: Don't Eat the Spatula - Don't Eat The Spatula

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Single Serving Chocolate Birthday Cake + A Special Giveaway (AIP, Paleo, Vegan)

A Year in the Life

This past weekend, we celebrated a very special moment. One year ago we met our beautiful little girl for the very first time. We brought her home to our house and introduced her to her three fur siblings and then thought, now what? LOL. Let's face it, no one knows what the heck they are doing as first time parents. It's nerve wrecking, and terrifying and wonderful all at the same time. As each month passed, my husband would say to me, "well we made it one more month." We all still had our fingers and toes and everyone, for the most part, was doing well. Those first few months felt like years of time as the passed. All the time and energy I spent trying to have a beautiful breastfeeding relationship with Emily now seems so distant and a drop of water in the ocean (read about our journey here).

Then in a blink, it was time to let Emily enjoy all my favorite foods as we began baby-led weaning. No surprise at all, she was a natural foodie baby and loved everything I gave her. If you don't already, follow me on Instagram where I often share pictures of what she is having each day. Right around 6 months, was the moment I am sure the world started spinning faster and time sped up because the next thing I knew, it was less than two months until her first birthday and it was time to plan to celebrate a whole year of her life.

To Smash Cake or to Not Smash Cake?

I must be honest, I was not even originally planning on having a smash cake for Emily's birthday. I just didn't see all the hype, and since she is such a fantastic eater, I didn't expect there to be any smashing. BUT after attending a few of her friends first birthdays I couldn't help myself. I wanted her to experience that as well, and then one day we can look back at those pictures and I can share the whole crazy day with her.

When I finally decided to have a birthday cake for Emily, I knew two things right away.

  1. I will be making it from scratch.
  2. It will use my most favorite flour ever, Otto's Cassava Flour.

Recently, I shared this AIP Chocolate Mug Cake recipe which was in inspiration for the cake. I decided to remove the sweeteners from the cake and add applesauce. This required a little adjusting of the other ingredients. For the frosting, while I knew a simple coconut cream frosting would work just fine, I really wanted something that was more frosting like in texture. While Emily does not eat strict AIP (she does eat eggs and many other paleo foods), I decided to keep this as an AIP cake so that I could use it for other occasions.

I have tested this recipe three times now and Emily has had it twice. I can say for certain it's a winner for both mommy and baby. What I also love about this cake (having tested it so much) is that both the cake and frosting can easily be separately  made ahead and assembled wherever you need them. Or you can make then entire cake ahead, freeze it, and travel to your destination. For Emily's birthday, I made the cake and frosting two days before the party and kept them in the fridge. Then the day before, I put the cake together and froze it and drove to my parents house (2 hours away) and it kept in their fridge until the party the next day. It turned out perfect!

Emily's Birthday Giveaway

Not only am I sharing this delicious birthday cake recipe with you all, but Otto's Cassava Flour has so graciously agreed to giveaway a 5 lb bag of cassava flour to help celebrate Emily's birthday. To enter for a chance to win a bag of cassava flour comment below who you plan to make this birthday cake recipe for next! The winner will be chosen on Sunday, April 23 at 12:00 pm EST. (for U.S. participates only). This giveaway is over. Congratulations, Rebecca Nicodemus for winning a bag of Otto's Cassava Flout. Thank you for all those who entered.

Single Serving Chocolate Birthday Cake


Option: fruit juice or vegetable juice to color frosting

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease two 4-oz ramekins or a muffin tray.
  2. Start making the cake batter by sifting the cassava flour, coconut flour, carob powder, and baking soda into a large bow. Whisk to fully combine.
  3.  Add applesauce, coconut milk, and avocado oil and stir to incorporate all ingredients.
  4. Evenly distribute the batter between the two greased ramekins or two muffin molds. If using ramekins, place them on a sheet tray so they are easier to take in and out of the oven.
  5. Place cake batter in preheated oven and back for 25 minutes, or until they pass the tooth pick test (stick a tooth pick in the center of the cake, and if it comes out clean, they are done)
  6. While the cake is baking, you can get started on the first two steps to make the frosting.
  7. In a small sauce pan, combine coconut milk and cassava flour and warm over medium low heat. Stir until it turns into a paste, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat, and transfer to a fridge safe bowl with a lid, and place in fridge
  8. Using a standing mixer with whisk attachment or a large bowl and a hand-mixer, add the palm shortening and maple syrup to the mixer or bowl and whip on high until it is light and fluffy and peaks begin to form. About 10 mins. If it gets too soft and melted, place in fridge for a few minutes to firm up.
  9. By now the cakes should be done. Remove them from oven and let them sit for 5 minutes undisturbed. Then carefully remove them from the ramekins or muffin tray and place on cool rack. You will want them completely cooled before your frost them. If you have time, you can allow them to cool at room temperature, or you can place them in the fridge or even freezer to cool faster.
  10. While the cakes cool, finish preparing the frosting. Remove the coconut milk/flour paste from the fridge, be sure it is completely cooled. Add the paste to the bowl with the whipped palm shorting, and mix until fully combined and fluffy. About 10 mins. 
  11. Once cake is cooled it's time to decorate. Carefully slice the two cakes in half, making four even layers. Begin building your layers. Lay the bottom layer of cake on wax or parchment paper (so you can easily move it to another surface after it's assembled), then add some frosting, then another layer of cake, and so on until you have built your 4 layers.
  12. If you want to be fancy, you can first do a crumb coat. Which means you use a light layer of frosting all over the cake. It is just enough to catch all the crumbs so that you don't see them when it is fully frosted. If doing a crumb coat, place cake back in fridge or freezer to allow the frosting to set before doing the final layer of frosting.
  13. Now you can be as creative as you want. You can simple use a knife and cover the full cake with thick layer of frosting. You could use a piping bag and make a fun design. You could even mix in a little fruit or vegetable juice (a 1/4 tsp or less) to color the frosting. Similar to what I did for Emily's birthday. 
Note; If frosting gets to soft, simply place in fridge or freezer to let it firm up a little. Or if you leave it in the fridge too long and it is hard, use standing mixer or hand mixer, to whip it back to fluffy goodness. 
Note 2.0: The cake and frosting can be kept in fridge for up to 3 days. Which means, you can make the cake a few days ahead and not stress about it as you finish all other preparations. Or maybe you all aren't procrastinators like myself?

Saturday, March 11, 2017

Apple, Cabbage, and Kale Salad (AIP, Paleo, Vegan, Whole 30)

This is a perfectly refreshing salad to break up the "is it winter? is it spring? is it summer?" feeling we have been having the last few weeks. I almost always have these ingredients in my kitchen, so it just made sense to throw them together. It's a perfect salad to pair with almost any meal and is a little more fancy than just a pile of romaine.

Apple, Cabbage, and Kale Salad


  • 1 apple
  • 1/4 of red cabbage
  • 3-4 stalks of kale
  • 1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 a lemon, juiced
  • A pinch of sea salt


  1. Peel and core apple, and slice in to matchsticks. I used a mandolin to get this thin cut.
  2. Slice the red cabbage very thinly. Again, I used my madnolin for a nice uniform thin slice
  3. De-steam kale and discard stems. Chop up leaves and add to bowl. Mix apple, cabbage and kale until well combine.
  4. Add olive oil, lemon juice, and sea salt and stir until well integrated.
  5. You can enjoy this right away, but I will say it gets better as it sits. If you can, make it a few hours or even a day ahead, and it will be even yummier. 

Friday, February 3, 2017

Shrimp and Mushroom Risotto (AIP, Paleo, Whole 30)

Sometimes I wing it and come up with a fun, easy recipe, this was luckily one of those times. This entire meal, from prep to table, will take 30 minutes and one pan (SCORE!). It is also Emily approved, meaning your kids should love it. Well, that is if they are as great an eater as my almost 10 month old. Regardless, this yummy, and totally AIP recipe, has the light fluffy creaminess you would get in a normal risotto. You won't even notice the difference. Ok maybe, but to me, it tasted exactly like it's SAD counterpart.

Shrimp and Mushroom Risotto


  • 2 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/3 cup of onion, diced
  • 8 oz of mushrooms, sliced
  • 1/2 cup + 1 tablespoon bone broth, divided
  • 4 tablespoons of coconut cream, divided
  • 1 packaged of Trader Joe's Frozen Organic Riced Cauliflower (approximately 3 cups of riced cauliflower)
  • 1 lb of shrimp, deveined and peeled
  • 1 tablespoon cassava flour


  1. Heat a large frying pan over medium heat.
  2. When pan is hot, add extra virgin olive oil and let oil warm up for a minute.
  3. Add onions to frying pan and cook for 2-3 minutes or until they become translucent.
  4. Add mushrooms and cook for 5-6 minutes or until the have slightly softened. Stir occasionally.
  5. Stir in 1/2 cup of bone broth and 2 tablespoons of coconut cream and bring to a boil.
  6. Add cauliflower rice, cover, and allow it simmer for 5 mins. Don't worry if the is still in frozen clumps, it will break up on its own.
  7. Stir in shrimp to fully combine. Cover again and let simmer for another 5 minutes.
  8. In a small bowl, whisk together 2 tablespoons of coconut cream, 1 tablespoon of bone broth, and 1 tablespoon of cassava flour.
  9. Stir in coconut cream mix into in cauliflower rice, mushroom, and shrimp saute and allow to cook for another 2-3 minutes on medium heat, or until sauce begins to thicken.
  10. Enjoy!