Thursday, 19 December 2013

Yule Log Genius Bake Along

What a good idea from Genius, to have a Bake Along.
I love to try new recipes and specially when I know there will be no gluten and no dairy in it!
I've never baked a Log before, but it has come out as per the recipe. And there is a minuscule chance of winning one of their great prices!

My dish was just slightly small so I've had to cut out a little bit to make it fit.
It was soooo delicious that I've nearly had to reach for an even smaller dish.
Good thing I got the photo out of the way first ;)
Find out more on their blog.

Tuesday, 17 December 2013

Lentil Stew Naturally Gluten Free

A dish meant for winter, how warming it is when it's cold outside and you feel like hiding under the duvet!
It's quite easy and quick to prepare if you have a pressure cooker, and i do ;)

If you don't have a pressure cooker you can also cook it in a normal pot, it will just take longer, maybe around one hour until the lentils are tender.

Ingredients: 100 grams of green lentils per person, one onion cut in thick wedges, one piece of chorizo per person (approx 30 grams or more if you like it), a piece of Serrano ham or bacon, 1 bay leave, salt to taste, 1 tsp of sweet paprika, 2 tbsp of olive oil, and three garlic cloves, peeled and cut in chunks.

Instructions: put the lentils, onion, chorizo, ham, bay leave and salt in the pressure cooker and cover with water, enough to cover the ingredients plus one inch more. Close the cooker and leave it to cook for 15 minutes in the vegetable setting.
When it's done, in a separate small pan heat the oil and when it starts to smoke add the garlic until brown. Then remove from the heat and add the paprika, mixing it quickly with the oil with a wooden spoon, just until mixed. Pour this over the lentils and they are ready to go!

Pom Bears Potato Snack

These little cuties are so nice!
A welcome discovery after checking the ingredients on the back of so many crisp packets.

The bag says they do not have artificial colours or artificial preservatives, but they do contain SOYA, the only allergen listed, so watch out if you can't have it.

Broadly available and so good every time ;)

Sunday, 15 December 2013

Newburn Bakehouse Gluten Free Baguette

I was very excited when I saw these baguettes in the supermarket, would they taste like real bread?
When I took them out of the packet two thoughts came to mind, first that the consistency was nice, quite sturdy little things, secondly that they have a somewhat plastic feel...
Cutting them in half and they still look good, nice texture, and the taste is OK.
I decided to have one of them grilled with some grilled ham as filling, and there is where disappointment begun. They got completely flat and really hard, as when you iron something with a synthetic fibre and it melts and get all burned....
Overall the taste is OK if you can get over the plastic look, but definitely one to eat cold!

Update: Oops! After tweeting about it, I've been told there were some instructions to be followed to get a golden crispy baguette, so will have to try them again and will update ;)

Udis Apple and Cinamon Toaster Pastries

I am not sure what to make of these pastries.
The taste is nice but it is very much like having a toast with some warm jam. They don't do much for me, but my sister loves them.

I suppose it is the sort of thing handy to have in the cupboard if you tend to run out of food without warning, very much an emergency ration for me.

What do you think? Worth trying?

Marks and Spencer Christmas range

I went into Marks and Spencers the other day and decided to check their gluten free Christmas range.
They have a good selection, with mince pies, a Christmas pudding for one and a Christmas cake. Reasonable price too, around £2.Not bad.

I haven't tried them, as I've never really liked the pudding or the mince pies in my gluten eating days, but I though I should mention it. If any reader has tried them, please leave a comment with your thoughts, thanks!

M&S Gluten Free Products

It's nice to see the selection of gluten free products at Marks and Spencer. There are quite a few of them, including sponges, biscuits, crackers, muffins, crumpets, shortbread and a few breads.
They also have some gluten free pasta, if I remember correctly in the pasta section.

I particularly love the white bread, which they call sliced white boule, super soft and spongy with poppy seeds, so yummy I always try to find an excuse to have one more slice ;)

Friday, 13 December 2013

Stollen Disaster

I was very excited with the magazine 101 Gluten Free recipes, so many Christmas favourites that I could bake!!!
My first attempt was for Panetone, but unfortunately it was so dry and flat that it was only bearable dipped in coffee...
Not one to get discouraged, I went for Stollen.

I didn't have high expectations. Even before my gluten free days, I've never been able to use yeast properly.
I got all the ingredients together, a lot of kneading and voila, it looked like a heavy log of bread with bits (first pic). The instructions said to leave it to raise for 30 minutes, which I did, wrapped in cling film.
Did it not look so encouraging in the second picture when it was pushing the cling film to the limit? It had raised!!! Was that the begining of my bread making days?
Unfortunately after baking for the recomended time, it smelled gorgeous, but was so hard I had to throw it away, as hard as a brick.
The search for some yeast recipes I CAN bake continues......

Carrot Cake

Yes, the panetone did not happen, the stollen did not happen but I could always go back to my trusted baking book, Cake Angels by Julia Thomas. So I did and I got a moist and delicious Carrot Cake.
I've taken a few pics from the process, the first one is the mix before going into the oven, the second out of the oven and the final one the finish product, icing included ;)
I took it to my knitting group, where three of us are coeliac/intolerant and it went in a second, even the gluten eating folk loved it ;)
I must say I've done this recipe a few times and every single one of them has been great. I read somewhere that gluten free baking works better with some fruit or vegetable in the mix, it must be true.

Thursday, 5 December 2013

Food heaven Lemon Cheese Cake

I had this cheese cake at the weekend, available in larger Sainsbury's frozen cupboards at £3.

There is also a summer fruits option, but in my opinion the lemon one is nicer.

Back to the Lemon Cheesecake, it is actually quite nice. The first time I tried it I was worried the base was going to be like a rock, but it's very much like biscuit crumbs.

The lemon cheese cake is make with Soya I think, but I like the taste so that is not a problem for me ;)

I had a chance to try all their products at the Allergy Show last June and I much say the Tiramisu was by far my favourite, I hope it is soon stocked in Sainsbury's so that I can indulge some now and then.

Pizza Express Gluten Free Pizza

I've been to Pizza Express a few times since they introduced their Gluten Free menu earlier this year. They have made a great effort to ensure all staff know what they need to do and understand what you ask, so well done!
The choice of pizza is very much like in the main menu, but made with the Gluten Free pizza base and served in a black board to differentiate them from the other pizzas, minimizing the risk of confusion when serving.
They also have Greens gluten free beer and Aspen cider, brilliant choices.

I've really enjoyed it every time, I only remember once when the base was a bit hard, but otherwise, good price and many restaurants to pop into, so a great option when out and about.
They have even changed their knives to some that actually cut!!!

What next? Gluten Free dough balls? Go on make me happy!

101 Gluten-Free Christmas Recipes

I found this magazine at WH Smith last week, and had to buy it!
It looks quite promising, with lots of recipes for the season. It costs £4.99 and as the title says, it has 101 recipes, divided into several sections:

Baking: 34 recipes, including Christmas pudding, nougat, cake pops, stollen, panetone and mince pies.
Starters and party food: 23 recipes, with cheese straws, pancake rolls, croquettes, mini quiches and blinis.
Mains: 13 recipes, inclluding, yorkshire pudding, gravy, Christmas stuffing, and a few sauces.
Leftovers: very turkey based.... 17 recipes.
Boxing day: 15 recipes, with pies, pastry, beef Wellington and a few quiches.
All the recipes have photograps, so no guessing what it should look like.
Now trying to decide what to cook first....