Category Archives: Make ahead

Dark Chocolate and Date Bakes

These are seriously dangerous to have in the house!

A great gluten free bake that is very forgiving.

Makes 12.

Ingredients

100g dark chocolate, 70% cocoa solids

125g pitted dates

130g ground almonds

3 egg whites

60g caster sugar

40g melted dark chocolate to decorate

Method

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees centigrade.

Line a 12 hole muffin tray with baking parchment.

In a food processor, blitz the chocolate until you have a light crumb. Tip into a large bowl.

Next, check each and every date for a stone and then blitz them in the food processor until finely chopped too. Tip the dates into the chocolate crumb.

Weigh the ground almonds into the same bowl and then, using your finger tips, break up any big chunks of dates so you have an even mix.

In another large bowl, whisk the egg whites until stiff peaks, add the sugar, a table spoon at a time until all of the sugar is incorporated.

Fold the chocolate mix into the egg white mix and spoon into the prepared tins.

Bake for 20 minutes. Once golden, turn the heat off but leave the bakes in the oven, with the door a jar, to cool completely.

Melt the remaining chocolate and then drizzle over the cool bakes.

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Baked Egg and Zucchini Cups

These are versatile little cups that we have for dinner when the non gluten free boys are having quiche.

This recipe makes 6 standard muffin cups.

Ingredients

3 large eggs, beaten

70mls milk

130g grated zucchini

30g ground almonds

15g fresh coriander, chopped

1 red chilli, shedded and sliced finely

Salt and pepper

1-2 teaspoons black chia seeds

Method

Preheat the oven to 200 degrees Centigrade.

Take out a muffin tin and cut squares of baking parchment to line 6 of the muffin holes.

Squish the paper up under a running tap and then shape to line the holes.

Combine all of the ingredients, except the chia seeds, in a bowl.

Spoon the mixture into the prepared tins and then sprinkle over the chia seeds.

Bake for 15-20 minutes until risen, they will sink again as they cool.

White Chocolate and Ginger Tart

If you aren’t into sweet treats, stop reading now!

My youngest came up with this recipe and has grudgingly shared small slices with the rest of us.

You could use a pastry shell but, as we are gluten free, the biscuit base is a nice quick alternative.

This tart fits a 25cm round tin or we use a rectangular tin and make two individual tarts for another night.

Ingredients

475g gluten free ginger nuts

150g butter

400g white chocolate

100g butter

400mls creme fraiche

Dark chocolate to grate over

Method

Melt the butter in the microwave or in a pan, add the crushed biscuits and mix well.

Press the biscuit mix into a loose bottomed tin or individual tins, packing tightly into the base and sides.

Refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Gently heat the chocolate and butter in the microwave, stirring frequently until melted.

Whisk in the creme fraiche until lump free.

Pour into the prepared tins and smooth the top.

Refrigerate for 2 hours.

Satay Burgers

Some nights there are too many comings and goings to allow us to sit down and eat dinner together.

Those nights the boys cook their dinner on the bbq and burgers are a favourite.

I’ve used pork in this recipe but minced chicken is delicious too. As the gluten rolls that we like are long and skinny, I just make the patties to fit the roll.

Makes six burgers.

Ingredients

500g minced Pork

3 tablespoons sweet chilli sauce

3 tablespoons crunchy peanut butter

1/2 cup desiccated coconut

30g fresh coriander chopped

Salt and pepper

Method

Combine all of the ingredients in a bowl and form into burgers.

Heat your bbq or pan over a medium flame.

Once hot cook the burgers, as it is pork, you need to cook it all the way through.

Brownie Cakes

We have an ongoing argument in the family as to what to call these, bruffins is the boys choice but they really are just a brownie.

As they are a brownie, they come out of the oven puffed in the middle and rapidly fall as they cool, the icing then fills the gap but be warned, these are rich!

Makes 16.

Ingredients

120g dark chocolate, 70% cocoa solids

120g butter

70g smooth peanut butter

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

300g caster sugar

120g ground almonds, almond meal

3/4 tablespoon baking powder

3 eggs

ICING

130g butter, at room temperature

225g icing sugar

25g cocoa powder

Method

Preheat the oven to 160 degrees Centigrade.

Take two muffin tins and line 16 holes with muffin cases.

Either over hot water or carefully in the microwave, melt the butter and chocolate gently, stir in the peanut butter and vanilla.

In another bowl, measure out the sugar, ground almonds and baking powder.

In a third bowl, whisk the eggs until light and fluffy.

Pour the chocolate into the dry ingredients and then fold in the eggs gently.

Spoon into the prepared cases and bake for 25 minutes.

Remove from the oven and allow to cool in the tin.

Once the cakes are cool, make the icing.

In a food processor, blitz the icing sugar to get any lumps out or sieve it.

Add the cocoa powder and then beat in the butter.

Spread a little icing into the middle of each cake and then grate over some white chocolate.

Sweet and Spicy Chicken Rub

It’s always handy to have a rub recipe up your sleeve!

This is one of my favourites, not too spicy and the boys love the sweetness.

Serves 6.

Ingredients

2 tablespoons brown sugar

1 tablespoon sweet paprika

2 teaspoons salt

1 teaspoon oregano, rubbed

1 teaspoon onion powder

1 teaspoon chipotle chilli powder

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

Freshly ground pepper

2kgs chicken wings, tips removed

Method

Combine all of the rub ingredients together.

Sprinkle the rub over all of the chicken and refrigerate for 4 hours.

Preheat oven to 190 degrees Centigrade and line a baking tray with parchment.

Place the wings in the prepared tin, skin side up.

Bake for 60 minutes, basting regularly.

Pesto Meatballs

I love that you don’t need to make a sauce for these meatballs, the pan juices, passata and balsamic make a lovely sauce.

The quantity of pesto is a bit vague, I made a big batch of fresh pesto today and just used up the last little bit in these meatballs.

Serves 8.

Ingredients

1kg minced pork

80-100g pesto

Salt and pepper

36-40 bocconcini, drained

750mls passata

30mls balsamic vinegar

20g finely grated Parmesan

Method

Preheat the oven to 210 degrees Centigrade.

In a large bowl, combine the pork, pesto, salt and pepper.

Divide the meat into 36-40 balls, flatten the meat, pop a mozzarella ball on top and gently bring the meat together to enclose completely. Repeat with all of the meat and cheese.

Place the meatballs in a roasting tin, a little spread out if you can.

Bake for 20 minutes until beginning to colour.

Turn the oven down to 190 degrees Centigrade.

Remove the roasting tin from the oven, pour the passata over the meatballs and then dribble over the balsamic vinegar.

Sprinkle over the parmesan and then return to the oven, bake for 25-30minutes.