Posts Tagged ‘lactose free’

The Great British Bake Off – gluten and dairy free technical challenge – week 8

Tuesday, October 2nd, 2012

Technical challenge – week 8. Gluten and dairy free teacakes

Making teacakes took me back to when I worked in a bakery in cornwall.

We made the biscuits ourselves but the marshmallow came in 10kg buckets. It was a thick rubbery clear jelly which you whisked for 10 minutes to make the marshmallow. It definitely didn’t taste as good as this recipe.

My silicon mould is slightly smaller than the recipe so I have sat my biscuit above the line of the mould to allow for a good portion of marshmallow.

I have adapted Mary Berry’s recipe.

Makes 6

Equipment and preparation: You will need a silicone mould that has 6 x 7.5cm/3in wide, half sphere moulds.


400g/14oz dark dairy and gluten free chocolate. I used Plamil 60% chocolate 
50g/1¾oz Doves Farm plain gluten free flour
50g/1¾oz maize flour
pinch salt
½ tsp gluten free baking powder
25g/1oz caster sugar
25g/1oz dairy free margarine
1 tbsp almond or soya milk

For the marshmallow

3 free-range eggs, whites only
150g/5½oz caster sugar
6 tsp golden syrup
½ tsp salt
½ vanilla pod, seeds only

Preparation method

1.To be able to get the teacakes out of the mould easily without breaking and with a lovely shiny chocolate you need to temper the chocolate first. I find it easier to do this in a microwave. Break up 300g/ 10½oz chocolate into a microwavable bowl. Melt on a low microwave setting stirring every 30 seconds.

Stop heating the chocolate when you can just see tiny lumps of unmelted chocolate, stir slowly until completely melted. If you stick your clean finger in the chocolate it should feel just warm, not hot.

Pour the chocolate into the mould. Move the mould around so all of it is covered with the chocolate.

Turn the mould upside down over the bowl so the excess chocolate falls out. Place still upside down onto a sheet of greaseproof paper and leave to set.

Do not put the domes in the fridge as the chocolate will lose its shine. When the chocolate has set, pick up the mould at the edge, try not to touch the chocolate as the warmth of your hand will melt the chocolate onto the mould.

2.Preheat the oven to 170C/325F/Gas 3.

3.To make the biscuits, put the gluten free flours, salt, gluten free baking powder and caster sugar into a bowl and rub in the dairy free margarine with your fingertips. Add the almond milk and stir everything together to form a smooth ball.

4.On a surface dusted with gluten free flour roll out the dough to about 5mm/¼in thick. Cut out six rounds with a 7.5cm/3in straight sided round cutter.

5.Place the rounds on a flat plate or board and chill in the fridge for 10 minutes. Make sure the biscuits are perfectly round and well chilled, otherwise they might spread or shrink when baked.

6.Bake the biscuits for 10-12 minutes. They do need to be hard, not soft as they form the base of the teacake.

7.Remove the biscuits from the oven and cool on a wire rack.

8.Meanwhile dip the cooled biscuits in the remaining melted chocolate, covering them completely (you may need to melt more chocolate). You can either dip the biscuits in the chocolate or spread the chocolate onto the biscuits with a palette knife. Place the coated biscuits onto parchment paper.

9.For the marshmallow, place all of the ingredients in a large bowl set over a pan of simmering water (make sure the bottom of the bowl does not touch the water), and whisk with an electric hand whisk for 6-8 minutes, making sure it is smooth, silky and doubled in volume. Make sure it is very stiff, the consistency of whipped cream, so it will hold when piped – you don’t want it runny.

10.Spoon the marshmallow mixture into a piping bag.

11.Melt the remaining chocolate, and place into a disposable piping bag with a sealed end. Set aside to cool and stiffen up a bit, but not harden.

12.Peel the biscuits off the parchment and place them onto clean parchment, flat side down.

13.Pipe the marshmallow into each chocolate-lined mould just up to the top.

14.Snip a 2cm/¾in end off the piping bag with the chocolate in it.

15.Carefully pipe some chocolate on the marshmallow and a rim of chocolate around the biscuit base and swiftly place the biscuit on top of the marshmallow filled dome. Smooth the join with a knife.

16.Leave the teacakes to set until completely cool and sealed together.

17.Very carefully remove the completed teacakes from the mould – be careful of fingerprints on the glossy dome.

18.Place on a plate and keep cool – but do not refrigerate, to make sure the chocolate keeps its glossy shine.

I had a lot of marshmallow left over so I made some dairy free snowballs. I piped the marshmallow onto baking parchment. Placed in the freezer to firm up slightly then dipped into melted chocolate and coated with coconut. I’m afraid my photos were not too pretty as I did this very quickly so I am not going to post them.

I have now eaten so much of the leftover marshmallow I cannot face anymore teacakes so I am going to make some mums at school very happy with the leftovers.

The Great British Bake Off – gluten and dairy free technical challenge – week 7

Thursday, September 27th, 2012

Technical challenge – week 7. Dairy and gluten free jam doughnut

Can you buy a gluten free doughnut? I don’t think I’ve seen one.

These are best when freshly made. They are so quick to make and no kneading involved.

Remember if you are serving gluten and dairy free doughnuts to somebody who is intolerant or allergic – make sure your oil hasn’t been used to fry foods containing those allergens.

makes 8


200g gluten free plain flour
100g cornflour
100g ground almonds
2tsp xanthan gum
1tsp salt
100g caster sugar
8tsp (4 x 7g sachets) dried yeast
1 egg
60g dairy free margarine, melted
300ml almond milk
caster sugar
sieved jam


Cover a baking tray with cling film. Brush the cling film with sunflower oil.

Mix together the gluten free flour, cornflour, ground almonds, xanthan gum, salt, sugar and yeast.

Pour in the melted dairy free margarine.

Beat the egg into the almond milk and pour into the dry ingredients. Beat until smooth.

Scoop the mixture onto the baking tray to make 8 equal sized buns.

Grease your hands with sunflower oil to stop the buns sticking and mould each bun into your required shape.

Brush another piece of cling film with sunflower oil and place on top of the buns.

Leave in a warm place to prove for 30 – 45 minutes.

Heat a deep fat fryer to 180°c / 350°f.

Lift each bun carefully and place into the hot oil. Cook 2 at a time for 4/5 minutes on each side until golden brown.

Lift out of the oil and drain on kitchen paper.

Coat the doughnuts in the sugar while still hot.

Leave to cool. Spoon the jam into a piping bag with a small nozzle.

Make a hole in the side of each doughnut all the way to the centre. Pipe the jam into the hole.

They are best eaten on the day of making.

The Great British Bake Off – gluten and dairy free technical challenge – week 6

Friday, September 21st, 2012

Technical challenge – week 6. Gluten and dairy free Queen of pudding

I haven’t made this pudding since I was at college. When I made it then, we piped a criss cross of meringue so you could see the jam in the spaces. Maybe this is a bit      80’s now? Plus you don’t get enough meringue which to me is the best bit.

You will notice in the recipe that I have used cake crumbs again instead of breadcrumbs. This is my personal taste. You can use breadcrumbs if you prefer.

The Recipe

Serves 4 – 6

100g gluten and dairy free cake crumbs (sponge cake recipe) or 90g gluten and dairy free bread crumbs

570ml / 1 pint almond milk
25g dairy free margarine (only if using breadcrumbs)
3 egg yolks
1 egg
50g caster sugar
1 lemon, zest

6 tablespoons raspberry jam

3 egg whites
150g caster sugar

Preheat the oven to 170C/325F/Gas mark 3 and grease a 1.4 litre/2½ pint shallow ovenproof dish (one that will fit into a roasting tin) with dairy free margarine.

Crumble the cake crumbs into the ovenproof dish.

Warm the almond milk in a small saucepan. Add the dairy free margarine (if using gluten and dairy free breadcrumbs).

Lightly whisk the egg yolks and 1 whole egg in a bowl with the sugar and lemon zest. Whisk the warm milk into the eggs and strain over the cake crumbs. Leave to stand for about 15 minutes, so the cake crumbs absorb the liquid.

Carefully place the dish into a roasting tin and fill the tin halfway with hot water. Bake the custard in the preheated oven for about 25-30 minutes until the custard has set. Remove from the oven, carefully take the dish out of the roasting tin and set aside to cool for 20 minutes.

Turn the oven up to 180C/350F/Gas mark 4

Place the egg whites into a mixing bowl and whisk until stiff (it is whisked enough when you can turn the bowl upside down and the egg white doesn’t move).

Whisk in 1/3 of the caster sugar until the meringue comes back to peak.

Add another 1/3 of the sugar and do the same.

Add the last 1/3 of sugar and whisk until stiff and shiny. Fill a large piping bag with the meringue.

Spread a layer of raspberry jam over the set custard, then pipe the meringue on top.

Return the dish to the oven for 10 minutes, without the roasting tin until the top of the meringue is golden.

The Great British Bake Off – gluten and dairy free technical challenge – week 5

Saturday, September 15th, 2012

Technical challenge – week 5. Gluten and dairy free hand – raised chicken and bacon pie.

I was slightly nervous about this challenge. I have attempted gluten free hot water pastry before and wasn’t happy with the results. It’s taken me a couple of days as I needed to make a special trip to my butchers – the lovely Martin at Boathouse Organics in Lewes. He makes lovely gluten free free range sausages and you can buy fresh organic suet from him too.

I also couldn’t find a pie dolly. Cook shops must be kicking themselves this week for not stocking them, as am I for not buying one years ago when I ummed and arred in the shop.

So here goes…. I am really happy with my pie. What do you think?

I’ve followed Paul Hollywood’s recipe for the filling. I remembered to take more photos this week too!

I’ve used Vitalite dairy free spread in place of lard. Mainly because I forgot to buy it and I thought the margarine – sorry, ‘dairy free spread’ would give the pastry more flavour. You can use lard if you want to.

The Recipe

Makes 2 pies


125g gluten free plain flour
125g maize flour
¼teaspoon xanthan gum
1teaspoon salt
125g dairy free margarine
125ml water

200g/7oz raw chicken meat
200g/7oz smoked back bacon rashers
2 sprigs fresh thyme
salt and freshly ground black pepper
150g/5oz dried apricots, chopped
2 leaves gelatine
¼ pint hot water
¼ organic Kallo chicken stock cube


1.Preheat the oven to 200C/400F/Gas 6.

2.Grease two medium sized pie dollies, approx 13x7cm/5x3in, with some oil. I used two glasses roughly this size, oiled.

3.In a large mixing bowl, combine the gluten free flour and maize flour with the xanthan gum.

4.Mix together the boiling water, salt and dairy free spread in small saucepan. Heat and stir together until the dairy free spread melts.

5.Pour the fat and water mixture on top of the flour mixture, stirring with a spoon until everything comes together.

6.Tip the dough onto a surface dusted with gluten free flour and bring together into a ball.

7.Divide the pastry in two, then remove a quarter from each half for the lids of the pies.

8.Work quickly while pastry is still quite hot. With the remaining three-quarters of the pastry, place on a flat surface and place the dolly/glass on top of the pastry in the middle. Sculpt the still warm pastry around the dolly, try and make sure the pastry is the same thickness. (You can roll out slightly first and wrap around the dollies, but be careful not to have an uneven thickness around the dollies if you do it this way). Make sure the bottom is not very thick.

9.Ensure there are no holes in the pastry.

10.Chill the pastry wrapped around the dollies in the fridge for about 20 minutes.

11.Roll out the reserved quarter of pastry into a circle to match the size of the dolly. Make a hole in the centre of each one and chill in the fridge.

12.Slice the chicken meat, and the bacon. Keep them separate. Season well with salt, pepper and fresh thyme.

13.Take the dollies out of the fridge and carefully coax the chilled pastry off in one piece. I slid a long thin palette knife down the sides of the pastry and I found using the glass made this easy because I could see where the pastry was sticking before pulling the glass away. If it softens from handling you may need to chill again for 10 minutes or so. Trim the top of the pie shells to make sure they are even, and not too tall, otherwise the sides will sag during baking.

14.Brush the inside of each pastry case with beaten egg in hope of sealing any tiny holes. Now pack the filling into the pie, start with bacon, then chicken, then a layer of roughly chopped apricots. Repeat until the filling is all used up.

15.Place on the lid. As this pastry will crack very easily, I trimmed the pastry with scissors in line with the sides of the pie then gently crimped around the sides, sealing thoroughly.

16.Brush the lids and the sides of the pies with egg wash. Place on a baking tray and cook for 50-60 minutes, or until the pastry is nice and crisp all the way around. The pastry will not colour as much as pastry made with wheat.

17.While the pies are baking, dissolve the chicken stock cube in 150ml/5fl oz of hot water.

18.Soak two leaves of gelatine in cold water for five minutes. When soft, squeeze out the excess water and whisk into the warm stock.

19.When the pies are cooked, place them on a cooling rack and allow to cool for 10 minutes.

20.Carefully pour the stock into the slit on the pie lid, to fill in any spaces inside the pie with (what will be) chicken stock jelly. This must be done when the pie is hot, if done when cold the jelly will just sit on the top and not soak into every nook and cranny.

21.Leave to set overnight before eating.

Lactofree chocolate cake

Wednesday, May 16th, 2012

Arla, the company who produce Lactofree dairy products very kindly sent me some vouchers to try their products for free.

If you have digestive discomfort after consuming foods made with cows’ milk, you could be lactose intolerant. But you don’t need to miss out on the foods you love as Lactofree has a range of real dairy products, just without the lactose.

While many people think they’re intolerant to dairy, the uncomfortable symptoms that occur after eating dairy are often caused by lactose, the natural sugar found in milk. Lactose intolerance is the inability to digest lactose, which can begin from birth or develop at any age. Visit the Lactofree website for more information.

I decided to make my chocolate brownie recipe using Lactofree Spreadable instead of butter or margarine. I topped it with chocolate ganache made using equal quantities of Lactofree Cream and dairy free plain chocolate.

The recipes turned out well. They tasted just the same as if I’d used my usual butter and cream.

The cream also whips well and I used it to make sour cream by adding a little lemon juice.

Thanks to Lactofree, people who are lactose intolerant can now enjoy a full range of dairy products again.