At the weekend my daughter invited seven of her friends round to celebrate her 13th birthday.
My daughter was diagnosed as lactose intolerant a year ago by the hospital. Lactose free milk and cheese can now be bought from the supermarkets, but unfortunately my daughter can only stomach a small amount of these, so she has a mainly dairy free diet, except for the lactose free milk and cheese occaisionally, in small amounts.
So it is really difficult to take her out for a meal, as nowhere seems to cater for this type of intolerance. Milk, whey, lactose, etc. is hidden in so many things it’s ridiculous, milk is even sometimes pumped into the skin of some frozen meat, as it’s said to give it a better browning effect. My daughter is really poorly after eating something she shouldn’t, even in small amounts and sometimes the effect happens very quickly after eating.
So this is why we had her friends for tea, as I know I can prepare a meal that she can eat, which tastes no different to the dairy equivalent.
I cooked pizza for everyone (and a special one for my daughter), chips, corn on the cobs, sausage rolls, chicken drumsticks, samosa, crisps, cucumber sticks and tomatoes. Everyone seemed to really enjoy the meal.
Dairy free birthday cakes are impossible to buy, I don’t think I’ve ever seen one and even if I did I’m sure it would taste like cardboard (like the jam tarts we bought not so long ago). Dairy free cakes are again so easy to make. All you need to do is replace the margarine or butter with a dairy free margarine. I use ‘Pure’ Margarine as it gives good results. If milk is required, I also use soya milk or for a lactose free cake, I use lactose free milk.
I wanted to make my daughter a really special cake as she always misses out when there is cake and sweets at school. So I decided to make a cake using a ‘Baba Pan’.
A baba pan is a cake tin with a hole in the middle. My mother very kindly gave me her pan as she never used it. I made a marble cake (the recipe is below) and covered it with a chocolate frosting (you can find the recipe here) and covered the cake and filled the hole in the middle with sweets that she can actually eat. I also put lollies and sweets around the base of the cake too.
It was a very easy birthday cake to make and it was lovely to see her eyes nearly pop out when she saw it, as she knew it was ok for her to eat. Her friends all loved it too.
I also made some dairy free butterfly cakes and a good friend brought some homemade dairy free flapjacks for my daughter too. I’m not sure if she realises it, but gestures like this mean the world to my daughter, so if you are reading this, thank you.
After they all ate, they played different games that my husband had sorted and when they left my daughter gave them all a gift which we had actually bought in the January sales ready for parties, so it does pay to think ahead.
All in all, the kids all had a great time and my daughter was very happy and we were happy because it had been achieved cheaply.
Chocolate Marble Cake
185g Margarine, plus extra for greasing the pan (dairy free margarine such as pure)
265g Caster sugar
225g plain flour, plus 1 tablespoon extra for dusting your pan.
85g self-raising flour
5 tablespoons of milk (lactose free milk or soya milk)
2 tablespoons cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking powder
Preheat your oven Gas 3 / 325 / 170C
Grease a baba pan and then lightly dust with the 1 tablespoon of extra flour.
Cream the margarine and sugar together, until light and fluffy.
Beat in the eggs until combined.
Sift both the flours and the baking powder into a separate bowl and then mix half of it into the margarine/egg mix, together with 1 tablespoon of the milk.
When this is combined, mix in the remaining flour with another 1 tablespoon of milk.
In a separate bowl, blend the cocoa with the remaining 3 tablespoons of milk, until it is smooth.
Take 2 tablespoons of the cake mix and add it to the cocoa mix and stir until smooth.
Fold the cocoa mixture into the cake mixture. Do not over mix, it should just give a rippled effect.
Spoon into your pan and smooth the top lightly.
Cook in the oven for 40 minutes and then lay some foil over the top to stop it from burning and continue to cook for another 30 minutes.
The cake is cooked when a skewer comes out clean.
Dust with icing sugar to serve or cover with chocolate frosting.
Thank you for reading my blog today.