Sunday, 30 October 2016

Autumnal Spiced Pumpkin & Walnut Cakes - gluten free; dairy free

It's Halloween and that can only mean one ingredient..... Pumpkin!

Last year in the UK, an estimated 15 million pumpkins were carved for Halloween but not eaten, according to a new seasonal campaign from Unilever and environmental charity Hubbub. That is an incredible amount of food waste. Laid end to end, these uneaten pumpkins would likely stretch over two and a half thousand miles! The wasted pumpkin weighs a staggering 18,000 tonnes.

Isn't that criminal? How can an intelligent, allegedly forward-thinking nation allow that much food waste on an annual basis purely in celebration of a festival?

Pumpkin is an amazing vegetable, rich in vital antioxidants and vitamins. It is also extremely low in calories with no saturated fats or cholesterol and plenty of fibre. Even the seeds are good for you, being packed with mono-unsaturated fatty acids, which are great for heart health. Perhaps it is time to rethink all that waste!

Like most other children, Miss GF loves to carve an annual pumpkin and set it outside on the porch to show we are a 'Halloween-friendly' house. To be honest, I don't really like the whole knock on doors thing, but if anyone is willing to risk walking up our very dark, unlit road, then they deserve a treat........ We don't get many who bother!

When pumpkins are carved at GF HQ, we spend ages making sure we get as much flesh out as we can. We cut and scrape and scratch until the sides are as thin as we can dare to go. The seeds are  usually washed ready for roasting and all the flesh is saved for bakes, soups and roasted veg.

This latest cake is delicious. I had planned it some time ago with Halloween in mind and originally had every intention of topping it with cream cheese frosting. However, I had a big bowl of 'liquid' fondant icing left over from last week's Fondant Fancies which needed using, as well as a half batch of home-made marzipan, so it seemed only right to make this a bit of a 'No Waste Food Challenge' recipe.

Although it wasn't a planned addition, the marzipan perfectly compliments the flavours in the sponge, which is heady with warming autumn spice (ginger and cinnamon) and moist with pumpkin and ground walnuts. The texture of the sponge is slightly dense and a little bit sticky...... with each bite, there is a lovely crunch from the chopped walnuts hidden inside. Dense does not mean 'heavy' and without the icing, I could happily eat these as bars for breakfast (actually.... I confess, I have eaten a few for breakfast with icing too...).

The added bonus is that they are both gluten and dairy free and the ingredients are actually pretty healthy! The flours are well-balanced for nutrition, mixed with ground walnuts and with no gritty rice flour either..... They are sweetened with a half half mix of unrefined coconut sugar and soft light brown sugar (although you could use just coconut sugar) and butter has been substituted for healthier coconut oil..... If that isn't enough to persuade you of its 'betterness', the pumpkin is not only good for you but if you make the puree using your Halloween pumpkin flesh, you will ensure you are doing your bit to prevent food waste too..... The fondant icing is an optional extra (you can top or not...), but does add a little bit of naughty sweetness to the experience....

If you miss out on making these for Halloween, they would be perfect for Bonfire Night too!

I am sharing these Autumnal Spiced Pumpkin & Walnut Cakes with the following :

Simple & in Season with Feeding Boys

No Waste Food Challenge with Elizabeth's Kitchen Diary

Free From Fridays with the Free From Farmhouse (and Le Coin De Mel)

Gluten Free Fridays with Vegetarian Mamma

Bake of the Week with Casa Costello

#TheFoodCalendar with Charlotte's Lively Kitchen - celebrating Halloween

Cook Blog Share with Sneaky Veg

Sunday Fitness & Food with Ilka's Blog & Marathons & Motivation.

Other Pumpkin Recipes on the Gluten Free Alchemist :
Pumpkin Soup
Pumpkin, Sultana & Chocolate Chip Cake
Pumpkin Seed & Sunflower Seed Bread
Pumpkin Toffee-Apple Cake
Baked Apple & Cinnamon Upside-Downuts

Autumnal Spiced Pumpkin & Walnut Cakes (makes approx 24 mini cakes; 2 x 8 inch/20 cm single layer cakes; 1 x 9 x 13 inch/23 x 33 cm tray cake or 12 mini cakes and 1 x 8 inch/20 cm round cake)


80g sorghum flour
60g tapioca flour
45g potato starch flour
50g buckwheat flour
50g ground walnuts
160g coconut sugar
160g soft light brown sugar
1½ teaspoons GF baking powder
1 teaspoon xanthan gum
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon fine sea salt

3 large eggs
270g pumpkin puree
100g coconut oil - melted
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
50g chopped walnuts

marzipan - I used home-made as from this recipe (about half quantity)
a little apricot jam - warmed

a few spoons fondant softened to drizzle-point as in this recipe - coloured as you wish
or you could make some cream cheese frosting

chocolate sauce (for spider web decoration) - you can use shop bought, but I used home-made from this recipe (approx one-third quantity)


  1. Prepare your chosen cake tins(s) by base-lining with baking paper. 
  2. Pre-heat the oven to 180 C/350 F/Gas 4.
  3. Weigh and mix together the flours, ground walnuts, sugars, baking powder, xanthan gum, spices and salt, making sure all lumps are completely broken down. Set aside.
  4. In a large bowl, beat together the eggs, pumpkin puree, melted coconut oil and vanilla extract until well-blended and airy.
  5. Add the dry ingredients and fold through until just evenly blended.
  6. Add the chopped walnuts and fold these into the mixture.
  7. Spoon into the baking tins (about half full) and bake for 15 to 18 mins (small cakes) or 25 to 35 minutes (large cakes) until the top is firm and a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.
  8. Remove the cakes from the tins to a wire rack to cool completely.
  9. When cool, cut a slither from the top to give a flat surface.
  10. Spread the surface of each cake with warmed apricot jam using a pastry brush.
  11. Roll out the marzipan into a layer a couple of millimetres thick and cut out pieces the correct size and shape for the cake(s).
  12. Place a piece of marzipan on top of the apricot jam of each cake and gently press to stick.
  13. Drizzle each cake with fondant or spread with cream cheese frosting.
  14. If you are making spiders web decorations on the top, carefully drizzle (using a small-nozzled bottle) a spiral shape of chocolate sauce onto the top of the fondant (before it has set completely) and drag a toothpick from the centre of the spiral outwards to make a web pattern.
  15. Leave to set completely. 
Gluten Free Alchemist © 2013-16 unless otherwise indicated

Monday, 24 October 2016

Pistachio, Orange & Raspberry Fondant Fancies (gluten free) - Week 9 GBBO

Remind me never to make Fondant Fancies ever again! Delicious as they are (and these ones are amazing...), I think they have to be the most fiddly faddly and time-consuming cakes that I have ever made.... really!

I made them as a gluten free challenge to this week's Great British Bake Off..... Week 9 (semi-final) : Patisserie Week. I chose them mainly because I didn't have 'time' for the puff pastry Palmiers and wasn't over-enamoured with the technical 'Savarin' cake...... When I saw the show-stopper, I thought 'Fondant Fancies! Yay! They look nice!'.....

Nice maybe..... but these little blighters took me pretty much all day to pull together. The idea of puff pastry, even gluten free, seems speedy in comparison. Hats off to the GBBO bakers..... I have no idea how they managed to make them in, what was it...... four hours?

It wasn't that the processes were particularly complicated, it was more the number of components and the amount of time needed to cool and chill the sponge between piecing together the elements. Whilst it seems the empty freezers on GBBO are largely there to chill hot food quickly, at home this feels like a false economy and it seemed to take forever to cool a steaming sponge at room temperature. And then of course there was the usual weekend washing, ironing and dusting to fit in in between.....

To be honest, there is part of me that wished I hadn't started the protracted set of recipes which were required for the Fancies. I have very recently upped my 'day job' hours from four days to five (which in real terms takes up about five and a half to six), so am already time-down and struggling to fit in the basics of domesticity. Whilst I am sure I will be more than grateful for the extra cash at the end of the month, I am already really missing my baking and sorting day!

I was gutted to miss out on the last two weeks of the GBBO bake along - one due to a failed roulade (which I will re-make and blog soon as the flavours were amazing) and the other, because we were away all weekend, so this week my gluten free efforts were determined to make an appearance.

Besides, with Miss GF being gluten free, it would be criminal not to ensure that (at least once in her life) she gets to eat a home-baked (not Mr Kipling over-sweet stylie) Fondant Fancy....... Aren't they the stuff of childhood memories?

Having said all of that, these Fondant Fancies are really quite divine. What am I moaning about? The end result has to be worth the effort...... surely. Each constituent part of the cake is individually memorable, yet together they create a flavour and texture explosion that wows the tastebuds.

The use of pistachio in the sponge imparts an incredible deep nutty flavour which pairs perfectly with the citrus tang of the orange. The little burst of fruity summer raspberry hidden within brings a juicy surprise, which with the raspberry buttercream and little sprinkle of freeze-dried raspberry decoration ensures a triple-balance of complimentary flavours. The use of sharper fruit and the lemon juice mixed in the fondant also help to offset the sugary sweetness of the fondant.

I confess, although the plan had been to make my own raspberry coulis to pop in the centres, in the end, the corners were cut and I grabbed a jar of Tesco Finest Raspberry Sauce, which at least contained plenty of real fruit and delivered the tang that was needed.

I did however make the marzipan with the help of Miss GF, from the simplest of recipes which I originally got from Laura at I'd Much Rather Bake Than.... Don't be fooled though.... simple is no way second-rate. This marzipan is so good..... Mr GF who is a bit of a marzipan connoisseur rates it among the best he has had.... And the best part is that you can make it in less than 10 minutes (including the weighing) if you have your ingredients to hand. I tell you...... since discovering this recipe (thank you so much Laura), I will never buy marzipan again.

I am sharing my incredible gluten free Pistachio, Orange & Raspberry Fondant Fancies with the following linkies (well the recipe did make rather a lot of them, so sharing seems the right thing to do....) :

The Great Bloggers Bake Off with Mummy Mishaps - Week 9 - Patisserie

The Bake Off Bake Along with This Particular and Rhyme & Ribbons
Sunday Fitness & Food with Ilka's Blog and Marathons & Motivation

Treat Petite with The Baking Explorer and Cakeyboi

Gluten Free Fridays with Vegetarian Mamma

Free From Fridays with Le Coin De Mel and Free From Farmhouse

Brilliant Blog Posts with Honest Mum

#FoodCalendar with Charlotte's Lively Kitchen - celebrating the annual Great British Bake Off challenge

Inheritance Recipes with Pebble Soup and Coffee & Vanilla - Making these was the best shot at Miss GF getting to experience childhood memories of Fondant Fancies (although frankly, these are way better than even my most 'enhanced' memories....)

Cook Blog Share with Sneaky Veg

Bake of the Week with Casa Costello

Other Gluten Free Alchemist Marzipan and Pistachio recipes that you might like...

Best gluten free Battenberg Cake
Chocolate-Covered Marzipan Christmas Stars
gluten free Pistachio "Macaroons'
gluten free Pistachio, Hazelnut, Apricot & Apple Biscotti
gluten free Pistachio & Vanilla Shortbread Cookies
Swordfish Cooked with Lime, Pistachio & Coriander
gluten free Pistachio Soft Nutty Cookie Mounds

Pistachio, Orange & Raspberry Fondant Fancies (makes 25 cakes)


180g plain GF flour blend (I used blend A from this post)
70g ground (unsalted) pistachios
½ teaspoon xanthan gum
1½ teaspoons GF baking powder
pinch fine sea salt
250g unsalted butter - softened
250g golden caster sugar
5 large eggs - room temperature
finely grated zest 1 orange
1 teaspoon orange extract

a few teaspoons raspberry sauce (I used quality shop-bought, or make your own as in this recipe)
2 tablespoons seedless raspberry jam

Marzipan (you need approx half to three-quarters this quantity)
225g ground almonds
225g icing sugar
1 large egg - lightly beaten
1 teaspoon almond extract

250g unsalted butter - softened
200g icing sugar
raspberry flavouring drops - to taste (I bought mine from Lakeland)
red food colouring paste (to desired shade)

Fondant Icing
750g ready-made white fondant icing - cut into small pieces
juice 1 small lemon (sieved)
approx 80 ml cold water
orange or red & yellow food colouring paste (to desired shade)

to decorate
50 shelled (unsalted) pistachios
a sprinkle of freeze-dried raspberry powder
edible glitter (optional)


  1. Sponge : base-line a 9 inch/23 cm square non-stick baking tin with baking paper and pre-heat the oven to 190 C/375 F/Gas 5.
  2. Grind your pistachios in a food processor until fine, but be careful not to let them become a paste.
  3. Weigh and mix together the flour, ground pistachios, xanthan gum, baking powder and salt, making sure all lumps are completely broken down. Set aside.
  4. Cream together the butter and sugar with an electric whisk, until pale and fluffy. 
  5. Add the eggs one at a time and whisk thoroughly between each, ensuring the mixture is well-blended and smooth.
  6. Add the grated zest and orange extract and beat again.
  7. Carefully fold in the dry mix until fully amalgamated (but be careful not to over-mix).
  8. Pour the mixture into the cake tin and smooth the top evenly.
  9. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes until the top springs back and a skewer comes out clean.
  10. Once baked, turn onto a wire rack to cool completely. When the cake is cool, place in the fridge to firm up slightly ready for cutting.
  11. Cut a piece of baking paper to the size of the tin and mark it with a 5x5 grid of equal-sized squares. Set aside.
  12. Marzipan : to make the marzipan, mix the ground almonds and icing sugar in a large bowl, add the almond extract and egg and mix together with a flat-bladed knife until the mixture comes together as a dough.
  13. Knead until smooth and wrap in clingfilm until ready to use.
  14. When ready, take the sponge from the fridge and place the grid-marked paper over the top. Using a cocktail stick, poke a small hole through each intersection of the lines, so that you can see the squared pattern across the top of the sponge.
  15. Using a small sharp knife, carefully cut a small hole into the centre of each square and fill with raspberry sauce.
  16. Warm the raspberry jam so that it is runny and brush a thin layer across the top surface of the sponge.
  17. Roll the marzipan into a piece large enough to cover the top of the cake and (using your paper template) cut the marzipan into a 9x9 inch 23x23 cm square.
  18. Place the marzipan square across the top of the sponge, covering the sauce-filled holes and gently press to stick.
  19. Place the cake in the fridge/freezer to chill for about 10 minutes and then place your paper template over the top and using the cocktail stick, poke holes through to mark the lines and squares.
  20. Remove the paper and using a very sharp knife, cut the cake into squares. Separate the squares slightly and place back in the fridge whilst you make your buttercream. 
  21. Buttercream : Beat the softened butter to loosen and then gradually add the icing sugar a little at a time until fully incorporated and creamy. 
  22. Add the raspberry flavouring to taste and then add a little red food colouring paste to the pink shade desired.
  23. Remove the cakes from the fridge and carefully spread a layer of buttercream on the four sides of each (not on the bottom or top) with a palette knife. Place back in the fridge to firm up whilst you make the fondant icing.
  24. Fondant Icing : Cut the ready-made fondant into small pieces and place in the bowl of a free-standing mixer with the beater attachment in place. 
  25. Add the juice of a lemon (sieved) and start the mixer beating.
  26. As the icing begins to soften and breakdown, gradually add the water, continuing to mix. You may not need all of the water (or you may need a little more), but continue to add until you have a thick, but pourable consistency.
  27. Add food colouring paste until you have the desired colour. (If not using straight away, set aside at room temperature and cover the bowl with clingfilm).
  28. When ready to ice the cakes, prepare a wire cooling rack by placing on top of a large sheet of baking paper (to catch the drips). Coat all but the bottom side of the cakes with a layer of fondant icing and place each cake on the rack to drip-dry.
  29. Decoration : As the icing begins to firm up slightly, top each cake with a couple of unsalted pistachio nuts, a sprinkle of freeze-dried raspberry powder and a little edible glitter.
  30. Set aside at room temperature to set completely.
Gluten Free Alchemist © 2013-16 unless otherwise indicated

Saturday, 22 October 2016

Miss GF Makes #6 - gluten free Ham & Potato Croquettes

It is a while since Miss GF Makes last made an appearance on the blog. It's not that she hasn't been in the kitchen, but what with her starting secondary school and getting used to a whole new routine and myself increasing my hours from 4 days to full time, managing to find the energy and getting the timing right to photograph and blog her exploits has been difficult.

She has yet to have any cookery lessons at school, but for sure, she is extending her repertoire at home, and has started to cook us occasional family meals at weekends. She makes a mean Chilli and has no problem with parcel-baked salmon and roux-based cheese sauce.

These Ham and Potato Croquettes however, are a step further in the skill set...... she found a recipe in a gluten free cook-book that she was given by her child-minder as a goodbye present when she moved on and then (following the habits of her mother) pulled out the key bits of necessary process (in this case, making a thick roux) and massacred the recipe beyond all recognition to create a delicious dish that she could call her own.

As always, she decided to make them with absolutely no planning whatsoever and then expected all the ingredients to be to hand....... Fortunately I managed to find a few slices of Cherry Coke boiled Ham left over from last Christmas (yes..... really!) which were perfect for the croquettes...... and given that Christmas is nearly here again (more ham on the way...), Miss GF's need for it was amazingly well-timed.

I also discovered a packet of Esgir Crunchy Crumbs that I had forgotten about in the larder. If you have never come across Crunchy Crumbs before, keep your eyes out for them (or get them from Ocado). They are corn-based 'breadcrumbs', which give a beautifully crispy coating and come from an innovative gluten free Spanish company - Esgir, that I first discovered at the Allergy Show a few years ago.

The photos for this post are pretty cruddy...... the light had all but gone and dinner was needed for hungry tummies which took priority over faffing for the perfect shot, but hopefully you will get a rough idea of how great they were.

I am sharing Miss GF's Ham & Potato Croquettes with the following linkies :

No Waste Food Challenge with Elizabeth's Kitchen Diary - Miss GF used up last year's ham and some larder-loitering Crunchy Crumbs to make these, but it is also a perfect dish for using up excess mashed potato.

Cook Blog Share - this week with Easy Peasy Foodie.

Free From Fridays with Le Coin De Mel and Free From Farmhouse.

Gluten Free Fridays with Vegetarian Mamma.

Brilliant Blog Posts with Honest Mum.
Cook Once Eat Twice with Searching for Spice - Not only are these croquettes made with left over ham, but one batch makes loads, so you can freeze some for another day.

Ham & Potato Croquettes (makes approx 26 croquettes) 


50g butter
80g cornflour
approx 350 ml GF vegetable stock 
1 kilo/2 lb (4 to 5 large) potatoes - peeled, boiled, drained and mashed
250g cooked ham chopped into chunks (Miss GF used cherry-coke home-roasted ham slices)
large handful frozen sweetcorn (optional)
fine sea salt - to taste
large grind black pepper - to taste
1 to 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley 
gluten free crunchy crumbs/breadcrumbs/instant cornmeal
sunflower oil to fry


  1. Put the butter into a large saucepan and melt over a low heat.
  2. Remove from the heat and stir in the corn flour until smooth and free from lumps (it will be very thick).
  3. Return to the heat and gradually stir in the stock, beating with a wooden/silicone spoon.
  4. Gradually bring to a simmer, stirring until all the stock has been added and you have a very thick sauce.
  5. Remove from the heat and add the mashed potato, chopped ham, sweetcorn (if using), herbs and seasoning. Stir through thoroughly.
  6. Set aside to cool completely.
  7. Put the breadcrumbs/cornmeal into a wide bowl.
  8. Once cool, take a large tablespoon of the ham-potato mixture and shape into a cylinder shape approximately 3 inches/8cm long.
  9. Dip and roll in the breadcrumbs/cornmeal until completely coated. Set aside until all the croquettes are shaped and rolled. Chill until ready to use.
  10. Pour sunflower oil into a skillet or large saucepan to a depth of about 1 cm/½ inch. Heat until a cube of GF bread sizzles.
  11. Gently lower the croquettes one at a time into the oil using a slotted spoon or tongs. Fry for 2 to 3 minutes on either side until golden, then remove with the tongs/slotted spoon and place on kitchen paper to drain any excess oil.
  12. Serve hot. 
Gluten Free Alchemist © 2013-16 unless otherwise indicated

Friday, 14 October 2016

Miss GF's Chocolate Birthday Bundts - gluten free (One for Family..... One for Friends....)

I had every intention of bringing you a beautiful roulade this week to tie in with last week's GBBO Dessert Week. Sorry.... It went wrong!

I made it.... yes.... and it tasted absolutely divine...... but it looked a total disaster. The sponge was okay, but unfortunately, the filling was more liquid than intended and the whole thing ended up as a bit of a plate-trifle!

I won't give away what type of roulade it was as I have every intention of making it again in a couple of weeks. To be honest, having to eat more of it is no hardship... it was that delicious (there is part of me itching to tell you all about the wonderful flavours it contained, but I don't want to spoil the surprise). Either way, I think there is a little work to do to get the recipe right first.

Fortunately..... this yummy chocolate bundt recipe has been sitting in my photo-box for a month or so. I made it for Miss GF's birthday back in the summer...... one large and one small..... one for family, one for friends....., but then blogging them sort of got side-lined as first holidays and then return to school got in the way.

This is such a great bundt recipe..... it is slightly tweaked from one that I made earlier in the year, but it is perfectly moist and chocolatey, not overly sweet and holds the bundt shape beautifully. As you take your first mouthful, you can't help but think 'what's not to love?'.

I had treated myself to a couple of new bundt tins which I found for a really good price on the Waitrose Kitchen website. They came as a large and small pair, which was exactly what was needed for making a cake for home and a cake for Miss GF's birthday party at the same time. Bundts are fantastic for easy eye-catching party pieces, because they don't need extra 'filling' and with relatively little work, can be decorated in so many show-stopping ways which make me look a lot cleverer than I actually am! Great (easy) cake..... lots of praise.... win win!!

One of the most important processes in making a bundt (and should never be missed or skimped) is preparing your bundt tin...... It would be a shame to make such a delicious sponge only to have it refuse to leave its mould and end up as a pile of broken, craggy, sponge chunks. I usually use a piece of kitchen roll/paper to carefully rub a light coating of oil into every dip and crease of the tin. This should then be top coated with a fine layer of cornflour (in the case of chocolate cake, I mix with a little cocoa both for flavour and colour)....... Shake the flour round the tin to cover and then tip out the excess to ensure an even surface to the sponge.

Although the two bundt sponges are the same, each can be decorated slightly differently..... The large cake (predominantly shared with adults) was inspired by some unusual crystallised mint leaves that I found on-line at Sous Chef..... This lead to a chocolate-mint drizzled topping which paired perfectly with the sponge and was decorated with the crystallised mint leaves, chocolate curls, grated chocolate and some edible glitter.

The smaller bundt (for the kids) was simply drizzled with plain and white melted chocolate, but then topped with some chocolate curls and chocolate-coated popping candy from Waitrose for a bit of fun and interest.

I am sharing Miss GF's Birthday Bundts with the following linkies in the hope that other people might enjoy them too..... If you make them, let me know..... I love to hear about other people's adventures with my recipes x

Cook Blog Share with Hijacked By Twins

Recipe of the Week with A Mummy Too

We Should Cocoa with Choclette over at Tin and Thyme

Bake of the Week with Casa Costello

#TheFoodCalendar with Charlotte's Lively Kitchen - celebrating Chocolate Week between the 10th and 16th October

Sunday Fitness & Food with Ilka's Blog and Marathons & Motivation

Brilliant Blog Posts with Honest Mum

Free From Fridays with Emma at the Free From Farmhouse and Le Coin De Mel

Gluten Free Fridays with Vegetarian Mamma

Chocolate Bundt Cake (makes 1 large (10 inch/25 cm) and 1 small (8 inch/20 cm) bundt) measurements for 1 large bundt only in brackets in purple

sunflower oil to grease inside of bundt tins
2 teaspoons cornflour
1 teaspoon cocoa powder

435g plain gluten free flour blend (I used mix A from this post) (290g)
120g ground almonds (80g)
90g cocoa powder (60g)
1½ tablespoons GF baking powder (1 tbsp)
1½ teaspoons bicarbonate of soda (1 tsp)
¾ teaspoon fine sea salt (½ tsp)
1½ teaspoons xanthan gum (1 tsp)
225g caster sugar (150g)
225g soft light brown sugar (150g)
5 large eggs (3 eggs + 1 egg white)
115g unsalted butter - melted (77g)
2 teaspoons espresso powder (1½ tsp)
100 ml boiling water (65 ml)
560 ml plain yoghurt (375 ml)
3 teaspoons vanilla extract (2 tsp)
200g chocolate chips (dark and/or milk) (130g)

Chocolate-Mint Drizzled Topping 
125g dark chocolate - chopped (85g)
50g unsalted butter (33g)
1 tablespoon golden syrup (¾ tbsp)
¼ teaspoon vanilla extract (¼ tsp)
few drops peppermint extract (to taste)

grated chocolate, chocolate curls, crystallised mint leaves and edible glitter to decorate

Chocolate-Popping Candy Topping
plain chocolate and white chocolate to drizzle
chocolate curls
chocolate-coated popping candy (I found mine in Waitrose)


  1. Sponge : It is essential to prepare your bundt tin carefully by lightly oiling with sunflower oil (I rub the inside with oil using a piece of kitchen towel), and then coating with the cornflour-cocoa mix. When well-coated, tip the bundt upside down and gently tap to empty any excess powder.
  2. Pre-heat the oven to 170 C/325 F/Gas 3.
  3. Weigh and mix together the flour, almonds, cocoa, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda, salt and xanthan gum, making sure any lumps are completely broken down. Set aside.
  4. In a large bowl, whisk together the sugars and eggs until well-blended, pale and thickened.
  5. Melt the butter either in the microwave or in a small bowl over steaming water. Set aside.
  6. Mix the espresso powder with the boiling water to dissolve.
  7. Add the yoghurt, melted butter, coffee and vanilla extract to the egg mix and whisk again to blend.
  8. Add the flour mix and fold until just combined.
  9. Add the chocolate chips last and fold through until evenly distributed, but be careful not to over mix.
  10. Pour the mixture into the bundt tins (about two-thirds to three-quarters full) and smooth the top evenly.
  11. Bake for 35 to 45 minutes until a skewer comes out clean (the smaller bundt will cook at the quicker end of the time)
  12. Leave in the tin for about 10 minutes before turning out onto a wire rack to cool completely. If the cake doesn't come out easily from the tin, carefully loosen the sides and central ring using a small, flexible silicone spatula before tipping and once upside-down, tap the base to encourage release.
  13. Chocolate Mint Drizzled Topping : In a small saucepan over a medium heat, melt together the chocolate, butter and syrup until smooth - stirring. 
  14. Once smooth and liquid, remove form the heat and add the vanilla and peppermint extracts to taste. 
  15. Spread whilst warm over the cooled cake and allow to drizzle down the sides.
  16. Decorate with grated chocolate, chocolate curls, crystallised mint leaves and edible glitter.
  17. Chocolate-Popping Candy Topping : separately melt the plain chocolate and white chocolate either in microwaveable bowls (set to medium on 30 second bursts, stirring between each until liquid and pourable) or in heat-proof bowls set above a saucepan of lightly simmering water.
  18. Drizzle the chocolate randomly over the cake and whilst wet and sticky, sprinkle with chocolate curls, chocolate-coated popping candy or other sprinkles of choice.
Gluten Free Alchemist © 2013-16 unless otherwise indicated