Baked Strawberry and Quinoa Custard (gluten free, low sugar)

If you like a good old fashioned Baked Rice Pudding, then you will love this. 

It’s not often you find a high protein, low sugar dessert that’s easy to make and yum to eat. 

The original recipe is from chef Michael Moore’s cookbook, Quinoa and Healthy Living, which was a part of his Blood Sugar cookbook series. A talented chef who was diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes in his 30’s, followed by a stroke in his 40’s, he is now helping educate people in how to eat well to manage diabetes and overall good health.

There’s something quite lovely about enjoying a warm dessert in winter time and knowing it’s not too bad for you after all. 

E x

Baked Strawberry and Quinoa Custard
Serves 8
A baked custard pudding, with whole strawberries and quinoa.
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
1 hr
Total Time
1 hr 15 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
1 hr
Total Time
1 hr 15 min
Ingredients
  1. 3 large eggs
  2. 60 ml (1/4 cup) rice malt syrup or agave syrup
  3. 1 teaspoon vanilla paste or extract
  4. 1/2 a lemon, zest and juice
  5. 2 tablespoons quinoa flour
  6. 250 grams cooked white quinoa (approximately 1/2 cup of raw quinoa will give you this quantity)
  7. 250 ml (1 cup) cream
  8. 250 ml (1 cup) milk
  9. 350 grams (approximately 1 1/2 punnets) strawberries
  10. a handful of flaked almonds (optional)
  11. icing sugar to dust (optional)
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees celsius.
  2. Using whisk attachment of electric beaters, whisk eggs, syrup, vanilla, zest and lemon juice.
  3. Whisk in quinoa flour.
  4. Stir in cooled cooked quinoa.
  5. In a small pan, heat cream and milk to a simmer. Remove from heat and allow to cool for 5 minutes.
  6. Stirring constantly, pour the cream mix over the quinoa mixture.
  7. Place strawberries that have been trimmed over the base of the baking dish.
  8. Carefully pour the custard mixture over the strawberries.
  9. Scatter flaked almonds over the top, if desired.
  10. Bake for 45 minutes - 1 hour, until the custard is set and lightly golden.
  11. Serve warm, with cream or ice-cream.
Adapted from Quinoa and Healthy Living
Adapted from Quinoa and Healthy Living
cook fast eat slow http://www.cookfasteatslow.com/

Caramel Apple Pudding

A perfect Autumn dessert, this ‘self-saucing’ beauty is  a mixture of soft apples, buttery sponge and caramel sauce. 

Made with pantry staples, this dessert will feed up to 8 people, making it a great option when having people over at this time of year. 

Thanks to Delicious Magazine, July 2005, it’s been a family favourite for a long time. 

You’re welcome. 

Caramel Apple Pudding
Serves 8
Caramel sauce and soft apples topped with a buttery sponge cake.
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
40 min
Total Time
55 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
40 min
Total Time
55 min
Ingredients
  1. 5 large apples, peeled, cored and cut into approx 1cm thick slices
  2. 1 2/3 cups plain flour
  3. 2 teaspoons baking powder
  4. 1 cup (200gm) castor sugar
  5. 200ml milk
  6. 150 grams unsalted butter, melted
  7. 2 eggs
  8. 1 cup brown sugar (you could reduce this to 1/2 cup to make it less sweet)
  9. 1/2 cup golden syrup
  10. icing sugar to dust
  11. custard, cream or ice-cream to serve
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees celsius.
  2. Grease a 2.5 litre (large) baking dish
  3. Place cut apples in the bottom of the dish
  4. Combine the flour, baking powder, sugar, milk, butter and eggs in the bowl of an electric mixer and mix till combined, thick and pale.
  5. Spread this mixture over the apples.
  6. Combine sugar, golden syrup and 300ml of water in a small saucepan and over low heat, stir until the sugar is dissolved.
  7. Bring to the boil, and then pour gently over the top of the pudding.
  8. Bake for 30-40 minutes in the oven till golden and puffed on the top.
  9. Serve warm with custard, cream or ice-cream.
Adapted from Delicious Magazine July 2005
Adapted from Delicious Magazine July 2005
cook fast eat slow http://www.cookfasteatslow.com/

Apple and Almond Cake (gluten free, dairy free)

These school holidays came and went in a whirlwind of park visits, skateboarding, basketball, soccer, play dates, bush walks, camp fires and bike rides.

It is my pleasure and joy to be raising three gorgeous humans who need enormous amounts of physical activity each day. It’s like constantly moving is their oxygen and absolutely essential for their survival. 

I am a slow learner, however, and always start off school holidays in the exact same, girly way.

“Boys, lets stay in today. Let’s have a PJ day, watch movies, play with toys, sip hot drinks and catch up on how each other is going. It’s been such a busy term, let’s just go slow today.”

This works NEVER.

And I am declaring it publicly so that you will remind me before the next holidays roll around NOT TO DO THIS AGAIN.

By 9.30am on Day 1 of holidays, I have ordered all cushions back on lounges instead of being used as weapons, I have yelled things like “please get off your brothers head/please take the ball outside/please stop yelling at each other/the house is not a gymnasium/get that skateboard outside/no, you cannot have WIFI yet/you can’t shoot water guns inside/stop swinging on the chair/I asked you to get off your brothers head.”

And then, we all get promptly dressed, pack the car with bikes, skateboards, RC cars, basketballs and soccer balls and head to the park. 

Peace at last. 

After a couple of days we did get into our holiday rhythm and enjoyed time with extended family and friends amongst many activities.

As exhausted as I am at trying to keep up with them during holiday time, I realise these years with our boys are precious as we make memories and experience stuff together. I know I will look back on them with fondness, remembering the time spent together more than how tired I felt. I hope so anyway.

One of our favourite days was spent with friends picking apples at an orchard. I felt like a real country bumpkin in my cowgirl boots, carrying my red bag and filling it with all types of apples, while recipe ideas swam through my head. Meanwhile the boys ran, climbed the trees to get the best apples, jumped on tractors, ran some more and picked as many apples as they could.

11 kilos in total.

Yes folks, this is the first of a few recipes coming your way with apples as the star ingredient. 

I think Apple Picking may indeed become an Autumn school holiday tradition in our house. 

This very simple, one bowl cake from the Healthy Chef, Teresa Cutter, has minimal ingredients and is a moist, almost friand-like cake. It’s beautiful warm, and if you can have dairy, served with cream or custard.

As school went back today, I thoroughly enjoyed making it, eating it slowly, still warm from the oven and then opening my computer and writing about it. And I did all of that without uttering one word. 

I feel better already. 

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Apple and Almond Cake (dairy free and gluten free)
Serves 8
An apple and almond, friand-like cake, with a hint of orange and honey.
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
50 min
Total Time
1 hr
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
50 min
Total Time
1 hr
Ingredients
  1. 2 cups (200 grams) almond meal, (or hazelnut meal)
  2. 1 teaspoon baking powder, gluten free
  3. 1/4 cup light olive oil
  4. 1/4 cup honey
  5. zest of 1 orange
  6. 2 eggs
  7. 1 teaspoon vanilla extract or paste
  8. 1 large apple, peeled, cored and finely diced
  9. flaked almonds to garnish
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 160 degrees celsius.
  2. Line a 16cm or 20cm round baking tin with baking paper, on the bottom and sides.
  3. Combine almond meal, baking powder, oil, honey, eggs, zest and vanilla in a mixing bowl and stir to thoroughly combine.
  4. Fold in the apple.
  5. Press into the tin and scatter with a handful of flaked almonds.
  6. Bake for approx 50 minutes, or until golden and the middle springs back when pressed lightly.
  7. Let stand in the tin for 30 mins to cool.
  8. Enjoy warm or at room temperature.
Adapted from The Healthy Chef
Adapted from The Healthy Chef
cook fast eat slow http://www.cookfasteatslow.com/

Chocolate Nutella Pudding

It was around this week last year that I posted my favourite Soft-Centred Chocolate Pudding recipe. For those who missed it, you can find it here.

It’s no surprise then, that as the weather has cooled and the Easter weekend looms close, I find myself thinking of chocolate and warming desserts once again. 

It was while my boys were snuggled on the lounge watching the Grand Prix and the rain was softly falling, that I was drawn to the kitchen and started to muck around with the good old classic Chocolate Self-Saucing pudding recipe that I am sure many of you have either made or eaten before. 

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On a side note, it was my first day out of bed after succumbing to the flu and I was completely over lemon and ginger tea and not being able to taste much of my food. 

So with limited energy to spare and 4 sets of hungry eyes looking at me from the lounge, I thought of this SUPER easy, mix-and-bake-in-the-one bowl dessert.

The best way I can describe it in relation to the Soft-Centred Pudding recipe above is using the analogy of shoes. 

The Soft-Centred Puddings are your black high heels. They are perfect for enjoying with guests, table cloths and candles and a well-thought out dinner party menu. 

This Chocolate Nutella Self-Saucing pudding are your ugg boots. You pull them out when you are tired and the weather is cold and you want to eat something with your family, preferably in your PJ’s and in front of a good movie. 

The best bit about this recipe, apart from the taste, is that you mix it all in the bowl you bake it in, a big tick for the minimal washing up.

Serve it with cream, custard or ice-cream…..and in your ugg boots. 

Chocolate Nutella Pudding
Serves 6
A chocolate and hazelnut pudding, that creates it's own rich sauce as it bakes.
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
50 min
Total Time
1 hr
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
50 min
Total Time
1 hr
Ingredients
  1. 1 cup self raising flour
  2. 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
  3. 1/4 cup castor sugar
  4. 1 egg
  5. 1/4 cup nutella
  6. 1/2 cup milk
  7. 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  8. Topping
  9. 2 tablespoons nutella
  10. 1/2 cup brown sugar
  11. 1 3/4 cup boiling water
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees celsius.
  2. Pour the flour, cocoa and sugar into a round baking dish (approx 4 cup/2L size) and whisk with a hand ballon whisk until combined.
  3. Make a hole in the centre of these ingredients.
  4. In a small jug, mix all other ingredients, (except the topping) with a fork and then pour into the hole in the dry ingredients.
  5. With a wooden spoon, stir until smooth and combined.
  6. For the topping - in a small bowl, mix nutella and brown sugar together. It will become clumpy.
  7. Sprinkle this mix over the top of the pudding.
  8. Pour the boiling water gently over the top of the pudding.
  9. Bake in the oven for 45-50 minutes, or until the top of the pudding is cooked and spongy but you can see the sauce bubbling up the sides.
  10. Cool for a few minutes and serve with cream, custard or ice-cream.
cook fast eat slow http://www.cookfasteatslow.com/

Soft-Centred Chocolate Puddings

Easter. This is one of our favourite times of the year.

We step away from the busyness of our normal schedule and head away to the country for a few days. The boys will make cubbies, race billy carts and play countless hours of soccer and cricket. One of my favourite things to do on this weekend every year, is to start a new 1000 piece puzzle with my eldest son. My middle son will challenge me to games of Bocce, and will beat me every time, and our littlest man will spend hours moving a pile of rocks from one place to the next with a Tonka Truck.

They will wear themselves out in the day and crash at night. As parents everywhere will know, this is a win win for everyone.

Night time descends. The fire is lit and I dust off that book that has been on my bedside table for far too long, or the board game cupboard is raided and I battle it out till my husband wins or one of us is asleep!

It’s simple and quiet and we all feel ourselves breathe deep again.

As comforting as all that sounds, it’s actually not the reason why it’s one of our favourite times of the year.

The fact is we start off this weekend of rest and reflection in church, remembering the ‘Amazing Grace that saved a wretch like me.’  The enormity of what Jesus did for me by dying on the cross, hits me every time. I am overwhelmed, with gratitude, that He would rather die than live without me.

As Easter Sunday rolls around, our boys will wake to find an Easter egg waiting for them and this time the conversation will be around why we use eggs to represent New Life at Easter. New Life, New Hope, Forgiveness and New Beginnings.  A fun Easter egg hunt always follows.

Whatever this weekend holds for you, I hope you get a chance to reflect on God’s Amazing Grace in sending Jesus. You may also find some extra time to cook and if so, these Soft-Centred Chocolate Puddings are the perfect Autumn dessert to cook for your family and friends. Enjoy!

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 Soft-Centred Chocolate Puddings

Recipe from Skye Gyngell’s cook book ‘My Favourite Ingredients.’

A few extra tidbits:

*  These puddings could be made with a dairy free spread instead of butter and dairy free chocolate or 70% dark chocolate that contains no milk.

*  Quinoa flour can be substituted for the plain flour to make these gluten free.

* They can be made up to a day in advance and refrigerated, uncooked. If you make them in advance, make sure you bring them to room temperature before cooking, or, if cooking straight from the fridge, you’ll need to add at least 5 minutes to the cooking time.

Ingredients

150gm unsalted butter, chopped

300gm dark chocolate, chopped

4 eggs

3 egg yolks (place egg whites in a small snap lock bag and throw in the freezer. I have a recipe coming soon to use these!)

150gm castor sugar

50gm (approx 1/4 cup) plain flour

Method

Preheat oven to 200 degrees celsius

Lightly butter and dust with cocoa, 6 x oven proof tea cups or individual pudding moulds, approx 200ml in size.

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Place butter and chocolate in a microwave safe bowl and microwave on HIGH for 1 minute. Remove and stir. If it is still not melted, put back in to the microwave for 20 seconds at a time, stirring after each time until melted. (This process is important, as burning the chocolate in the microwave is very easy. It’s best to melt it 80% of the way and finish off stirring it till completely smooth)

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Place sugar, eggs and egg yolks in the bowl of an electric mixer and mix on medium speed until it’s pale, thick and mousse like.

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Gently fold chocolate mixture into the egg mixture till combined.

Sift the flour into the mixture from a height, and gently fold through.

Place into pudding moulds and either refrigerate if you are preparing in advance or place onto a baking tray and put straight into the oven and cook for 8-10 minutes. You are looking for a just- cooked and puffed up top, but if you press lightly, you know it’s gooey underneath. You are best to start off cooking it for less time and add a few minutes. If you overcook, they will still be beautiful chocolate puddings, but won’t have a soft centre.

Dust with icing sugar and serve with cream or ice cream.

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