Scallion Soda Bread (Gluten Free)

Happy St Patrick’s Day! or ‘Lá Fhéile Pádraig Sona Daoibh!’

So a traditional Irish recipe is in order I think.  This soda bread is gluten free (of course) and flavoured with spring onions, or scallions as I keep being corrected. I didn’t have any buttermilk for this recipe so I’ve made my own version combining yoghurt and milk which works just as well and may even be a bit thriftier.

If you are looking for other Irish food inspiration then you could try these delicious gluten free potato farls here, otherwise…

Ingredients:

  • 1lb of Doves Gluten Free White Bread Flour
  • 2 eggs, topped up to 12fl oz with half yoghurt and half whole milk
  • 6 spring onions scallion, sliced finely
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • 1/2 oz of sugar
  •  1 oz of bicarbonate soda
  • 2 oz of butter

Method:

Pre-heat the oven to 200 degrees (fan) and oil a baking tray.

Mix all the dry ingredients in a large bowl and rub in the butter. Add the spring onions and mix.   Whisk up the egg, yoghurt and milk mixture then stir into the dry ingredients.  Turn out the dough onto a well floured board, the mix will be quite sticky so be generous with your dusting.  Knead the mix for a couple of minutes then form in to a large ball and plop onto the oiled tray.  Cut a deep (over half way) cross through the centre, brush with milk and dust with flour.

Bake in the oven for about 30/40 minutes, until golden and hollow sounding when you knock its bottom.

Serve with butter, cheese and chutney for tea or toasted the next day for breakfast.

‘Tabhair dom an rud céanna mar atá ag an fhear ar an t-úrlar!’ – translations sourced here.

Apple Crumble (Gluten Free)

I do love a good crumble, I can pretty much make a crumble mixture by eye these days but just for you I’ve measured out the quantities (I’m good to you aren’t I?).

Crumbles are the ultimate comfort food and served with custard can make many a grown man, or woman, weep with pleasure.  It’s a simple recipe and just as easy to make gluten free, if you aren’t a coeliac then just substitute gluten free flour for the ‘normal’ stuff.

I’ve made an apple one here because I’ve been popping down to my local market of late and getting the bargain of all bargains on big fat juicy Braeburns of 10 for a pound, can’t say fairer than that can you, but one can only eat so many apples a day in their raw form, so a crumble was in the offing from the moment those apples hit the bag.  You could use any fruit you like with this recipe, a bit of forced rhubarb would be nice or if you are making this at the end of the summer a few hedge picked blackberries in with the apples would go down a treat.  Right, enough waffling and onto the recipe.

Ingredients:

  • 4 oz gluten free plain flour (I used Dove’s Farm)
  • 2 oz of butter
  • 1 1/2 oz of sugar
  • 5 big apples
  • a handful of sultanas
  • 1/2 a teaspoon of ground cinnamon
  • A squirt of agave syrup
  • A baking dish about 25 cm long or whatever you;ve got

Method:

Pre heat the oven to 200 degrees.  Peel and chop the apples roughly then stew in a pan with the sultanas, cinnamon, agave syrup and a splash of water until tender.  Pour apples into dish.  Rub the butter into the flour until you have crumbs.  Add the sugar and stir.  Then sprinkle the crumble mixture on top and shake to settle.  Bake in the oven for a bout 30/35 min until starting to turn a light golden and the apples bubbling up from the bottom.

Serve with custard, make your own if you can be bothered, it is much better that way but don’t feel guilty if you just peel open a tub from the cupboard. I didn’t…

Sultana Scones (Gluten Free)

One of my earliest memories of cooking is making scones at nursery in Scotland, my memory is pretty hazy as the recollection seems to have me measure and mix these little cream tea beauties with no help at all, what I do remember is planning to make sweet scones and ending up with cheese but whatevs, it’s the thought that counts.  I’ve been thinking a lot about scones and Welsh cakes recently, I think I was inspired by LondonEats recipe here.  It made me remember another episode from childhood when visiting my grandparents in Cardigan, watching my Step Gran making them on the  griddle and  serving them up warm with butter and jam mmmmm, just thinking about them is making me dribble so I’ll definitely have to make a gluten free version soon.  Anyways onto the scones, I think I’d forgotten how easy these are to whip up, but simple they are and best eaten on the day or frozen to keep fresh.  These gluten free ones are quite crumbly but just as delicious and can easily be adapted to make plain scones or cheese ones by swapping in and out some ingredients (I don’t need to spell it out to you do I?)

Makes about 6

Ingredients:

  • 8oz of gluten free self raising flour
  • 2 oz of butter
  • 2 oz sugar
  • 1 egg
  • milk (I explain the measurement below)
  • A big handful of sultanas

Method:

Pre-heat the oven to 200 degrees (fan).

Rub the butter into the flour in a large bowl.  Mix in the sultanas. Crack an egg into a measuring jug add the sugar and then top up with milk until it reaches the 5 fluid oz mark.  Whip the egg and milk mixture together then add to the dry ingredients.  Stir together then get your hands in to form into a ball.  Flour a board and plop out and flatten so that your mixture is about 2/3 cm thick.  Cut out rounds with a cutter (in an ideal world) or in my world a small mug.  Place on a baking tray lined with parchment, brush with egg wash (not essential) and bake in the oven for about 15 min until golden.

Serve warm with lashings (love that word) of butter, jam and, go on then, a big fat dollop of cream.

Lemon and Ginger Punch

I was going to entitle this drink ‘Hard Lemonade’ because I had drunk one of said drinks at Pitt Cue Co earlier in the week and it was so delicious I’ve been thinking about it ever since. I had a couple of experiments with gin and lemons yesterday and made a pretty decent drink glass by glass but I wanted something I could get ready ahead of time and just pour when the urge took me and so this punch was born. Also after spending most of half term coughing, spluttering and blowing my nose I thought a nice lemon and honey drink was in order as it is medicinal isn’t it?!

It’s a light, refreshing and restorative little tipple that works well chilled over ice.  You could easily add gin or vodka to this but when I remembered I had this gingerbread rum leftover from Christmas it seemed to be fate.

Ingredients:

  • 4 lemons
  • 1 nugget of stem ginger
  • 1 dessert spoon of sugar
  • 2 teaspoons of honey
  • a slug of syrup from the stem ginger jar
  • about 3/4 pint of water
  • gingerbread rum or booze of your choice

Method:

Zest and juice 4 lemons into a jug, grate in the ginger and then stir in all the other ingredients and top up with water.  Add your glug of rum about 4/6 shots (?).  Chill the drink in the fridge for an hour or so and serve over ice.

Banana, Cinnamon and Sultana Cakes (Gluten Free) and the Fairy Cake Revolution

This is becoming a bit of a regular slot on here, they are just so easy to make and each week I seem to have a new ingredient that needs eating or cooking with before it goes to waste so here we have it another use for those spotty bananas at the bottom of the bowl, or if you’re looking for an alternative try this or this.

I do kinda like the idea of championing these little cakes, they seem to have disappeared in the whole cupcake phenomenon that has swept the world, it’s like a little fairy cake revolution!  All hail the humble fairy cake, whipped up easily by everybody, without the need for half a tonne of butter cream icing and designer names and price tags.  So this my friends is a little shout out to my  fairy cakes, I still love you!

Makes about 20

Ingredients:

  • 150g butter
  • 100g sugar
  • 150g gluten free self raising flour (I used Dove’s)
  • 3 eggs
  • 3 bananas, mashed
  • A big handful of sultanas
  • 1 heaped teaspoon of cinnamon

Method:

Pre heat the oven to 180 degrees (fan).  Cream the butter and sugar until pale and fluffy.  Beat in the eggs one by one. Add the mashed banana, sultanas and cinnamon and stir.  Mix in the flour and then spoon into cases, ab0ut 2/3rds full.

Bake for about 15 min or until golden and cooked through.  Leave to cool then share, spreading the word, the revolution is here, LONG LIVE THE FAIRY CAKE!!!

Cranberry, Chocolate and Clementine Fairy Cakes (Gluten Free)

I’ve basically nabbed the core recipe for fairy cakes from the side of the Dove’s Self Raising Flour pack here but I’ve added a bit of a twist by adding an ace little favour combination which was inspired by the dregs of my kitchen cupboard and fruit bowl.  I wasn’t sure this was going to work but it makes a pretty damn tasty batch of  moist, clementine scented cakes filled with morsels of dark chocolate and cranberry pieces.  These disappeared pretty sharpish in my office and will definitely be making a come back for any impromptu cake deserving sessions in the future, any old excuse will do.

Makes about 20 in bog standard fairy cake cases.

Ingredients:

  • 150g butter
  • 150g sugar
  • 150g gluten free self raising flour (I used Dove’s)
  • 1 small packet of dried cranberries
  • 100g dark chocolate
  • Juice and zest of 2 clementines

Method:

Pre heat the oven to 180 degrees.

 Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs one by one, add the orange juice and zest, then the cranberries, chocolate and flour.  Spoon into cases, about half full.  Bake for about 15 min or until lightly golden and cooked through.

Once cooked leave to cool, then eat, share and stand back and be proud – Well that would be the safest advice but actually what you want to do is try one of these little bad boys warm from the oven when the chocolate is still all melty and delicious and tell yourself you deserve it and really you are just checking the quality right? Yeah? You know what I’m talking about.

Spiced Pineapple and Rum Loaf (Gluten Free)

It’s getting chilly, the snow is starting to fall (well in Scotland and on WordPress!), decorations are going up and I’m getting all festive! Now is the time for warm spices, mulled cider or wine, clementines and all things cuddly and sparkly.

I had this pineapple that was starting to look a little sad in the corner of the kitchen and had somehow managed to let a bottle of rum fall into my shopping bag this morning, oops, so what better combination for a festive loaf thought I.

Not the prettiest of pictures, but pretty damn tasty...

Ingredients:

  • A whole pineapple
  • 4oz of sugar
  • 4oz of butter
  • 8oz of Doves Farm Gluten free Self Raising Flour
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 heaped teaspoons of mixed spice
  • A big handful of sultanas
  • 2 tablespoons of rum (I used some Gingerbread Rum, but a nice spiced one would be good too)
  • Some extra butter and brown sugar for greasing and the topping

Method:

Pre heat the oven to 170 degrees (fan oven).  Grease a loaf tin and heavily butter the base. Sprinkle the bottom with brown sugar, if you have muscovado use that, I just had some crappy granulated demerara and couldn’t be fecked to go out again.  Peel and core your pineapple.  Finely chop half the pineapple.  Slice the rest thinly, you won’t need all of it so help your self to a slice or three!

Cream the butter and sugar together.  Beat in the eggs, then the chopped pineapple, flour, sultanas, spice and rum.

Line the base of your loaf tin with pineapple slices, in an ideal world this will look pretty, in my world it will be a little bit of a mess.  Pour your batter on top and smooth down.

Pop into the oven and cook for about an hour, check with a skewer or knife and when it comes out clean it is done.

Serve warm with ice cream, custard or rum spiked cream or butter or cold with a nice cup of chai or a hot toddy.  I know what I’m having.