My daughter turned one. I made her a green monster cake. Everyday when she finishes showering my partner drapes a green towel over her head and yells out “ema there is a green monster coming to get you!” We chase her, she screams and laughs….I guess its more of a shriek. Then its off to the next thing. Potty time. Sometimes getting dressed and out the door. All the basic, sweet things you do when raising a kiddo.
I had a bunch of people send me recommendations for her first birthday cake. I went with one I made up because it felt special….and we happened to have everything laying around the house that I needed. This is key when you’ve forgotten to go grocery shopping before your daughters birthday. Use what you have. One person snarkily asked if I didn’t choose their recipe because it wasn’t “healthy.” I paused and had to think about that a little. Something I didn’t start doing until after my daughters birth was being really really relaxed around food & being really really intentional with my actions.
I want my daughter to grow up without food hangups. Since her birth we’ve visited and traveled to lots of lovely friends and family. It stuck out to me, in a shocking way, how unhealthy some of their ‘food rules’ are. Now this isn’t me poking fun at mental illness or eating disorders. Those aren’t funny. The people I’m talking about, to the best of my knowledge, don’t suffer from anything that is controlling their food decisions. The behaviours seem to be deeply rooted in this idea that people need to look/be a certain way, and they believe eating certain foods will help them achieve that.
I don’t want that for my daughter.
I don’t want her to cringe at something because it has fat in it. I don’t want her to believe she has to eat a certain way so she can fit into clothing ‘better’. I don’t want her to feel like she has to only eat organic salad and green tea her whole life and be ‘pure’. I don’t want her scurrying to buy books, and magazines that will give her the ‘best plan’ to be the ‘best her’. I want better for her. And I will do everything I can in our home life to explain and show her that all that other stuff is BULLSHIT and that she is a fantastic and wonderful person.
ahem…so….I did not ignore the ‘unhealthy’ recipes. I just didn’t have all the stuff to make the lovely ideas that were sent my way. And one day when my lil one can talk, and she asks me for something else on her birthday, I’ll cry a little to myself on the inside because she’s growing up and I’ll still get all the hormonal feels during those moments, and make her the special birthday cake she wants. Who knows it may be one of those recommendations after all.
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Green Monster Cake
serves 6 monster servings
~Coconut oil for greasing your pan
~3/4 cup coconut flour, sifted
~1 1/2 cups almond flour, sifted
~1/4 cup arrowroot starch, sifted
~1 tsp baking soda
~1/2 teaspoon baking powder
~2/3 heaping cup dates, chopped finely
~1/4 teaspoon sea salt
~1 teaspoon activated charcoal
~1 1/2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar, room temperature
~1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
~1/4 cup date syrup*
~3/4 cups water
~1/4 cup orange flower water**
~1/2 teaspoon orange essence
~1 teaspoon activated charcoal
~3 tangerines, peeled, deseeded/pith removed
~1/4 cup raw cashews, soaked (optional)
~3/4 cups raw pistachios, soaked (optional)
~2 small lemons, juiced
~2 teaspoons orange flower water
~1 teaspoon spirulina
~4 teaspoons Agave nectar (optional)***
*Note: Date syrup should only have dates in it. Nothing else added to it including water. You could also substitute this with date paste but read the label and be sure nothing extra is added to this or it could change the texture/integrity of the cake.
**Note: I bought this brand of orange flower water. It wasn’t particularly strong in flavour. If you have a brand that is more potent be weary of using as much as I did. You may in fact only need 1 teaspoon as I thought initially I would.
***Note: I did not use any extra sweetener because our tangerines were the bomb and perfectly sweet. Also my lil one craves sour foods so making it too sweet would’ve taken away her favourite flavour. I posted the agave nectar as I know most folks would LOVE a lil sweet to balance everything out…I know I would have.
1) Preheat oven to 350 F or 175-ish C. Grab a bundt cake pan and lightly grease the lower half/third of the pan with coconut oil and set to the side. Grab two mixing bowls, and a sifter for your dry ingredients. If you are soaking your nuts for the frosting place them in warm water now.
2) Place sifter over a mixing bowl and add all your dry ingredients. Gently tap sifter until all the dry ingredients make their way through and into the bowl. Mix a couple times with a fork or whisk until the charcoal is evenly incorporated and the dry mixture looks grey.
3) Mix together all your wet ingredients. Be sure not to add the coconut oil hot to the other ingredients. If you used a pan or microwave to warm it up, allow some time to cool to room temp or comfortably warm to touch.
4) Make a well in the centre of your dry ingredients. Pour the wet ingredients into your well. Mix with a fork until thoroughly incorporated. Note there are usually some dry ingredients stuck in the corners of your bowl (if it has them) be sure the scrape along the sides and bottom thoroughly using a rubber spatula or your finger. The mixture will have a texture similar to wet sand but should hold together well.
5) Scoop out mixture into your greased bundt pan. Use a fork and gently press down the cake batter to get rid of any air pockets & to make sure the cake is even on all sides. With gluten free batters it won’t spread and even itself out…so you can end up with a lopsided cake. Nothing frosting can’t fix but always good just to double check! Place cake in oven for 45-55 minutes.
6) For your frosting you’ll add all your ingredients to a blender or food processor. Start to blend. If the mixture is too dry scrape down edges and try again until a thick buttercream-esque frosting forms. If you take a spoonful of it and held the spoon upside down it would stick to the spoon. You can always add a little fresh orange juice to get things going. If you find that your frosting is too liquidy add some more raw cashews. Once you’ve reached your desired consistency place in the fridge to cool down. Remember the flavours will get better once everything has chilled.
7) Once the cake has baked allow it to cool at room temperature for 15-30 minutes. If the cake still feels pretty warm to the touch place it in the fridge for 10 minutes. Design your cake with frosting as you desire. I started with the top of the bundt cake then moved onto the sides then did the middle ring.
8) Serve your green monster cake fresh with a very very very light sprinkle of spirulina on top. NOTE spirulina is best administered with pinched fingers not a spoon or sifter…or you may get the results in the photos above.
As always feel free to reach out to me with questions or requests. Click on the link below to find me on Instagram. I hope you have a great week y’all!
Much Luv, Laters