Thursday, 19 July 2018

Coconut Flour Sub Rolls

I found a lovely recipe for a sub roll made without wheat flour on Divaliciousrecipes.  I liked the idea of the recipe which is made with coconut flour, psyllium husk and ground flaxseed.   With no yeast but using lots of eggs and some baking powder these rolls are actually very good indeed.  The texture is not the same as wheat bread but it is still very soft and easy to eat.  With the addition of garlic and onion powders the flavour is also very good.

The recipe is actually very easy to make and doesn't take long at all.  On the Divaliciousrecipes website it mention that these are low carb, 17g each but 11 grams of that being fibre that means that it is a good alternative to most breads.

I ate mine for lunch, filled with salad, ham and cheese.  But I am sure filled with sausage or bacon or almost anything would be good too.  

I was very happy with how mine turned out, they cut well and taste great.  I am sure these are not something I would eat all the time, but for something different or if watching carb intake they are a good choice(though I am not an expert at carb intake so don't take my word for it).  Mine were baked for the full 30 minutes before I was happy that they were firm enough.

I ought to mention that I did read that some ground psyllium husk powder turns purple when baking.  The powder that I bought was a white kind and didn't do that.
Coconut Flour Sub Rolls

                                  Coconut Flour Sub Rolls - Video
  • 62g(1/2 cup) coconut flour
  • 15g(2 tbsp) ground flaxseed
  • 24g(4 tbsp) ground psyllium husk
  • 5 medium eggs(large in USA) separated into yolks and whites
  • 30ml(2 tbsp) cider vinegar
  • 30ml(2tbsp) olive oil or coconut oil
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp ground onion powder
  • 1tsp ground garlic powder
  • 240ml(1 cup) boiling water.
  1. Preheat the oven to 180C/160C Fan/350F
  2. Line a baking tray with parchment paper, or a silicone mat.
  3. Place all the dry ingredients into a large bowl and mix to get them nicely combined.
  4. In another large bowl whisk the egg white until they reach the stiff peak stage, then set aside.
  5. Whisk the egg yolks in another bowl to give them a little volume and they turn slightly paler.
  6. Add the egg yolks into the dry ingredients and mix together.  It will not mix very evenly so use a spoon to get them combined into a crumbly mixture.
  7. Add the oil and cider vinegar and mix in as well, the mixture will still remain crumbly.
  8. Add the egg whites and gently fold in.  They will mix in but the mixture wont all come together.
  9. Add the boiling water and continue to mix gently until the whole mixture is combined into a wet consistency.  Form into a square that is level on top and leave to stand for 10 minutes for the moisture to be absorbed.
  10. Divide the mixture into four fairly equal portions and take each one, in turn, into your hands and gently form into a sub shape about 4 1/2 to 5 1/2 inches in length.  Then place on the baking tray leaving a gap between each.
  11. Bake in the oven for 25 to 30 minutes, until they feel firm to the touch.
  12. Remove from the oven and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely before cutting. 

Saturday, 14 July 2018

Brownie Pie

I got this idea for a Brownie Pie from a website that sells cake pans.  Basically the pie is a brownie base that is covered with some chocolate custard(or pudding in the USA).  I tried the recipe on that site and the resultant 'pudding' was distastrous, to say the least.  So for my Brownie Pie I have made a different type of pudding, but it tastes very good and spreads well to cover the brownie to a nice thickness.  

The recipe is quite straightforward, though with quite a few steps.  The tricky part is making the custard/pudding, since you have to whisk the mixture constantly to ensure that no lumps occur.

I used a 23cm/9 in round springform pan to bake the brownie, rather than the more usualy square tin.
Then I let it cool and tranferred it to a plate ready to receive the custard/pudding.

For decoration I sprinkled some mini chocolate chips and some mini marshmallows on the top and then drizzled  a little caramel sauce over as well.

Certainly it looked very good and those who ate it enjoyed it immensely.  I had just a small taste, once I had delivered it to where it was going, and must say it was great.
Brownie Pie

Brownie Pie - Video

For the Brownie Base:

  • 200g(1 cup) caster sugar(or granulated)
  • 65g(1/2 cup)plain flour
  • 40g(1/3 cup) cocoa powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 medium eggs(large in USA)
  • 60ml water
  • 120ml(1/2 cup) vegetable oil, or margarine, or butter melted.(I used coconut oil)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 200g(1 cup) dark chocolate chips

For the Chocolate Pudding/Custard:

  • 150g(3/4 cup) Caster Sugar(or granulated)
  • 2 1/2 tbsp cornflour
  • 25g(1/4 cup) cocoa powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 3 medium egg yolks(large in USA)
  • 90g (3 oz)dark chocolate, chopped finely
  • 80ml(1/3 cup) milk in one container( I used semi skimmed)
  • 320ml(1 1/3 cup) milk in another container( I used semi skimmed)
  • 80ml(1/3 cup) double or heavy cream
  • 14g(1 tbsp)butter, cubed
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

For the topping:

  • 45g(1 cup) mini marshallows(you may not need them all)
  • 100g(1 cup) mini chocolate chips(you may not need them all)
  • 45ml(3 tbsp) warmed caramel sauce for drizzling.


  1. Preheat the oven to 180C/160C Fan/350F.
  2. Grease and line the base and sides of a 23cm/9 in springform pan.
  3. Place all the ingredients for the brownie, except the chocolate chips, into a large bowl.
  4. Then mix together until fully combined.
  5. Add the chocolate chips and stir in to mix throughout.
  6. Pour the mixture into the cake tin and ensure that it is spread evenly.
  7. Bake in the oven for 20 mins.
  8. Remove from the oven and allow to cool in the tin before releasing and placing on a plate
  9. In a large bowl place the caster sugar and sift the cocoa powder and cornflour on the top, to remove any lumps in those items.
  10. Add the salt and mix in.
  11. Add 80ml of milk and the egg yolks into the dry ingredients and whisk together until all in combined and is smooth.
  12. Place the remaining milk and cream into a saucepan and heat on a medium heat until it begins to simmer.
  13. Slowly pour the milk mixture, whisking all the time, into the cocoa mixture.  Go slowly with the hot milk at first and then you can go more quickly.   Make sure to whisk constantly until the milk is all combined with the cocoa mixture.
  14. Pour the mixture back in the saucepan and return to a medium to low heat, whisking constantly to ensure no lumps appear.  Continue to heat until the mixture begins to bubble(you can turn the heat down at this stage) and keep whisking until the mixture thickens well.  The longer you cook the thicker it will become.
  15. Remove from the heat and pass the mixture through a sieve(into a bowl) to remove any lumps that may have appeared.
  16. Add the vanilla extract, mini chocolate chips and the cubed butter and stir until all is melted and combined into a smooth custard.
  17. Cover the surface of the custar with plastic wrap, pushing in onto the surface to avoid a film for forming.  Allow the custard to cool completely.
  18. When the custard has cooled completely spread it evenly onto the brownie.
  19. Sprinkle the mini chocolate chips and the marshmallows on the top, pushing down slightly.
  20. Drizzle some caramel sauce over the top and the brownie pie is ready to serve, or refrigerate for later.

Sunday, 8 July 2018

Cinnamon Swirl Pullman Loaf

I have made cinnamon swirl bread in another video but today I decided to make one with my pullman loaf tin.  This is a tin that makes a long loaf that provides 4 inch square slices.  They are perfect for toasting for breakfast.  Often people include raisins with the cinnamon and that is very good indeed.  But for mine I opted not to use raisins as the recipients prefer it without. 

The recipe can be used for a loaf in a 2lb loaf tin as well, but instead of being square slices the loaf will raise above the top of the tin and make larger slices.  

It is a simple to make recipe, but it does take some time as the dough needs to be rested, for proving.  But the waiting is all worth it since the resulting loaf is so tasty.

Mine turned out perfectly, with a lovely swirl on the inside and it tasted wonderful. It was ideal for slicing and then freezing so you can just use the number of slices you need each time and not worry about the bread going stale.

My pullman loaf tin is the type that doesn't need to be greased to prevent sticking.  But if you have a different type it is a good idea to lightly grease the tin to ensure easy release after baking.
Cinnamon Swirl Pullman Loaf
                    Cinnamon Swirl Pullman Loaf - Video Ingredients: 
  • 560g(4 1/2 cups)strong white bread flour(all purpose flour is fine too)
  • 56g(4 tbsp)softened butter
  • 50g(1/4 cup)caster sugar
  • 68g(2 1/2 oz)beaten egg(I beat 2 large eggs and took 68g keeping the rest for later)
  • 7g(1/4oz/1 packet)active dried yeast
  • 110ml(1/2 cup minus 2 tsp)water at 43C/110F
  • 175ml(2/3 cup + 1 tbsp) milk at 48C/120F
For the filling:
  • 100g(1/2 cup) caster sugar
  • 20g(8 tsp) ground cinnamon(adjust to your own taste)
  • remainder of beaten egg(+ a little milk if you don't have much egg)
  1. Grease a pullman loaf tin, unless it is one that doesn't need greasing.
  2. Add a teaspoon of sugar and the active dried yeast to the water and stir.  Then leave for 10 minutes to allow the yeast to activate.  It should become frothy.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer(you can do everything by hand but it takes much more effort) with a whisk attached, add the milk, egg, softened butter, sugar and the yeast mixture and whisk to combine.
  4. Change the whisk attachment for the dough hook and add about 1/3 of the flour and start to knead.
  5. Add the remaining 2/3 of the flour in two additions mixing each time.  Then continue to knead until the dough comes cleanly away from the side of the bowl and feels only slightly tacky to the touch.
  6. Tip the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and fold in on itself a few times to form into a ball.
  7. Place in a lightly greased bowl, top side down first and then turn over.
  8. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap or a damp towel and place in a draught free area for the dough to prove until it has doubled in size(about 1-2 hours).
  9. Tip the dough out onto a floured surface and roll out into a rectangle with the short side being slightly less than the length of the pullman loaf tin(I rolled about 12x16 inches).
  10. Mix the caster sugar and the cinnamon together.
  11. Brush egg was over the surface of the rolled dough and sprinkle the cinnamon and sugar over the top, leaving a small gap at the edge.
  12. Roll the dough, from the short side, into a sausage shape, brushing the exposed dough as you go.
  13. Turn the sausage so the seam is shown and pinch it together to seal.
  14. Pinch the ends in too to seal them.
  15. Place the dough into the pullman loaf tin, seam side down and press into the corners, trying to make the dough level.
  16. Slip the lid of the pullman loaf tin on and close.
  17. Allow to prove again, until the dough is about 1/2 inch from touching the lid(you will have to open it to see this).
  18. As the dough proves preheat the oven to 180C/160C Fan/350F.
  19. Bake the loaf in the oven for 45 minutes.
  20. Remove from the oven and tip out onto a wire rack, allowing it to cool completely before slicing.

Wednesday, 4 July 2018

Flourless Almond and Coconut Cake

I saw what looked to be a very nice recipe on Belinda Jeffery's website for an almond, coconut and vanilla cake that contained no flour.  I rather liked the idea of it, being a big fan of both almond and coconut.  So I decided I would try it out, but with a couple of minor amendments.  

I included some Sicilian lemon extract in mine and I changed the method, to whip the eggs until they were rather thicker than just frothy.  I also added the butter as last ingredient snd folded it in gently, to try to leave a little more air in the batter as the cake will be moist and I wanted it to be as light as possible. 

Now I think this cake is ideal as a dessert, with cream, custard or ice cream as well as being eaten just as a cake.

Although I baked mine in a 9inch/23cm round springform pan it could easily be made in an 8 inch/20cm square tin, and then cut into squares.

I topped mine with flaked almonds but some coconut sprinkled on top would be very good too.  It baked well and once cooled and cut into slices it tasted wonderful, moist with all the lovely flavours of almond, coconut, vanilla and lemon.  
Flourless Almond & Coconut Cake

                  Flourless Almond & Coconut Cake - Video
  • 190g(1 2/3 cups) ground almonds
  • 60g(2/3 cups) dessicated coconut
  • 250g(1 1/4 cups) caster sugar
  • 200g(13 tbsp) melted butter, cooled
  • 4 medium eggs(large in USA)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp almond extract
  • 1/2 tsp lemon extract
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 20g(about 2 tbsp) flaked almonds.
  1. Preheat the oven to 180C/160C Fan/350F.
  2. Grease and line a 9 inch/23cm round springform pan(or an 8inch/20cm square tin).
  3. Whisk the eggs, in a large bowl, until they have gone pale and thickened a little.
  4. Add the vanilla, lemon and almond extracts and whisk to combine.
  5. In another bowl mix the ground almonds, coconut, salt and sugar until they are well combined.
  6. Add those dry ingredients into the egg and gently fold until all is combined.
  7. Add the melted butter and fold in, gently, until all is combined.
  8. Pour the mixture into the cake tin and bake in the oven for 40 minutes, then test to see if the top is springy when pressed.  If so take it out of the oven, if not then bake for a few minutes more and test again.
  9. Place the cake, in the tin, on a wire rack and allow to cool completely.  Then remove from the tin and place of a plate for serving.

Thursday, 28 June 2018

Sicilian Sesame Biscuits/Cookies

Reginelle di Palermo are a Sicilian biscuit, coated with sesame seeds.  I have seen this in various websites and they looked very good.  They appear to come in different sizes, I suppose dependent how you want to make them.  

Often they are flavoured with anise or saffron. Sometimes some jam is mixed into the dough as well.  For mine I decided I would simply use a little lemon zest and vanilla to flavour mine beyond the lovely taste of the sesame seeds.

Traditionally these biscuits are made using baking ammonia(ammonium bicarbonate) and lard.  These days baking soda and butter are substituted for those ingredients. I was lucky enough to find some baking ammonia in a local Polish store, so that is what I am going to use.  Baking ammonia was commonly used in baking before the advent of baking soda and baking powder.  It actually creates, apparently, a crisper biscuit that is achieved with baking soda or baking powder.  But using baking soda will certainly give a nice crisp biscuit.  

Lard too helps to create the crispness of the biscuit, different to butter.  But some people may prefer to use butter, simply for the extra flavour.  It will work fine too.

The recipe is actually very simple and doesn't take too long either.   For mine I decided on small biscuits that you can just pop into your mouth.  They spread and grow a little in the oven, but still remain small enough to eat easily. You can make them any size you want, but remember that larger ones will take longer to cook.

I was very pleased with how mine turned out, and it was difficult not to eat rather too many. They were lovely and crunchy with a great taste of sesame and a little vanilla, though I didn't really taste the lemon zest, maybe a little more zest would have been better.
Sicilian Sesame Biscuits/Cookies

                       Sicilian Sesame Biscuits/Cookies - Video
  • 250g(2 cups)cake & pastry flour(plain flour will be ok)
  • 80g(7tbps) lard(butter can be used, or margarine)
  • 80g(3/8 cup) sugar
  • 35g(1 1/4 oz) beaten egg
  • 20ml(4 tsp) milk
  • 5ml(1 tsp) vanilla extract
  • 1tsp lemon zest
  • 4g(1 tsp) baking ammonia(baking soda is ok)
  • pinch of salt
  • 100g(3 1/2 oz) sesame seeds. (have more seeds available in case you need them)
  • Remainder of egg and some water to coat cut out dough.
  1. Place the flour into a large bowl and add the lard.
  2. Cut the lard into the flour, rubbing between your fingers too, until it has broken down and you have a sand-like texture to the flour.
  3. Sprinkle over the sugar, baking ammonia, salt and lemon zest and mix to combine well.
  4. Pour in the milk, egg and vanilla extract and stir to bring the mixture together into a clumpy, powdery dough.
  5. Tip out onto the work surface and use your hands to pull the mixture together into a smooth dough.  This will take a minute or so but will come together easily.
  6. Form the dough into a flat disc and wrap in cling wrap, then chill in the fridge for 30 minutes.
  7. Preheat the oven to 200C/180C Fan/400F.
  8. Line a couple of baking trays with parchment paper, or silicone mats.
  9. Take the dough out of the fridge and roll to a about .5 to1 cm( 1/4 to 1/2 inch) and cut into strips about 4 cm(1 inch) wide.  Then cut each strip into pieces about 1cm(just under 1/2 inch) wide. Or whichever size you prefer.
  10. Take each piece and gently dip, or coat, in the egg/water mixture and then dip into the sesame seeds, turning over to coat completely.  
  11. Place on a baking sheet, leaving a gap between each to allow spreading.
  12. Bake in the oven for 15 minutes.
  13. Remove from the oven and allow to cool before eating.

Sunday, 24 June 2018

Mini Oat and Multiseed Bites

I came across something called Aussie Bites, which are sold in the USA.  They are promoted as being a taste of 'down under' though I couldn't find any confirmation that they are eaten in Australia.  However I did like the look of them, as they have lots of very good indredients, as well as not too much sugar.  So I decided to make a version of them, but to call them Mini Oat and Multiseed Bites.

These are made in a mini muffin tin and are very simple to make. I based mine on a recipe on but I changed a few things and reduced the amounts as I only wanted a batch of 24.

Although I have designated particular ingredients I dont think it matters too much which seeds etc you use, this can be to taste and what you might have readily available.  So for instance some chopped nuts might be nice instead of sunflower seeds. 

Mine turned out very well, and are just a perfect size for a little snack.  The taste and texture are great, with the various seeds and the apricots and raisins add a nice fruity edge.
Mini Oat & Multiseed Bites

Mini Oat & Multiseed Bites - Video

  • 145g(1 3/4 cup) rolled oats
  • 48g(1/4 cup) dried apricots
  • 40g(1/4 cup) raisins
  • 35g(1/4 cup)sunflower seeds
  • 25g(1/4 cup)ground flaxseed(linseed)
  • 17g(1/4 cup)dessicated coconut
  • 12g(2 tbsp) chia seeds
  • 50g(1/4 cup) cooked quinoa 
  • 50g(1/4 cup) caster sugar
  • 56g(1/4 cup) butter, melted
  • 60ml(1/4 cup) vegetable oil
  • 60ml(1/4 cup)honey
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  1. Preheat the oven to 180C/160C Fan/350F
  2. Grease a 24 hole mini muffin tin(I only had 12 holes, so cooked in two batches).
  3. In a food processor(I did everything in an immersion blender grinding half the oats first) place half the oats and grind until fine, then pour into a bowl.
  4. Place the remaining oats, apricots, raisins, sunflower seeds, flaxseed, coconut, chia seeds, quinoa, sugar and baking powder into the processor and blitz until the raisins and apricot have been chopped into smaller pieces, then pour into the bowl with the ground oats.
  5. Mix all the dry ingredients together.
  6. Add the oil, honey, melted butter and vanilla extract and mix until all is well combined.
  7. Divide the mixture evenly into the muffin tin holes(about 25-26 grams in each) and press down to compact.
  8. Bake in the oven for 10 to 12 minutes, until the top has risen slightly, dried and changed to a lighter colour.
  9. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 5 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely.

Wednesday, 20 June 2018

Chocolate Sponge with Chocolate Ganache and Raspberry Jam

I have to make a cake for a great-niece whose birthday will be soon.  She really enjoys chocolate cake with ganache.  So in preparation for that I decided to make a simple version of a chocolate sponge, with two layers and to sandwich them together with a layer of raspberry jam and chocolate ganache.  Then to cover the whole thing with more ganache and finally a chocolate glaze.

For the cake recipe I used a method that depends on the weight of the eggs, in their shells.  The other ingredients, butter, sugar, flour and cocoa powder are all based on the weight of the eggs.  Then just a little baking powder and milk are added too.

For the filling I used seedless raspberry jam, the amount is dependent on taste and I decided upon 4 tablespoons as a good amount. Then a thick layer of silky chocolate ganache.

The remaining ganache is then used to cover the cake and it is chilled to let it set up a little.  That way it is ready to have a chocolate glaze poured over to finish it off.  Of course, for a birthday cake you can write on it but I didn't do that since this was just a trial.

My sponges turned out very well indeed, having baked for 25 minutes and when the filling and coating were put on it looked good and tasted great too, though very rich.  I think small slices are ideal.
Chocolate Sponge with Chocolate Ganache & Raspberry Jam


                    Chocolate Sponge with Chocolate Ganache & Raspberry Jam -Video
For the sponge cake:
  • 4 medium eggs(large in USA) weighed with shells on. (240g for mine)
  • The weight of eggs in softened butter (so 240g)
  • The weight of eggs in caster sugar(granulated would be fine)(so 240g)
  • 3/4 the weight of eggs in plain flour, or cake flour (so 180g)
  • 1/4 the weight of eggs in cocoa powder so(60g)
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • dash of milk(I needed 1/2 tsp), if required.
For the filling:
  • 4 tbsp raspberry jam(or as much as you prefer)
  • 500g(17 1/2 oz) dark chocolate chopped into small pieces
  • 400ml(1 2/3 cups) double cream
For the glaze:
  • 120ml(1/2 cup) double cream
  • 60ml(1/2 cup) water
  • 200g(1 cup)caster sugar
  • 20g(4 tbsp)cocoa powder
  • 7g(1/4 oz) gelatine powder
  • 60ml(1/4 cup) boiling water
  1. Preheat the oven to 180C/160C Fan/350F.
  2. Grease 2 8 inch cake tins, preferably loose bottomed, and line the base with parchment paper.
  3. In a large bowl place the softened butter and sugar and cream together until light and fluffy.
  4. Beat the eggs together and gradually beat them into the butter mixture until all is mixed in completely.
  5. In a bowl mix the baking powder and cocoa powder into the flour and then sift onto the butter mixture.
  6. Gently fold the dry ingredients in until a smooth batter is formed.
  7. Add a little milk and mix in if the batter is too stiff.
  8. Divide the mixture equally into the two cake tins and spread until level and covering the entire base.
  9. Bake in the oven for 20 to 25 minutes, until the cakes are springy to the touch.
  10. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for a few minutes in the tins,  then transfer to a cooling rack, removing the paper from the base.
  11. Heat the 400ml of cream in a pan until just boiling.
  12. Pour over the 500g of chocolate and stir to get mixed in, then leave for a couple of minutes to allow the chocolate to melt.
  13. Stir again until all the cream is mixed in and the mixture is silky smooth.
  14. Allow to cool completely, then whisk until the ganache is fluffy and has changed to a paler colour.
  15. Spread the jam over the cake you are using as the base.
  16. Spread about 1/3 of the ganache onto the jam and place the second cake on top.
  17. Use the remaining ganache to spread over the entire top and sides of the cakes, making it a nice even coating.
  18. Place the cake in the fridge to let the ganache set up ready for the glaze.
  19. Heat the 120ml of cream with the sugar, cocoa powder and 60ml of water, for about 20 minutes, stirring from time to time, until it has thickened.
  20. In a jug pour 60ml of boiling water and sprinkle over the gelatine, then whisk vigorously until fully dissolved.
  21. Remove the glaze mixture from the heat and pour in the gelatine, stirring all the time until fully combined.
  22. Allow the mixture to cool down(you can help this by placing in a bowl on some ice) until just warm, about 26C/80F.
  23. Remove the cake from the fridge onto a wire rack, or a plate.
  24. Pour the glaze over the top and use a spatula to spread over, letting it run down and coat the sides.
  25. Leave the cake until the glaze has set before slicing.