simply takes a 2kg bag of rice to the posho mill and pays Kshs. 20 for 2 kgs.
About using guar gum—”it thickens the batter quite a bit and so is heavy when using a hand-mixer.”
Her tip—”Put in the guar gum last and then let it set before transferring the cake batter to a baking tin.” Alternatively, she mixes the batter by hand instead of a mixer and quickly adds it with the wet ingredients including the guar gum at the end.
This is Rita’s take on what was originally called Friday Night Chocolate Cake.
Gluten-free Chocolate Cake
- 1 3/4 cups rice flour or 1 1/4 cup rice flour and 1/2 cup cassava flour
- 1 1/2 – 2 cups sugar (if you want it sweeter)
- 3/4 cup cocoa (do not substitute with milo or drinking chocolate)
- 1 1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 2 large eggs
- 1 cup mala/buttermilk/yoghurt
- 1/2 cup melted butter or vegetable oil
- 1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup freshly brewed hot coffee or boiling water
- 1 teaspoon guar gum
DirectionsPreheat your oven to 170ºC/350ºF. Grease and flour the cake tin.
In a large bowl, whisk 1 3/4 cups rice flour, 1 1/2 cups sugar, 3/4 cup cocoa, 1 1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda and 3/4 teaspoon of salt. Make a well in the centre.
In a separate bowl pour in 2 beaten eggs, 1 cup of mala/buttermilk, 1/2 cup melted butter or oil and 1 Tablespoon vanilla. Combine the wet ingredients.
Make a well in the centre of the dry ingredients, pour in the wet ingredients and incorporate both.
Finish by pouring the 1 cup of hot water or 1 cup of hot coffee. Do not overmix. It smells so good already! When it is combined, add the 1 teaspoon guar gum and let it set.
Spoon into your greased and floured tin and bake in the preheated oven for about 30 minutes. (Rectangular cakes cook faster than round). It is ready when a knife inserted comes out clean.
Dust icing sugar or with this simple chocolate frosting: The Chocolate Icing Recipe You Need.