Thursday, 22 December 2016

Reindeer Pancakes

It's the boys first day of school holiday's today, so before we head into town and dash around for the last Christmas bits, were starting with a breakfast to get us into the festive spirit.

I know I posted these on Twitter last year, but never got round to typing up a recipe, so here goes...
Yes, there was an argument over who got the plate with the
smaller one and who got the one with a broken antlers!
200g Gluten Free Plain Flour (I used Doves Farm Bread Flour, which I use for most things as it's buckwheat free, you may need a slightly different amount of fluid for different flour blends)
300mls Milk Substitute
2tsp Baking Powder
1tbsp Sugar (any will do, I used light muscovado for this)
1tsp Mixed Spice (or other christmas spice flavours)
1tsp Vanilla Paste (or extract)
Enough eyes and noses for 6-8 reindeer (depending on size). I used chocolate chips and frozen raspberries.

Put dry ingredients in a bowl and mix to combine.
Add milk substitute and whisk to form a smooth batter.
Put a couple of tablespoons of batter in a cone of greaseproof paper for piping the antlers. Snip the end off.
Place one tablespoon of batter on a hot oiled pan and spread a little to form an oval.

Place another, slightly smaller, spoonful above the first.

Pipe antler shapes.

When bubbles are beginning to form on the surface and underside lightly browned, flip over and cook on the other side for a few minutes.
Put on plate & place on eyes and nose.
Repeat until all batter is used up.

Thursday, 15 December 2016

Swedish Cinnamon Buns (Bakels)

I've been posting variation of these on Twitter for the last year or so, but still not got round to posting recipe, so here goes…
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300g Bakels White Bread Mix
300mls Milk Substitute
2tsp Dried Yeast
30g Hard Dairy & Soya Free Margarine
1tsp Vanilla Paste (or extract)
2 Cardamom pods, split & seeds crushed

60g Hard Dairy & Soya Free Margarine
50g Soft Dark Brown Sugar
Zest of half an Orange
1 1/2tsp Ground Ginger
1tsp Ground Cinnamon
1/4tsp Ground Nutmeg
1/4tsp Ground Cloves
2 Cardamom Pods, split & seeds crushed

Warm the milk substitute to hand hot. Sprinkle on the yeast, stir & leave to foam.

Tip the bread mix into a large bowl. Pour in the yeast mixture and mix with a blunt knife until it begins to come together.

Add a little flour, knead for a few minutes and shape into a ball (or follow the instructions on the pack if you have a mixer).

Cover and leave to rise until doubled in size.
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Meanwhile, mix all the filling ingredients together with a fork.

Add the rest of the dough ingredients to the dough and knead in. This well be a very soft, sticky dough, but keep mixing until well combined.
Add a little more flour and bring together to a ball.
Roll out the dough into a rectangle about 5mm thick. I do it between sheets of cling film to stop it sticking.

Spread the filling over the rolled out dough.
Fold into thirds.
Cut lengthways into 4, then half each to give 8 long strips.
Twist into a knot and tuck the ends underneath.
Put onto a greased baking tray, brush with oil or milk substitute and leave to rise for 15-20mins (may need longer in a cold room).

Sprinkle with pearl sugar, if using.
Bake at 200ºC for 15-20mins until golden brown.
Lovely and sticky and crusty underneath too.

Gingerbread Garland

I love spices in baking and last year treated myself to the book Gingerbread Wonderland by Mima Sinclair. Not for the recipes, as most are not suitable for our free from needs, but the 30 recipes have some great ideas for adapting.

I made stained glass window biscuits a few years back, but this house is obviously too humid and the sweets just went gooey (never had that problem in old house!), so this year I'm trying a different simple biscuit decoration.
A few biscuits may have been lost (so only a tiny detail shown) as using two
over enthusiastic boys to hold ribbon didn't go well...
I batch of Gingerbread Dough
40g Cocoa Powder
Christmassy Cutters

Divide the gingerbread dough into two. Knead the cocoa into one half.
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Roll out the dough to about 5mm thick (I do it between sheets of cling film so it doesn't stick).

Cut shapes and place on lined baking tray.
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Cut two slices in each biscuit, about 1cm apart and wide enough for the ribbon to thread through.
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Bake for 12 minutes at 160ºC until golden brown at the edges.
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Check the slits are large enough and re trim if necessary.

Transfer to cooling rack.

When cold, thread ribbon through slits. Don't pull ribbon to tight or it will break the biscuit.
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Monday, 12 December 2016

Snowflake Biscuits

I probably won't succeed, but I'm going to break with tradition this year and try to post some seasonal recipes before the actual event! This requires being organised enough to bake in advance AND sit down and type a recipe up. Lets see how we do…
I mostly used the Basic Biscuit recipe as the base for these, but added ground almonds too. If you need nut free, just omit these.

125g Dairy and Soya Free Spread
100g Caster Sugar
4tbsp Dairy and Soya Free Cream (or milk substitute, but add a little less of this)
1tsp Vanilla Paste (or extract)
260g Gluten Free Plain Flour
35g Gluten Free Self Raising Flour
50g Ground Almonds (optional)
1tsp Ground Cinnamon
3-4 Cardamom Pods, seeds removed and crushed

Additional flour for kneading
Icing Sugar for Dusting

Put the sugar, spread, vanilla and cream in a bowl and whisk until well combined.

Add all the other ingredients and mix to a smooth paste with a spatula or wooden spoon.

Cover and chill for 30mins to firm up before using.

Roll out (knead in a little extra flour if the mixture is still too soft) to 5mm thickness and cut into desired shapes (I dip my cutters in flour before using to stop the dough sticking).
Place on a greased or lined baking sheet and bake at 180ºC for 12minutes.

Remove from oven, dust liberally with icing sugar before placing back in the oven for a further 5 minutes.
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Leave on tray for a couple of minutes before removing to a cooling rack to cook completely.
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Gingerbread Flapjack

Another variation on a theme, a slight tweak to the normal fruity packed lunch flapjacks to give them a more seasonal feel. 

75g Hard Vegetable Margarine 
75g Date Syrup
Zest of 1/2 Orange
2 Grated Apples
1tsp Ground Cinnamon
1tsp Ground Ginger
1tsp Ground Mixed Spice
260g Rolled Oats

Put syrup and margarine on a bowl and melt together in the microwave.
Add fruit, spices & oats to the syrup mixture.
Mix well and tip into a lined or greased tin (mine is 18x25cm).
Spread out and press down in the tin with the back of the spoon.
Bake at 170ºC for 40 minutes. Cut into 12 bars with a sharp knife and leave to cool in the tin.

Monday, 21 November 2016

Banana and Chocolate Chip Muffins

Feel like I'm cheating a bit posting a variation of someone else's free from recipe, but after Laurna posted this recipe (useful way to sneak in avocado in her version too!) on Twitter recently, it's been a useful emergency muffin recipe. 

I'm in London most of this week on a course, and trying to prepare some easy meals and snacks. I had 2 overripe bananas in the fruit bowl, so rather than coming home to 2 rotten bananas in the fruit bowl, I whipped up another batch of these. 

2 Ripe Bananas
1/4 cup oil
1/2 cup milk substitute
100ml pot fruit puree
2 cups Gluten Free Plain Flour
1tsp Baking Powder
1/2tsp Bicarbonate of Soda
1tsp cinnamon
1/4cup Caster Sugar
1tsp vinegar
Dairy & Soya Free chocolate chips/buttons or chunks (I used about 40g cut into chunks for these)
You can add additional chopped fruit too.

Add bananas (broken into pieces), oil, milk substitute and fruit puree to a bowl.

Blend until smooth (or just mash the banana).

Add all the other ingredients and mix well.

Put into muffin cases (about 10), or a greased muffin tin.

Bake at 180ºc for 25mins.

Saturday, 19 November 2016

Gingernut Biscuits

I love a good spicy ginger biscuit and recently decided to have a go at attempting to create a proper crunchy, crackled, gingernut biscuit. The first attempt was too thick and not crispy enough all the way through. The second was rushed and I didn't have time to take photo's, but thought I had it cracked. Third time lucky, I've simplifies the method, and I'm actually going to try to get it online... Non-wheat free boy (who loves the real thing) declared these 'perfect'!
You can't tell from this photo, but they even have the slight sparkle of sugar crystals on the top.

100g Dairy & Soya Free Spread
100g Dark Muscovado Sugar
2tbsp Honey
1/2tsp Vanilla Paste (or extract)
1tsp-2 Ground Ginger (depending how hot you like them)
1tsp Ground Cinnamon
1ball Stem Ginger (finely grated or chopped) - optional
145g Gluten Free Plain Flour (I used Doves Farm White Bread Flour in this batch as had run out of plain)
1tsp Baking Powder
1/4tsp Bicarbonate of Soda

1-2tsp Caster Sugar to sprinkle.

Put muscovado sugar in a bowl (break up with a wooden spoon as the small hard lumps don't always mix in, then you get dark caramelised bits on the biscuits), add the spread and whisk until paler and evenly mixed.
I wouldn't normally separate things into bowls, but my mum phoned
so I couldn't start whisking, but did manage this while I was talking to her.
Add the honey, spices and vanilla and whisk again.
Tip in the rest of the dry ingredients and fold in until well combined.
Place spoonfuls (well spaced out as these will spread) on a lined tray.

Flatten and smooth out to a circular shape with the back of a spoon. Sprinkle with the extra caster sugar.
Bake at 180ºC for 12 minutes, then turn the oven down to 160ºC for a further 10 mins. Either leave to cool for a few minutes before moving to a cooling rack, or for extra crunchiness, turn oven off and leave to cool in oven.
I meant to half dip these in dark (milk free) chocolate, but they got eaten too quickly...