It is National Coeliac week this week, I have been gluten-free for nearly 5 years now. So here are a few things I have learnt and things I miss too.
- Gluten is in a lot of foods
- When you are gluten-free eating out can be a nightmare.
- Picking up a quick lunch when out and about that is gluten-free can turn into an even bigger nightmare.
- Nice bread that is gluten-free is incredibly hard to find or make. The best is Genuis which you can actually make into a sandwich, unlike all the others available.
- You can make the most amazing cakes gluten-free and sometimes even nicer than those with gluten in!!!
- You cut a lot of rubbish out of your diet.
- Sadly most gluten-free supermarket brand biscuits are pretty horrid. Though I do like Asda’s new range.
- Gluten free oats are hugely expensive (£2.98 for 500g) but worth every penny when you bake with them. Like these spiced oat cookie cakes.
My tips so you don’t feel left out:
- Adding an extra egg to a basic cake mix can make all the difference.
- Gluten free baking recipe books are good to have but learn to swap flour’s, add an extra teaspoon of baking powder or egg and give your old recipes a go.
- Savoury muffins make a great alternative to bread for lunch, freeze well and are perfect for when you are on the go. I add grated carrot or courgette to my recipe now. Everyone here loves these a bit too much!!!
- Perfect pancakes just swap plain flour to gluten-free plain flour and a teaspoon of baking powder.
- Gluten-free baking is more challenging. Good quality bakeware always makes a difference to baking but it really does help make gluten-free rise better. I been lucky enough to have tested Mermaid Bakeware which I have to say has made a huge difference to the results in my gluten-free baking.
Here is a delicious and super easy recipe for Golden Syrup cake ( it’s not to sweet honest!) which is a Annabel Karmel’s recipe which I have swapped to be gluten-free.
You will need:
175ml (6floz) sunflower oil
175ml (6floz) golden syrup
3 eggs lightly beaten
175ml (6floz) cold water
225g (8 oz) gluten-free plain flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
2 tsp of mixed spice
1 tsp of bicarbonate of soda
175g (6 oz) soft brown sugar
75g (3 oz) raisins or sultanas (optional which I didn’t use as only 50% of the house likes dry fruit!)
You need to:
Preheat oven to 170ºC/375ºF/Gas 3.
Grease and line a 20cm round cake tin. ( I used my Mermaid cake tin which gives me excellent results)
MIx together the oil, golden syrup, eggs and water.
Sift the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger, mixed spice and bicarb together. Stir in sugar.
Combine wet and dry ingredients and stir in dry fruit if using.
Pour cake mix into tin (it is quite liquidy so don’t panic) and bake for 1 hour or until skewer comes out clean when inserted into the middle of the cake.
Enjoy either with a nice cuppa but also delicious as a pudding with custard. Yum yum!!! We all loved this cake and it was so easy to make. I like the fact it used sunflower oil as butter at the moment is so expensive.
If you are not gluten-free just swap back the plain flour and baking powder to 225g (8 oz) Self raising flour.
I have mentioned Mermaid bakeware in this post, not as a post for Mermaid but just because the quality of my cakes has gone up since using this cake tin!!!
Go to find out more about National Coeliac Week