My Self Proclaimed Bake off Challenge: Week 6

Did anyone else enjoy last week as much as me!? I really wanted to try those dairy free ice creams, the closest I’ve come to finding one that tastes like normal ice-cream is by Almond Dream – definitely worth a try.

So this week is pasIMG_2659try week. I was slightly scared about this one… how on earth could I make a ‘healthy’ pastry without butter?! I started off by experimenting and attempting to make a healthy cinnamon roll. The picture makes it clear that this was definitely my most unsuccessful experiment to date…

That is when I realised that all pastry isn’t good for you, so why was I trying to make a ‘healthy pastry’ when this is nearly impossible? This lead me to make a raw treat which I’ve called Cinnamon Balls. They are super easy to make and I can’t wait to see some of you try them when I release the recipe in my Ebook in october. My family have said they have ‘just the right amount of cinnamon’ which I was very proud of so hopefully you will like them too.

Here a picture of them to get your mouth watering! They are honestly so delicious!
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My Self Proclaimed Bake Off Challenge: Week 5

So I, along with many others I’m sure, was thrilled to hear that this week bake off are doing an ‘alternative ingredients’ week. So no dairy, sugar or gluten. YAY! Finally, a week where I can watch the contestants struggle as much as I do to create delicious baked goods which are dairy free with sugar alternatives and aIMG_2570 lot of the time which contain zero gluten. I’m so excited to see what they come up with.

Here’s what I came up with this week: Nutella Cookies – dairy free, gluten free and refined sugar free. And to top it all off they are also vegan friendly.

The recipe will be available in my Ebook which will be released in October. It was definitely a winner and the whole batch went as soon as I brought them to a friends house. I can’t wait for you all to try them.

Here are my top tips for baking with alternative ingredients:

  1. Apple sauce makes for a great replacement for butter, as well as adding sweetness meaning you can use less sugar in the recipe (however be careful to keep the same consistency).
  2. From my experience, self raising gluten free flour does not work! You are much better off using a normal gluten free flour (my favourite is buckwheat) and adding a teaspoon of baking powder per 100g to make it self raising.
  3. Bananas always do wonders in cakes where you are missing butter – they help make it moist and lovely. But be careful not to lose the flavour of the rest of your ingredients by adding in a banana as replacement. Banana bread is wonderful but not when it’s everything you bake!
  4. Maple syrup and agave syrup do make lovely cakes, cookies, cupcakes etc but you may need to add in some ground nuts or more flour so that the mixture is not too loose.
  5. Dates. They really help to naturally sweeten a bake (when well blended and mixed into the mix) – using dates however will take some trial and error as it changes the consistency a lot and you may have to change up a lot of quantities. Practice makes perfect!
  6. Try the batter. Even though some times I end up eating a bit too much, it really does help you get a feel for the recipe and if you need more sweetener or chocolate etc.

Good luck and get baking!!

My Self Proclaimed Bake Off Challenge: Week 4

So to start of with I have some exciting news! I have decided to release an Ebook after the bake off with all of my creations along the way! This week the recipe is honestly probably the best thing I’ve come up with: Raw Chocolate Torte. IMG_2506Although it is higher in calorie than my other recipes, it is most definitely dessert worthy and although rich, it is a light and delicious summer recipe which will be available in the Ebook. I think you’ll all love it!

Tip: The key thing about this Torte which is better than many alternatives is that it won’t leave you with a big sugar crash later in the day. I have used Agave syrup and coconut sugar (which is not refined) to sweeten it which are slower releasing and far better to add to your baking. If you are looking to make your cakes a little healthier you can simply replace the sugar in a recipe with coconut sugar (although be careful as coconut sugar can dry out cakes a bit so you may have to compensate with other ingredients!) and its roughly 2/3 agave to 1 cup of sugar.

 

Keep your eyes open for more details regarding the Ebook which will be released next month!

My Self Proclaimed Bake Off Challenge: Week 3

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It’s basically good for you

So this week is Bread Week. In anticipation for this weeks episode I have already made our tried and tested banana bread. Maybe not the type of bread Mary and Paul would be expecting for this week, but my mum and I, and the rest of the family love it, so it was a must.

When I first tried this bread, I still remember how sceptical I was. My mum had just found out she was lactose intolerant and was finding it very hard to come to terms with the fact she couldn’t have her ordinary snacks anymore. So my first bite, like most would be when you hear a cake has no butter and no sugar, was taken with apprehension. But it was delicious! I promise you that if you make this you will not be disappointed. It is so moist and light, yet still really fills you up. I’m also currently working on a vegan version so keep your eyes open!

Ingredients:

  • 3 bananas (mashed) – works best when they are very ripe!
  • 100g wholemeal flour
  • 100g oatbran
  • 2 large egg whites
  • 1 whole sweet apple skinned, cored and grated
  • 4 tbsp truvia baking blend
  • 1 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1 1/4 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon

Method:

  • Mix all the dry ingredients.
  • Mash the banana’s with the egg whites and whisk until smooth.
  • Add the wet mixture to the dry ingredients and combine.
  • Pour into a 9inch loaf tin and bake on 180 degrees celcius (fan assist) for 50-55 minutes until browned and springy to the touch.
  • Allow to cool and it should keep for a week in an air tight tin.

This is a real winner with my family and anyone who tries it, we love to have a slice with a nice cup of tea in the afternoon.

My Self-Proclaimed Bake Off Challenge: Week 2

It’s that time of year again… the time of year baking-lovers and Mary Berry fan girls like me live for… The Great British Bake Off is back. Every year I’ve said that I want to bake something along with the show every week, and every year I’ve never done it. This year I decide11856257_10154161598524358_2033816689968669527_od it was time!

Last week I started by trying to make a vegan Madiera cake. Considering I’d never tried this before and was kind of winging it with
the recipe, I was happy with how it turned out. However, the consistency wasn’t quite right. It turned out more like a dense malt-loaf texture than a fluffy Madiera cake and the crack on the cake wasn’t quite up to Mary’s standards. When I’ve perfected the recipe I will share it but for now it will remain a secret!

This week however I will share with you my mum and I’s tried and tested biscotti recipe. We like to call them ‘Nev’s Biscotti’ after a very special friend. They really are delicious and are slightly healthier than the shop bought alternatives and standard recipes due to their lack of butter, refined sugar and flour with higher protein content. Here it is!

Almond and cranberry biscotti

Ingredients:

  • 140g blanched almonds
  • 125g quinoa flour
  • 100g oatbran
  • 80g coconut sugar
  • 3 large eggsIMG_2361
  • 50g dried cranberries
  • 1teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Method:

  • Bake the almonds on the oven on 180C fan for ten minutes. Remove and cool and turn the oven down to 150C. When the almond are cool chop into pieces.
  • Beat the eggs, vanilla, almond extract and set aside.
  • In another bowl combine to flour, oatbran, sugar, baking powder and salt.
  • Add the egg mixture and beat to form a sticky dough.
  • Add the cranberries and almond pieces and fold in using a spoon.
  • On a baking tray lined with
  • A silicone sheet pour the mixture to form two long sausage shapes about 30cms long, 8cms wide and bake for 30-40 mins or until golden brown and firm to the touch.
  • Removed from the oven and leave to cool for a few minutes then cut into slices of about 1.5/2cms wide and place back on their sides and into the oven for a further 5-7 minutes each side.
  • Leave to cool and enjoy.

If you do make them be sure to let us know by tagging us on instagram/twitter/facebook as we would love to see!