Boozy Babycakes

This is my entry for 'Go Ahead Honey its Gluten Free!’ a gluten free baking event with the theme, 'Tea-time Treats', hosted by yours truly. I will be posting a round up of the other contributions to the tea-party at the end of next week.

Of course as you know my faithful darlings - there is always a story to tell in my kitchen. Well today that story is the age old favourite, triumph from adversity.

It starts with a grumpy boy who is annoyed with his new shoes (and tired of breaking them in) and a frustrated mum, who paid quite a lot for those shoes and wishes they would hurry up and get comfortable. We were going to Spike's house for the afternoon and Fin knows that it is just plain shabby not to turn up with a little something to share. We planned to make flapjacks and hastened to the shops to buy some fruit sugar for them.

On our return we found that we had only an ounce of butter in the house and only some walnut oil - not even a drop of any other kind (mummy has been busy blogging darling). But we didn't have time to go out again for the butter. Fin looked like a crumpled balloon as I started suggesting other items we could take. Until I mentioned chocolate cakes. Ok, chocolate cakes it was.

I vaguely remembered reading about mayonnaise chocolate cake somewhere and dug out a jar from the fridge, setting it next to the ounce of butter and walnut oil. 'Yuck!' shrieked Fin, 'you can't put that in my cakes!’

'Just watch me, honey' I drawled, like Jack Nicholson about to do something wicked.

However, when we got the cocoa powder out of the cupboard, there was only an ounce of that left - and we had to make 8 cakes to feed everybody at Joy's house. I abhor chocolate cakes that are not deeply chocolaty, and these already had mayonnaise in them. Fin looked anxiously into the cupboard again in case inspiration was lurking there.

It was then that my desperate eye veered towards the booze cupboard and lighted on the Kahlua. Aha! We set it beside the other ingredients and set to work mixing and beating as though we were conjuring life out of the philosopher’s stone. Into the oven they went and we stood back, not knowing quite what to expect.

Twenty five minutes later, eight fluffy Kahlua scented cakes came out of the oven. Fin broke off a piece and proclaimed them a success. As soon as they were cool enough we packed them into a box, jumped on our bikes and cycled into the wind, laughing in the face of adversity, all the way to West Bay.

Emergency Kahlua Babycakes (Gluten free, makes 8)

If you don't have walnut oil (or don't like it) then use vegetable oil. This recipe produces quite a light chocolate flavour - if you like it stronger, substitute 1oz of cocoa for 1oz of the maize flour. If you want to make fairy cakes, you'll get around 16 - bake for about half the time and check to see if they are done.

Wet Ingredients
1 oz butter
3 oz good quality mayonnaise (using free range eggs)
1 oz walnut or hazelnut oil (or more butter)
2 medium free range eggs
4 oz palm sugar/date paste
50 ml date syrup (or molasses)
50 ml Kahlua (or Tia Maria)
50 ml soda water (or milk/still water)

Dry Ingredients
1 oz cocoa
2 oz tapioca starch
3 oz ground almonds
2 oz buckwheat flour
1/2 tsp xanthan gum (optional - leave out if you're not keen)
1 tsp cream of tartar (or 1 1/2 tsp vinegar)
1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda

Preheat the oven to 160C fan assisted, 175C if not. Put 8 muffin cases in a bun tray and fill the spare holes with water. Put a tray of water in the bottom of the oven.

Melt the butter in a saucepan (add the extra amount if not using walnut oil), allow it to cool for five minutes while you measure the dry ingredients and sift them into a bowl.

Put the butter saucepan on the scales and measure in an ounce of oil, 4oz palm sugar/date paste and the 3oz of mayonnaise. Off the scales, add the date syrup, eggs and Kahlua. Whisk or beat until smooth and thick.

Pour the Kahlua mixture onto the dry ingredients, pour in the soda water and fold gently but thoroughly, until you have a smooth batter. Pour and scrape it evenly into the waiting muffin cases and bake for 25-28 minutes until the tops are springy and risen and a skewer comes out cleanish. Don't over bake or they will be dry. Cool on a rack until teatime and only let people know what's in them after they have finished!