Easy grain free soft cookies

While away I was looking for a cookie that I could make quickly, These have been so successful I have made three batches in a couple of weeks. You can add anything you fancy I have added raisins, dark chocolate chips or cherries . Maybe try adding chopped nuts. I think hazelnuts would work well.

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Recipe –

100g ground almonds

1/4 cup desiccated coconut

2 tsp ground flax seeds

2 tbsp coconut flour

1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda

1/2 tsp salt

3 tsp cinnamon ( you could add cacao or ground ginger instead )

1/3 cup honey

1 large egg

70g butter or coconut oil ( melted )

1/2 cup  or more – a mixture of raisins / cherries / chocolate chips /  sultanas  Be inventive !

Method

Put all the dry ingredients in to the bowl

then add in the egg, honey, melted butter or coconut oil.

mix well together , form into balls , place on a baking sheet with  greaseproof paper

squash down with your hand to flatten as they don’t spread much by themselves

bake for 12 mins at 175c

cool on a wire rack

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store in an airtight container or freeze in two’s ready for a snack attack!

The ground flax seed and coconut flour are not cheap but kept in an airtight container they last ages .

Happy Baking !

 

 

 

 

 

Review of COYO coconut yoghurt

Yesterday I popped in to my nearest Tesco store and spotted these  COYO Coconut milk yoghurts. I had some how missed COYO  at the Allergy and Free From Show so was excited to have a chance to try them.

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These yoghurts are gluten free, nut free, soy free and dairy free.

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First we tried the natural coconut milk yoghurt, we both loved it, very light, a little like whipped cream . Only criticism is that there didn’t seem very much yoghurt for the money, we noticed there was less yoghurt in the natural tub against the chocolate version?

The raw chocolate flavour was nice too. Quite a subtle chocolate flavour and the texture of a chocolate mousse.

I will definitely buy the natural coconut milk yoghurt again if I can find at a reasonable price.

It would make a really good cream alternative.

The Yoghurts are £1.69 each in Tesco.

Also available are mixed berry yoghurt, pineapple yoghurt and mango yoghurt. Coconut ice cream is available too. I cannot wait to find them and try them soon!

Find COYO here www.coyo.co.uk

Follow on Twitter @coyo_uk

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Lemon and poppy seed grain free Muffins

Inspired by grain free cake and muffin recipes I decided to have a go at making some lemon and poppy seed muffins. Here are the results

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Bouncy light texture with a medium sweet lemony taste, well worth giving them a try, We love them!

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Lemon and Poppy seed Muffins-

1/2 cup coconut flour

1/4 tsp bicarbonate of soda

1/4 tsp salt

4 large beaten eggs

1/2 tsp poppy seeds

1/4 cup of non dairy milk I used Koko dairy free but almond milk would work well too

1/2 cup raw honey

zest of 2 lemons

Topping –

2 tbsp lemon juice

1 tsp raw honey

2 tsp coconut oil ( I used Lucy bee raw organic coconut oil )

Method-

Pre heat oven 175oC

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Mix dry ingredients together

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Mix wet ingredients together

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pour the wet ingredients into the dry and mix well together

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remove all lumps

spoon into muffin cases ( I used some new muffin cases with foil insides, they were fab! no sticking  )

mix the topping together and spoon on to the top of the muffins

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any remaining juice can be used when the muffins come out of the oven for extra lemony taste.

pop in a pre heated oven for 20-25 mins ( mine took about 23mins )

cool on wire cooling rack and drizzle with remaining juice

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Enjoy warm or cold

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Happy Baking!

 

 

 

 

Review of The Gluten Free Kitchen, North Yorkshire

The Gluten Free Kitchen is a bakery and shop selling in store and online. They also have a selection of products available in a number of Waitrose and Booths supermarkets and some National trust properties.

Chef Sue Powell and business partner David Fleming have been producing home baked gluten free products since 2005. The business is based in Leyburn, North Yorkshire. Products include ready to roll pastry, cakes muffins , savoury tarts, crumbles, bread etc

you can visit their website here to see more of their products www.glutenfreefood.info

Sue from The Gluten Free Kitchen asked if I would like to review their products, I was very happy to do so and I was sent a parcel containing a lovely selection of their products. I was very impressed by the packaging and chill pack inside the cold box. Everything had stayed perfectly fresh.

I also like their product packaging and leaflet very professional.

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My family of 5 gluten eaters who mainly eat gluten free helped me test all the products today. They had a great time!

Coffee and walnut muffin – gluten and dairy free £2.05 A good size muffin with a lovely coffee flavour.  Moist cake with a delicious frosting.

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Bakewell tart – £2.00 gluten and dairy free . A big favourite with us all. Very good pastry, even better than the ready rolled pastry. A good size tart easily shared.

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Apple crumble –  gluten, dairy and egg free £2.29 nice apple filling with a good crumble top, some thought the crumble had a slight floury taste. But overall good. Perfect for one.

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Lemon drizzle pudding – £2.29 A sharp lemon flavoured individual sponge, moist pudding easy to warm in microwave. very nice

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Ready roll pastry –  gluten and dairy free £2.25 was easy to use, rolled out well and cooked nicely. I made a chicken pie topped with the pastry. Rather broke up when cut into slices and some felt it left a slightly floury taste in the mouth. Overall all felt if you couldn’t eat regular pastry this would be a very good alternative. A convenient product easily stored in the freezer ready for use.

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homemade Chicken pie

Carrot cake muffin – £2.05 A moist cake with large pieces of walnut inside and delicious frosting , a little crumbly.

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Chocolate cake muffin – £2.05 gluten , dairy and egg free.  A big favourite with my tasters. One saying it was the best chocolate cake he had tasted! good strong chocolate flavour and a scrummy chocolate topping.

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Goats cheese and red onion tart – still to be reviewed . looks delicious

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The gluten free bread from The gluten free Kitchen is also dairy soya and egg free. There is an oven crust loaf, white rolls , seeded loaf and seeded rolls which have added sunflower and flax seeds.

If you live in North Yorkshire or will be holidaying in this beautiful area of the UK. It is well worth taking a trip to Leyburn and dropping into the shop and bakery for some gluten fee and dairy free homemade baked goodies. I would love to hear your views!

Dont forget you can order online too. Minimum order is £20, delivery charges are on the website.

We really should support our local gluten free bakeries and shops who produce virtually homemade products far superior to the mass produced products filling our supermarket shelves.

you can follow @glutenfreeGFK on Twitter

on Facebook The Gluten Free Kitchen

I would love to see some grain free and refined sugar free products added to the range possibly in the future.

These products were sent to me free of charge but this hasn’t effected my impartiality.

Gluten and Dairy free, raspberry bakewell cake

I have been wanting to make a cake for a while using coconut oil and only a small amount of sugar. Lucy bee coconut oil kindly gave me one of there favourite recipes to try.

A raspberry bakewell cake which sounded delicious and was gluten and dairy free.

As soon as my coconut oil arrived from Natures health box I started baking.

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I pre heated my fan oven to 160c and measured out my ingredients. Coconut oil, eggs, caster sugar, gluten free SR flour ( I use Doves ) ground almonds and flaked almonds and fresh raspberries.

Link to @lucybeecoconut and the Raspberry bakewell cake recipe here

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It was so simple I just had to combine all the ingredients and mix well.

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Make sure you melt the coconut oil before adding, I used the microwave about 20 seconds.

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When mixed well I spooned half the mixture into the bottom of my loose bottomed cake tin, then I added the raspberries and a final layer of cake mixture. Not easy , I had to use my fingers to spread it out as the mixture is very thick.

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Then I popped it in the hot oven for 50mins until golden brown.

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Using a loose bottom tin really helped, the cake came out with no problems.

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I added just a dusting of icing sugar on the top.

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I totalled up the cost of the cake, around £6.50. Not to bad considering the local free range eggs, fair trade organic raw coconut oil, and local raspberries

Organic raw Coconut oil is a good healthy oil, as opposed to things like vegetable oil and is much better for us. Hence why I wanted to start baking with it. I already use it in my Granola recipes and cook with it all the time. From scrambled eggs to roast sweet potato wedges which are delicious.

The Raspberry bakewell cake was a great success

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The cake rose far more than I expected and had quite a dense texture more like a pudding, we served ours with clotted cream but think it would work better with double cream or custard. The cake would serve between 8-10.

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Thanks @Lucybeecoconut for the recipe. Very delicious!

Gluten free Chocolate cake mix by Incognito cakes

Incognito cakes kindly offered to send me a new Chocolate cake mix for me to try.

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I normally make a homemade cake for my son’s birthday but as I had the Incognito cake mix to try I used that. I wasn’t disappointed and have to admit it was lighter than my cakes.

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The cake used coconut milk in the mixture and I used butter as apposed to vegetable oil as I am not dairy intolerant.

The mixture was like a batter quite different to my usual sponges, I was very interested to see how it would turn out.

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I have to say I was impressed with the bake, the cake had risen very well. Now just had to leave it to cool and add the icing mix provided.

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The topping was easy to make up and there was enough to sandwich the two halves together and ice the top of the cake.

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Now the proof of the pudding is in the eating! Well this Birthday cake had a thumbs up all round. Amazingly light, a very impressive cake!

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Find out more about the mixes here incognito cake mixes

A new gluten free carrot muffin mix from Incognito cakes.

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New to baking?  Not a problem! using this incognito muffin mix, instructions are very simple and the end products are delicious.

Firstly empty contents of mix into a mixing bowl and add 3 eggs and 170ml of vegetable oil. I am not dairy intolerant so prefer to use melted butter. Another option might be coconut oil, will try that next time.

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Then add 3 medium sized grated carrots and stir in.

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spoon the mixture into the cases provided, I had enough muffin mixture for an extra one, result!

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The muffin mixture then goes in a pre heated oven for 15 – 20 mins 

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check they are cooked by lightly touching the top of a muffin it should feel quite bouncy. Cool on a wire rack and wait. We struggled, Mr S ate his before it was completely cool. He loved it and he is a gluten eater.

Loved the texture and subtle cinnamon and nutmeg flavour, the grated carrot was still visible which I really liked. I think I will top my next muffin with a cream cheese and icing sugar topping, which I think would work well.

Incognito cakes hope to launch these mixes soon, to find out more click here

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Finding Free from treasures on Lamma island , Hong Kong

On monday we took the ferry to Lamma, an island off Hong Kong island. Sadly the weather was poor. Cloudy with very little sunshine, but still a warm 27c.

It was a far shorter journey than I was expecting about 20 mins which as the sea was quite choppy, that was long enough!

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Lamma island is where many ex pats live. The island has no cars and the only mode of transport is bicycles. Many of which were parked up by the terminal ready for their owners arriving back later.

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As it was nearing lunch we went off in search of somewhere to eat. Now Lamma island is famous for its seafood restaurants all along the road from the ferry terminal. We decided on a small, clean looking restaurant called Beer and Babble seafood restaurant.

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The waiters were very friendly and spoke very good english. As always I had my trusty food intolerance translation sheet with me. Now looking slightly worse for wear! Sticky tape holding it together from an incident a few days ago. The waiter read it carefully and took it off to show the chef. I decided on grilled king prawns with plain boiled rice and broccoli. 

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A safe sensible choice, could of done with some lemon or something to cheer it up but at least I knew it was Free from.

After lunch we had a little look around the shops, only a few and not very exciting. Until we came to, Just Green a health food food with a good selection of gluten free and free from goodies. Now if only I could have found this shop a week ago! Anyway it was good to check it out and it will be useful for future visits to my Brother in law and his wife on Hong Kong island.

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A few doors away was an intriguing cafe, very quirky. I loved the look of it.

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Bookends cafe was a vegetarian cafe which had some gluten free and free from options so I had to try it out!

The blackboard had an array of gluten free, free from cakes written on it . I decided on an english breakfast tea and a slice of their gluten free carrot cake. Sadly they had sold out, so had to make do with some gluten free biscuits I had hidden away in my handbag for such occasions.

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The cafe had a lovely atmosphere and I can see why it is mentioned in the guide books.

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It was soon time to head back to the ferry terminal, I’m so glad we made the trip over. Otherwise we would have never discovered the free from treasures Lamma had to offer.

 

Life, A vegetarian restaurant in Hong Kong

On Sunday night we decided to give Life a try! It’s a vegetarian restaurant in Hong Kong

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The restaurant is right next to the Central Mid levels escalator. A small 3 levelled restaurant, we were taken to the top floor a lovely little roof terrace with wooden seats and small square tables. We were given a menu and I ordered a homemade lemonade and my husband ordered an organic white wine.

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It was exciting to see gluten free marked on a menu. The first time this holiday! I chose the sweet potato chips and asked them to hold the mayonnaise and ketchup. Stupidly I didn’t explain about the yeast intolerance immediately. The chips arrived with a small amount of vinegar on them. What a fool! Unfortunately then my husband accidentally knocked his wine glass over . Some landing in my chips. Not a great start! I had luckily or unluckily had tried a couple, they were fine nothing special. They didn’t taste like sweet potato or potato so not sure exactly what they were. Very tough when you can’t have a sauce to dip them in to.
Mr S had some polenta triangles which looked nice although he said they were quite dry and couldn’t get through the four of them.

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Unfortunately I couldn’t try them as they had mushroom in them. Vegetarian restaurants don’t actually seem a terribly good choice for me! Being yeast, onion and mushroom intolerant as well as gluten makes eating quite difficult sometimes. This restaurant would be great though if you are gluten and dairy intolerant.

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I was very excited about my main course, gluten free Pizza with sundried tomato and goats cheese. I suddenly panicked and double checked it was a yeast free base too. I was told immediately yes it was. But when it arrived it basically looked like a large slice of toasted gluten free bread. The bread was very spongy like a soft focaccia. I called the waitress over to double check about the yeast. I have never seen yeast free bread like this except when I have made soda bread. My pizza was now sitting in front of me. There was a lot of toing and froing and after 20 minutes of trying to speak to the Only person who knew what was in the ingredients the main chef. Who was not working that night. We finally had our answer Yes it was definitely free of yeast and contained some kind of Japanese gum!?
Now obviously my pizza/ toasted bread was stone cold. Things were not going well. Luckily my husband had chosen a gluten free pasta with a spicy vegetarian sauce which he enjoyed. Although he was terribly stressed about the pizza situation.

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It also turned out that the cheese was actually vegetarian goats cheese so made from some yeast product, so I had to remove that before I could start. Anyway the Pizza was fine, definitely just toasted bread with tomato on , but a tasty snack.
Still hungry I decided to look at the pudding menu.

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Thought I would give the chocolate flour less cake a go. The waitress then brought over a sheet which showed its ingredients and in large letters it read gluten free yeast free! If only they had one of those for the main courses!

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I have to say the cake was the driest crumbliest cake I have eaten in a long time. Nothing like the beautiful homemade gluten free cakes I can make or buy in the UK. Had to ask for some glasses of water to help us get through our one piece to share.
So, not the best of evenings. Luckily we were on our own so it didn’t wreck anyone else’s dining experience.
I think if you are only gluten intolerant then there would be some good choices of food at this restaurant, but if like me you have multiple intolerances better stick to places where you can have fish or meat with veggies.

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