Isabel’s Pizza Dough Mix – Review

I’ve been meaning to write a short post about this wonder mix for some time.  This stuff is pretty much the closest I’ve got to a ‘normal’ pizzeria style base.  Not only that but it also doubles as a pretty awesome flat bread come garlic bread for chowing down with everything from curries to salads or just as a ‘I need carbs, craving doughy things’ snack (you know what I mean right?!).

So below is my gorgeous gluten free pizza with a tomato sauce, mozzarella and chorizo topping.

And just under here is my mouthwatering, lipsmacking, slightly chewy, slightly crispy, buttery garlic flat bread served here with a lentil and aubergine curry and trust me this is going to be appearing more than weekly on my plate from now on.   Once you’ve made the dough you can roll these out and freeze them ready to whack in the oven any time the craving takes you, I stick mine in the ice cube tray to keep them flat.

The mix is made from cassava starch, milk powder, salt and ‘natural flavours’ (whatever that means) and I buy mine from Ocado but if you look at their lovely website you can order online or find alternative stockists.

1 Curry Sauce 3 Ways

So last week I made that chickpea curry here, well guess what, I had some left over sauce and managed to stretch it out into 3 different dishes over the week with leftovers for lunch (I didn’t count the leftovers in the title).   Pretty smart huh? Anyways want to know the details of my genius? (I’ll stop with the sickening over confidence now)

1.  I started with the curry sauce on Sunday and made this lovely chickpea curry, then I portioned off some of that and added the leftovers of my roast into a tub and packed that up for lunch.

Chickpea Curry

2.  On Tuesday night I roasted off some aubergine chunks and boiled some lentils then plonked them all in a pot with half of the remaining curry sauce.  This provided me with dinner for one and a portion for lunch the next day.  For dinner I served it with a garlic flat bread using Isabel’s fantastic gluten free pizza dough mix smothered in garlic butter.

Aubergine and Lentil Curry with Gluten Free Garlic Flat Bread

3.  Then the final dish was a baked egg in curry sauce with peas and a gluten free pitta (or 2).  I poured the leftover sauce into a small baking dish (I heart Falconware!), cracked in an egg and baked in the oven at 200 for about 20 minutes.  Just before it was ready I boiled up some peas, scattered them across and toasted a pitta to dip in.

Curry Baked Egg with Peas and Pitta

So my dear readers, what d’ya think?  Nifty huh? Hope you like it x

My Instagram Feast

I said it would be a regular, so true to my word here is my recent Instagram feast:

From top left: Veggie Thali from Exmouth Market, Rhubarb and Ginger Crumble featured on LiveGlutenFree, veggies ready for Sunday roast, Chickpea Curry featured earlier in the week, 'oops I ate my dinner before taking a picture' - aka too greedy for own good, gluten free pizza made with Isabel's pizza dough mix, curry no 2 with aubergines and lentils and Isabel's pizza dough made into a garlic flat bread, breakfast of Bakery on Main St gluten free muesli mixed with yoghurt and fruit, and a recent supermarket indulgence of Warburtons Blueberry muffins, mmmm...

Recipe for the Gluten Free Rhubarb and Ginger Crumble can be found here.

Chickpea curry here.

If you’d like to see my last Instagram Feast you can click here.

Thanks for reading 🙂

Gluten Free on the Go

So I thought I’d have a go at another regular slot and feature some of the gluten free snackage and food products I’ve begun to notice popping up in cafes and highstreets recently.

So we’re going to start with that good old British stalwart, Marks and Spencers.  Now  M&S have been stocking some pretty awesome gluten free goodies for sometime in their food stores, their almond bakewell tray bake is something quite special and they do bread and other offerings too, not totally convinced on the bread personally but its good to know they are trying, right?  Anyway, did you know they had started selling gluten free sandwiches? Yeah? Yes, I know, I’m a bit slow on the uptake here but a couple of months ago I heard about them here and then about a month ago, desperate for a quick reprieve from the wails of ‘I’m hungry’ from my 3 year old, I collapsed into M&S Cafe Revive in Croydon to sate her poor rumbling belly.  And it was just as I was contemplating eating a whole casserole ready meal type affair from the cafe fridge that I saw them, gluten free cheese and pickle ploughmans sandwiches.

Sorry for the crappy picture here, it's a tad dim in the Cafe Revive Croydon!

The sandwich was pretty good, I did leave the crusts (not because I don’t want my hair to go curly!) because they were a tad dry and crumbly.  However the main body of the sandwich was soft and packed with filling, unlike alot of packed sandwiches I’ve had in the past.  So all in all I’d probably buy one again, but I would like to see them in all or at least more of their cafes and food stores, when I went to my parents over the Easter break they weren’t stocking them and so far Croydon is the only M&S I have spotted them in.  Have you seen these sandwiches in your local M&S?  Do you know of any better gluten free sandwich choices on the highstreet?  Let me know… 🙂

Quick Chickpea Curry

I’ve got 2 Cadbury’s Creme Eggs and a packet of Minstrels in the fridge and I’m feeling guilty so thought I’d knock up a healthy veggie curry for lunch that could double up as one of my weekday packed lunches leaving enough sauce to spare to make something quick and spicy for tea in the week – multi tasking food, you see that?  What more do you want? Anyway by my wonderful diet logic if I eat one healthy meal that means I can deffo have eaten at least one of those creme eggs by the end of the day, it’s a simple balanced equation right?

This curry is quick and simple to knock up and is pretty much made with store cupboard ingredients, in fact if you don’t have chickpeas, a tin of beans, some lentils or whatever veggies you have lurking about in your fridge would all make welcome additions to this spicy sauce.

So here we go…

Serves 2 with left over sauce for another meal in the week

Ingredients:

  • 2 onions, finely chopped
  • 1 tin of chopped tomatoes
  • 2 heaped teaspoons of medium curry powder
  • 1 heaped teaspoon of garam masala
  • 3 fat cloves of garlic, finely chopped
  • a thumb sized piece of ginger, finely chopped
  • A dessert spoonful of mango chutney
  • 1 tin of coconut milk (I used half fat – cus this is like diet food innit)
  • 1 tin of chickpeas

Method:

Soften the onions in a pot with a tablespoon of oil until translucent, add the ginger and garlic and fry for a minute or two.  Add the spices and let them fry for a further minute then add the tomatoes and let it bubble down for about 5 minutes, stirring now and then to prevent it from catching.  Add the chutney, salt and  coconut milk, then blitz with a hand blender (or in a machine), return to the heat and bring to the simmer.  This is where you can now syphon off half the sauce and stash in the fridge or freezer until a later date. Now add the drained and rinsed chick peas to the pot.  Simmer the chickpeas for a further couple of minutes until everything is heated through then serve.  I served mine with a gluten free pitta for lunch and I’ll be having the other portion for lunch on Monday with a bit of tonight’s left over roast chicken dinner stirred in, I love a bit of leftovers don’t you?

My Instagram Feast

So I’m still quite addicted to this Instagram lark, I check my feed daily to nosey at other people’s pictures, it’s like little windows into other worlds and I love it.  In an attempt to showcase some of my food and feeds over the past month or so I’d like to introduce you to ‘My Instagram Feast’ which will hopefully be a regular (ish) feature on this blog (if i can manage to take a picture before guzzling down my food – it’s a serious problem you know?! all too often I find myself out and about devouring the most exquisite gluten-free treats only to realise at the last mouthful I’d forgotten to take a picture – doh).  So anyways I was talking about my feast  yeah? Well you’re all invited to join the feast and if you want to keep up to date with my Instagram food fetish then follow me at @whatislaate.

From top left, picnic in the woods, Natural History Museum's mammoth salad selection, Sunday tray bake, Lindt Carrot (oh my), Aubergine Bake, new season British asparagus with tarragon beurre blanc, rather hazy gluten-free fish and chips (I was too excited at the prospect of batter to take a good shot!), victoria sponge (gf) and my dad's gluten-free Chinese spread (oh yeah)...

So whats your Instagram name?

Vlog!

So here it is, my first attempt at a video blog, I’ve been wanting to do one of these for a long time and finally realised I could just set up my laptop and use the webcam to film it – no this isn’t going to be nominated for a best filmography award, but it is a start.  It has taken a lot to get this far, every time I watch it I cringe and am truly  crushed by the often starring role of my big fat double chin!!!  ARGGHHH!!  But anyway, I’m 30 now and have to accept that I’m far from perfect and that my bum does look big in pretty much everything I wear (breaks into chorus of ‘I like big butts and I can not lie’).

So I hope you like it, please let me know, I’d love to hear what you think.  The recipe included is for a gram flour flat bread featured here and here with a dry potato and pea curry, very similar to the written recipes I’ve linked to.

Right so here we go (closes eyes, covers face and tries not to peek):

Thanks for watching and  let me know what you think by making a comment…

Chilli with Gluten Free Corn Tortillas

I’ve been dreaming about gluten-free tortillas or wraps since I stopped eating gluten, they are somewhat the holy grail of gluten-free finds and until recently I didn’t think anyone manufactured any good ones.  However, it seems there is a saviour, Saara at The Gluten Free Student Cookbook has found some at the Mex Grocer and she also had a go at making some here.  These looked great and I shall be certainly ordering some of the Mex Grocer ones for my freezer but after reading Thomasina Miers’ Mexican Food Made Simple over the last week I had ambitions to go authentic and cook some from scratch.  Now you’ll need to source some ‘Masa Harina’ flour first, not too difficult it would seem, it’s of course readily available online but also stocked at major supermarkets (I found mine in Sainsburys).  It’s a pretty simple recipe, I followed the one on the back of the packet which just involves adding hot water, Thomasina adds some oil to hers  and in hindsight I would recommend a glug into the mix to improve the flexibility of the finished tortilla.  The ones I made were not something you could easily use for a fajita or wrap but made a great flat bread type accompaniment to a chilli and certainly would work well in wedges, refried and served with guacamole, salsa, sour cream and cheese.

The chilli was mostly my own invention, whilst I nicked the idea for  the admission of chorizo from Thomasina the rest was a bit of this and bit of that from my imagination (oh yeah and a quick consultary call to my Dad).

Ingredients:

For the chilli:

  • 250g of lean beef mince
  • 250g of pork mince
  • a third of a ring of chorizo, chopped into small chunks
  • 2 medium onions, finely chopped
  • 1 stick of celery, finely chopped
  • 1 tin of chopped tomatoes
  • 200g carton of passata
  • 1 tin of kidney beans
  • 1 heaped teaspoon of mild chilli powder (crank up the heat on this if you can take it, I regretted the lack of spice but I was catering for a 3 year old too so added extra fresh chilli to mine at the end)
  • 1 rounded teaspoon of sweet smoked paprika
  • 1 tablespoon of sherry vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons of ketchup
  • 1/2 a tablespoon of agave syrup
  • 2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
  • 2/3 squares of dark chocolate
  • salt and pepper

For the tortillas (makes about 4, double, or triple for more):

  • 125g Masa Harina flour
  • 160ml of hot water
  • salt and pepper
  • a tablespoon of oil

Method:

Brown the mince and chorizo in a large pot.  Add the onion, celery and garlic and fry gently for a few minutes until tender.  Add the chilli powder and paprika and fry for a minute or so then add the tomatoes and passata and top with half a can of water.  Bring up to the simmer and add the vinegar, ketchup, syrup and salt and pepper.  Simmer with the lid on for about 30 min then add the kidney beans and cook on a low heat for a further 15 min.  Chuck in the chocolate, stir, then set aside until your tortillas are ready.

Mix the corn flour, salt, pepper, oil and hand hot water in a large bowl and bring together into a soft, clay like ball.  Cover and leave to rest for 15-30 min.  Take a golf ball sized chunk and roll in to a ball in your hands then place between the layers of a plastic sandwich bag.  Now this is where in an ideal world you would be a good Mexican cook and have a tortilla press to make fine looking circles with no cracks, however I’m not Mexican and I’m not very good either so instead I used a good old fashioned British rolling pin and made round (ish), cracked rustic circles, and when I say circles you can use your imagination there as well.  You want to aim for about 2mm thick but I say experimentation is the best way forward and find your way through trial and error, the odd snack or test case whilst cooking never did anyone any harm.  Heat a dry pan and cook your tortillas on a high heat for a couple of minutes each side until slightly puffed and charred. Keep your tortillas warm in a tea towel in a low oven whilst you assemble the rest of the meal.

I served my chilli in a bowl topped with a rough guacamole (chopped avocado, chilli and lime), sour cream, and grated cheese with the tortillas on the side to dip, wrap, mop up and devour.