Gluten-Free and Dairy-Free Strawberry Shortcake

Updated on January 15, 2020
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Renz has been a local food blogger in the Philippines for almost seven years.

Gluten-free and dairy-free strawberry shortcake.
Gluten-free and dairy-free strawberry shortcake.

A Dairy-Free and Gluten-Free Shortcake

When we talk about strawberry shortcake, what immediately comes to mind is something luscious and creamy. In the same light, whenever we say "creamy," we typically think of milk and dairy. Sadly, this spells doom for our lactose-intolerant or lactose-allergic friends, which explains why they usually can't entertain the thought of eating this particular dessert.

Now, what if I tell you that a dairy-free strawberry shortcake exists? Well, yes! You came to the right article, for I'm about to share with you a special recipe I learned from one of my pastry classes. This will allow you to bake a strawberry shortcake that is both dairy-free and gluten-free.

A person who is lactose-intolerant lacks lactase, which is an enzyme that breaks down lactose. When someone can't digest lactose, the undigested lactose passes into the colon, which makes the gut very acidic and accelerates bacterial growth.

Bake Time

Prep time: 1 hour 45 min
Ready in: 1 hour 45 min
Yields: Serves six people (1 slice each)

Ingredients

For the cake:

  • 100 grams eggs
  • 32 grams rice flour
  • 50 grams coconut sugar
  • 32 grams coconut oil
  • 50 grams hazelnut powder

For the vanilla mousse cream:

  • 250 grams almond milk
  • 55 grams egg yolks
  • 50 grams honey
  • 30 grams cornstarch
  • 125 grams margarine
  • 15 grams pistachio paste

For finishing:

  • 250 grams water
  • 75 grams sugar
  • 50 grams lemon juice
  • 500 grams strawberries

Instructions

  1. Mix eggs and coconut sugar in a bowl. If you have a mixer, this step will be easier. Whisk until the mixture doubles in volume.
  2. Combine rice flour and hazelnut powder before adding them to the mixture. Mix with either a spatula or whisk. When thoroughly mixed, add the coconut oil and continue mixing.
  3. Pour the mixture into a baking mold, preferably circular and 6 inches in diameter.
  4. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes at 170°C. Baking time may vary depending on the mold you use. Once baked, set aside and allow it to cool down.
  5. Pour the almond milk in a saucepan and add the pistachio paste. Heat the pan.
  6. While waiting for the almond milk to boil, mix egg yolks with honey in a bowl. Allow them to blend well before adding in the cornstarch. Mix again.
  7. Once the almond milk boils, pour it over the egg-honey-cornstarch mixture. Mix the ingredients, and pour the contents back into the saucepan.
  8. Boil the combined mixture as you continuously stir it. Once it reaches its boiling point, count 15 seconds and remove it from the heat.
  9. Set aside the resulting cream and put it in the freezer to cool down.
  10. Combine water, sugar and lemon juice in a sauce pan and allow it to boil. This syrup will be used to soak the cake layers.
  11. Take the cream out of the fridge, and put it in a mixing bowl. Add 1/3 of the margarine and whisk evenly. When the texture further thickens, add the second third. Whisk again. Do the final third. The vanilla mousse cream is now ready for piping.
  12. Slice the top portion of the cake with a bread knife. You will no longer need that portion.
  13. Slice the cake in half horizontally in order to create the two layers of the shortcake.
  14. Soak both sides of the upper layer with syrup, while only soaking the top side of the bottom layer.
  15. Take a mold ring slightly larger than the size of the cake layers. Set the bottom layer at the center, and pipe the vanilla mousse cream around it, closing the gap between the ring and the cake.
  16. Surround the ring of the cake with strawberries cut in half. Lightly press the strawberries down to allow them to be in contact with the mousse.
  17. Pipe on top of the strawberries, and use a spoon to close the gaps. Ensure that the strawberries are all covered.
  18. Cover the bottom layer with the mousse and add chopped strawberries.
  19. Lay down the upper layer of the cake. Then cover it with mousse. Use a spatula to even out and flatten the mousse.
  20. Optional: If you know how to prepare a strawberry/raspberry confit, you may add a layer of it on top to add more flavor and color to the cake.
  21. Garnish the cake with strawberries and pistachio paste. Serve chilled.

Photo Tutorial

If you are having difficulties following or visualizing the instructions above, you may refer to the photos below to provide you with a better idea of how to follow the recipe.

Let's begin with the initial preparation for making the cake layers and the vanilla mousse cream.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Mixing the rice flour and hazelnut powder (Step 2).Baking the base cake (Step 4).Almond milk and pistachio paste in a sauce pan (Step 5).Slicing the cake into 2 for the layers of the shortcake (Step 12).Soaking the cake layers with syrup (Step 13).
Mixing the rice flour and hazelnut powder (Step 2).
Mixing the rice flour and hazelnut powder (Step 2).
Baking the base cake (Step 4).
Baking the base cake (Step 4).
Almond milk and pistachio paste in a sauce pan (Step 5).
Almond milk and pistachio paste in a sauce pan (Step 5).
Slicing the cake into 2 for the layers of the shortcake (Step 12).
Slicing the cake into 2 for the layers of the shortcake (Step 12).
Soaking the cake layers with syrup (Step 13).
Soaking the cake layers with syrup (Step 13).

The remaining steps involve piping the cream, adding the layers and then finishing it off by decorating/garnishing the cake.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Laying down the strawberries (Step 16).Covering the strawberries with vanilla mousse cream (Step 17).Covering the first layer with mousse (Step 18).Adding the upper layer and covering with mousse (Step 19).Spreading the mousse (Step 19).Optional step of adding raspberry confit (Step 20).Decorating the strawberry shortcake (Step 21).Gluten-free and lactose-free strawberry shortcake. Finished!
Laying down the strawberries (Step 16).
Laying down the strawberries (Step 16).
Covering the strawberries with vanilla mousse cream (Step 17).
Covering the strawberries with vanilla mousse cream (Step 17).
Covering the first layer with mousse (Step 18).
Covering the first layer with mousse (Step 18).
Adding the upper layer and covering with mousse (Step 19).
Adding the upper layer and covering with mousse (Step 19).
Spreading the mousse (Step 19).
Spreading the mousse (Step 19).
Optional step of adding raspberry confit (Step 20).
Optional step of adding raspberry confit (Step 20).
Decorating the strawberry shortcake (Step 21).
Decorating the strawberry shortcake (Step 21).
Gluten-free and lactose-free strawberry shortcake. Finished!
Gluten-free and lactose-free strawberry shortcake. Finished!

Voila! The strawberry shortcake is now ready to be served. Thank you for trying this recipe, and I hope you'll come up with a great cake! Feel free to use the Q&A below if you have any questions.

The strawberry shortcake has this light sweetness characterized by a subtle hint of coconut. The overall taste will depend on the quality and sweetness of the strawberries. Start with the right ingredients, and you'll get an amazing cake!

The author with his finished strawberry shortcake.
The author with his finished strawberry shortcake.

Tips on the Recipe

  • If you don't have restrictions regarding gluten and dairy, this recipe can be tweaked by replacing almond milk with full milk, margarine with butter and rice flour with wheat flour.
  • You can skip the cornstarch for the vanilla mousse cream if you convert it into a regular strawberry shortcake.
  • The coconut sugar can be replaced by regular sugar, but this will change the nutritional profile of the cake.

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This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

Questions & Answers

    © 2019 Renz Kristofer Cheng

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