After this weeks charity bake off I thought I’d give Paul Hollywood’s queen of puddings a go. I have adapted the recipe to make it both gluten free and dairy free. If like me, you struggle to lift heavy things out of the oven, get some help as the water bath/bake tray they sit in during the first bake gets quite heavy. Makes 6 small ramekins.
Ingredients For the custard: 400ml almond milk 1/2 a vanilla pod 25g caster sugar 3 large egg yolks
For the pudding: 80g of gluten free brioche (I just used a small roll). 6 tbsp strawberry or raspberry jam
For the meringue: 3 large egg whites 150g caster sugar
Method 1. Preheat the oven to 160*C/140*C fan. 2. Grease ramekins. 3. Blitz the brioche in a food processor until it becomes a crumb and put an equal amount into each ramekin. 4. Make a start on the custard. 5. Pour the milk into a saucepan with the vanilla, split the pod and scrape out the seeds. Throw the pod in as well and bring just to the boil. Once it reaches the boil remove from heat immediately. 6. Whisk egg yolks and 25g of caster sugar. Strain and pour the milk into to the yolk mixture continuing to whisk as it’s added to form a custard. 7. Pour custard into the ramekins containing the brioche and let stand for 5 minutes. 8. Stand ramekins in a roasting tin filled halfway with boiling water and bake in the oven for 20 minutes until the custard sets. 9. Set aside to cool. 10. Reduce oven temperature to 150*C/130*C fan. 11. Once custard is cooled add in a layer of jam on top of the custard. 12. Make meringue, start by whisking up the egg whites until they form white stiff peaks. 13. Add in the 150g of caster sugar a tablespoon at a time, continuously whisking until meringue makes stiff peaks again and is glossy in appearance. 14. With about a quarter of the meringue fill the ramekins up with a layer of meringue. 15. Pipe the remaining meringue into kisses on the very top. 16. Bake for 15 mins until lightly golden. 17. Allow to cool slightly and serve.
*With any leftover meringue mixture, you can make little meringue kisses, which I put in the oven to bake along with the puddings.
With Christmas coming up I thought I’d start experimenting with some alcohol containing cupcake recipes. For mine I wanted a sweet flavour rather than a huge alcoholic hit so I used Koppaberg strawberry and lime gin. If you don’t have any flavoured gin to hand, I’m sure a standard gin will do as the coulis already has a fruity flavour. Makes 12 medium – large cupcakes.
Method Preheat oven to 160*C fan/180*C standard I use an all in one method for my cakes as I find this works better with the allergy free/special dietary ingredients. 1. Mix with a whisk in a large bowl the flour, dairy free spread, caster sugar, eggs, baking powder and vanilla extract until all combined and a smooth batter is achieved. Add food colouring if using it and mix again until pink/red. 2. Split the cake mixture evenly between 12 cupcake cases. 3. Bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes until a starting to brown and a bouncy consistency is achieved. 4. While the cakes are baking, start the coulis. In a pan on a low to medium heat mix the strawberries, raspberries, icing sugar and 4 tbsp gin. I recommend just using 2 tbsp of icing sugar, but add more if it looks watery. 5. Keep pan on the heat for approximately 10 minutes until fruit has collapsed into a coulis. 6. Mash up any larger lumps of fruit and use a blender if need be. 7. Allow cakes and coulis to cool. 8. In a clean bowl mix the buttercream, first cream the butter, then add icing sugar and slowly turn up the whisk speed. Then add the vanilla and gin and continue to whisk. 9. Cut a 20 pence piece size hole into the centre of the cool cupcakes, this should go about 2/3 of the way down into the cupcakes. 10. Syringe/spoon the coulis into the holes in the cupcakes, make sure they are pretty much full to the top. 11. Pipe the buttercream on top of the cakes in whatever pattern you like. (Sprinkle lime zest onto buttercream to decorate) 12. Serve and enjoy!
This recipe is a bit of a cheat using shop bought, pre rolled, gluten free pastry. However it does include the process of caramelising onions which takes about 45 minutes, so make sure you leave yourself some time to let them cool before assembling the tarts. Makes 3-4 tarts.
For caramelised onions: 3 large red onions. 2 tbsp of garlic olive oil. (normal is fine but garlic does add to taste) 3 tbsp of balsamic vinegar. Pinch of salt. 1 tbsp of brown sugar (caster is also fine)
Fot tart: 1 packet of pre rolled, gluten free pastry. (obviously if you want to make your own you can) 3-4 tbsp of green pesto. 125g mozarella.
To caramelise onions: 1. Start by chopping onions into thin long strands. 2. Add to pan with olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt and sugar. 3. Cook on a low to medium heat for about 45 minutes, stirring at regular intervals to ensure everything is mixed and nothing is sticking to the bottom of the pan. 4. The onions will eventually start to caramelise and go a nice deep purple colour and of a sticky consistency. 5. Put in a bowl and leave to the side to cool, as adding hot ingredients to the pastry can cause problems with rising.
Tarts: Preheat the oven to 170*C fan oven. 1. Cut pastry into approximately 5cm circles. 2. First add the pesto, spread a layer out across the base of your pastry rings. 3. Add about a table spoon and a half of the onions on top of the pesto. 4. Tear up the mozzarella and spread across the onions. 5. Bake in the preheated oven for approximately 20 minutes until the outside of the pastry has browned nicely. 6. Serve with chips or a salad!
This is one of my favourite stir fries to make. It’s quick, easy and tasty and completely gluten free as well as low histamine. This recipe serves one, but feel free to double the recipe accordingly. This can also be made vegan by missing out the chicken and swapping for a meat substitute or even just some extra veg.
Ingredients: 1 chicken breast, diced. 4 pieces of tenderstem broccoli 3 spring onions (cut into slices) 1/2 a pepper (diced into squares) 2 heaped tbsp of crunchy peanut butter. 3 cloves of garlic (crushed and chopped finely) 1 tsp fresh ginger (finely chopped) 1 tsp salt 2 tbsp garlic olive oil for frying (normal olive oil is fine)
Method 1. Heat the oil in a pan on a medium- high heat 2. Fry the chicken or meat alternative. 3. Once the chicken is cooked add in the veg and fry for 2-3 minutes. 4. Add in the peanut butter and stir for about a minute, add a small amount of extra oil if it starts sticking to the pan. 5. Add in the garlic, ginger and salt, fry for an additional 2-4 minutes until all combined. 6. Put into a bowl and serve! Enjoy!
I’ve very recently gone back onto a low histamine diet in an attempt to reduce some of the severe digestive system symptoms I’ve been having. I’m not sure if a histamine intolerance/undiagnosed allergy issues could be further impacting whatever else is going on. As the diet avoids a lot of common ingredients found in store bought sauces, whilst avoiding preservatives, I’ve found it can be quite tricky. I thought I’d share some of my new recipes with you, starting with this basic pasta sauce using no tomato! This makes approximately enough for two to three meals.
Ingredients: 2 large red peppers (cut in half) *I use sweet pointed ones but any is fine* 1 red onion (cut into quarters) 1 butternut squash (peeled and cut into chunks) 1/2 a beetroot 2 garlic bulbs (top cut off) Garlic olive oil Sea Salt Black pepper
Method: 1. Heat oven to 200*C/180*C fan oven. 2. Prepare veg for roasting as per instructions in ingredients. 3. Spread the vegetables out on two trays lined with baking paper. Try to keep the butternut squash on its own tray as it cooks for longer. 4. Drizzle veg generously with garlic olive oil, sprinkle over sea salt and pepper. 5. Cook the tray with the pepper, onion and beetroot in the oven for 30-45 mins until starting to brown. Cook the tray with the butternut squash for a total of 1 hour to 1h15 until soft. 6. Using a blender blend all the veg together adding the basil, oregano, parsley and lemon juice. 7. Once completely blended your sauce should resemble a standard tomato pasta sauce. 8. When cooking the sauce add water to get the desired consistency for your meal!
If you wish to keep some of the sauce for another day, simply sterilise a glass jar and store in the fridge!
Ingredients 1 Large white onion cut into rings (I found batter sticks better to white than red onions) Vegetable oil 85g GF plain flour 1Tsp baking powder 1/2 Tsp salt 1/4 Tsp chilli powder 1 Tsp cajun seasoning 50ml almond milk 50ml water 1 Tbsp cornflour
Method Heat up enough oil in a pan to completely cover onions when dropped in. Mix together flour, baking powder, salt, chilli powder and cajun seasoning in a bowl. Add almond milk and water to form a thick batter that sticks to the back of a spoon. Put cornflour in a food bag with sliced onion and shake until onion gets a slight coating on. Shake off any excess flour. Dip the coated onions in the batter until generously coated. Add coated onions to hot oil and fry until crispy (depending on pan size you might need to repeat this process more than once until all onions are done). Drain off the excess oil, I used kitchen paper. Serve as a starter, side dish or a snack and enjoy!
Ingredients 300g/2 boxes of gluten free HobNobs or similar 175g butter/dairy free alternative 400g of condensed milk 3 egg yolks 4 limes 300ml of dairy free double cream (trying to reduce the lactose levels but normal cream is fine) 2Tbsp of icing sugar
Method Heat the oven to 160*C fan/140*c Smash up the two packets of HobNobs until they are crumbs. Melt the butter until it is liquid either in a microwave or a pan. Add the butter to the crumbs, making a sticky mixture. Put the mix into a loose based tart tin, making sure you fully line the base and sides. Bake in the oven for 12 minutes, remove and cool. I cooled mine in the fridge. While base is cooling put egg yolks in a bowl and whisk until they are thicker and foamy. About 3-4 minutes should be enough. Add the condensed milk and whisk for a further 3 minutes. While whisking juice and zest the four limes. These should slowly be added to the mixture as the whisk runs for a further 4 minutes. Pour the mixture into the now cooled base, put back in the oven for 15 minutes. Cool and then chill in the fridge for approximately 5 hours or more. When ready to serve whip up the double cream and icing sugar with a whisk on a high speed. Once thick enough consistency, use to decorate top of tart. Remove from base, slice, serve and enjoy!!