Sunday, 7 February 2016

Pear and Ginger Pudding GF SCD

A few years ago I shared this recipe as part of the Seasonal Real Food Blog Series on Recipes to Nourish.  At the time I made this dessert with pears but the combination of apples and pears together works beautifully and if you pop in some berries, the nutritional value of the pudding increases in leaps and bounds. Ginger has exceptional healing properties and is also well known for its powers in aiding recovery from colds and flu making it an ideal choice as a spice in cooking at this time of year. Plus, it's so warming and comforting.

The recipe uses a variation of my grain free plain sponge cake recipe. I should have divided the recipe in half but since it uses 3 eggs, it's much more practical to make enough for perhaps two desserts, freezing any cake that's leftover. It serves 4 to 6 people.

Pear and Ginger Pudding GF SCD

1 kg pears or apples or a mixture of both (about 8)
½ cup fresh orange juice (or more)
honey to taste (optional)
1 tsp cinnamon (optional)
250g Ground Almonds
3 large eggs
3 tblsps extra virgin olive oil
80ml organic honey
1 tblsp pure vanilla extract
½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
2 tblsps ground ginger
finely grated rind of 1 small lemon
pinch salt

To make the cake :
  • Set the oven to 170° C then line two 7" sandwich cake tins tins with baking parchment or use 6" square tins.
  • Pour the honey, extra virgin olive oil and vanilla extract into the bowl of a food processor then break in the eggs and process until combined.
  • Measure out the ground almonds, lemon rind, ground ginger, bicarbonate of soda and salt into another bowl and whisk together with a fork or balloon whisk.
  • Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients little by little processing on a medium speed until all the dry ingredients have been mixed in.
  • Share the batter between the tins then bake for 20 to 25 minutes in the bottom half of the oven or until a skewer inserted into the cake comes out clean and the top is springy to touch.
  • Allow to cool in the tins for 10 minutes before turning out onto a cooling rack.
  • Place on a board and cut into 1" cubes. 

To make the fruit filling :
  • Peel and slice the fruit.
  • Tip into a pan with the fresh orange juice and cinnamon.
  • Bring slowly to the boil then turn down the heat and simmer for about 20 minutes or until the fruit is soft adding additional orange juice as required.
  • Sweeten with honey to taste.

I served this pudding with vanilla cashew cream.

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Thursday, 28 January 2016

My Favourite Superfoods - Cauliflower

What makes the simple cauliflower a superfood? Do you even like it or are you getting a little tired of seeing it popping up everywhere? Lucky for me, I've always adored the taste and texture of cauliflower, it was even considered to be a treat. But when I was growing up it was only ever cooked in season and not every day of the year. These days, the reliable Autumn cauliflower seems to be taking on much more of a starring role in the kitchen from making minor appearances in breadsticks and cakes to completely pushing the mighty old spud off stage.

Wednesday, 6 January 2016

Happy New Year 2016


Do you make New Year's resolutions? I don't see the point in them any more and why make resolutions to begin on the 1st of a new year. Why not today or tomorrow? In the past when I've made New Year's resolutions, I've never managed to stick to them for long and I've realised that, to some extent, they can actually cause some stress and anxiety and that's no way to start the New Year! However, I do try to set some goals but I don't set firm rules since I know they won't always work out.

Sunday, 1 November 2015

My Favourite Superfoods - Walnuts

Monkey nuts were one of my favourite snacks as a child but walnuts only ever made an appearance at Christmas in the bowl of mixed nuts on the table. I remember that they were the easiest nut to crack! But what a mess they made, tiny bits of shell flying all over the sparkling white tablecloth. Actually, walnuts aren't nuts, they're drupes. Drupes are fleshy fruits where the fruit surrounds a shell with a seed inside but unlike other drupes like cherries and peaches for example, we eat the seed of the walnut fruit instead of the flesh itself.

Thursday, 15 October 2015

Spicy Candied Walnut Pieces GF SCD

Since the festive season is approaching, I thought I'd share with you our recipe for candied walnuts which feature in my Waldorf Salad recipe. We use the walnut pieces because they're quite economical but if you prefer to use walnut halves, they will look much prettier!

Friday, 9 October 2015

My Favourite Superfoods - Apples

I don't really care for the popular buzzword "superfood" which is used to describe foods appearing in ever growing and ever changing lists promoted by the media and bloggers. Some of these are foods I'd never heard of before - foods which you wouldn't have had access to in the past.

Tuesday, 6 October 2015

Remembering the Food We Ate in the 60's and 70's

Over the last few years there has been a huge amount of focus on "healthy" eating and on how to solve the rapidly increasing food related illnesses and their impact on the National Health Service and the general health in society. My Facebook feed is flooded with recipes for "healthy" foods, sweet and savoury. Just recently I've been looking back and reminiscing about the foods we enjoyed to eat while I was growing up - when we had nobody telling us what is good and what is bad for us to eat, when we never considered "going on a diet" (that started to happen in the mid-70s) and when most of us were of a normal weight and certainly not hung up with body image as young teenagers. We lived in a world without the internet and with very little to watch on TV. A world where Chelsea Girl and C&A were the only large stores selling fashionable clothes and where people in Bradford could open an account at Brown and Muff's and be allowed to take home clothes on approval without paying for them first!

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