Monday, February 15, 2010


I'm moving house, so apologies for the lack of updates while I have no kitchen! Will be back as soon as I can x

Saturday, January 16, 2010


I've been playing around with this sponge recipe for months trying to get it right. I'm not sure if it's because I used my new electric mixer that it finally worked, or if I just got the quantities right. This is an adapted recipe from Rowies Cakes that featured in Australian Parents Magazine in October 2008 - I used potato flour instead of cornflour.

Seeing as it is nearly Australia Day I thought it best to use the sponge to make lamingtons. If lamingtons aren't your thing you could cook the sponge in 2 round springform tins and once cooked and cooled sandwich fresh berries and whipped cream between the two layers and dust with icing sugar.


6 eggs, separated
300g caster sugar
Juice of 1/2 lemon
225g potato flour (available from Asian grocers and some supermarkets)
3C icing sugar (gluten free)
1C boiling water
75g butter
coconut flakes or dessicated coconut

1. Preheat the oven to 180˚C. Grease and line 2 square cake tins.
2. Using an electric mixer, beat egg yolks, caster sugar and lemon juice on high speed for 10 minutes until the mixture is creamy and white. Reduce speed to low and gently blend in the potato flour for 2 minutes until thoroughly combined.
3. Using an electric mixer, beat the egg whites until shiny, firm peaks form. Use a spatula to fold in the creamed mixture until well combined. Pour into prepared tins and bake for 35 minutes or until golden. Cool in pan for 20 minutes, then turn out upside down onto a plate or cake stand.
4. Once cakes are cooled, cut off the edges and then cut into squares - whatever size you prefer.
5. Make the icing by sifting together the icing sugar and cocoa. Mix with
melted butter and half of the boiling water, then gradually add more of the water until a consistency is reached where the icing will fall off the spoon but isn't too watery. Using two forks fork, dip the sponge squares into the mixture and then roll in the coconut. Allow to set on a wire rack.

Makes 32 small lamingtons.

Thursday, December 3, 2009


Just letting you know that I will be taking a break from blogging over Christmas. Please feel free to send in your recipes for me to publish, or send me requests for what sort of recipes you would like to see in the new year. Happy holidays to you all! xx

Sunday, November 29, 2009


I have always loved my families tradition of having a slice of Christmas cake and a cup of tea mid morning on the days leading up to and out of Christmas day. We've always had quite boozy cakes - which is really tasty when you get to the alcohol filled glace cherries! This year I decided to adapt my mum's Christmas cake recipe to make it gluten free, and using some different fruits and adding nuts (which my dad would never eat!).

750g mixed dried fruit
300g glace cherries
100g flaked almonds
100g golden raisins
100g chopped dates
1tsp ground ginger
1tsp ground cinnamon
1tsp ground nutmeg
1tsp vanilla extract
1/2C brandy
1/2C rum
250g butter
250g brown sugar
5 eggs
1/4C golden syrup
1tbs jam
juice and rind of 1 lemon
300g gluten free self raising flour (I used White Wings)
2tbs cocoa
1tsp salt
1tsp bi-carb soda
blanched almonds to decorate
extra brandy and/or rum to soak the cake with after cooking

1. Mix the fruit, nuts, spices, vanilla and alcohol together in a large bowl. Cover and leave to sit overnight.

2. Pre-heat oven to 150ºC. Cream together the butter and sugar with electric mixers until light and fluffy.

3. Add one egg at a time, beating in thoroughly. If the mixture curdles you can add a small bit of the flour in.

4. Mix in the golden syrup, jam, lemon juice and lemon rind.

5. Sift in the flour, cocoa, salt and bi-carb soda. Mix well.

6. Mix the fruit into the butter and flour mixture.

7. Line 1 large, or two regular sized baking tins with two layers of non-stick baking paper. Fill tin/s with mixture and tap on the bench to remove any air bubbles.

8. Decorate top/s of cake/s with blanched almonds. Bake for 3 hours, or until cooked. Remove from oven and poke holes over the top with a skewer. Pour over extra brandy and/or rum - depending on how boozy you like your cake! Leave to cool in tin, then remove, wrap in baking paper and newspaper and store in a cool dry place until you're ready to tuck in. You may like to check it during this process to make sure it is moist enough - you can add more alcohol to it if needed. It will keep for months.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009


The last few years I have bought gluten free fruit mince tarts from a variety of suppliers – and they've all been pretty ordinary. Now that there is the ready-made sweet shortcrust pastry available from The Pastry Pantry, I thought I would attempt making my own, yum!

2-3 sheets of The Pastry Pantry sweet shortcrust pastry
1/2C grated apple (I used Granny Smith)
1/4C currants
1/4C slivered almonds
1/4C chopped, pitted dates
1/4C Craisins (dried cranberries)
1/4C mixed peel
1/4C glacé cherries
1tbs brandy
tbs rum
tbs marmalade
tbs brown sugar
1/2tsp cinnamon
1/2tsp nutmeg
25g finely chopped butter
icing sugar to dust

*Note: you can use any dried fruits that you want, so add what you like, take out what you don't – as long as the final quantity of fruit is the same.

1. Place all of the ingredients, except the pastry, into a bowl. Mix thoroughly and leave to sit for 1 hour. If you have time you can leave the mix to sit for 2 days, occasionally stirring.
2. Following the instructions on the pastry packet, thaw the pastry sheets.
3. Preheat oven to 160ºC.
4. Using a circular cookie/pastry cutter, cut out circles in the pastry and place into patty tins. You could also use mini muffin tins for smaller tarts.
5. Put fruit mix in food processor, and pulse a few times until you get the consistency you like in your fruit mince tarts.
6. Spoon the fruit mixture into the pastry, filling to the brim. Decorate the top of the tarts with a piece of pastry cut into whatever shape you desire.
7. Pop them in the oven for 25 minutes, or until pastry is lightly golden.
8. Cool on a wire rack, and dust with icing sugar before serving.

Makes about 15 tarts, depending on their size.

Saturday, November 21, 2009


When I tried to make gingerbread men a couple of years ago as Christmas gifts it was a complete disaster. I used a standard recipe, just replacing the flour with a pre-mixed gluten free flour - but it didn't work as planned. The biscuits cracked and various arms, legs and heads fell! Unable to give my amputee gingerbread men as gifts I had to resort to making little bags of mixed lollies with a gift tag attached. This year I have worked on a 'sturdier' recipe creating a crunchy gingerbread biscuit that doesn't break. Enjoy!

100g butter
1/3C brown sugar
1 egg
1/3C golden syrup

1C rice flour
1C tapioca flour
1/2t Xanthan gum
2t ginger (more if you love it really 'gingery')
1t cinnamon
1/2t nutmeg
1/4t bi-card soda
pinch salt

1. Beat butter and sugar with an electric mixer until fluffy. Add syrup and egg and beat until mixed.
2. In a separate bowl mix all the dry ingredients together, then gradually sift the dry ingredients into the butter mix, mixing up with a spoon. Near the end it may get too hard to use a spoon, so get your hands dirty and knead it together.
3. Cover with cling wrap and place in the fridge until cooled (should take less than an hour).
4. Divide the mixture in half, place one portion of the mix between 2 sheets of non-stick baking paper and use a rolling pin to roll the mixture out to a few millimeters thick. Repeat with remaining half. Place both rolled out pieces, still in between the sheets of baking paper, into the fridge to cool for about 20 minutes.
5. Preheat oven to 180ºC. Line 2 baking trays with non-stick baking paper. Using a cookie cutter in what ever shape you like, dip the cutter in some rice flour, then press into the biscuit mix. Place the shapes onto the baking trays with a little space in between.
5. Bake for 10-15 minutes, being careful to not overcook (as they will become too dry).

The mix will make about 24 biscuits - depending on the size of your cookie cutter. Wrap them up in bundles with some cellophane and ribbon for a cute Christmas gift, or just keep them for yourself or for when guests come over!

Friday, November 6, 2009


With gluten free baking you are bound to run into disasters every now and again - I sure do! But it's a shame to let all you time, effort and produce go to waste, so here are some simple ways to resurrect a baking disaster!

The cake has sunk:
That doesn't mean your heart should too! The cake should still taste okay, but you will want to add height or fill the cavity. The easiest (and yummiest) thing to use is a mix of fresh berries. If they are tart you can mix them with a little icing sugar first. You may also like to add a layer of whipped cream or marscapone underneath.

The sides of the cake broke away when removing from the tin: Annoying hey? Never mind, this can be easily disguised with a thick layer of ganache. Mix up some dark chocolate with a little cream in a bowl over a saucepan of simmering water and smooth and creamy. Allow to cool a bit and then spread over the top and sides of the cake.

The cake is dry:
Okay, no one wants to eat dry cake, so can you turn it into something else? Perhaps a trifle? Or tiramisu? Maybe a summer pudding? These desserts all add liquids to the 'cake' component which will combat the dryness.

The cake has broken into pieces: Ah, the joys of gluten free baking and binding issues! If the cake still tastes okay you could serve it to your guests already 'sliced' into pieces and topped with fruit/cream/icecream/sauce. If it is too crumbly you could turn it into a trifle.

Do you have any baking disasters that you have made a miraculous recovery from? Please share!