Monday, 30 June 2014

Gluten Free Profiteroles

When I was a kid my mam used to take us to the Kylemore bakery after grocery shopping where we could choose whatever cake we wanted. We'd head home with a selection of coffee slices, cream doughnuts, Danish pastries and my favorite a chocolate ├ęclair. 
 
My gluten free self needed a replacement for this childhood
favorite and made these little beauties for a Canada Day BBQ this evening.
 
Is it inappropriate to go straight for dessert?? I can't wait to get munching.
 
 
Gluten Free Profiteroles

Choux Pastry
1 cup Four Flour Bean Mix
1/2 tsp Xanthum
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter
1 cup water
4 Eggs
 
Filling
Whipping cream
1/4 cup Icing sugar
2 tsp Vanilla Extract
 
Icing
1/2 cup semisweet chocolate
2 tbsp unsalted butter
1 cup Icing sugar
1 tsp Vanilla Extract
Hot water as required





Preheat oven to 450F. Prepare a cookie sheet with parchment paper or a silicone mat. Place flour, xanthum and salt in a bowl. Mix well and set aside.

Combine butter and water in a saucepan. Bring to the boil, stirring until the butter melts. Reduce heat to low, then add flour mixture. Stir vigorously until mixture begins to form a ball. Remove from heat. One at a time add each egg beating well between each addition. Use a spoon or a piping bag fitted with a large nozzle and spoon or pipe dough onto the cookie sheet in 1 inch rounds.
 
Bake for 15 minutes in the preheated oven, then reduce the heat to 325F and bake for a further 20 minutes until hollow sounding when lightly tapped on bottom. Pierce with a skewer to allow steam to escape and leave to cool on a wire rack.
For the filling, whip cream to firm peaks, sift in icing sugar, add vanilla extract and mix well to combine. Use a piping bag fitted with a small nozzle to pipe cream through steam holes previously made in rolls. Place in refrigerator while you prepare the topping.
For the chocolate icing melt your chocolate and butter in a double boiler over a low heat. Stir in icing sugar and vanilla extract. Add hot water, one teaspoon at a time, until icing is smooth and shiny. Remove from heat to cool slightly.

Drizzle over filled profiteroles or dip top of each roll in chocolate mix. If you decide to dip each top allow the chocolate to dry before place on a serving dish.

Hope everyone has had a great Canada Day and a wonderful 4th of July
 
http://www.happyholidays2014.com/happy-canada-day-cards-pictures-with-quotes-2014.html


Miz Helen's Country Cottage for Full Plate Thursday
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Enchanting Everyday and the ladies for Enchanting Inspiration Link Party
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Sorry for the weird layout issues. Blogger is having some technical difficulties today!!

Michelle xxx

Wednesday, 25 June 2014

Confessions of a recipe hoarder..

Hello! My name is Michelle and I am a hoarder....

A recipe hoarder that is. I have books piled high, a pinterest board full of deliciousness and please tell me I'm not the only one who collects the recipes pages from newspapers and magazines. It's getting to be a bit ridiculous. 

In an effort to contain the collection a friend bought me a lovely old school photo album {you know the ones that have sticky pages with the transparent cover sheet} for my birthday about 2 years ago but as yet I have done nothing with it. Shame on me. My lovely kitchen table often looks something like this..



Source


It wouldn't be so bad if I actually tried any of the recipes but alas they keep piling up and every week I have good intentions to start a fresh and try something different but it never happens. So with a long overdue kick up the back side I've decided to start sharing some recipes here. Just the incentive I need to bring new meals to our dinner routine.

First up is from an interesting article in the Metro paper here in Toronto about the benefits of adding turmeric to our diet. Studies have shown it to be very effective in preventing cancer and protecting the liver against disease. I'm not gonna re hash the article here as other much more informative people than I have done all the hard work already but if your interested you can check some of them out here and here
 
This recipe is super quick and easy, we teamed it with some stir fry veg as a side and thoroughly enjoyed it. I apologise for the picture. It doesn't do it any justice. Silly Iphone.
The original recipe was not gluten free so I have changed up the flour from the original recipe.


Pan Fried Turmeric Fish
 
1 egg
2 tbsp Turmeric
2 tbsp Gluten free flour
1/4 tsp Sea salt
1/4 tsp White pepper
1 lb White fish of your choice
1 tbsp Butter
1 tbsp Olive oil
 
Beat eggs with 1 tablespoon of water. Combine turmeric with flour, salt and pepper in a separate bowl. Dredge fish in egg and then into flour mix, turning to coat evenly.
Warm pan over medium-high heat, add butter and oil. Cook for 3 minutes on each side. Place on kitchen paper to absorb excess grease.
For the veggies, just a simple stir fry in olive oil and garlic.

 It's perfect for a light no fuss evening dinner. Give it a try and let me know what you think.
 
Michelle xxx

Tuesday, 17 June 2014

Monday Night Munching

Monday evening is a relaxing night in our house. We tend to over do it at the weekends and Monday night is when we like to relax and maybe catch up on some programmes (Game of Thrones anyone)
  
http://theoutsiderarg.wordpress.com/2013/05/06/kit-harington-the-honorable-jon-snow/
Oh John Snow what will I do without you until next year 
  
Dinner tends to run to minimal input, one pot, comfort food. I had some sausages left out from a BBQ at the weekend and wanted to use them up so I decided on my version of Gordon Ramsay's Spicy Sausage Rice with some garlic bread. I have made this before using a range of sausage flavours but this week I had gluten free smokies from presidents choice. The flavour was by far the best of all my attempts. A little bit smoky a little bit spicy. Delicious! 
 
Gluten Free Spicy Sausage Rice
 
Spicy Sausage Rice
 
1 tsp Olive oil
1 onion, peeled and sliced
1/2 each red/green/yellow pepper, deseeded and chopped
1 tbsp Garlic Puree
5 spiced sausages, e.g. Italian chilli,chorizo,
1 heaped tsp smoked paprika
1 cup Jasmin rice
1/2 cup white wine
500ml chicken stock
4 spring onions, trimmed and chopped
1 tomato, chopped
Small bunch of flat leaf parsley, roughly chopped
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
 
Add a glug of oil to a heavy-based pan and fry the onion for 5 minutes until soft. Add the pepper and garlic and cook for 2 minutes.
 
Depending on the sausages you use you can either slice the sausage and add it to the pan or slit the sausage skins and crumble the sausage meat into the pan, then cook over a medium heat for 4–5 minutes until coloured. Add the smoked paprika and mix. Season to taste.
 
Add the rice and stir well to mix thoroughly and absorb the flavor. Deglaze the pan by pouring in the white wine and scraping any bits stuck to the bottom. Add the stock and bring to a simmer. Cook gently for 20–25 minutes until the rice is tender and the liquid almost entirely absorbed.
Remove from the heat, gently fold in the spring onions, tomato and parsley and serve.
 
For the garlic bread I used a gluten free baguette I had in the freezer and I always have a tub of garlic butter on hand. 
 
A perfect one pot dinner for no fuss cooking. Have you any other sausage receipes you suggest we try. I like using simple ingredients in alternative ways. A bit of variety without breaking the bank.
 
 Michelle xxx
 
Sharing with
 
New Mrs. Adventures for Flashback Friday

Aunty Rita's Swiss Roll

Every Irish House has an Aunty Rita and my house was no different. Aunty Rita was a legend. The best baker and knitter in a twenty mile radius. When we moved from Dublin to Louth she would regularly come down for the weekend to visit laden down with Swiss rolls.
 
I thought I would make a Swiss roll in her honour this weekend. Her recipe was old school, chock full of gluten so I couldn't use that exactly but the Swiss roll I turned out with this flour less version is almost as good as hers.


 
 
White chocolate Swiss roll
 
3/4 cup white chocolate
½ tsp vanilla extract
6 large eggs, separated
3/4 cup caster sugar
Icing sugar for dusting

 
Filling
raspberry jam
Whipping cream
1/2tsp vanilla extract
1/3 cup icing sugar

 
Preheat oven to 180C/350F. Grease and line a Swiss roll (13x9inch) pan.

Melt white chocolate, vanilla and 2 tbsp hot water in a heat proof bowl set over simmering water. When melted, remove from the heat and allow to cool slightly.

Cream egg yolks and sugar together until thick and creamy. Stir in melted chocolate.

Whisk egg whites in a separate bowl to form soft peaks. Fold the whisked eggs into the chocolate/egg yolk mixture.

Pour mixture into the tin and level with the back of a spoon. Don’t forget the corners!

Bake for 15 minutes until just risen and firm. Cover the tin with parchment paper and a damp tea towel and allow the cake to cool like this for a couple of hours.

 Whip the cream adding the icing sugar and vanilla extract.

When cool turning out onto a icing sugar dusted piece of parchment.
Spread with raspberry jam leaving about a 1 inch gap from the narrow ends. Spread the cream mixture on top of the jam.

Use the parchment paper to help roll tightly. Place in the fridge for an hour or so to settle. Dust with icing sugar to serve.

A word to the wise, have patience and let the bake cool for a few hours before filling and rolling. The impatient part of me did not wait and my first attempt went to the birds. It is definitely worth the time for the end result. Delicious!!

 
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 Michelle xxx
 
 
 
 
 

Thursday, 12 June 2014

June Projects

I'm working on a couple of little projects at the moment which I will share once I get them put together.But a little sneak never hurt anyone. 
 
 You might remember our chair search ( if not you can read about it here)
Well we decided to use what we have and work with the rattan arm chairs.



The cushions that came with the chairs are quite thin so I plan to double up the pad and have picked a nice stripe material to cover them. I just have to learn how to use a needle and thread :-)
 
Here is the inspiration photo for an idea of what we're thinking. If you look closely you can see that the pad is a good 4 or 5 inches deep.

Source



I picked up a window frame which was headed for the dump which I'm gonna clean up and hopefully turn into something like these

 
 
Source

 
I'm hoping by posting about my projects it will actually motivate me to get them started.
Let me know if you have any tips for covering seat pads. Browny points will be given if I can create them without sewing. Or reasonably priced (cheap) places to get canvas prints printed.
 
 
 
Michelle xxx

Monday, 9 June 2014

Lemon Butterfly Cupcakes and a Brown Bread flop!

I'd had a quiet week in the kitchen last week as we've been out enjoying the evening sun so I was looking forward to getting my bake on on Saturday but wasn't sure what I wanted to try. So I did what any indecisive person would do and left the decision to the masses. (Or in my case J)
 
I handed him the books and said "take your pick". Given the opportunity to decide I was prepared for him to ask for a black forest gateaux or a glutenous chocolate cake (anytime we walk past the cake counter in Loblaws he asks why don't I make cakes like that) but to my surprise he came back with the butterfly cupcake picture saying his mam used to make them when they were kids.
Decision made Lemon butterfly's it is!
 
These gluten free cupcakes are really easy to make. And pack a big punch. If your not a fan of lemon, the curd can be substituted for an orange curd, whipped cream or whatever your sweet bellies prefer.
 
Lemon Curd ingredients

3 Large eggs
100g (3 ½ oz) Honey
Grated zest of 1 lemon
175g (6oz) Coconut oil
110 ml Lemon juice (3/4 small lemons)
50g (2oz) Unsalted butter
 

Off the heat, use a whisk to combine the eggs, honey and lemon zest in a heavy based saucepan. Add the coconut oil and the lemon juice.

Whisk together over a medium heat until the coconut oil has melted, the mixture thickens and starts to bubble. Whisking throughout the process.

Remove from the heat and strain over a clean bowl. Gradually whisk in the butter until combined.

Allow to thicken in the fridge for 1 hour. Or store in an airtight container for up to a week.

 
Lemon Butterfly cakes

 
200g (7oz) Unsalted butter
200g (7oz) Caster sugar
Grated zest of 1 Lemon
4 Large eggs, beaten
200g (7oz) Self raising gluten free flour**
2tsp Xanthum gum
Lemon Curd
Icing sugar to decorate

 
Preheat oven to 180C/350F. Line muffin pan with cases. Cream the butter, sugar and lemon zest together until light and fluffy. About 3 minutes.

Beat eggs in a separate bowl until pale yellow and frothy. Gradually add some egg a little at a time on medium, mixing well with each addition. If mixture curdles, turn the mixer up high for a few seconds and it will become smooth again.

In a separate bowl shift the flour and xanthum gum together, mix well. Using a large metal spoon fold in the flour being careful not to knock out the air.

Divide the mixture between each muffin case, filling half way. Bake in the middle of the oven for 25 to 30 minutes or until cakes are well risen and the sponge springs back when touched.

Allow to cool in the tins for 5 minutes before placing on a wire rack.

When the cakes are cool use a sharp knife to cut a cone shape from the top of the cupcakes. Cut the cones in half to make wings.

Pipe the chilled lemon curd into the hollowed-out cone shape in top of cupcake. Top with the two cone halves and dust with icing sugar.

**To make self raising gluten free flour I add one and a half teaspoons of baking powder with a quarter teaspoon of salt for each cup of gluten free flour**


And ………. Enjoy!



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The Bloggers Brags Pinterest Party,  

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or Gluten Free & DIY Tuesday

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 Linda at The Gluten Free Homemaker

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 Michelle for Whatever Goes Wednesday

The ladies of Allergy Free Wednesday

Angie @ the Novice Gardener for fiesta friday
 ________________________________________________________________ 
 


 When I started this blog I told myself I was going to share my triumphs with gluten free baking and my failures. Baking in general can be trial and error but when you add gluten free into the mix it can be a recipe for disaster. This was one of those times. It's so frustrating when we put so much effort into making something nice and not have it turn out how we envisioned. I want to share these so people know they are not the only ones that it happens too at least I hope I'm not the only one. Maybe I'm wrong and it is just me but either way posting about it makes me feel a bit better. A first world problem I know. I have little to complain about.


 
 
 

The bread was a success in terms of taste and softness but after rising perfectly before going into the oven she (Yes it's a girl) came out of the oven with a great stinking big hole in the middle. So I am sharing the picture and will practise until I turn out a proper loaf and then share the recipe.

 Feel free to drop by,say hello and share your gluten free flops. Show me I'm not the only one it happens too!

 
Michelle xxx
 

Tuesday, 3 June 2014

The great chair debate...

For some time now (almost a year) we have been on the hunt for chairs to go with the dining table made by the super talented man in my life. You can catch it here.

We initially thought we would do six different style chairs like this



Then we came across wing chairs in Marshall's and considered doing these on the ends something like this
 

 
But the chairs were way out of our ickle budget so that idea was put to bed.

I recently come across these metal chairs that I think look amazing and would be a nice contrast to the table. 
 
The upside to this idea is that we  already have two rattan armchairs like the ones above which we could use. All they'd need is some new cushions.
 
However I really really like the idea of a bench on one side of the table like this
 
 
Decisions decisions decisions. I can't decide what is going to work best both for now in our rented space and for when we get our cottage. The table is quite big so I feel the bench would save some space but we already have the rattan chairs so that saves money. What do you think?
 
Michelle xxx
 
 

Monday, 2 June 2014

Strawberries, cherries and an angel's kiss in spring....

I was up and about early Saturday morning, made a trip to St. Lawrence Market and picked up some delicious Ontario grown strawberries for this weeks bake.

 The original recipe is from Julia Thomas' Cake Angels. I have literally tried all her muffin recipes and have had fantastic results. This is my go to book for baked treats.
Her recipes are gluten, wheat and dairy free so I adapt them for gluten free only.
We don't like to totally deprive ourselves in our house.  mmmm butter!!!!


Strawberry Cupcakes
2 Large eggs + 2 large egg whites
1tsp Vanilla extract
160g Unsalted butter
300g Caster sugar
300g Self-Raising gluten free flour**
½ tsp Salt
2tsp Xanthum gum
½ cup Milk
2 cups Chopped strawberries
Preheat oven to 180C/350F. Line muffin pan with cases. Whisk eggs, egg whites and vanilla together until fluffy. It should change colour to a pale yellow. Set aside
In a separate bowl shift the flour, salt and xanthum gum together, mix well. I usually sift it 3 times just to be sure. Set aside.
Cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy.
 
Gradually add the egg mixture on medium mixing well with each addition. If mixture curdles, turn the mixer up high for a few seconds and it will become smooth again.
Using a large metal spoon fold in the shifted flour mix in two batches, add some of the milk between each flour addition. Stir in the chopped strawberries.
Divide the mixture between each muffin case. I use an ice-cream scoop. Bake in the middle of the oven for 25 to 30 minutes or until cakes are well risen and sponge springs back when touched.
Allow to cool in the tins for 5 minutes before placing on a wire rack.
 
**To make self raising gluten free flour I add one and a half teaspoons of baking powder with a quarter teaspoon of salt for each cup of gluten free flour**


 
 

 
  
 
I had a package of Gluten Free frosting in my cupboard so I cheated slightly with these but it was just too nice of a day to stay in the kitchen any longer.

 
I hope you had a lovely weekend and made the most of the lovely weather before the thunder storms roll in this afternoon. Here's a tune to drown out the rumbles :-)
 
 
 
 
 


Michelle xxx