Rhubarb Cake and Spring Gathering with The Little Plantation

I am beyond excitement to share with you that the 27th of April I will be co-hosting my first Supper-club with one of the sweetest and most creative gal of all, in the vibrant setting of theSocial Pantry in Battersea.

The way you nourish you through your surroundings is very important. My kitchen is a collection of stain-steel, brass and hand made ceramics, that are beautiful and that last. A balance between beautiful, trustable and meaningful.

The same when I choose the people that nourish my inner environment. They are honest and beautiful. Kimberly in one of them. Her warm heart reflect in her manners, in her heartfelt cooking, in her actions (she was part of the little bounch that make happen the massive Women's March on London).
She is one of those people I want next when I want my creativity to flow like a river.

We prepared together this Rubarb Vegan Cake recipe, nut free and sugar free as an invitation to our new venture. Our Spring gathering  will happen at the beautiful Social Pantry.

We aim to gather you around the vibrant colours of the spring, make community in a friendly environment and slow down. Will be a moment to share,  and to savour the taste of slow-made seasonal food and of new friendships.

This cake is one of the two desserts Kimberly and me will be serving at our Spring Gathering.
All the dishes will be vegan, refined sugar free, and we will accommodate paleo and gluten free needs.  Have a peek at the menu!

 I do hope to see you there and finally meet you in person!

Ingredients for the sponge (makes 4 layers):

3 cups of white spelt flour
2 cups rapadura or coconut raw sugar.
5 tsp organic baking powder
2 tsp vanilla essence
2 tsp apple cider vinegar
1/4 tsp of unrefined salt
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil or rapseed oil
1 cup of plant based milk unsweetned (you can add more if needed, the batter should be slightly runny - different flours take different amount ofliquid)
the zest of one lemon

Ingredients for the filling:

1 can coconut milk (refrigerated)
1 stalk and half rhubarb
1/4 tsp vanilla essence
1/4 tsp pink peppercorn or to taste
1 tbsp Xilytol
1 tbsp arrowroot
pinch of salt
2 raspberries or 1/4 tsp beetrot powder for a pink colour (optional)
Ingredients for the icing:
400 gr coconut yogurt wipped up
a pinch of pink peppercorn

Instructions for the sponge:

Pre-heat the oven at 180C/355F and grease 4 tins of 16 cm diametre.

Take all the dry ingredients from the cake (flour, sugar, baking powder and salt) and mix well in a large bowl.
Cover with the wet ingredients and lemon zest, and gently combine all well.
The more gently you fold the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, the less rounded the top of your cakes will be. It is matter of folding more than stirring in fact.
When the batter is ready spread it evenly across the 4 cake forms, place in the preheated oven and cook for approximately 35 min or until fully baked through (do stick test).

Once cooked, let the cake layers cool down for about 10 min, then remove from tins and leave on a rack. Let them cool completely before starting to assemble the layered cake.

Whilst the cake is cooking prepare the filling and the icing.



Rinse the rhubarb, peel off the hardest bits.

Scoop out the coconut cream from the can leaving the water and leave aside.

Prepare the arrowroot stirring it in a couple of tablespoon of the leftover coconut water (you can use the leftover for stews or smooties).

In a small saucepan heat the rhubarb (plus the raspberries or beet powder) with the xilytol and the salt, stirring for a couple of minutes. Add the coconut cream and bring to a gentle boil over a low flame.

Stir in the arrowroot and the vanilla. Turn off the flame and leave aside to cool completely. The compote should be firm enough so the filling stay in the cake. You can reheat and add a bit more dissolved arrowroot, if needed.

Grind and stirr in the filling 5 to 10 pink peppercorns.



Wip the yogurt adding a bit of pink peppercorn to have some nice pink bits in it.


When the cakes are perfectly cold and the frosting and filling are "solid", you can start to assemble.

(If the cakes are rounded cut off the top, taking care to cut them straight and similar in height)

Spread a measured amount of filling in the centre up to 1.5 cm from edges. All around the pink filling pipe or scoop your white frosting. Than place on top an other cakes disk and repeat. Place the last cake upside down.

Now you can start with the frosting. Poke a long stick in the middle of the cake. This will hold the layered cake while you work with the frosting. If necessary put back in the fridge for some moments before starting. 

Scoop a generous amount of frosting on top of the cake, and with a spatula work it all around the top and down the sides of it, scraping away the excess very gently.  You want to fill up any space leaving some of the cake edges still visible.

Keep working the sides until you are happy with the result, if needing some extra directions try here. Clean the edges and smooth the top, then decorate with flowers or fruit.

This cake is extremely simple and delicious, I hope it will inspire you a slow relaxed afternoon with the people that make you heart sing.

Love, Silvia xx

Avocado Chocolate Vanilla Cake and a Recycling Adventure

This avocado and chocolate vegan cake is more than just a sugar free delicious dessert. It is beauty on the plate and sustainability through its ingredients leftovers. Learn to make  instead of consuming stuff is my new way of self nourishment that respect my ethics and inspires me the art slow living.
When I met Isabella ( http://www.twome.co.uk) I was running a pips challenge. (Planting the fruit stones instead of throwing them away). We have been so lucky to instantly feel close, and we developed together this idea "self sustained" cake and styling. We wanted to inspire to use all part of the ingredients, make instead of consume, self sustain even the styling. I made an avocado based frosting, and Isabella dyed some props fabrics with the stones.
For me it felt a return to my origins. In my grandparents farm life was a cycle. Everything had its place from the begin to its end, and it was perfect balance to me. We didn't even own a landfill bin. I am serious. Life felt much lighter that way.

Avocado stones make a deep pink colour, delightfully elegant. You can dye practically any natural fibre ( I don't recommend pure linen for the first trial). You can decide to have a flat colour, a ombré colour like our macramè, or a messy look dyeing the cloth closed in a knot perhaps. It is possible to also use the avo skin, and to be kept for that purpose it can be froze.

For me the encompassing pleasure of a good meal (and dessert) goes behind being vegan. I want to work with real ingredient, first of all. And my appreciation for food and a responsible sourcing are inextricable. However respect for the land, doesn't end with organic farming and plant based cooking. We should start to admit that sustainability only starts with sourcing. And that if might end in a less noble landfill is a half way practice. Nevertheless one could count on the already audacious and compassionate consciousness that accompanies the act of vegan eating itself. But the road goes forth. From the plastic food wraps (SUPs: single use plastics) to the food waste itself we are responsible of our acts as they are still upon Mother Earth and other species. I feel a personal urge of being vegan further from not eating or wearing animals. I believe that we can make ourselves responsible of killing as much if we don't care of filling our seas and land with pollution. And in my attempting to create a sustainable family I found to love most being able to use all part of my ingredients, make from what otherwise would be wasted. Create instead of consume for me is a new way of self nourishment that respect the ethics of the era of compassion we all strive to create. That is why an avocado cake recipe that also create the opportunity to create something beautiful with leftovers.

When I made this chocolate and vanilla cake I was looking for a vegan cake that could be soft and moist but firm enough to hold in this geometrical appearance when cut. Vegan chocolate cakes often can be very dry or use a lot of oil to have moisture. I find it to be a challenge to achieve the texture, I am not afraid to admit it, but I am also happy to have succeeded here! 

Cooking time 35 min circa
Preparation easy, adequate to beginners
serves 8 - 12 people 

ingredients for the vanilla cakes ( makes 2)

1 + 1/2 cup of white spelt flour (or half white and half wholemeal)
1 cup raw unrefined rapadura sugar
2 tsp (10 ml) organic baking powder
1 tsp vanilla essence
1 tsp apple vinegar
pinch of unrefined salt (let's appreciate our local salts! But if you live on Himalayas plz feel free to go pink )
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil or rapeseed oil
1 cup of spring water

Ingredients for the chocolate cakes ( makes 2)

1 + 1/3 cup of white spelt flour (or half white and half wholemeal)
1 cup raw unrefined rapadura sugar
1/2 cup pure cacao powder (or pure carob if sensitive to cacao)
2 tsp (10 ml) organic baking powder
1 tsp vanilla essence
1 tsp apple vinegar
pinch of unrefined salt
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil or rapeseed oil
1 cup of spring water


Pre-heat the oven at 180 C and grease 4 tins of 16 cm diameter circa.
If you have a oven with ventilation (fan) you can cook all 4 cakes in one go otherwise cook them only two by two.
In two separate bowl mix well the dry ingredients for each of the two cakes. Make 3 "holes" in each of the dry mixtures. In one hole pour the oil, in the other 2 pour the vanilla essence and the vinegar, repeat for the other cake. Cover with filtered or spring water and gently incorporate all ingredients together, repeat with the second mixture. The more gently you fold the wet ingredients with the dry, the less rounded the top of your cakes will come. It is matter of folding more than stirring infact. However this specific recipe tends to make cakes with rounded top so we will eaven them with a sharp knife before decorating. 
When the batters are ready pour each in two of the greased tins and cook at 180 C for 35 min or until the stick comes out clean.
When cooked let cool down for 10 min, then remove from tins and leave on a rack. Let them cool completely before starting to assemble the layered cake.

Frosting ingredients

4 medium avocado, ripe and soft
1/2 cup of raw cocoa ( or pure carob if sensitive to chocolate)
1/3 cup raw unrefined coconut sugar\rapadura\xylitol
1/4 tsp vanilla essence
pinch of unrefined salt
-Blend all together and refrigerate

Ingredients for the filling

170 gr good quality vegan cream cheese (or see my previous post to make your own)
pinch or drop of vanilla powder or essence
1 tbsp xylitol
4/5 blackberries juice
-Mix all ingredients without blending in a food processor, especially if using a ready made vegan cream cheese.


When the cakes are perfectly cold and the frosting and filling are quite solid to hold onto the cake, you can start to assemble.
If the cake are rounded cut off the top with a sharp bread knife,  taking care to keep them straight and similar in height. 
Start with the chocolate cake, spread a measured amount of filling in the centre up to 1.5 com from edges. So you can pipe all around the filling some chocolate frosting.
Place on top one of the vanilla cakes and repeat, then again a chocolate cake and repeat. The last cake will be the vanilla, place it upside down and poke a long stick in the middle to hold the layered cake while you work with it. If necessary put back in the fridge for some moments. 
Scoop a generous amount of frosting on top of the cake and with a spatula work it all around the top and down the sides of it, scraping away the excess very gently. You want to fill up any space leaving some of the cake edges still visible.
When finished put into the fridge.
Melt on a low flame a sugar free vegan chocolate bar adding a couple of Tbsp of plant based milk and 1 Tbsp of coconut oil. Leave to cool until viscous, then make a dripping sauce  scooping it on top of your cake, leaving one side without any dripping chocolate at all.
Decorate as please. Devour. You are very welcome!

I really hope this cake will inspire you beauty and sustainable life. Sustainable can be curated, aesthetically delightful and even fashionable. Monk sandals are not in my plans I ensure you! And as I always like to mention, a Japanese adagio says: is beautiful what is right ( and delicious I would add!!)

For the dyeing process have a look at Isabella blog, (http://www.twome.co.uk/single-post/2016/10/31/anatural-dyeing-a-vegan-cake-from-avocados) also she recommends Rebecca Desnos e-book. However the main steps are summarise below here.

-Clean your fabric with water and natural soap leaving it damp, and you can pretreat in soya milk mordant to help the absorption of the botanical colours.
-In a big aluminium pot bring to boil 3 to 5 whole stones and simmer them in enough water to cover the fabric you like to dye. Simmer for 1 + 1/2 hour or until the water turns from pink to a nice maroon. The more the pips the darken the colour will be!
-When ready strain the water with a cheese-cloth so the liquid is nice and clean. Let it cool to tepid.
-Then simply bath the fabric or yarn in the coloured water until it reaches the desired shade, it can vary from an hour to overnight. The longer the bathing, the more vibrant the colour will be.
-Rinse the fabric in warm water and hang to dry.


Enjoy! love, compassion and plenty foolishness.
Silvia B.  




Apple Cinnamom buns to fall in love with Fall

cinnamon buns _salvialimone

I am so in love with season changes and the surprises that bring to us, the colours and the new tastes. My children growing out of the past season clothes. All feels renewing, in a perfect cycle of blossoming and resting. 

This recipe (you can also find featured on the feedfeed website), that we made together Kimberly Aimee and me, is without any doubt the perfect tribute to the Autumnal scents. And, oh my! Are real, deal buns vegan and refined sugar free! The buns are not so sweet, for who loves subtle delicate tastes and perfect even for breakfast! But if you have a sweet tooth worry not! The decadent vegan cream cheese frosting make them a perfect sweet treat for a luxurious tea party.

So here you are:

For this recipe you need a wide bowl, a warm place for proving, and a baking trail (I like to bake rolls in a round one - 25ø cm circa).

Prep time :25 min - Proving time: 1 to 2 hours + 45 to 1 hour - baking time about 30 min


200gr spelt flour
250gr non bleached white flour
4 Tbsp raw coconut sugar
1 heaped tsp unrefined sea salt
7gr fast acting yeast (I use doves farm)
250ml almond milk + extra 3 Tbsp
1-2 Tbsp extra v olive oil to grease the proving bowl

Ingredients for the apple chinnamon filling:

2 crisp apples peeled and thinly sliced
7 Tbsp raw coconut sugar
2-3 Tbsp of cinnamon

Ingredients for the vegan cinnamon cream cheese frosting

4Tbsp coconut oil softened
1 cup powdered raw sugar
110g vegan cream cheese (mind the quality of the ingredients)
1/4 tsp pure vanilla powder or extract
1 tsp ground chinnamon



Dough: mix together all ingredients for the rolls, except the olive oil, until just combined. If the mixture is dry add bit by bit some milk for the right consistency. Better a bit soft than dry. Then knead the dough on a dry surface sprinkled with flour. Knead about 7-10 min. Then, in a large bowl greased with the oil, place the dough inside, cover with a damp cloth and leave to rest for 1-2 hours (or until doubled) in a warm place such as the oven with just light on. Length of time depends on the weather.

As the dough is rising, prepare the filling by peeling, removing core and slicing the apples. We used seasonal pink apples that have are crisp, tart and sweet. Give them a squeeze of lemon to prevent browning, if you like to. 

When the dough is ready remove it from the bowl and roll it out with a rolling pin into a rectangular shape. Sprinkle the sugar and cinnamon evenly over the dough and then neatly place the apple slices to completely cover the dough. Roll it up and cut into 10/12 pieces. And place on a baking tin that can hold them all (25 cm ø circa). 

Next allow the rolls to prove in a warm dry place for between 45min and 1 hour. Cook into the oven for 30 min at 180C/255F or until they start to get brown.

As the rolls are baking prepare the frosting. Sieve the powdered sugar (you can powder it in the food processor) and combine with the other ingredients over a bath-Marie.

When the rolls are ready, let them cool until tepid and drizzle with the frosting. Devour! 

Silvia B xx