Monday 4 February 2013

Gluten & Dairy Free Sponge Cakes

We originally developed this recipe in 2008 for a primary school party. We needed a completely allergen free recipe to cater not only for Abigail but also for a child with a dairy intolerance and after a few days tinkering we came up with this one, it has changed a little since then though with the optional inclusion of xanthan gum to improve the texture.

Preparation time -  15-20 minutes
Cooking time - 15-20 minutes
Makes / Serves - 1 large cake, 12 small cakes or 6 muffins
Child friendly - 4/5
Difficulty rating - 2/5


120 g gluten-free self-raising flour alternative
110 g caster sugar
 1/4 teaspoon xanthan gum (optional)
3 eggs

  1. Preheat the oven to 180 C / 350 F / Gas Mark 4 and prepare your cake tin/s or cases.
  2. Place the eggs in a large mixing bowl and beat until thick and pale, this can take a very long time by hand an so using an electric hand mixer is highly recommended, even by this method it will  take at least 6 minutes but is essential for a good texture.
  3. Gradually add the sugar (around a quarter at a time), beating the mixture well after each addition.
  4. If using xanthan gum then combine this with the flour in a separate bowl and mix well.
  5. Add the flour to the eggs and fold into the mixture. Sifting rather than pouring the flour can make it easier to get a smooth mixture, you shouldn't use the electric hand mixer at this stage unless you have problems getting a smooth mixture.
  6. Spoon the mixture into your tin/s or cases, gently smoothing the top if making a large cake and dividing equally between the cases if making small cakes of muffins.
  7. Bake in the oven for 20 minutes if making a large cake, or 15 minutes for small cakes or muffins. Or until the cake/s appear golden brown and a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean.
  8. Leave the cake/s to cool in the tin/s for a minimum of 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
  1. This recipe is perfect for parties as it caters for both gluten and dairy free diets and is tasty enough that everyone can enjoy it. A large one is the perfect base for a birthday cake, which you can decorate however you want or small ones can be turned into fairy cakes, cupcakes, or decorated in any number of other ways, be creative!
  2. This recipe is the perfect base for any number of cake and muffin types, replace 20 g of the flour with cocoa to give it a chocolatey twist, or add chocolate chips, fudge chips, glacé cherries, dessicated coconut or any other ingredients that takes your fancy, once again.. be creative!

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