Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Gluten-Free Cake Love

J and I have a great group of friends who get together once a month for game night--video, card, board, etc--and generally some eating, as well (J talked about our most recent Game Night offerings here).  Well, one of the couples in our group live a gluten-free lifestyle (one suffers Celiac's Disease and the rest eat gluten-free in solidarity), so we try to offer gluten-free options.  One area that this has suffered has been in my baking.  I make cakes/cupcakes for the group periodically, and so far I had not tried to go gluten-free. 

Last week, the wife half of this couple celebrated a birthday, and the awesome husband half arranged a suprise birthday dinner at one of their favorite Mexican restaurants.  To complete the celebration, he asked that I make a cake (gluten-free of course).  Eek!

Now, to be clear, I did not make a cake from scratch.  Gluten-free cake mixes have come a long way, and seemed to be a safer route to a quality cake.  I've no doubt that scratch recipes might turn out a better quality cake (just like they might turn out a better result than a 'regular' cake mix); I also have no doubt that there is more room for error and more things to go wrong.  I used Pamela's Chocolate Cake mix.  We used Pamela's pancake mix for our Shrove Tuesday Pancake Supper with great results (not grainy, tastes like pancake), so I didn't hesitate to grab her mix for this project, too.  Best compliment?  A non-gluten free party guest raved about how delicious the cake was!

So now that you know how I made the cake, what about the decorating?  Well, the week before I noticed a flower pot cake in the Williams Sonoma catalog that provided the inspiration (you can order your own here).  In order to be sure we had enough cake, I also made some cupcakes to stretch (and to work for the little ones who attended!).  Enjoy!

All decorated and ready for the knife...

...and the inside shot!
Thank you, Leo, for the opportunity to try my hand at gluten-free!

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