My daughter Eva has Rett Syndrome; a rare neurological disorder that in her case, left her locked in a body that would not work for her from the age of 9 months. I went from being a photographer to being a mum to being a rudimentary therapist, advocate and ranter. This blog is here to share ideas, thoughts, therapies, recipes, advice and sometimes have a rant. or two.

Friday, September 27, 2013

Uniquely Eva

A couple of weeks ago Eva was asked to come to a party in her favourite dress-ups.  After some time of me holding up a variety of outfits this was chosen (top to bottom) by Eva.  I particularly loved her Cinderella "slippers".  Perfect for a quick getaway from potential princes.

Then Cinderella had a vegan chocolate cupcake (I absolutely LOVE it when she can eat at least one awesome party food!) and was clearly pretty proud of herself for demolishing it in such ladylike style.

And here's the link for the vegan chocolate cake.  It really is as easy as it looks and tastes brilliant.  We used ghee instead of oil or butter in both the cake and the icing:

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Almond meal cakes and other things

I've neglected this blog and I'm now feeling pretty rusty at writing...  A few days after my almond milk post we had to take Eva to hospital with asthma that then turned rapidly and dramatically into pneumonia.  She stayed in hospital for a week then had another week at home and next thing I know it's the end of school term and I've not written a thing for 2 months.  

So, if you have any almond meal still in your fridge from then - aaaagggghhhhhh!!!! Get rid of it immediately!

Here however is a lovely cake recipe for the wet almond meal leftover next time you make almond milk.  I've adapted it to Eva's tastes and there are a few variations at the bottom that we used as school morning tea cakes.

Lemon Almond Meal Cake
egg free, can be dairy free, can be gluten free.

2 tablespoons lemon juice + soy milk = 1 cup milk
1/2 - 1 cup wet almond meal
1 1/4 cup spelt flour (or whatever flour you like but NOT coconut flour)
1 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp bicarb soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup sugar (brown or white - whatever you like/have)
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/3 cup oil (grapeseed, olive, almond, coconut or mix of all three OR ghee)
3 tbsp lemon zest

Prepare the milk and lemon juice and set aside to thicken.  Put all the dry ingredients together in a bowl - almond meal, flour, baking powder and soda, salt, sugar - and mix through.  Wet almond meal won't mix well but that's ok.  
Add all the rest of the ingredients - lemon zest, vanilla, oil/ghee, milk and stir thoroughly to make sure the flour and almond meal is mixed in.

Pour into a tin lined with baking paper and bake at 180 degrees celsius for between 30-60.  Now I'm no pro recipe-tester so I can't give you a definite time but check it every 5 minutes from 30 mins on - quickly and with a skewer.  If the skewer is clean when it comes out then cook it an extra 5 minutes and let rest in the tin for ten minutes before cooling completely.

Extra almond meal makes the cake more damp and takes longer to cook.  Adding fruit makes it take a bit longer to cook too.  I've had one spectacular fail with this recipe (I did it without the recipe and forgot sugar and cooked it way less than it should have) but the rest have been awesome.  They aren't big fluffy cakes but they're yummy, they're wholesome and  what counts the most is that my little girl can eat them and loves them!


Ditch the lemon zest, reduce the sugar to 1/2 cup and add a handful of chopped strawberries, a handful of desiccated coconut and a mashed ripe banana.  Great for school morning teas. 

Or ditch the lemon zest and add 1/3 cup cacao and 1/3 cup desiccated coconut.  Ice it with chocolate coconut icing. (1 cup Icing sugar, 2 tbsp cacao, 2 tbsp desiccated coconut, 1 tsp vanilla essence, 1 tbsp coconut oil, teensy amount hot water to mix it all in).

Or ditch the lemon zest, use dark brown sugar only and add 2 tsp ground cinnamon, 1 tsp ground cardamon, 1/2 tsp ground cloves, 1/2 tsp ground ginger.

see the bit of white? that's some almond meal i didn't mix in properly. tasted fine!