Gluten-free flax Bread

2 cups brown rice flour

1/2 cup Sorghum flour

1/2 cup potato starch

3/4 cup ground flaxseed

2 1/2 tsp xantham gum

2/3 cup powdered milk

1 tsp salt

3 tbsp light brown sugar

1 1/2 tbsp dry yeast (yes tablespoons!)

1 2/3 cup tepid water

4tbsp butter, melted and cooled

3 eggs, lightly beaten

1tsp vinegar

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees

Combine all the dry ingredients together in a large bowl. In a medium bowl, combine the wet ingredients. Make sure that the butter has cooled, as you don’t want the eggs to cook!

Slowly add the wet ingredients to the dry, mixing well with a large wooden spoon.

The mixture will be thick and goopy. Leave it in a warm place, covered with a clean dish towel for a couple of hours.

Use a large wooden spoon to” knead” it. As the mixture is runnier than a normal bread dough, you will not be able to knead it, as you would regular dough – but give it a pummeling with the spoon!

Transfer the mixture to a greased loaf pan and bake for about forty five minutes or until top is lightly browned and a toothpick comes out clean.

After the first day, keep the bread in an airtight bag in the fridge. The bread is perfect when toasted.

GLUTEN-FREE FLAX BREAD

As you may have noticed, I’m on a bit of a gluten-free baking kick right now and the crowning glory of my recent efforts is this loaf of bread. I have baked dozens of them in an attempt to get it absolutely right, and I think I’ve just about nailed it. This bread is simply DELISH and it’ll be hard to hold onto your loaf for long, because everyone wants a couple of slices toasted. My mission was to create a gluten-free loaf that #1, wasn’t like a full-on brick, and #2, didn’t taste of garbanzo beans (which is my main beef with a lot of the mixes out there.) This is nutty, and light and just very more-ish!

There are a bunch of ingredients but don’t get put off, because once you’ve gathered them, you can keep them all in a big bin or bag and whip it out when you’re in the mood for baking.

2 cups brown rice flour

1/2 cup Sorghum flour

1/2 cup potato starch

3/4 cup ground flaxseed

2 1/2 tsp xantham gum

2/3 cup powdered milk

1 tsp salt

3 tbsp light brown sugar

1 1/2 tbsp dry yeast (yes tablespoons!)

1 2/3 cup tepid water

4tbsp butter, melted and cooled

3 eggs, lightly beaten

1tsp vinegar

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees

Combine all the dry ingredients together in a large bowl. In a medium bowl, combine the wet ingredients. Make sure that the butter has cooled, as you don’t want the eggs to cook!

Slowly add the wet ingredients to the dry, mixing well with a large wooden spoon.

The mixture will be thick and goopy. Leave it in a warm place, covered with a clean dish towel for a couple of hours.

Use a large wooden spoon to” knead” it. As the mixture is runnier than a normal bread dough, you will not be able to knead it, as you would regular dough – but give it a pummeling with the spoon!

Transfer the mixture to a greased loaf pan and bake for about forty five minutes or until top is lightly browned and a toothpick comes out clean.

After the first day, keep the bread in an airtight bag in the fridge. The bread is perfect when toasted.

Roasted beet, orange & hazelnut salad

 

4 or 5 medium beets (this is normally what makes up a regular bunch.)

2 medium oranges

1tbsp red wine vinegar

1tsp honey

3tbsp olive oil

1/2 tsp Dijon mustard

1tsp cumin seeds, lightly crushed

1/2 cup hazelnuts, roasted in a hot oven for 10 minutes

1 cup feta or crumbly goat cheese

1 ripe avocado

Serves 2

Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees F

Peel the beets and cut into bite-size wedges. Place them in a roasting tin.

Take one of the oranges and grate the zest into a small bowl. Squeeze the juice into another small bowl.

Whisk the vinegar, honey and olive oil together in a jug and season with sea salt and pepper. Divide this dressing between two bowls. Whisk the mustard into one of the bowls and set aside. Whisk the cumin, orange zest and half of the orange juice into the other bowl of dressing and then pour over the beets. Make sure each wedge is well-coated and then lightly cover the roasting tin with foil, before placing in the oven for 50 minutes.

Remove when down and leave to cool (you can do all this the day before if you want.)

Peel the orange and cut away all the pitch. Using a sharp paring knife, cut the segments away from the dividing membranes.

Slice the avocado.

When you are ready to assemble, carefully place the beets in a large bowl and add the orange segments. Top with the avocado, goat cheese and toasted hazelnuts. Drizzle over the mustard dressing, taking care not to toss or mix the salad, as you don’t want everything to turn pink.

Roasted Beet, Orange, & Hazelnut salad

I have bunches of beets! I can’t seem to stop buying them, and they always come in my farm box. I wanted to have a go at making the ultimate Seasonal Salad – one that is hearty, and that combines different tastes and textures. I was really happy with the result, as I managed to get in two flavors I love: hazelnut and cumin – they pair beautifully together. The only thing I really dislike about working with beets is the red dye that gets on everything. Be sure to pull on your rubber gloves before peeling and cutting your beets!

Roasted Beet, orange, & hazelnut salad

4 or 5 medium beets (this is normally what makes up a regular bunch.)

2 medium oranges

1tbsp red wine vinegar

1tsp honey

3tbsp olive oil

1/2 tsp Dijon mustard

1tsp cumin seeds, lightly crushed

1/2 cup hazelnuts, roasted in a hot oven for 10 minutes

1 cup feta or crumbly goat cheese

1 ripe avocado

Serves 2

Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees F

Peel the beets and cut into bite-size wedges. Place them in a roasting tin.

Take one of the oranges and grate the zest into a small bowl. Squeeze the juice into another small bowl.

Whisk the vinegar, honey and olive oil together in a jug and season with sea salt and pepper. Divide this dressing between two bowls. Whisk the mustard into one of the bowls and set aside. Whisk the cumin, orange zest and half of the orange juice into the other bowl of dressing and then pour over the beets. Make sure each wedge is well-coated.

Lightly cover the roasting tin with foil, before placing in the oven for 50 minutes.

Remove when down and leave to cool (you can do all this the day before if you want.)

Peel the orange and cut away all the pitch. Using a sharp paring knife, cut the segments away from the dividing membranes.

Slice the avocado

When you are ready to assemble, carefully place the beets in a large bowl and add the orange segments. Top with the avocado, goat cheese and toasted hazelnuts. Drizzle over the mustard dressing, taking care not to toss or mix the salad, as you don’t want everything to turn pink.

 

MEYER LEMON GLUTEN-FREE CAKE

Juice of  1 lemon

2tbsp brown sugar

4tbsp water

1 3/4 cups butter, softened

1 cup of brown sugar (I used my trusty coconut palm sugar in an attempt to be a little healthier)

1/2 cup plain yogurt

1 cup Arrowhead Mills gluten-free baking mix

2/3 cup ground almonds

1tsp baking powder

1 large lemon, zest grated off it and then thinly sliced

4 large eggs, lightly beaten

 

Pre-heat oven to 325 degrees F

Grease a loaf tin and line the bottom with parchment paper.

First make the topping, by placing the lemon slices, sugar and water in a small saucepan and simmer on a medium heat until the water has evaporated. Remove the lemon slices and set aside.

 

Ideally use a mixer to beat the butter and sugar until creamy. Add the eggs really slowly to try to avoid the mixture curdling (not the end of the world if it does!)

 

Remove bowl from mixer and fold in all the dry ingredients, making sure they’re well combined.

Spoon into the loaf tin and smooth on top. Arrange the lemon slices on top of your cake and bake for 45 minutes or until a knife comes out clean.

 

Leave to cook and slice. You can either serve with a cup of tea or coffee, or you can serve it with a dollop of creme fraiche for a dessert.

The cake will keep up to one week in an airtight container.

 

MEYER LEMON GLUTEN-FREE CAKE

For some bizarre reason, I’m on a gluten-free baking roll right now. I just love experimenting with different flours to see if I can create a delicious sponge without using white flour. My latest creation, even though I say it myself, is pretty spectacular!

I wanted to do something with Meyer lemons, as I have a tree full of them right now and I should make the most of them while they’re around. I’m obsessed with these lemons because they are so sweet and fragrant. By the way, you can totally make this cake with regular lemons  - but I thought I’d get all fancy and Meyer-ish!

I used a baking mix again, not because I’m too lazy to mix the plethora of gluten-free flours I now have in my pantry, but because I wanted to see if the Arrowhead Mills Gluten-free baking mix that I used for my previous muffin recipe, wasn’t a fluke (I don’t usually love gluten-free mixes.)

Juice of  1 lemon

2tbsp brown sugar

4tbsp water

1 3/4 cups butter, softened

1 cup of brown sugar (I used my trusty coconut palm sugar in an attempt to be a little healthier)

1/2 cup plain yogurt

1 cup Arrowhead Mills gluten-free baking mix

2/3 cup ground almonds

1tsp baking powder

1 large lemon, zest grated off it and then thinly sliced

4 large eggs, lightly beaten

 

Pre-heat oven to 325 degrees F

Grease a loaf tin and line the bottom with parchment paper.

First make the topping, by placing the lemon slices, sugar and water in a small saucepan and simmer on a medium heat until the water has evaporated. Remove the lemon slices and set aside.

Ideally use a mixer to beat the butter and sugar until creamy. Add the eggs really slowly to try to avoid the mixture curdling (not the end of the world if it does!)

Remove bowl from mixer and fold in all the dry ingredients, making sure they’re well combined.

Spoon into the loaf tin and smooth on top. Arrange the lemon slices on top of your cake and bake for 45 minutes or until a knife comes out clean.

Leave to cook and slice. You can either serve with a cup of tea or coffee, or you can serve it with a dollop of creme fraiche for a dessert.

The cake will keep up to one week in an airtight container.

 

BEST GLUTEN-FREE MUFFINS

Yields about 6 muffins

Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees F

1 cup virgin coconut oil

1/2 cup maple syrup

2tbsp Lacuma Powder* (or substitute with brown sugar)

2 eggs, beaten

1 cup Arrowhead Mills organic gluten-free baking mix

1cup blueberries

Mix the coconut oil, maple syrup and sugar in the bowl.

Very slowly beat in the eggs. Add the flour and baking powder and mix well. Finally add the blueberries to the mix, combining really well.

Grease a muffin tin or line with muffin cups and spoon in the mix. Bake for 20 minutes or until skewer comes out clean and the tops are nicely browned.

If you are saving the, keep them in an airtight bag in the fridge and warm up before eating.

BEST GLUTEN-FREE MUFFINS

I have a number of friends who have been told to avoid gluten, so I’ve been experimenting like crazy with all kinds of recipes for the perfect muffin. Too often gluten-free breads and muffins can either be hard and dry, or have a slightly “beany” taste, which I really dislike. I’m not wild about many of the gluten-free baking mixes out there either, however, this Arrowhead Mills one does a perfect job. These blueberry muffins are light, tasty and really healthy – the perfect breakfast or between-meal snack.

I have substituted virgin coconut oil for butter, as I wanted to make a healthier muffin. You can find virgin coconut oil at any health food store, and Trader Joe’s even carries it now.

You’ll see a strange ingredient* in the list called Lacuma. The Lacuma is a Peruvian fruit and Navitas Naturals sells it as a whole food powder. It’s a fantastic alternative to empty-calorie sweeteners – low in sugar and high in nutrients. I love baking with it.

I was also dying to try my new Kitchen Aid fire-engine red mixer. I am so excited about this new addition to my kitchen, it’s ridiculous. Suffice to say, my muffins were made in five minutes flat.

Yields about 6 muffins

 

Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees F

1 cup virgin coconut oil

1/2 cup maple syrup

2tbsp Lacuma Powder* (or substitute with brown sugar)

2 eggs, beaten

1 cup Arrowhead Mills organic gluten-free baking mix

1cup blueberries

Mix the coconut oil, maple syrup and sugar in the bowl.

Very slowly beat in the eggs.

Mix in the baking mix and baking powder. Finally add the blueberries. and combine really well.

 

Grease a muffin tin or line with muffin cups and bake for 20 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean.

If you are saving some until the next day, keep them in an airtight bag in your fridge and gently warm them up before serving.

Seeds Of Change Simmer Sauce

The Seeds Of Change Simmer Sauces are a pantry staple for me because I can whip up a superb, creamy curry in a matter of minutes and it’s really healthy too. At this time of year, I have tons of loose veggies rolling around in my crisper drawer, so if I’m stumped on what to cook for dinner, I just gather them up (potatoes, cauliflower, broccoli, carrots etc) and simmer them in a jar of this sauce – serve with steamed brown rice and it’s as good as any Indian restaurant I’ve been to.