Gluten Free Anzac Biscuits

Gluten Free Anzac Biscuits

I love a good Anzac Biscuit.  Mum used to make these big flat ones that were rich with oats and golden syrup, crunchy round the edges and chewy through the middle, with just the tastiest hint of fresh rosemary to excite the palate and cut through the sweetness.  She is a clever cook that mum of mine – I used to (and still do) love getting in the kitchen with her when she was baking – such a treat!  I have made them many times over the years, but have never quite captured the classic taste and texture of mum’s recipe.  I often wonder if that is all but a trick of the mind though, a longing for times past and reminders of mum’s fabulous home cooking.  Probably a little of both I suppose. This recipe was born out of desire to paid homage to the past, and to start a new tradition that fits with life as we know it now.  I had some left over almond pulp in the fridge just waiting to be transformed in to something else, when it struck me that I could use in place of flour for some gluten free baked goodness perfect for the whole family.

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Egg & Bacon Quiche

Gluten Free Egg & Bacon Quiche

Hands up if you love pie! Yes?  Me too!  I always loved it in old movies when on the window sill was a freshly baked apple or blueberry pie, just waiting to be cool enough to eat.  If I took a deep breath, I swear I could almost smell and taste it, reaching out of the screen to greet me.  They always remind me of good, wholesome eating and family dinners around the table.  

With the weather cooling, I was looking for something comforting to eat and my mind quickly set on a golden, flaky pastry. I was almost drooling in anticipation, such is my love for shortcrust!  While playing with the pastry recipe, my son appeared asking what I was up to.  I explained I was making a delicious pastry, just perfect for pie.  He instantly became excited and asked if I could make him an egg and bacon one!  While my initial thoughts were more of the sweet variety, I also love a good savoury quiche and with his little face all lit up like that, how could I possibly refuse!  

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Gluten Free Shortcrust Pastry

Gluten Free Shortcrust Pastry
Do you love rich, buttery, golden crusted pastry?  I know I do!  When I was pregnant with both my children the thing I craved more than anything was flaky, melt in your mouth, puffs of pastry wrapped around or under all manner of sweet or savoury goodness.  I loved it then and still do now (only minus the gluten fuelled gut aches).  

Thankfully, one of the [many] great things about an excellent shortcrust pastry is that you want it to crumble the second it hits your mouth, making it perfect for non-elastic, hard to knead, gluten free flours.  

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Raw Chocolate Easter Eggs with Raspberry Cashew Cream Centre

Raw Chocolate Easter Eggs with Raspberry Cashew Cream Centre

What would Easter time be without chocolate?  It has become such an entrenched part of our culture and I say a big YAY to that!  Only trouble is, being gluten and lactose intolerant means my options for chocolate are limited, unless I wish to suffer the wraith of the irritable bowel!  Many store bought varieties are heavily processed, containing milk and gluten, which is a problem, plus inflammatory additives such as preservatives, emulsifiers and sugars that are an even bigger problem for a sensitive gut like mine.  Basically, for me, the darker and more natural the chocolate the better I can cope with eating it.  

With that in mind, I set about playing with cacao butter and powder – the raw (unprocessed) version of cocoa – that has not been fermented, roasted and pressed under high heat.  The result is a rich, indulgent, healthier and oh-so-delicious version of the chocolate we know and love, free from the irritants and nasties.  Yep, my Easter just got a whole lot better than I had anticipated!

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Gluten Free Hot Cross Buns

Gluten Free Hot Cross Buns

Baking with gluten free flour is always tricky for me and baking bread with gluten free flour is especially tricky.  I am yet to figure out the trick to it, but with each new recipe I try I do believe I am getting closer.  While these may not be the prettiest buns you will see on the internet this Easter, I can tell you the texture and taste are not far from the glutenous version I was craving.  

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Spelt Hot Cross Buns

Spelt Hot Cross Buns
With Easter fast approaching, I decided to give another one of my old favourites a make over!  I have been wanting to experiment with spelt flour for a little while now, but have hesitated because it contains gluten, so I was worried it might cause my IBS symptoms to flare up. After talking with my dietitian, who explained to me that spelt is known to be easier to digest and can be suitable for a sensitive gut like mine, I decided to just give it a whirl.  I am so glad I did, will you look at these gorgeous chunks of fluffy wonder!  

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Chai Spiced Quinoa Porridge

Chai Spiced Quinoa Porridge
I love it when Autumn rolls in around my home town.  We have bright sunny days, followed by cool snuggly nights.  It is my favourite time of year, the weather, the changing of the leaves, the crispness in the air and of course the produce.  Autumn produce is incredible and abundant, with so much colour and variety to choose from, including, pumpkins, eggplants, tomatoes, melons, mushrooms, apples, pears, grapes and pomegranate, as well as nuts, quince, the sweet wonder that is fig and zingy bite that comes from freshly dug ginger root.    

Recently I brought together my love of warm spices, fresh figs and good old fashioned porridge to make this gorgeous and satisfying bowl of goodness.  If you are looking for a sensational tasting, tummy warming, gut healing way to start (or finish) your day, then you can’t go wrong with this little beauty of a dish.  

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