Happy Birthday America! (Ain't No Party Like a Funfetti Party)

For anyone who follows South of Vanilla on Instagram, you will have surely discovered that it was my boyfriend’s birthday last week. His birthday coincidentally coincides with the summer solstice, which is ironic because his dislike for his own birthday is extended over the longest day of the year. (For anyone following astrology, he also is Gemini-Cancer cusp, which makes him a bit mercurial with a side of exceptional empathy. He drives me crazy. But I like it.)

Since CK spent several years in the military, he has a great love for, among other things, his country. I’ve gotten into the fashion of creating America-themed birthday cakes for him (Last year’s was a cake in the form of a hamburger.), so it takes the focus slightly away from a whole day just about his birthday.

Birthday cake from 2013. So much has changed!

Birthday cake from 2013. So much has changed!

Back when I first started Paleo, CK joined me about two weeks into my journey. He’s struggled with it more than I have, and maybe perhaps I’ll have him write a guest post about his Paleo struggles eventually. For him and his sweet tooth, one thing he really missed was Paleo desserts, which is one of the reasons I started creating my own recipes. Fast-forward almost a year, and I’ve finally gotten around to making Paleo version of one of the classics: “funfetti”.



P.S: Isn’t this cake topper perfect for celebrating the 4th of July holiday today?  And its super easy.  Instructions are included below.



Paleo “funfetti” Cake

For the Cake:

  • 1/4 cup raw honey 
  • 8 tbsp grass fed organic butter, room temperature
  • 3 eggs 
  • 1 tbsp vanilla 
  • 1 1/2 cup cashew flour
  • 1/3 cup light tasting olive oil 
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda 
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder 
  • 2/3 cup almond milk 
  • ¾ cup rainbow sprinkes**

For the Frosting:

 

  1. Preheat over to 350 degrees.
  2. Beat butter, eggs, honey, eggs, olive oil, and vanilla together.
  3. Add in cashew flour, baking soda, and baking powder. Mix until incorporated.
  4. Slowly add in the almond milk while mixing the cake batter.
  5. Spray pan with nonstick coconut oil spray. Pour batter into one 9-inch pan and bake
  6. At 350 degrees for 35 minutes. Alternatively, if you would like a smaller cake or multiple layers, you can always bake this cake in a different sized pan, just make sure to adjust the baking time.
  7. After baking, wait until cooled, then frost. 

** Sprinkles are not Paleo. Why? They are full of refined sugar and dyes. But sometimes life is too short.


 


Patriotic Cake Topper

  • 3 paper-striped straws
  • twine
  • 7 small American flags
  • Scotch tape
  1. Take one of the straws and with a ruler, measure out the halfway point. Cut the straw; these will become the two shorter “posts”.
  2. Cut two pieces of twine, with one piece about 2 inches longer than the other.
  3. Take each piece of string and tie onto the ends of the straws. One string should be between the two tall straws, and one should be between the two short straws.
  4. Take a small square of tape, and tape each flag to the piece of twine. There should be 4 flags between the shorter posts, and 3 between the taller posts.
  5. Place on the top of your cake with the taller posts in back and enjoy! 
Raw materials ;)

Raw materials ;)


Life's too short (without sprinkles)

I love donuts.

Let’s be honest here….That’s an understatement if there ever was one. 

Donuts combine 3 of my favorite things in a dessert: sweet batter, frosting, and sprinkles. Imagine my dismay when I realized that Paleo cavemen and cavewomen didn’t eat donuts. I’m still waiting for the press release revealing that archaeologists have discovered a primitive deep fryer. Guys, its coming. I know it, only a matter of time.  Then we can rest assured that we re doing our bodies good by piling our plates high with leafy grains, bacon, and donuts. (No wonder the Paleo community gets a bad rep sometimes.)

Donuts are tricky on Paleo. Most Paleo baking uses almond flour, cashew flour, or coconut flour. These are all fantastic grain substitutes, but coconut flour has a coconutty-taste to it, and nut flours can be very dense. They generally don’t lend themselves well to pastries, especially donuts by any means.

My mom shares the same love of donuts with me. As a kid, it was always a special day when she would bring home a dozen donuts from the grocery store. Our favorites were the vanilla cake donuts with chocolate glaze. I would promptly dunk those babies into a cold glass of milk, or if I was feeling really saucy, a chocolate glass of milk. Chocoholic from day one, I swear.

I semi-regularly indulge on donuts, both Paleo and non-Paleo. Naturally, the week I decided to take the Paleo plunge, a Dunkin Donuts opened up 2 blocks from my apartment…. On one of my favorite running routes. Naturally. I also work a quarter of a mile next to a Maryland based grocery store that has quite possibly the best donuts I have ever had. Another irony? The nurses at my work are just as obsessed with donuts as I am. They bring in a dozen at least a week, and they are always offering me one. Life, you are a funny, ironic beast.

A subtle message from my lovely German grandmother

A subtle message from my lovely German grandmother

What I really want to share with you is this Paleo chocolate donut recipe that is more donut-y than other Paleo recipes I’ve tried out. The outside edges are a little crispy, and the inside is still soft.  They’re a little labor intensive, especially since this recipe only makes half a dozen, but I think the donut lover inside of all of us realizes that art takes time. I’m still working on perfecting the Paleo donut frosting, but I decided to post anyway because I was just too excited. Hope you enjoy!

Triple Chocolate Paleo Donuts

For the donuts:

  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tbsp. melted butter
  • ¼ cup coconut milk kefir (or just regular coconut milk)
  • ½ cup coconut sugar
  • 1 tsp. apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tbsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • ¾ cup tapioca starch
  • ¼ cup coconut flour
  • ¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • Dash of sea salt

For the glaze:

  • ½ bar dark chocolate
  • 1/8 cup coconut oil
  • 1 tbsp. powdered egg whites
  • Chocolate sprinkles, if desired*

For frying:

  • About ½ cup coconut oil

To Make the Donuts:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Combine the eggs and sugar, beat with a mixer.
  3. Add butter, coconut kefir, apple cider vinegar, and vanilla, mix again.
  4. Add in the tapioca starch, baking soda, baking powder, salt and mix again with a mixer until everything is mixed well.
  5. Add cocoa powder, mix again.
  6. Add the  coconut flour, and mix until just incorporated. You batter should still be liquidy.
  7. Pour batter into donut pan, you should have 6 very full donut molds.
  8. Bake in middle rack at 350 degrees for 17 minutes. Donuts should be set in their donuty shape, but when a toothpick is inserted, it should not come out completely clean.
  9. Once donuts have cooled enough to safely remove from the baking pan, heat coconut oil in a frying pan. Once the oil is melted, place 2-3 donuts at a time in frying pan. Fry each side of each donut foe 2-3 minutes, until each side is crispy. Repeat until all donuts are fried. Watch your donuts closely here, they can burn very fast.
  10. Let dry on paper towels. While drying/cooling, prepare you frosting.

To Make the Glaze:

  1. To create the chocolate glaze, melt chocolate and coconut oil in a bowl. You can do this using a double boiler, but I went the easy way and just did it in a microwave.
  2. Once almost cooled, stir in the powdered egg whites.
  3. Using a fork, dip one side of each donut into the bowl with the glaze. Place onto baking racks to dry. Add sprinkles, if desired.

*The sprinkles aren’t Paleo. Life’s too short.

** Because the glaze is made with coconut oil, it will melt at warm temperatures. Be mindful of this when storing your treats.