Entries in Apple Puree (4)

Thursday
Apr102014

Rhubarb & Apple Traybake (Gluten Free, Vegan, Dairy Free, Egg Free)

If you hadn’t noticed from all my tweeting and nudging and hinting...I’ve got a new book out!!  I’m so enormously proud of this (as I was my first) and I really, really hope you all love it too.  The emails, comments and messages I’ve had over the last few years have been incredibly inspiring and touching too.  I really hope that if I have done just a little to make living life with food intolerances just that bit easier, then I have done something of some value and if you can cook my recipes and then share them with your friends and family then I have achieved what I set out to.  Truly, thank you if you bought the first book and (ahem) thank you too for buying the second!  If you need any further incentive, then here’s a little bit about it...

Free-from Food for Family and Friends is cookbook dedicated to delicious gluten, dairy, egg, soy and yeast free recipes, and I when I say free-from I mean that every single recipe in this book is free from all of those foods.  For those that are new to my work I aim to show you how delicious free-from food can be.  I believe that embracing your food intolerances is the best thing you can do for both your mind and body.  Once you have moved past the struggle of feeling unwell and adjusting your diet, you will begin to feel healthier, happier and to realise the abundance of foods you can eat.  I promise you that there is not one recipe, dish or meal that cannot be adapted, created or bettered by making it intolerance friendly and this book aims to show you how.

My first book was divided into seasons, to show the natural and fresh abundance of foods available to us.  I still firmly believe in cooking by the seasons and cannot encourage you enough to look in your local markets and greengrocers to see what’s fresh and plentiful, but I also understand that day-to-day life is not always so simple and that family, work and increasingly fast pace of live can leave you with less and less time to cook.  But I also believe that cooking and eating is a bonding experience – a time for friends and family to come together which is why Free-from Food for Family & Friends is about food for all of the family, to enjoy at any time of the day, any day of the week and every day of the year.  From lazy breakfasts to quick lunches, al fresco summery food, fireside suppers, weeknight eating, family favourites, decadent and proper puddings and then celebratory food for the weekend, this book has it all! 

To get your taste buds going here’s a little treat from the book; I’m yet to make this without it disappearing almost straight from the oven, the roasted rhubarb lends a fragrant tang that balances out the almost caramel crust sweetness of the cake, made light and fresh from the apple puree baked within it.  It makes a wonderful afternoon indulgence with a pot of tea and friends and family, but you could also happily serve it as a homely pudding, a pouring of custard or a scoop of slightly tart coconut yoghurt (as seen here) to accompany it.  I shall leave that up to you but I promise both book and bake are a delight to behold!

RHUBARB AND APPLE TRAYBAKE

Makes 12 squares

You will need a 8 inch square baking tin for this recipe

 

200g golden caster sugar, plus 2 tbsp extra for roasting the rhubarb

100g apple puree

125ml sunflower oil

1 tsp vanilla extract

225g gluten free self-raising flour

1 tsp baking powder

400g rhubarb

 Preheat the oven to 180c and line the baking tin.

Trim the ends from the rhubarb and cut into 1 inch pieces.  Place on a roasting tray, scatter over the sugar and roast for 15 minutes until tender but still holding their shape.

Place the apple puree, sugar, oil and vanilla extract in a large mixing bowl and beat together until smooth and combined.  Sift in the flour and baking powder and fold into the mixture until you have a smooth and thick batter.

Spoon the batter into the baking tin and smooth into the corners, levelling the top with the back of a spoon.  Scatter the rhubarb evenly over the surface of the bake and, using your fingertips, gently press the pieces down into the batter a little.  Bake for 45 minutes until golden and fragrant.

Remove from the oven and either serve warm with coconut yoghurt or custard, or leave to cool completely in the tin before cutting into squares.

 

 

 

 

 

Tuesday
Feb112014

Sweetheart Cinnamon Rolls (Gluten Free, Vegan, Dairy Free, Egg Free, Yeast Free)

Cinnamon buns have long been to me the most tempting of offerings, always out of reach as I could never find a way of making them gluten, dairy, egg and yeast free –  those ingredients (especially the yeast) being integral to their creation.  Yet finally, and in nearly every way thanks to inspiration from the wonderful Sarah Britton at My New Roots, whose original recipe is the basis for this creation, I think there may well be a way of creating a cinnamon roll that offers all of the beauty and taste of the original kanelbulle but that can enjoyed by those of us eating free-from diets.

Walnuts have a true kinship with sticky and sweet, mellow flavours like cinnamon, toffee, maple syrup and apple and so what better way of drawing on their mellifluous scents than by combining their various forms, tastes and textures to make this most glorious treat.

The dough, made with a gluten-free flour blend, leavened simply with baking powder and bound with apple puree is rolled out and spread with a gooey, unctuous sweet date paste, delicately spiced with cinnamon and cardamom.   I should be honest with you here and say that they are a noticeably denser than a leavened version would be but 1. That’s unavoidable without yeast and eggs 2. It also means no proving so cinnamon rolls in half the time! 3. It’s a small price to pay for such a heaven-scent (I know what I did there) treat.  Plus, as Cinnamon Rolls are really meant to be served for breakfast or during Fika (why don’t we have this in England!) it seemed natural that they have a slightly more ‘wholesome’ consistency, all the better to soak up your almond milk latte with!

With Valentine’s just around the corner, treat your favourite person (or people), or frankly, just yourself, to a beautifully pleasing and delicious wintry treat, the Sweetheart Cinnamon Rolls.  Note, these are best eaten when first made as they don’t keep so well, but if you do want to store them then do so in an airtight tin lined with a bit of baking paper.

SWEETHEART CINNAMON ROLLS

Makes 7

300g gluten free plain flour

½ tsp xanthan gum
4 tsp baking powder
2 tbsp golden caster sugar
200g apple puree
3 tbsp rapeseed or sunflower or melted coconut oil

For the filling

225g chopped dates
200ml water
2 tsp cinnamon
A pinch of ground cardamom
A small pinch of sea salt
75g walnuts, chopped


3 tbsp pure maple syrup, to glaze

Preheat the oven to 190c and find a 10 inch/25cm round baking dish or cake tin.

Begin by making the filling. Remove the stones and chop the dates into small chunks. Place them in a saucepan with the water, cinnamon and cardamom.  Bring to a simmer and then simmer gently, stirring occasionally until you have  a chunky paste –  this will take about 10-15 minutes and if you think the mixture looks a little dry you can add more water, you want a thick and unctuous but spreadable paste. Once made set aside to cool down while you make the dough.

Sift the flour, baking powder and xanthan gum into a large mixing bowl.  Stir in the sugar, then pour over the rapeseed oil and apple puree and mix together until the dough begins to clump together.  Then use your hands to pull the mixture into a ball and very lightly knead the dough until smooth to your touch and pliable.

Lay out two sheets of clingfilm onto your worktop, turn the dough onto one and use your hands to loosely shape it into a rectangular blog.  Cover with the remaining sheet of clingfilm and then roll the dough into a rectangle, approximately 6 x 16 inches (that’s 16 x 41cm) in size – you will need to trim the edges to get a sharp line so feel free to do that and then roll in the trimmed pieces to your existing dough to get extra length.  

Peel away the top layer of clingfilm and then spread the filling in an even layer over the dough and sprinkle with roughly chopped walnuts, reserving a handful for scattering at the end.

Beginning at the short end of the rectangle, and using the clingfilm to help pull up and shape the dough, roll the dough up carefully until you have one very large cinnamon roll.  Use a sharp knife to then cut into seven smaller cinnamon roll rounds.

Place the cinnamon rolls in the baking dish or tin and bake for 25-30 minutes until golden brown. Remove from oven, allow to cool for five minutes and then drizzle over the maple syrup and sprinkle with the remaining walnuts.