Hands up if you love cake? Yup, me too (as my posts on both this blog and Instagram often reflect). However, I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – while there is an increasing amount of gluten free cake options on the market, whether they’re any good is another matter entirely. Upon being diagnosed as coeliac six years ago, Stacey (aka The Mad Batter) decided to take her quest for good gluten free cake into her own hands and, rather than relying on shop-bought options, started experimenting in the kitchen and baking her own tummy-friendly treats. After quickly realising that it was something she loved doing and that she wanted other people to be able to enjoy her gf cakes too, she set up her baking business, The Mad Batter (what a fantastic name!); and, as they say, the rest is history.
Knowing that I have a (giant) sweet tooth, Stacey sent me a couple of her cakes to try – a Victoria Sponge (my all-time favourite) and Chocolate Fudge. They came in cake jar format – the first time I’ve had this – and now, after trying myself, think they’re a great idea. Not only does it make it far easier for independent bakers such as Stacey to reach customers far beyond her local area (just how to do you put cake in the post without it getting totally smooshed?), but the jar vacuum also helps keep the cake fresher for longer. Even better, while the cake can be scooped out and shared, it also makes for an indulgent treat as you can dive straight in solo with a fork. Forget nights in with a spoon and tub of ice cream – cake jars are the new kids on the block.
I digress – let me tell you more about the cakes themselves. In my quest for a good gluten free Victoria Sponge, I’ve tried a lot (all in the name of research, of course) – and The Mad Batter’s is genuinely one of the best I’ve tasted. The light, fluffy sponge came in two layers, and was combined with a generous filling of buttercream and jam. This was then all topped with more delicious buttercream icing; whipped to the perfect consistency, it was smooth, thick and sweet without being sickly. It turns out that you can fit a surprising amount of cake in a jar, so ate about half in one sitting – which was excellent as it meant I got to enjoy it all again the next day!
While Victoria Sponge is generally my bake of choice, anything involving chocolate is my second; so was more than thrilled to be able to tuck into a Chocolate Fudge variety as well. While some gluten free sponge can be too dense, The Mad Batter has hit the nail on the head – the two layers here were thick but moist (I really dislike that word but it’s the best one to describe it), so comprised the ideal texture. Dotted throughout the sponge were also little chocolatey chunks, which added a nice contrasting bite. In amongst this and on the top was plenty of velvety chocolate fudge buttercream – its flavour rich and moreish without being too overpowering, and with a texture that complemented the cake itself. Finished with a sprinkling of chocolate flakes, it all made for one heck of a rival for the Victoria Sponge.
Packed niftily into a cake jar or not, there’s no denying that The Mad Batter’s cakes are delectable – and her Instagram images are testament to just how fantastic they look, too. As Stacey says herself, ‘It’s always time for cake’ – and when it tastes as good as these, I couldn’t agree more!
Each bake is unique, so prices for The Mad Batter’s goodies vary; to make an enquiry, check out The Mad Batter’s offerings or place an order, visit Instagram (@the.madbatter), Facebook (TheMadBattersBakedGoods) or drop Stacey a line at email@example.com.