I’ve been doing some travelling this year, visiting Scotland and England. I was born in the UK so had a lovely time catching up with relatives as well as doing some sightseeing. The Scottish Highlands are absolutely amazing and I did see a ripple on Loch Ness so Nessie made an appearance just for me!
I was thrilled with finding the wonderful Schar bread in Tesco and Sainsbury stores. I really wish that our regular shops stocked it here in Australia. I was surprised to find that it was not so easy to obtain the Orgran No Egg (egg replacer) that I often use in cake recipes. Eventually I tracked it down in a Holland and Barrett store and I also saw it in a different health shop. So, if in the UK, check out the Holland and Barrett shops for it. This cake recipe was given to me 24 years ago, so I decided to make it gluten-free and vegan. The icing is made from cream cheese so if you want it vegan, have a look at substituting a vegan cream cheese and non-dairy margarine or just enjoy without icing. If not nut-free, a handful of walnuts thrown into the mixture go down well too.
190 g gluten-free self raising flour
20 g cocoa powder
110 g sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 cup grated carrot (weighs approximately 140 g)
225 g crushed pineapple
80 g water + 2 teaspoons Orgran No Egg (or use EnerG or use 2 eggs if you can have them)
115 g vegetable oil (I use sunflower oil)
- Mix all of the dry ingredients together in a bowl with a wooden spoon. Add the carrot and mix well again.
- Add all of the wet ingredients into the middle and mix well with a wooden spoon.
- Spoon into a medium sized ring tin.
- Bake at 160 C fan-forced (180 C conventional) oven until a skewer inserted comes out not sticky. I found this took around 60 minutes.
Icing (not vegan)
- Mix 60 g cream cheese and 30 g soft butter together with electric beaters.
- Add 1/2 teaspoon vanilla and beat again.
- Add 175 g sifted icing mixture (powdered sugar/confectioner’s sugar) – make sure if it has starch that it is cornstarch not wheat start.
- Add 2 teaspoons lemon juice and mix well.
Well, phew, the school year is done and dusted, so I can get back to blogging. These chocolate biscuits are based on a recipe I saw elsewhere, and I have changed them to make them gluten and egg free as well as dairy free. I used my Bellini thermocooker to make them, but a food processor or hand method would work as well. I have made them with butter, and have also tried them dairy free when making them for a dairy allergic child, and they taste yummy both ways. Here’s the recipe:
200 g plain gluten-free flour (I used the Aldi ‘Has No’ brand, but other brands will work fine eg. White Wings, Home Brand, Orgran)
50 g cocoa powder
1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda (baking soda)
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
330 g caster sugar
150 g Nuttelex or another dairy free margarine (butter can be used if not dairy free)
40 ml water plus 1 teaspoon of Orgran ‘No Egg’ powder (or use EnerG powder) plus 10 ml (2 teaspoons) oil (I used sunflower oil).
Alternative egg substitute if you don’t have egg replacement powder: 1 tablespoon (4 teaspoons) flax meal plus 3 tablespoons hot water. Mix together and allow to cool before using.
- Measure the dry ingredients into the Bellini jug or food processor and mix for 30 seconds on speed 4 to combine. If doing by hand, sift ingredients together.
- Add the Nuttelex or butter in cut up chunks.
- Press the ‘pulse’ button on the machine or processor until the Nuttelex is incorporated evenly. I usually find it takes about 3-4 quick pulses.
- Add the egg substitute and pulse again until the egg substitute is combined. If working by hand use a knife to incorporate the wet ingredients.
- Roll the mixture into teaspoon sized balls. Press down with your hands and place on trays. Press down lightly with a fork.
- Cook at 160 C (fan-forced) or 180 C conventional oven for 11 minutes.
- Allow to cool and harden before eating.
Here’s a chocolate slice recipe that I always fall back on when I need to bring a plate of goodies to an event.
300 g gluten-free plain flour
180 g dessicated coconut
225 g sugar
24 g cocoa
370 g butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Mix the flour, coconut, sugar and cocoa together in a large bowl.
- Melt the butter and vanilla together and add to the dry ingredients.
- Press into a 30 x 23 cm baking tin.
- Bake at 160 C fan-forced (180 C/350 F conventional oven) for 20 minutes.
- Allow to cool then ice with chocolate icing and sprinkle with coconut.
- Refrigerate until cold then cut up into squares.
Icing: Sift 280 g gluten-free icing mixture (or use pure icing sugar) and 48 g cocoa into a bowl. Add 60 g of melted butter and 60 ml of hot water and stir until well mixed.
It’s spring here in Brisbane, but thanks to some rainy weather, it’s a little cooler than usual for November. It felt like a great day to pull out the old chocolate pudding recipe:
150 g gluten-free self raising flour
24 g cocoa powder
170 g sugar
30 g melted dairy-free margarine (Nuttelex) or use other margarine or butter for non dairy-free
125 g rice milk (or dairy milk if you can have it)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
110 g brown sugar
30 g cocoa
435 ml boiling water
1. Sift the flour and cocoa into a medium sized bowl. Add the sugar and stir to combine.
2. Add the margarine to the milk and vanilla then add to the dry ingredients.
3. Mix well with electric mixers and pour into a small casserole dish.
4. Combine the brown sugar, cocoa and hot water together, then pour carefully over the cake mix in the casserole dish.
5. Bake at 160 C fan-forced (180 C/350 F conventional oven) for approximately 45 minutes.
I saw this fabulous picture on Facebook recently and just had to have a go at making something like it. I haven’t followed the recipe given there but used one that I’ve had for years. Yummy, chewy brownies with strawberry cream!
185 g chocolate (I used milk chocolate)
125 g butter
80 ml water
175 g caster sugar
150 g gluten-free plain flour
2 teaspoons Orgran No Egg (or use EnerG) – If you can eat eggs use 2 eggs and omit the water above
1 cup walnuts (optional – I didn’t use them this time)
1. Grease and line a 20 cm square cake pan.
2. Melt butter and chocolate with the water over low heat.
3. Stir in sugar and mix well. (If using eggs, add them here)
4. Sift the flour and No Egg powder together.
5. Stir in flour and walnuts and mix really well to avoid lumps of flour.
6. Pour into the pan and bake at 160 C fan-forced (180 C/350F conventional oven) for 40-45 minutes.
7. When it has cooled to room temperature, remove the brownie and place on a cutting board. Cut out hearts using a heart cutter. Place the hearts onto a plate and refrigerate to become firmer. Keep the leftover bits for nibbles.
1. Whip 200 ml of thickened cream until quite thick. Blend 100 g of strawberries and mix in with the cream (reserve a little for the plate if you like).
2. Place some strawberry puree on the serving plate. Place 3 hearts onto the plate. Pipe strawberry cream onto the hearts.
3. Place a heart brownie on top and dust with icing sugar.
I honestly thought that everyone knew how to make this slice seeing as the recipe is on the side of the condensed milk tin. However, every time I make it, people ask me for the recipe. The original recipe is not gluten-free, but using gluten-free flour works well. I have changed the chocolate icing recipe, as the one I use makes it easier to cut. I’ve also converted cup measurements to mass so that it is quick and easy to put together. The recipe below is for a double batch. With the colder than usual August weather in Brisbane everyone seems to be hungry and we have regular visitors who don’t mind a piece or two. Just halve the recipe if you don’t want so much!
Ingredients and Method
300 g gluten-free self-raising flour
340 g brown sugar
160 g coconut
250 g melted butter
Combine these four ingredients together and mix. Place into a large oven tray (I used one that is 35 cm x 25 cm x 6 cm). Bake at 160 C fan-forced or 180 C/350 F conventional oven for 10 minutes.
2 cans of sweetened condensed milk (each 395 g)
40 g butter
100 g golden syrup
Combine the condensed milk, butter and golden syrup in a large saucepan. Stir over medium heat until boiling then continue to simmer whilst stirring constantly for 5 minutes. Take care as the mixture is very hot and may ‘spit’ as air bubbles come to the surface. Pour over the base and cook for a further 10 minutes in the oven. (Keep the saucepan aside for scraping out later – yum!)
300 g chocolate
60 g butter
70 ml water
Combine the chocolate, butter and water in a heat proof bowl and place over a saucepan of simmering water. Stir until the chocolate is melted and the mixture is well combined. Pour over the slice and refrigerate until set. Use a warm knife to cut into pieces. This slice keeps well in the fridge – if you can keep everyone away from it long enough!
This chocolate cake is so easy to make and it tastes great! It takes me less than 15 minutes to mix it and get it into the oven. Now that I have a new fan-forced oven, it’s cooked in no time. Here’s the recipe:
260 g self-raising gluten-free flour (The Orgran or Aldi ‘Has No” brands work well. Often other brands have too much raising agent in them, causing the cake to over rise and then sink)
340 g caster sugar
60 g cocoa
125 ml oil
375 ml milk (use coconut milk or rice milk for dairy free – coconut milk gives a lovely flavour)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1. Sift the flour, sugar and cocoa together into a large bowl.
2. Mix the milk, oil and vanilla together and add to the dry ingredients.
3. Mix well with electric mixers until it is thoroughly mixed.
4. Place into a greased ring or bundt tin.
5. Bake at 160 C fan-forced (180 C/350 F for conventional oven) until cooked. My oven is fan-forced and it takes about 45 minutes in a bundt tin.
6. Allow to cool and then invert onto a plate.
Sift 140 g gluten-free icing sugar and 24 g cocoa into a bowl. Add 30 ml of hot water and 30 g of melted butter (or dairy-free margarine such as Nuttelex). Mix well.
It’s normal for the cake to sink a little in the middle when cooking. If using a bundt tin no one will notice the sink when it’s inverted!