baking challenge: gluten-free nut-free vegan rainbow cake

a couple of months ago my little one gave me a challenge: a rainbow cake. now this is a big thing as i am not a baker but with my little one’s allergies, i can’t just go out and buy it. i did some online research and then i just stewed on it.

it wasn’t until i started binge-watching PBS’s The Great British Baking Show on Netflix (US version to the original UK show on BBC The Great British Bake Off) and saw all of the various challenges of baking that i knew i had to get started!

for fun, i’m loosely following the show structure to prepare to bake: signature bake, technical bake and showstopper bake.

  • SIGNATURE BAKE
    my signature so far is not mine since i’m no baker! i’ve tried several brands of gluten-free cake mixes (Bob’s Red Mill and Wholesome Chow Organic Gluten Free)  using ground flax meal as the egg substitute and they’ve turned out fine. however i will have to find a white cake mix or recipe to accommodate the rainbow colors. the main task will be to find a good flavor (that would appease even gluten and egg loving eaters) that i can consistently bake well.
  • TECHNICAL BAKE
    it’s a rainbow cake so i need to make sure whatever i use whether it’s for the flavor or for color will work. in addition to little one’s allergies of gluten, nut and egg free, i will need to think of color. while there is gel food coloring and pre-made natural chemical-free dyes, i would prefer to use natural chemical free food coloring from fruits and vegetables. i know little on can eat beets so hopefully i have red. turmeric is used for yellow (mix for orange). spirulina is an ingredient for blue (mix for green and purple). i will have to test both of them. we have an allergist appointment coming up so i’ll be providing samples to test. fingers crossed.
  • SHOWSTOPPER BAKE
    there’s some cool ways to create the rainbow cake. one way is to pipe the batter in lines and rolled in up as a swiss roll … or i can pipe the batter in the shape of a rainbow and bake? have to decide to bake in tin or glass. perhaps i’ll do bake separate layers to stack -or- fill each color layer and then bake -or- pipe the colors and roll it up. so many ways to consider! in addition, i’ll need to make sure that the colors i add will not cause any issues with the bake. i’ll have to make the right colors of the rainbow. how the cake looks like will depend on baking method. if i do separate layers, i will need an adhesive so i may consider marshmallow (i wonder if Nadiya’s marshmallow fondant recipe has egg?).

 

in the show, there’s practice time for the challenges and i will have to do a lot of practices. so i gotta get started! on MY mark! get set! bake!


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