Love is a fruit in season at all times, and within reach of every hand - Mother Teresa


The quest started after last spring’s workshop at Kimbri Farm in the Blue Mountains. It began when @gillianbellcake asked if vegans baked. I answered yes, I did. What I didn’t explain was I was still experimenting, searching for the perfectly moist vegan cake, which was refined sugar free and dairy free with a gluten free option. I’d posted a cake on my blog, which I sometimes baked, yet I was unsatisfied with the result. I desired to bake a cake that anyone wouldn’t guess was vegan, as it tasted so good. That I hadn’t achieved. Although our everyday diet consists of vegetables and fruit, with a few grains, nuts and seeds, my family love to celebrate birthdays with a cake, and mine were as yet unsuccessful. Many cake experiments were slightly soggy or a bit dry which my family grinned and smiled about while I felt downright disappointed. The perfect cake eluded me and I was frustrated until I happened to bake two separate experimental cakes, both at different times. The first was a vegan plum torte, and the second a chocolate, peanut butter and raspberry layer cake. Family and friends couldn’t believe they were vegan cakes, and I’ll leave you to decide whether they are good enough.

This double layer cake uses a peanut butter icing which I’ve borrowed from @deliciouslyella. I’ve yet to create a better peanut butter icing; hers is simply delicious.

Health benefits:

·       Raw cacao can improve your memory, increase your bliss, reduce heart disease, shed fat, boost immunity, and create loads of energy.

·       It’s surprising that raw cacao contains nearly four times the antioxidant content of regular processed dark chocolate, 20 times more than blueberries, and 119 times more than bananas.

·       Two tablespoons of peanut butter are packed with 7 grams of protein, is an excellent source of potassium and is a source of healthy fats.


V, DF, SF, GF option

Makes one 22 cm (8½ inches) cake layer


2 cups (300 g) spelt flour

OR 1 cup (200 g/7 oz.) light buckwheat flour + 1 cup (200 g/7 oz.) brown rice flour

½ cup cacao powder

½ cup coconut sugar

2 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

½ teaspoon fine sea salt

4 tablespoons coconut oil, melted

2 tablespoons peanut butter

1 cup (240 ml) rice malt syrup

1½ cups (300 ml) almond milk

2 tablespoons (30 g/1 oz.) chia seeds milled in blender

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar

Preheat the oven to 180’C (350’F). Lightly oil the cake tins with coconut oil. If making 2 cakes, double the mixture. Sift the flour, cacao powder, coconut sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt into a large mixing bowl and stir to combine. In another bowl, combine the melted coconut oil, peanut butter, rice malt syrup, almond milk, milled chia seeds and vanilla extract, and whisk vigorously to beat air into the mixture. Gently mix the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients. Stir in the apple cider vinegar. Pour the batter into the prepared cake tin and bake for 50-55 minutes, until the skewer comes out clean when inserted in the middle. When the cakes are cooked, leave them to cool a few minutes, then turn onto a wire rack to cool completely.


For the peanut butter icing:

2/3 cup (100 g) cashews, soaked for 2 hours

3 tablespoons rice malt syrup

1 teaspoon vanilla powder

½ tablespoon coconut oil

½ tablespoon coconut sugar

3 tablespoons peanut butter

4 tablespoons (60 ml) water


For the raspberry layer:

2 cups (250 g) frozen raspberries, partially thawed

2 tablespoons coconut sugar

1 cup (125 g) fresh raspberries

While the cakes bake, make the icing by blending all the ingredients in a blender. Scrape the mixture into a bowl and set in the fridge. Make the raspberry layer by mashing the partially thawed raspberries with a fork on a plate, and stir in coconut sugar.

To assemble the layered cake, spoon half the icing on one of the cakes and spread evenly, then spread half the raspberry mixture over it. Gently sandwich both cakes and repeat. Arrange fresh raspberries over the top.