Baguette, Baguette, Baguette!!! (improved recipe for home made gluten free dairy free bread)

It has come a long way to achieve this wonderful quality and stable recipe for our home made gluten free dairy free bread. This bread is made with a generous amount of golden flaxseeds and gluten free oat. It smells phenomenal when baking in the oven and the freshly baked baguette has a crunchy crust and a beautiful nutty flavour. In my opinion, It’s well worth the effort to make these bread even you are not gluten or dairy intolerant.

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The magic ingredients – Golden Flaxseeds & Psyllium Husks

One of the major challenges of making gluten free bread is to provide a structure for the yeast to work, so the dough will rise during proofing. Gluten in wheat flour provides an amazing quality that would give the bread dough the elasticity and network. To replace the gluten and to give the dough the structure, you could use natural ingredients like xanthan gum or psyllium husks, etc. Personally I prefer to use psyllium husks to xanthan gum, for the former gives you a dough that you can shape into different bread, while the latter tend to give us a runnier dough which is good for pouring into a baking tin.

However, too much psyllium husks is not necessary good for you. Too much fibre intake could cause you problems as much as it would with too little fibre. That’s the reason why we started adding higher ratio of golden flaxseeds (grounded) as it provides soluble fibre which our body would accept better.

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Improved Recipe – Gluten Free Dairy Free Bread

(2 pound bread loaf or two 16 inch baguette)

Ingredients:

100g              ground golden flaxseeds (preferred to brown flaxseeds for a nuttier flavour)

350g              water

100g              ground gluten free oat

(Optional 10g of poppy seeds for enhanced flavour)

100g             rice  flour (50/50 with brown rice flour)

50g               corn starch

20g                ground psyllium husks

15g                caster sugar

10g                instant yeast

One                medium size egg (room temperature)

30g                olive oil

7g                  sea salt

***Pre-heat your oven to 170 to 220 degrees C, see Step 8 for detail***

Step 1 – Bring the ground flaxseeds with 350g of water to boil, and then transfer to the kitchenaid stand mixer with a dough hook to cool down to hand warm temperature.

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Step 2 – Mix the other ingredients, except the egg, olive oil and the sea salt, in a separate bowl.

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Step 3 – Once the ground flaxseed mixture is cooled to the desired temperature, pour the ingredients above into the stand mixer with the egg (except the oil and the salt). Turn to a very low speed at 1 or 2 and mix the ingredients until the they are all blended well. With mark 2 or 4, it could take as long as 5 to 10 minutes. You will find the dough much wetter than traditional bread. (Optional – You could use 300g of water instead of 350g, but I find the dough not rise as much with less water ratio)

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Step 4 – Now add the olive oil and patiently let the oil mixed well into the dough. At first, the dough will get separated by the oil and it did not look right. But don’t worry if you give the mixer enough time and at a low speed, the oil will eventually get absorbed into dough. This step is very important as an undermixed dough would not rise.

Step 5 – I tend to add the salt in the last stage of the mixing, so to allow the yeast and sugar work more in the beginning of the process. It should just take a couple of minutes to mix the salt into the dough evenly.

Step 6 – Now you could dust your work surface and your hands with corn starch. Please just put enough of corn starch to allow you to pick up the dough to work with. Excess amount of corn starch will affect the consistency of the dough quality and any destruction of the structure (with psyllium husks and flaxseeds) affect the proofing.

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Step 7 – It is a dough that you can shape with but as it is wetter than the normal wheat flour dough and its delicate, I tend to roll it flat with a rolling pin, and then shape it as a bread loaf or baguette gently. Then cover your dough with a plastic bag (sealed if you could). The dough should rise double in size in half an hour in room temperature or a warm corner in your house.

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Step 8 – For soft crust go for 170 degrees. For crunchy crust 220 degrees. Aim 30 minutes for baguettes and 40 minutes for bread loaf. You will know when it is cooked through if it sounds hollow when taping the bottom of the bread loaf/ baguette.

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Enjoy your home made bread with your loved ones!

There is always a cake for you! – Gluten free dairy free chocolate cupcakes with ganache topping

Can you imagine sitting in a room with 30 other people indulging themselves with home made cupcakes, and all you could do is watching them enjoying these beautiful little cakes? I certainly can, but I would be so deeply depressed!

So a couple of days before a charity children party organised by Birthdays with Love, and thanks to my good friend and mentor Three Thrum Mum, I had a little experiment with some gluten free and dairy free chocolate cupcakes. They do taste just like what you would expect – luxurious, heavenly chocolaty, melts in your mouth – as a good chocolate cupcake should be!

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This is how I made them (12 standard cupcakes):

Ingredients for the chocolate cupcakes (gluten free and dairy free):

120 g of gluten free flour (1/3 corn starch, 1/3 rice flour, 1/3 sweet potato flour)

1 tsp of gluten free baking powder

1/4 tsp of xanthan gum

1/4 tsp of kosher salt

40 g of good quality unsweetend cocoa powder

Mix the above dry ingredients and sieve once

2 medium size eggs

60 g of unrefined cane sugar/ light brown sugar

60 g inverted sugar (this is the magic ingredient to keep the cakes moist for longer)

70 g of grape seed oil (I prefer this to coconut oil for it would not affect the taste of the final product)

50 g of soy milk or water

Step 1 – Pre-heat your oven to 180 degree C

Step 2 – Whisk the eggs together with the sugar until its fluffy and pale (hand held mixer or stand mixer)

Step 3 – Sieve in/ pour in the dry ingredients, the inverted sugar, the oil and the soy milk into the egg mixture. You can either turn on the stand mixer just for a a few seconds or by hand folding in the ingredients until blended

**Please note the batter is very liquid but it would make some lovely light fluffy and round cupcakes

Step 4 – Pour roughly around 35 g of the batter in each of the cupcake cases and bake them in the oven at 180 degrees C for around 15 minutes

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Ingredients for the dark chocolate ganache (dairy free):

100 g of good quality dark chocolate (chopped to small pieces and 70% would be the best option)

100 g of soy milk

a dash of vanilla essence

Step 1 – Bring the soy milk to boil. Pour onto the dark chocolate.

Step 2 – Let it sit for a minute or two, and then stir with a spatula until all melted and glossy

Step 3 – Use it however way you like it! I just simply hold the cakes upside down and drown them into this chocolate bath!

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What is next? EAT THEM!

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A Luxury Morning Treat (Apricot, Pistachio, Maple Syrup – gluten free dairy free flapjacks)

Believe me, you have to try it and you will know exactly what I mean. I almost thought I was in a cinema! The smell of the camalised maple syrup reminds me so much of those naughty popcorns. I love it!

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You could argue these oat bars are not as healthy as the ones I made before (basic flapjack recipe). But my goodness me the magic of maple syrup is unbelievable. And with the addition of pistachios and apricot – this is truly indulgence. It’s no ordinary flapjacks!

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Apricot, Pistachio & Maple Syrup Flapjacks

I made 33 finger size flapjacks with a rectangular pan of 12 inches x 20 inches.

You will need:

350g gluten free rolled oats
175g coconut oil (or same amount of butter)
175g maple syrup
125g unrefined raw sugar
50g pistachios (shelled and toasted)
150g dried apricot (cut into small pieces)

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**preheat your oven to 160 degrees c

Step 1 – Put the sugar, the coconut oil, and the maple syrup in a saucepan. Heat it up in low heat and stir it until all the sugar has melted

Step 2 – Pour the heated wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix mix mix until all the liquid is absorbed to the rolled oats (it should just be bind without too much excess liquid or it won’t be crispy)

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Step 3 – Transfer the mixture into a greased baking tin (I used a non stick silicon cloth in the tin) and spread it evenly with a spatula

Step 4 – Bake it in the 160 degrees c oven for 30 to 40 minutes (until it’s beautifully golden brown and you can see all the liquid is absorbed). When you touch the top with your finger, it may not feel crispy yet but it should feel it comes together in one piece.

Step 5 – Now be patient and don’t take the flapjacks out from the oven. Turn off the oven, leave the door open for an inch, and leave the flapjacks in the oven overnight.

First thing in the morning, you will have these beautiful crunchy crispy tasty oatbars for breakfast!

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These luxury oatbars or flapjacks do taste different to the basic ones, with a more nutty and carmalised flavour. Forgive me for saying this again, this is a pretty easy thing to make and it would keep for a good few weeks in an airtight tins. Great nibbles and taste absolutely gorgeous! Enjoy your baking!

“6 beautiful ingredients and 5 basic steps – you have a great snack and breakfast for your family!”

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Flapjacks are uncool? Let’s change their point of view! (Gluten free Dairy Free oat bars with coconut oil and other goodies)

What? Flapjacks are uncool? This is a bold comment from The Guardian when I did a search for flapjacks on the web last night!

What if we made it with goodies like coconut oil, gluten free rolled oats, honey, luxury mixed dried fruits, a pinch of lemon rind, a pinch of roasted hazelnuts and a little touch of ginger? I think anything home made and easy to make is very cool!

This is the breakfast I had this morning – home made flapjacks/ oat bars with beautiful home made yoghurt and fresh passionfruit, alongside with a cup of English breakfast tea. What a wonderful morning!

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These oat bars are so easy to make and they are great healthier alternatives for snacks. I started measuring up ingredients at 11.30pm last night and I was bed by 12.15am, smiling in my bed as I will have lovely breakfast when I wake up! The wonderful smell from the baking is just phenomenal!

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I made 39 finger size flapjacks with a rectangular pan of 12 inches x 20 inches.

Basic Gluten Free Flapjacks (oatbars)

You will need:

350g gluten free rolled oats
175g coconut oil (or same amount of butter)
175g honey
175g unrefined raw sugar (reduce by half if you add any dried fruits)
A drop or two of lemon juice

Optional – I also added a handful of mixed dried fruits, Roasted hazelnuts, fresh lemon rind, and a pinch of ground ginger

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This is how I do it:

**preheat your oven to 160 degrees c

Step 1 – Put the sugar, the coconut oil, and the honey in a saucepan. Heat it and stir it until all the sugar has melted

Step 2 – Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix mix mix until all the liquid is absorbed to the rolled oats

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Step 3 – Transfer your mixture into a greased baking tin (I used a non stick silicon cloth in the tin) and spread it evenly with a spatula

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Step 4 – Bake it in the 160 degrees c oven for 30 to 40 minutes (until it’s beautifully golden brown)

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Step 5 – Remove from oven, wait for baked product to cool down (10 minutes?), cut it into your desired nite sizes, and then return it to the oven to dry overnight for a crunchy bite!

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“4 basic ingredients and 5 basic steps – you have a great snack and breakfast for your family!” 

You have no excuse. Pre-heat your oven, measure your ingredients, and start cooking!

 

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