Feature my Food Friday: Introducing Nath and her ‘Free From’ Fudgy Chocolate Cake

Nath is an inspiring and incredibly talented recipe developer, food writer and blogger. ‘The Intolerant Gourmand’ is her cute and happy little man, Callum. 

Nath and I first met because Callum and Jumpy had very similar allergies. Although Jumpy has grown out of a few (milk protein, seeds, all fruit and soya), Callum’s allergies seem to be there to stay.

Saying Callum has a restricted diet is an understatement, but Nath is determined for him not to “miss out on wholesome, good, scrummy food that didn’t impact on taste and could cater for his allergies. With a lot of hard work, research and trialling alternatives, Nathalie has managed to overcome the challenges of catering for Callum’s severe allergies, creating, and developing as many recipes as you can possibly think of, to cater for dairy-free, egg-free, tomato-free, wheat-free, gluten-free and more.”

Over to you, Nath!

Tell us about you

Hi, my name is Nathalie, and I am a soon to be married mum of 2! There’s Chloe, my 7 year old daughter, Callum, my 3 year old dude, Jon – the hubby to be, and our crazy fluff ball of a cat.

Where do you find inspiration for your recipes?

In one word, my brave little dude! He has multiple severe allergies, and if I didn’t rewrite, create, and develop recipes, he would struggle to eat what people take for granted on a daily basis! I refuse to have him miss out on scrummy food just because it’s not safe for him, so I create safe versions that everyone can enjoy! I’ve cooked and baked all my life, so it’s something I’ve always enjoyed. I’ve now turned that passion into a business, and I love every single minute of it, as I know it’s helping many others out there in the same situation!

Is there anything you would not touch even if you were given £1,000 to eat it?

Yes, fried spiders! I mean seriously, why anyone would ever even consider this to be a good idea…! Makes my skin crawl just thinking about it, never mind eating it! Urgh!

Can you give us an anecdote about food?

‘Oh wow mummy, I have cake, is it really safe for me?’ – Callum’s response the first time he tried my choc fudge brownies created just for him – and the ones that Mel and her family tried! I’ve not shared the recipe yet as it is in the first of my cookbooks which is dedicated to him! That response is the very reason why I do what I do, and why I will continue to do it for as long as I can!

What is your favourite way to share your recipes?

All my recipes are posted to my blog, and my business website, and then I also share across social media such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. I’m just venturing into the realms of Pinterest, Yummly, Google+ etc, although I have a lot to learn (tips gratefully received!!). And I am about to launch a YouTube channel too!

What recipe did you choose to share today and why?

I’m sharing my fudgy chocolate cake recipe, as it’s one of the family’s all time favourites. It’s so simple to make, it’s allergy friendly, and it’s a healthier version of cake as it has courgette in it (which you can never tell). I tend to use this particular recipe for Callum’s birthday cakes as it is strong enough to be carved into shapes. His first birthday cake was a 3d Thomas the Tank, 2nd birthday was a 3D tractor, and last year was a 3D monster truck, I’ll find out in the next couple of weeks the requirement for this year!

Could you share a couple of tips that make your life easier in the kitchen?

Making sure you have all the utensils you need to use all ready to go! There is nothing worse than starting to create or follow a recipe, and then find out you have to stop because something you need isn’t clean! I also swear by my KitchenAid and Magimix! I literally use them every day, and could not do what I do without them! They are a total godsend and worth every penny!

1 thing no one should ever do in the kitchen?

It’s probably been said by many others, but don’t try to guess how much you need of anything, particularly if you’re baking. It’s a science, a chemical reaction occurring, and if the ratios aren’t right, it simply won’t work and it can put you off! Cooking/ baking should be enjoyable, so make sure you are prepared, have everything you need, read the recipe fully, and then jump in and take your taste buds somewhere amazing!

 

Thanks my lovely for all the info, tips and for conveying your passion for all things ‘free from.’ Jumpy and I had a great time this afternoon following your recipe. OK, I have to admit that ‘following your recipe’ should be used loosely. As we were about to start baking, I realised I had used the rest of my ‘free from’ flour blend to bake Vicki’s scones on Monday. Then I realised I had only bought about half the courgettes I needed. We simply halved the ingredients and mixed a few wheat-free flours together (buckwheat, potato, rice). We also added dark chocolate chunks (just because!). Rather than using a cake tin that would have been too big, we went for a muffin tray. Oh, and we did not have any egg replacer either. I just made flax eggs with milled flax seeds and water.

 

Jumpy loved grating the courgettes, although she kept repeating they were “gusting” (disgusting) and she was determined not to add them into the batter.

Jumpy Grating Courgettes

We still did, and the muffins came out looking great and tasting incredible (and you really cannot tell there are courgettes in there)!

 ‘Freefrom’ Fudgy Chocolate Courgette Muffins

Do you think my litttle lady enjoyed her cakes?

‘Freefrom’ Fudgy Chocolate Courgette Muffin

Drum roll… Here is Nath’s recipe!

Print

‘Freefrom’ Fudgy Chocolate Courgette Cake

A delicious, fudgy yet healthy chocolate cake that is dairy-free, wheat-free, gluten-free, egg-free and nut-free! 
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes

Ingredients

  • 350 g gluten-free self-raising flour 
  • 50 g cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon mixed spice
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 175 ml vegetable oil
  • 375 g golden caster sugar
  • X3 egg replacer 
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 500 ml grated courgette

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/ Gas 4. Grease and line a large loaf tin or an 8” cake tin.
  2. In a large bowl, add the flour, cocoa powder, mixed spice and 1 tsp salt, and mix until well combined.
  3. In a separate bowl, add the oil, sugar, egg replacer, vanilla and grated courgette and stir, until well mixed.
  4. Carefully add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and gently mix until just combined, being careful not to overwork! Then pour into the prepared tin and bake in the preheated oven for around 40-50 minutes until soft and slightly springy to touch. The edges will also appear to be coming slightly away from the tin.
  5. Remove from the oven, and leave to cool for around 15 minutes before turning out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
  6. Enjoy!

Photo and recipe credit: The Intolerant Gourmand.

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17 Comments

  1. 12/09/2015 / 9:38 am

    This looks absolutely delicious, and if you had handed me a slice I honestly would never have known it was ‘free from’ on so many levels! Great sounding and looking recipe!
    Angela x

    • 12/09/2015 / 11:58 pm

      Nath is a genius when it comes to ‘free from’ baking. A few months ago, she put on the most wonderful picnic, and everything there was egg-free, wheat-free, nut-free and dairy-free!

  2. Lou
    12/09/2015 / 6:27 pm

    Yummy… can’t wait to try this out

    • 12/09/2015 / 11:48 pm

      I had a few in my bag but forgot to take them out this afternoon!

    • 12/09/2015 / 11:51 pm

      Nath really is an inspiring mum, recipe developer and friend. I feel so lucky to meet amazing people like her through blogging. xx

  3. 13/09/2015 / 8:12 pm

    Nath is fab! Another excellent recipe and I was glad to help on the flour blend!!! They look delicious!

    • 14/09/2015 / 12:05 am

      They were! The last one was eaten this evening. x

  4. 14/09/2015 / 1:15 am

    Oh my gosh, now I want chocolate cake – that looks amazing!! I love the idea of putting veg in yummy food, they do a lot of it over here – beetroot chocolate cake is a favourite.

    • 15/09/2015 / 2:01 pm

      I’ve never tried beetroot chocolate cake! If you have a recipe, I’d love you to share it on Feature my Food Friday! xx

  5. 15/09/2015 / 9:41 am

    yum! I’m always looking for ways to snack in more veg for my children #tastytuesday

  6. 15/09/2015 / 12:09 pm

    What a great way to use up courgettes! I can’t stand them myself, so this looks like a great way to disguise them! Becky x #TastyTuesdays

  7. 16/09/2015 / 1:56 am

    Mel thank you so much for inviting me to join your ‘feature my food Friday’ it’s an honour to be part of it! I’m so pleased people are liking the recipe, it’s one of the first cake recipes I created! I’m privileged to be part of such a lovely welcoming blogging community! x

    • 16/09/2015 / 2:12 am

      It really is an honour, Nath! You’re so passionate, dedicated and inspiring… oh, and your food is yummy! Fancy sharing the recipe for those addictive sausages you made for our picnic? (tummy rumbling now)

  8. 17/09/2015 / 9:29 am

    Love this new series darling and wow look at that cake, I literally want to cry because I want some now (PMT is a beautiful thing)! Thanks for linking up to #tastytuesdaysx

    • 17/09/2015 / 4:08 pm

      I’d love you to take part if you ever feel like it! x

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