Cake Adds Life

One interesting and popular feature of life drawing is the much-loved tea break. And of course one feature of a full tea break is a delicious piece of homemade cake. So maybe a few cake recipes would add to the mix - cake adds life! And these might well contribute to the development of truly voluptuous models, and that relative rarity, the satisfied artist.

And what about biscuits? Check out Gazelle's almond biscuit recipe, and more. All of these recipes contain no ingredients obtained from animals - all are suitable for vegans.


Carole's Sweet Date Cake


Pour 1 cup boiling water over 8-12 ounces of chopped dates.
Add 1 teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda.

Let that stand while the following is mixed:

3-8 ounces of sugar
3 ounces vegan margarine
10 ounces of (wholemeal) flour
1/2 teaspoon salt

Add that to the date mixture and bake in a moderate oven (Gas Mark 4, about 180 Celsius) for 35 minutes.

And add one of the following tasty toppings:

Topping 1

5 tablespoons demarara sugar
2 tablespoons margarine
2 tablespoons soya milk

Boil for 3 minutes without stirring, then beat. Spread on cake and top with walnuts.

Topping 2

7 ounces creamed coconut
3 fluid ounces hot water
grated rind of half an orange
3-4 tablespoons of icing sugar
3 tablespoons of orange juice
(optional) 4 ounces of lightly toasted desiccated coconut

Mash the creamed coconut with some hot water, then beat in the orange rind, icing sugar, and orange juice and enough hot water to give a smooth consistency for spreading on the top and sides of the cake. If you want you can sprinkle coconut on top too.



Fruitcake with Cherry and Coconut

This recipe has been adapted from one in the excellent and very, very affordable booklet The Cake Scoffer, written by veteran vegan caterer Ronny. The book is highly recommended, and a sequel is available.

8 ounces self-raising flour
4 ounces sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
3 ounces of glacee cherries (cut in half, but not smaller than that)
5 ounces of mixed dried fruit (such as raisins, sultanas, dates, prunes, apricots, currants, fruit peel)
1 tablespoon of mixed spices (ginger, clove, cinammon, allspice, nutmeg)
1 ounce of desiccated coconut (the sort of dry coconut flakes you sprinkle on things)
a dash of lemon juice or vinegar
5 fluid ounces of vegetable oil
8 fluid ounces of water
1/4 teaspoon almond extract

First mix the flour, sugar and baking powder in a big bowl, then stir in the other dry ingredients thoroughly.
Then add the liquid ingredients and mix.
Then pour into a greased cake tin preferably not larger than nine inches in diameter.
Bake 45 minutes at Gas Mark 5 (190 C), then put temperature down to Gas Mark 3 (160 C) and bake for 15 minutes more. You may need to test if the cake is done with a cake tester (thin rod that comes out clean if poked into done cake). If overcooked the cake becomes dark brown and a bit crispy round the edges.

If you don’t have self-raising flour, you can just make it yourself by mixing 1 cup of all purpose flour with 1 teaspoon of baking powder and 1/4 teaspoon of salt.

You could ice this cake, or just roll out marzipan and put that on top. Do check carefully what sort of glacee cherries you buy to avoid horrible colourings, for example E120 which is made from squashed bugs. Locally you can find some nice baking cherries in Archie Brown's health food shops in Bread St Penzance and Kenwyn Street in Truro, Cornwall's current shopping capital.