Doughnuts

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Doughnuts

My daughter had her heart set on dougnuts and I knew unless I made them for her she would not have them. I read several recipes and began experimenting with ingredients that were safe for her. We have family staying from the UK at the moment so I thought it would be a nice treat to make some for breakfast today. My daughter suggested the icing I had used on my son’s solar system birthday cake this year (picture at the end of the post), so, I whipped some up and she was right – a delicious combination!

Ingredients:

  • 150g white rice flour
  • 70g tapioca/arrowroot flour
  • 100g raw sugar
  • 1.5 tsp baking powder
  • 1.5 tsp guar gum
  • ½ tsp Himalayan salt
  • 125g melted margarine/butter (I used Nuttelex)
  • ¾ cup milk (I used Cocoquench – a mix of rice and coconut milk)
  • 1 egg (no-egg = 1 heaped tsp no-egg powder + 2 Tbs of milk)

Method:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 180 degrees celsius
  2. Mix dry ingredients together in a bowl
  3. Mix wet ingredients together. I used my Thermomix to mix the wet ingredients together (milk, + milk for the no-egg mixture & melted Nuttelex).
  4. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix gently together.
  5. Spray a doughnut tin, I used rice bran oil.
  6. Fill the doughnut sections ¾ full with mixture
  7. Bake 20 minutes
  8. Turn out on a wire rack to cool slightly before icing to serve. You could also top them with a sugar and cinnamon mixture instead of icing them.

Chocolate Royal Icing

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup pure icing sugar (sifted)
  • 2 tsp Orgran no-egg powder
  • 1 Tbs Cacao
  • ½ tsp vanilla bean paste
  • 1 Tbs water (add small amounts extra to get the desired consistency)

Method:

  1. Shift icing sugar and cacao together and stir in the no-egg powder
  2. Add the vanilla paste and water and stir together until desired consistency reached
  3. Ice the doughnuts using a knife

NB: This icing can be made as white if you omit the cacao and add a little extra icing sugar to replace it. Also, food dyes such as Hopper can be used to colour this icing to make any desired colours.

I searched high and low for my doughnut tin but I later saw them in Big W here in Australia! https://www.bigw.com.au/product/willow-12-hole-donut-baking-pan/p/WCC100000000008256/

 

My son’s 6th birthday cake – The Solar System (I used this royal icing recipe for the brown, white and yellow icing).

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Bread!

bread

I was initially terrified of making my own bread but in the end I was left with no choice… If I wanted my kids and family to eat safe bread then I would have to make it! I have finally gotten really confident with this recipe and can now make up a double batch of this at a time in my thermomix. I used to make these loaves using the old-school handmade bread method but now that I have a thermomix I use that method. I find that if I make it by hand I need more flour to make it a consistency that I can knead. But, if I make it in the thermomix the machine kneads it for me and it can be left as a cake batter consistency and makes wonderfully light and fluffy bread. The handmade bread is still delicious but more dense.

Old-school handmade bread

Ingredients:
• 125g white rice flour
• 125g brown rice flour
• 125g arrowroot/ tapioca flour
• 1 ½ tsp guar gum
• 1 tsp salt
• 300g warm water
• 1 Tb Yeast (I use one sachet – 7g)
• 1 tsp honey (golden syrup, maple syrup or rice syrup)
• 1 Tb honey (golden syrup, maple syrup or rice syrup)
• 3 Tb sunflower oil (or safe oil for you)
Method:
1. I usually pre-heat oven to 150 degrees then turn off (ready for bread to rise in a nice warm place)
2. Combine warm water, yeast and 1 tsp honey and let the yeast froth up (set aside about 10min)
3. Meanwhile, measure the dry ingredients into a large mixing bowl and stir to combine together.
4. When yeast has frothed, add the honey and the sunflower oil into the yeast and water mixture.
5. Then pour the wet mixture into the dry mixture, stir until combined
6. Turn out onto a floured mat or chopping board ready to knead (I use white rice flour to flour the board)
7. Knead the dough until it has combined nicely. I add extra white rice flour to get it to a nice dough consistency.
8. Oil a bread loaf tin.
9. Transfer dough into the tin and press it down, tap the tin (to get out air bubbles), then use wet hands to smooth over the top of the bread.
10. Let rise in the pre-warmed oven until the bread has risen (approx 10 minutes)
11. Bake at 200 degrees for 1 hour
12. Turn out onto a wire rack to cool
13. I like to slice it after it has cooled and freeze it so slices can be taken out and defrosted or toasted when needed.

Thermomix Method
1. I usually pre-heat oven to 150 degrees then turn off (ready for bread to rise in a nice warm place)
2. You can grind your rice into flour or use flour you have already ground. To grind flour place brown and white rice into the bowl for 2 minutes on speed 9 (I usually grind 250g at a time). Set flour aside.
3. Place water and the 1 tsp of honey into the bowl. Combine at 37 degrees, speed 1 for 5 minutes to heat the water
4. Add the yeast, mix on speed 1 for 30 seconds. Leave 10 minutes for the yeast to proof and froth up
5. Add the oil and the Tb of honey, then place all dry ingredients into the bowl. Mix on speed 1 for 20 seconds, scrap down and repeat
6. Knead with closed lid for 2 minutes. Repeat for a further 2 minutes if needed.
7. Oil a bread loaf tin.
8. Scrape mixture out of the bowl into a pre-oiled bred tin
9. Transfer dough into the tin and press it down, tap the tin (to get out air bubbles), then use wet hands to smooth over the top of the bread.
10. Let rise in the pre-warmed oven until the bread has risen (approx 10 minutes)
11. Bake at 200 degrees for 1 hour
12. Turn out onto a wire rack to cool
13. I like to slice it after it has cooled and freeze it so slices can be taken out and defrosted or toasted when needed.

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If you give this recipe a try please let me know how it turns out. I’m happy to troubleshoot or discuss how you could substitute these ingredients if some of the ones I’ve used aren’t suitable to your family’s sensitivities.

Party Time!!

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My son’s 4th birthday party this year was inspired by Thomas Trainsformers…a crazy mash up of Thomas the Tank Engine and Transformers (check out the cartoon on YouTube). I decided to make a cake for the party based on the symbol for Trainsformers. My son and I did some sketches to plan the cake.

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I made the cake two days ahead and decorated the cake the day before the party. I decided for the party to do a mix of Thomas, train, vehicles and robot type things to pad out the theme.

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I used a train-shaped biscuit cutter to make shortbread and chocolate shortbread biscuits, as well as melon trains cut from watermelon and rockmelon. I used lots of primary colours for decorating, as these colours match both the Thomas and Transformers themes. I made a craft area with wooden robots and trains to decorate, colouring in pictures that were both Thomas and Transformers themed, and stickers for decorating.

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Birthday Cake Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 440g white rice flour
  • 220g tapioca/arrowroot flour
  • 10 Tbs Cacao powder
  • 440g caster sugar
  • 3 tsp bicarb soda
  • 2 tsp guar gum
  • 580ml rice milk (or other suitable milk)
  • 220g margarine, I used nuttelex (melted)
  • 2 tsp vanilla bean paste

Method:

  1. Line and spray oil a deep round spring base tin (I used rice bran oil)
  2. Sift together in a large bowl the flour, cacao, guar gum, and bicarb
  3. Stir in the sugar
  4. In a separate bowl, mix together the milk, melted margarine, and vanilla
  5. Gently fold and mix the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Mix gently until well combined. If you think the mixture is too dry add more milk or melted margarine until it is a cake batter consistency (I find different milks and flours absorb differently)
  6. Pour into the prepared cake tin and bake for 40-50 minutes, or until a wooden sewer comes out clean
  7. Cool in the cake tin
  8. I turned the cake upside-down and stored in a cake box until it was time to decorate

Buttercream Icing

Ingredients:

  • 155g margarine
  • 90g icing sugar or icing sugar mixture- sifted. Most icing sugars in Australia are suitable but I have only found ‘Bundaberg Icing Sugar Mixture’ to be top 8 & corn free

Method:

  1. Add all the ingredients into a mixing bowl and mix until smooth

Fondant Icing

Ingredients:

  • 4 ½ cups of icing sugar or icing sugar mixture- sifted. Most icing sugars in Australia are suitable but I have only found ‘Bundaberg Icing Sugar Mixture’ to be top 8 & corn free
  • 1 level tsp gelatine
  • 2 Tbs golden syrup or honey
  • ¼ cup boiling water
  • Vanilla paste to flavour (if desired)
  • Food dyes to colour (I used Hopper food dyes) http://www.hopperfoods.com.au/Products/NaturalColours.aspx
  • Extra sifted icing sugar to use when kneading

Method:

  1. Sift icing sugar into a medium sized mixing bowl
  2. Dissolve gelatine in the boiling water, add golden syrup and stir
  3. Add wet mixture to the icing sugar
  4. I sifted extra icing sugar onto a plastic chopping board and then kneaded the fondant and added the colourings slowly during the kneading process until the desired colour was achieved.  Because Hopper dyes are natural and chemical free the colours are different to commercial dyes. I did a test run and divided the mixture into four portions and did a test dye to decide what colours I would work with.
  5. Fondant can be stored wrapped in baking paper in zip-lock plastic bags at room temperature (I covered them with icing sugar before wrapping them to store).
  6. When ready to roll and decorate knead again on a mat with icing sugar (to prevent sticking). Use to decorate as you would regular fondant

Putting the cake together

I covered the cake with a layer of buttercream, then froze the cake to get the buttercream to set. I then rolled out the green fondant into a large circle and covered the cake, trimming the edges and smoothing the fondant until I was happy. I made a stencil of the Trainsformers symbol and cut it out of baking paper. I rolled out the blue fondant and cut the stencil shapes out. I kept a master copy of the design so I would know where to place the shapes. I arranged the shapes to make the symbol. To finish the cake I made lots of little balls of fondant and arranged them around the base of the cake, alternating blue and green the whole way around.

I was really pleased that the cake was adored by the birthday boy! Young and old said it was delicious and the mini balls were a big hit with the kids. I sent some home in party bags and we got to enjoy it for a few days after the party as well.

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Salt Dough

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From being very young my children have always loved play dough. But with each subsequent allergy or other diagnosis the ability to let them play with ‘regular’ play dough (even homemade) became impossible. After the Coeliac Disease diagnosis, I used to make my own gluten free play dough, and they loved that. Then came the corn allergy news…all gluten free flours and regular play dough, shop bought or homemade has gluten and corn and maybe even soya in them. So, I tried really hard to make a workable play dough that could be stored and re-used…sadly, without the corn it just never worked or stored well. So, I changed direction and tweaked salt dough recipes and now we have a recipe that we use. It stores well between uses and as a bonus you can bake and keep what you make if desired! Great for making things like medallions to give away at birthday parties, Christmas decorations, or even homemade Mothers or Fathers Day gifts. My children’s daycare make this throughout the centre so all children, no matter what sensitivities they have, can use dough together. When they first made the change I talked them through cross-contamination of old cutters and rollers and even the bowl for mixing it in. They’ve been very willing to ensure everything was put through a dishwasher and cleaned thoroughly, and threw out any wooden rollers and replaced with plastic (the porousness of wooden rollers and chopping boards can retain allergens even after thorough cleaning). I hope this recipe brings you and your children the creative freedom it gave our family.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup white rice flour
  • 1/2 cup tapioca/arrowroot flour
  • 1/2 cup salt
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 tsp guar gum

Method:

  1. Combine all ingredients into a bowl and stir well. Add additional rice flour until a non-sticky dough consistency is reached. I flour the surface the dough is  being used on with rice flour also. You could add food dye to the water before combining all the ingredients; Hopper food dyes are great for food allergy sufferers.
  2. If desired bake on a tray lined with baking paper for 1-3 hours at 150 degrees Celsius (baking time depends on thickness and size of the project you are baking). Bake until hard.
  3. Cool on a wire rack. They can be painted if desired.

If you give this recipe a try please let me know how it turns out. I’m happy to troubleshoot or discuss how you could substitute these ingredients if some of the ones I’ve used aren’t suitable for your family’s sensitivities. I can be contacted through this blog or via email: freefromfamily@gmail.com

Bangers & Mash

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I developed this recipe for my husband, who is English, and my daughter, who loves sausages and is very proud of being half English! My daughter thinks no sausages are good enough for her to eat unless they are PORK.  This recipe serves 4 people.

Ingredients:

  • 8 Pork Sausages (you could use beef, chicken or even turkey sausages)
  • 1 kg of potatoes
  • 2 Tbs Sunflower oil
  • 2 Tbs Margarine
  • 1 brown onion
  • 1 tsp caster sugar
  • 1 tsp balsamic vinegar or apple cider vinegar (or any vinegar suitable to your dietary needs)
  • 700 ml stock (I use my bone broth recipe, you could use chicken, lamb or beef broth)
  • 4 tsp tapioca/arrowroot flour
  • 4 tsp cold water
  • Salt and pepper (I use Himalayan salt)
  • Rice milk and margarine to add to the mash potatoes to make them yummy and creamy
  • Frozen peas (enough for 4 people)

Method:

  1. Cook the sausages until cooked through and lovely and brown. I cooked them in an electric frying pan with baking paper under them. When the sausages were finished I just lifted them in the baking paper into a baking casserole dish and put them in the oven (180  degrees Celsius) to keep them warm.
  2. Peel and chop the potatoes and cook them ready to mash (I cooked them in the microwave)
  3. I then put the amount of peas I wanted into a microwave dish and covered them in water so they were ready to steam at the last minute before serving
  4. The gravy sauce is a bit more involved but so yummy and makes this dish like proper Bangers & Mash. Start by chopping the onion in half and then into crescents. Melt the margarine and oil together in a large saucepan. Add the onion and stir. Cover with a lid and cook slowly over a gentle heat for 10 minutes (onion should be translucent when cooked). Add the sugar and vinegar and stir well. Cover and cook for 5 minutes. Add the stock and cook uncovered for 5 minutes. In a heatproof dish or jug mix the flour and cold water into a paste and then add a few large spoons of the hot gravy mixture. Once combined pour the flour mixture into the saucepan with gravy and stir well. Heat on high heat and boil for 10 minutes to thicken the gravy.
  5. Meanwhile, drain and mash the potatoes and add a dollop of margarine and mash together. Then add the rice milk until to turns into the creamy mash consistency you desire.
  6. Quickly steam the peas and drain.
  7. Plate the sausages, mash and peas; then pour the gravy sauce over it all to serve.

If you give this recipe a try please let me know how it turns out. I’m happy to troubleshoot or discuss how you could substitute these ingredients if some of the ones I’ve used aren’t suitable for your family’s sensitivities. I can be contacted through this blog or via email: freefromfamily@gmail.com

Oriental Honey & Lemon Chicken

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We have been missing Chinese and Thai foods so I decided to create our own Honey & Lemon Chicken. I thought it would be nice served with coconut rice and some Chinese style vegetables. My husband has reserved the left-overs for him and wants it again asap! This quantity serves 4 people.

Ingredients:

  • 8 chicken legs or thighs
  • 2-3 Tbs honey
  • The rind and juice of 1 lemon (medium to large sized lemons)
  • 3-4 Tbs Olive oil
  • Salt & Pepper to taste (I use Himalayan Salt)
  • 1 cup Basmati Rice
  • 1 tin of coconut milk (400ml)
  • Extra water if needed to cook the rice
  • 2 Florets of Buk Choy

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius (fan forced)
  2. Spray oil the baking dish (I used rice bran oil)
  3. Place the chicken pieces in the dish
  4. Mix up the marinade in a bowl and stir together (honey, olive oil, lemon & rind, and salt & pepper)
  5. Pour the well mixed marinade over the chicken
  6. bake for 45minutes-1 hour (I turned them about 3 times throughout the cooking)
  7. About 20 minutes before the chicken will be ready get the rice and vegetables organised
  8. I cooked the rice using the absorption method using the rice milk and some extra water. I then rinsed the rice using boiling water before draining and serving (this gave the rice a hint of coconut milk but it wasn’t overpowering
  9. I chopped the Buk Choy and steamed it lightly
  10. To serve plate the meat, rice and vegetables; then drizzle the remaining sauce from the baking dish over the meal before serving (the flavours of the sauce work well with the meat, rice and vegetables!)

If you give this recipe a try please let me know how it turns out. I’m happy to troubleshoot or discuss how you could substitute these ingredients if some of the ones I’ve used aren’t suitable for your family’s sensitivities. I can be contacted through this blog or via email freefromfamily@gmail.com

Muesli

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When my children had corn eliminated from their diet, basically all breakfast cereals went with it. My daughter used to love cereal but it has taken me a long time to find suitable cereals for them to have again. I have managed to find a safe puffed rice and crunchy rice flakes. Since I mixed up this muesli I have even found safe sunflower seeds and pepitas!!! Adding the seeds to the mix is a great way of adding protein to breakfast cereal. Also, since my Easter Hot Cross Bun post I have found some safe sultanas that my daughter doesn’t react to – it’s all progress and exciting. This can be a breakfast or a great afternoon snack to keep the kids, and grown ups, going.

Ingredients:

  • Puffed rice (in Australia the brand I use is Nature First Organic)
  • Crunchy rice flakes (in Australia the brand I use is Nature First Premium)
  • Sultanas and/or other dried fruits (in Australia the brand I use is Woolworths Select  Aussie Sultanas)
  • Sunflower seeds and pepitas [pumpkin kernels] (in Australia the brand I use is Coles own brand from the health section range)
  • Honey, golden syrup, or maple syrup
  • Banana (or other fresh fruits)
  • Suitable milk (we used Rice Milk)

Method:

  1. Decide on the quantity you are mixing up; if it is just a bowl to serve straight away or a week’s worth for the family
  2. In a mixing bowl (or the bowl you are serving in), add equal parts of puffed rice and crunchy rice flakes (this makes up the base of the cereal. So, you could either combine two whole packets, add a cup of each or just add a bit of both to the bowl you are about to serve.
  3. I then add the sultanas to make a nice amount through the dried muesli. Next time, I will try the sunflower seeds and maybe pepitas at this stage as well. You can add anything you think will work for your dietary requirements.
  4. To serve I chop a ripe banana over the muesli, drizzle with honey, and add milk.

If you give this recipe a try please let me know how it turns out. I’m happy to troubleshoot or discuss how you could substitute these ingredients if some of the ones I’ve used aren’t suitable for your family’s sensitivities.