Easy Grain, Dairy and Sugar Free Batter – Excellent for Muffins and Cakes

This is my first recipe for grain, dairy and sugar free batter, made with almond meal and coconut flour. The recipe differs from typical coconut flour recipes, and does not include huge amount of eggs and oil among its ingredients. It took some time for me to get comfortable working with coconut flour, and to create a reliable recipe for a batter, easy to prepare and simple to bake. I used this batter first to bake muffins to see how the batter behaves during baking, and what texture of the final product would be.  I baked medium/large muffins in a muffin baking tray in paper liners.

eCoconutMuffin-1

This quite soft, if not runny batter, gave moist and soft muffins with excellent structure, which I liked, to my surprise, better than other grain free textures, baked from moist batters.

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Second time I used this batter to bake pear upside down cake in Pyrex glass loaf pan, lined with baking paper. It wasn’t a long and narrow small size loaf pan, I normally use to bake grain free cakes or bread. Cake, baked in the regular size loaf pan 12cm x 21cm, at lower temperatures (150C fan-forced, preheated oven), for a longer period of time (70min), raised well during baking, was fully baked through without being burned, retained its structure after cooled down, and the middle of the cake did not cave in.

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With both bakes I used spiced strawberry sauce/glaze to either serve it as a sauce for muffins, or to brush on pears layer after baking on still hot cake.

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Ingredients:

grain, dairy and sugar free batter

for 6 large muffins, or medium size cake

  • 2 large eggs, separated
  • 150g raw honey
  • 110g (1 tub) commercial pure apple puree (I used Aldi brand)
  • 85g almond meal, sifted
  • 30g coconut flour, sifted
  • 20g poppy seeds
  • 15g, 1 serving spoon grapeseed oil
  • 5g baking soda, 1 tea spoon
  • 1 tea spoon lemon zest (I used frozen)

extras for the cake

  • 1 large or 2 medium pears, cored and sliced
  • coconut oil to grease baking pan and baking paper

ePearcake-2

spicy strawberry sauce/glaze

  • 440g washed and hulled strawberries
  • 120g raw honey
  • 2 table spoons lemon juice
  • 3 tea spoons lemon zest
  • 110g apple (1 tub) pure apple puree
  • 3 cloves
  • 1 stick cinnamon
  • 1/2 vanilla pod, deseeded ( saved after vanilla seeds were used for other dessert)

Note: Strawberries are not the best option to make sauces, they are bland, lack in taste and flavour. Any other berries with pronounced tart flavour would be better. I used apple puree, lemon juice, zest and spices to enhance flavour.

Preparation:

Step by step preparation is shown for pear upside down cake. When baking muffins, make cake batter, and spoon it into 6 liners and bake 50-60min under the same conditions as upside down cake.

  • prepare and measure all ingredients
  • prepare baking tin – grease the tin with coconut oil, line with baking paper, grease baking paper with coconut oil
  • arrange pear slices on the bottom of the lined and double greased pan

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make the batter

  • separate eggs
  • whisk egg whites until stiff peaks, put aside
  • in a wide bowl mix sifted coconut flour with apple puree (use hand-held mixer on low speed)
  • add egg yolks and honey

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  • mix on medium speed until fully combined
  • add oil

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  • add lemon zest, beat everything together for 2 min

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  • add sifted almond meal, poppy seeds, sifted baking soda

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  • mix all dry ingredients into the batter using spatula
  • add 1 large spoon of egg whites, mix them in to loosen the mixture

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  • add the rest of egg whites and carefully mix them into the batter

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  • spoon the batter over sliced pears
  • spread and level the batter with spatula

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  • preheat oven to 170C, turn down the temperature to 150C and place loaf tin on the middle shelf of the oven
  • bake for 60-70min, when ready, the cake will be firm to touch
  • avoid opening the oven for at least 40-45min

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  • let the cake rest 5-7min in a tin
  • turn the cake over to a lined wire rack or serving board (I placed baking paper on top of the cake, used some folded kitchen towels to make the difference in cake and board level, used another sheet of baking paper over the towel, and only then turned the cake over, to prevent the sudden drop of the cake to the surface. I took the towel from beneath the cake. It was easy to do, because it was sandwiched between 2 sheets of baking paper)
  • the cake was out of the tin, while the lining stayed with the tin

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  • if using glaze, spoon the glaze over still hot cake

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  • brush or spread the glaze evenly over pears layer

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  • glazing the top of the cake is not completely necessary, I made the choice to do it, because I did not want to use honey over the pear slices before baking to avoid honey burning, with sweet pears it is not at all necessary to use any sweeteners, pears layer can be left untouched as is

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The cake had a nice dark colour, but it was not the colour of the burned honey. To make baking cake from this batter even easier, I can recommend to bake the cake in a round springform tin with liners, and use fruits, if wanted, on top of the cake. The texture of baked batter is soft and moist, and does not need any extras. For me it was a challenge to bake properly pear upside down cake, after the first one in this blog was burned in corners.

spice strawberry sauce/glaze

  • wash and hull strawberries, cut them in quarters
  • add honey, lemon juice, apple puree and cook on low heat until strawberries become soft
  • blend the mixture until homogenous
  • return to the sauce pan, add cloves, cinnamon and half of deseeded vanilla pod
  • cook on medium/low heat until the sauce thickens
  • store refrigerated
  • use as a sauce for desserts, or glaze for cakes

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