As the old saying goes, “You can’t make an omelette without breaking eggs.” Luckily I didn’t want to make an omelette, not because I don’t like breaking eggs but because I didn’t have any. What I did have was a whole lot of apples. Something had to be done with them. I thought baking them, in a cake, would be just the thing.
The question was how to bake a cake without eggs. I turned to google. My instinct was correct. Recipes for eggless cake filled several pages. After a little reading I distilled that using oil, baking powder and water would do the trick. I happened to have all of those things. So I set about peeling and chopping the apples. After eating several of them I had a lovely pile of peeled chopped apples.
The next step was to ‘combine all the dry ingredients’ with the apples. Apparently as long as you have self raising flour you can do anything. I reached into the pantry for the self raising flour. There was dessicated coconut, powdered ginger, grated nutmeg, slivered almonds and rolled oats. More than enough ‘dry ingredients’. But nothing labelled flour. However I wasn’t going to let a small hitch like this stop me baking an apple cake. Admittedly I did feel a little silly. As Lady Bracknell might say, “To bake a cake without eggs may be regarded as a misfortune but to bake a cake without flour and eggs looks like carelessness.”
Before we proceed any further I must post several warnings. This is not a recipe for vegans, vegetarians or those with a lactose or gluten intolerance. This is not a recipe for flourless, eggless cake. This is a recipe for disaster.
However, at the time the question was, how to bake an apple cake without eggs, and without flour. I have been in tough situations before. Usually when faced with what seems an impossible task, I give up.
But not this time. I was determined to succeed, to use all of my experience, my strength, my determination. I would even use my brain if I had to. That being a last resort I googled again. Surely someone had successfully attempted a flourless, eggless, cake. Nothing. But I am nothing if not optimistic. I had spotted a can of cannellini beans in the cupboard. I decided they would be the perfect substitute for flour. After all, they are the same colour. If nothing else it would be an interesting way to clean out the cupboard.
So I got out my mini stick blender and whipped the beans into a lovely creamy paste. Then I ‘folded’ in all the dry ingredients. My spirits lifted. Perhaps we would eat cake after all. All I needed now was an oven. And that I had.
But after about an hour and a half I still didn’t have cake. If I baked any longer I would have hot coals. I took the ‘cake’ out of the oven. Scooping it out onto a rack to cool I stole a taste. I was pleasantly surprised. It reminded me of apple crumble. But there was something missing. What it really needed was some fresh whipped cream. And some eggs. And flour.