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Birthdays and broken limbs

Hmmmm I’m typing this with one hand (more on this later) from my mum’s kitchen in England.

To keep the kids occupied – cousins too – I’ve given them all a scavenger hunt. I thought this would guarantee me 30 minutes of peace as they ran round like hooligans outside.

There’s lots of fun stuff on the list …. a rock in the shape of a bottom, a pair of granny’s socks, a selfie with the cat, an interesting leaf, a green bean from the veggie patch. It’s backfired a little though … there’s mud all through the house and I’m fielding all sorts of questions: Does a crystal count as a rock? Where are the socks? Is this leaf (cue appearance of a triffid that’s been dragged in from the ditch) interesting enough?

As we speak, I have items being dropped off at my feet and a cacophony of noise as they art-direct cat selfies. Ah well, it may be chaos but it’s also very funny.

What’s not quite so funny is the trips to A & E, a broken elbow and my arm in a bright pink cast. While we were in Wales we went to Bounce Below which has three levels of trampolines connected by curly metal slides all underground in an illuminated slate mine.

It was amazing!! Everything that kids – and mums who think they’re kids – dream of until I whistled down a tube slide at 100mph and was spat out with such force that I broke my arm. I’ve never broken anything before and I cried real tears but it turns out all Welsh nurses are amazing.

I’ve discovered that sleeping with a broken arm is tricky. So is washing my hair, putting a bra on and doing up the buttons on jeans. I also can’t drive the lovely/expensive hire car (more tears). I am however a pro at opening things with my teeth and getting out of all of the washing up! (I hate washing up so it's almost worth it.)

Things are pretty cheerful here though, especially as Belle is about to turn 11! She has been counting down the days and the excitement is infectious. We’ve been busy making cards, ordering gifts (hello Amazon!) and the cake is under way. She requested granny’s lemon drizzle cake which reminded me of this gluten-free, dairy-free version. I came up with this one seven years ago at my mum’s. I rarely make it because it’s definitely on the sweet side. But sometimes you just need a treat and I figure that birthdays and broken limbs qualify. Now I just have to find someone to help me make it ….

Quick tip: as this is sweet, have this with a cup of herbal tea and stir in some grass-fed collagen for protein (I love the Great Lakes collagen hydrolysate from Miles). It will help to steady your blood sugar a little! Plus collagen is all-round amazing for anti-ageing, helping to improve joint integrity and improving your gut. It’s also great for healthy hair and preventing wrinkles too. Win win win!

Sunken lemon drizzle cake (gluten and dairy free)

Just a quick heads-up, as I was making this in the UK I was using UK scales and used two small loaf pans that looked smaller than my regular one in Bermuda. If you use one large loaf pan extend the cooking time until a skewer comes out clean.

Ingredients (makes two small loaves)

Dry mix:

150g almond flour (ground almonds work fine)

30g brown rice flour

175g caster sugar

large pinch salt

1 tsp baking powder

1 tsp baking soda

Zest of one large lemon

Wet mix:

4 eggs, room temperature (important)

Juice of half a large lemon

1/4 cup coconut oil melted. Use unrefined if you like a coconut flavour, refined if not

1/4 dairy-free “buttermilk”. Place 1/2 tsp lemon juice in your 1/4 cup measurer and fill to the brim with soy or almond milk. Let it sit for 5 minutes before using so it curdles.


Juice of half a large lemon

1.5 tbsps maple syrup


1. Preheat oven to 180C or 355F

2. Line your loaf pans completely, or grease well and add a sheet of baking paper to the base.

3. Prepare your dry mix. Throw all ingredients in a large bowl and whisk well with a hand whisk.

4. Prepare your wet mix. Whisk the eggs at room temperature or the coconut oil will harden and go lumpy. Then and add the lemon, oil and “buttermilk” in any order. But keep whisking. If yours does go lumpy, no major drama but you may get more bubbles in the cake. Just whisk to as smooth a consistency as possible.

5. Combine the dry and wet mixes, pour into the pan/pans and pop in the oven.

6. Cook for 30 minutes. Adjust if using different pans – remember I did two small loaves – and remove from oven. The skewer should come out clean.

7. Whisk the drizzle ingredients together in a small pan over a gentle heat. Use a skewer to quickly poke deep holes in your warm cakes (I poked about 15 holes) and then drizzle the solution over the top getting good coverage but without soaking!

8. Cool in the pan completely before serving.

Catherine Burns is a qualified nutritional therapist. For more details: www.natural.bm, 505-4725, Natural Nutrition Bermuda on Facebook and @naturalbda on Instagram

Sunken lemon drizzle cake

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Published August 06, 2021 at 8:00 am (Updated August 02, 2021 at 3:14 pm)

Birthdays and broken limbs

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