Buckwheat Crepes with oven roasted Rhubarb

High fives to all the amazing cooks and chefs out there at the moment championing wholefoods and more healthful and mindful ways of eating. I feel an amazing shift happening towards a more natural and delicious way of conscious eating and farming, and it’s so great to see it becoming more mainstream. I have been adding to my cookbook collection because there are so many gorgeous books out there that I find them hard not to take them all home. There are so many exciting, vibrant recipes that I can’t wait to whip up and I’m sure I will be feasting on them coming into Spring and Summer.

Buckwheat Crepes with oven roasted Rhubarb

One gorgeous book that I bought a little while back is My Petite Kitchen. Eleanor Ozich is a gluten free rock star, making special food delicious for all the right reasons. She cooks from a place of love (you can just tell) and her pictures are just so pretty, they really do make it all feel like home.

I bought her book without even opening it (yes, I knew if would be that good) and it has proven to be a mega source of gluten free inspiration. I have it literally post-it noted all over.

She sounds really, really nice and has just opened a cafe, and I tell you, if I lived in New Zealand I would be down there for some lunch quick smart.

This recipe was inspired by her Buckwheat Pancakes; mine are crepes because that is what my kids want to gobble at the moment and I served them with some oven baked rhubarb. Gluten free, refined sugar free, just get them into you. Preferably whilst still in bed, or at least in your pyjamas.

Buckwheat Crepes with oven roasted Rhubarb

For the crepes:

130g buckwheat flour
310ml milk
2 beautiful organic free range eggs

Whisk together the flour, milk and eggs until nice and smooth. Simple huh.

Heat a little coconut oil or butter in a fry pan (I have a little flat cast-iron crepe pan and it is awesome, go and get yourself one if you really like crepes, you won’t regret it). Heat the pan until just before smoking point, you need the pan to be hot before you try and make your first crepe.

Pour a ladle full of crepe mixture into the pan, and swirl it around quickly to create a thin, even layer. Pour any excess mixture out of the pan and back into the bowl, ready to make the next crepe.

Cook the crepe until it is just opaque, and you can run a rubber spatula around the edges of the crepe. It won’t take long to cook if the crepe is thin enough. Truth be told, the first crepe probably won’t turn out right (sometimes I’m lucky and the first one works out, but honestly if you tear the first one then cook’s treat for you). With your rubber spatula flip your crepe over and cook on the other side for just 10 or 20 seconds more, until the little bubbles on the second side are just browned. Slip it out of the pan and onto a beautiful plate that is magically waiting there for you, begging to be filled with a little stack of crepes.

Keep cooking crepe by crepe, keeping the first ones warm in a low oven on their beautiful plate, but covered by some tin foil so they don’t dry out. Do a little dance, shuffle in your slippers and give yourself a high five. Yay, crepes!

Drizzle them with maple syrup if you want to, and maybe some creamy yoghurt.

And if you do prefer your breakfast whilst reclining, these keep well in the fridge, so you can make them the day before, then wrap them well and pop in the fridge waiting to be warmed up by your loved one in the oven the next morning, to serve you breakfast in bed.

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Oven Roasted Rhubarb

One bunch of beautiful pink rhubarb, ends and leaves discarded
2 or 3 tablespoons of stevia
Juice of half a lemon

Cut your rhubarb into little finger sized lengths. Place into a glass or ceramic bowl.

Sprinkle the rhubarb with the stevia and lemon juice and shake it all about. I am vague here about the stevia because personally I like rhubarb a little on the tart side, but some of us out there (well, pretty much everyone else that lives at my house anyway) like things a little sweeter, so you can add more. And if sugar doesn’t bother you, then go ahead and use brown sugar, oh my, it will be delicious.

Preheat your oven to 180 degrees C.

Let the rhubarb, lemon and sweetness mingle for 20 minutes of so, until they are juicy friends.

Pop the rhubarb and juices into a deep roasting pan (like a brownie tin, something with some depth to hold the juices) and cover with a piece of tin foil. Roast in the oven for around 20 minutes or a little less, rhubarb loses it’s shape quickly, so if you’d like the pieces to retain their roundness, check it after 15 for tenderness.

Eat.

Amazing photography by Sarah of Love Katie and Sarah, thanks S xx

roasted rhubarb

Lime and Pistachio Tea Cakes

Sometimes you just need a little something sweet and syrupy. These are for those times.

Inspired by the gluten free classic seen in almost every cafe sweets cabinet, this is my variation on the classic Orange and Almond cake; Lime and Pistachio cakes, in miniature. Sweet and sticky, yet fragrant and bright from whole limes and my favourite, pistachios.

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Lime and Pistachio Tea Cakes

Makes 6-12 individual sized tea cakes, the perfect size for sharing with a friend.

  • 5 or 6 limes, 450 – 500g
  • 6 eggs
  • 450g caster sugar
  • 300g ground almonds
  • 250g ground pistachios
  • 1 rounded teaspoon baking powder

Put the limes into a saucepan and cover with water. Pop on a lid and bring to the boil; boil the limes for around an hour or until they are completely tender. Remove the limes from the water and cut them open to remove any seeds. Place the limes in a food processor and blitz until completely smooth. Set aside for now.

Grease a 12-hole muffin or friand tin well with butter. If you have a tin that has removable bases, then now is the perfect time to use it. If not, then cut out some little circles of baking paper and pop them into the bases of the muffin tin.

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C.

It is up to you how many little cakes you would like to make, you can easily divide this mixture into 12 little cakes, or even just divide it into 6 and make the little cakes nice and tall. Just slightly increase the baking time if you are making taller cakes. I divided my mixture into 8.

In a bowl, beat the eggs and sugar until combined; you don’t want to add too much air here, just make it all nice and smooth and dissolve the sugar a little bit.

Stir through the lime puree, and then fold in the ground almonds, ground pistachios and baking powder, until beautifully smooth.

Spoon into the muffin tin, dividing into as many as you wish. Bake for around 35 minutes (adding an extra 10 or 15 minutes if your cakes are taller), until a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean. Allow the cakes to cool in the tin before removing them.

Serve with a dollop of thick cream, and a few curls of lime zest and crushed pistachios if you are feeling fancy.

These cakes keep really well for several days, but you probably won’t be able to resist them for that long.

Lovely photography by Sarah Collins from Love Katie and Sarah

LimeCakeWhole

Hazelnut and Pumpkin Tart

As I write this, I am sitting here grabbing a little slice of Winter sun. Inside, beside a window. It may not be the great outdoors, but it’s something. And sitting in the sun is making me think that a picnic would be a good idea. And whilst there is nothing like a picnic somewhere verdant and lush, either just in the backyard or out somewhere adventuring, on a day like today I think the blanket might just blow away. So let’s have an indoor picnic instead, and dream of a new day in Spring, with some flowers out and some birds singing, and just soak up a little bit more of that sun.

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This tart is earthy and sweet and gluten free. The base is crumbly, but deliciously so. Don’t skimp on the fetta, rocket or the dukkah, together they make for a perfect picnic combination of flavour and texture; smooth and sweet pumpkin alongside creamy, tangy fetta, a little spice from the dukkah and freshness from the rocket. Best enjoyed with friends.

Hazelnut and Pumpkin Tart

20cm loose bottomed tart tin, greased with butter

For the filling:

  • 600g pumpkin, sliced into wedges and roasted until tender
  • 3 tablespoons of dukkah for sprinkling
  • 150g ricotta
  • 4 beautiful, organic, free range eggs

For the hazelnut crust:

  • 75g butter, cold and cubed
  • 65g brown rice flour
  • 45g hazelnut meal
  • 2 tablespoons potato flour or cornflour
  • a sprinkling of cold water
  • a pinch of good quality salt

Combine the rice flour, salt and hazelnut meal in a bowl. Add your butter, and use your hands to crumble it all together, until things are looking a little lumpy and pretty well mixed. Sprinkle in some cold water, and give a light knead until a dough forms. You should need around 2 or 3 tablespoons of water. Wrap the dough in cling film and pop it in the fridge for 30 mins to firm up a bit.

Preheat oven to 190 degrees C.

Once the dough has had a rest, use your hands to press the dough into the bottom and up the sides of a well greased tart tin. Yes, no rolling pins required!

In a bowl, whisk together the ricotta and eggs until smooth, along with a good pinch of salt and a crack of pepper.

Pour the ricotta, egg mixture into the tart shell, then place the roasted pumpkin pieces on top. Sprinke with the dukkah, then place in the oven to bake for around 35-40 minutes. It will be ready when the sides of the tart will have puffed and it is slightly golden all over.

This tart is delicious hot out of the oven or at room temperature. Bring it to the table or the picnic rug and top with a handful of wild rocket and a crumbling of goat’s fetta. The base will be delicious and a bit crisp and crumbly, just mop it all up with your fingers and enjoy.

Photos by the amazing Sarah of Love Katie and Sarah

birthday cake for saachi

I was recently asked to make a birthday cake for a special little boy who has a very special diet. No flour, no dairy, no sugar… no problem!

Harvest-cake

I have lots of beautiful resources for specialised baking, but upon looking at his list of allowed foods, I had one go-to girl in mind, Caitlin from the ever gorgeous and inspiring blog Roost.

If you have a specialised diet, especially one which needs to avoid grains, then you will find her story and her recipes invaluable.

Birthday Cake for Saachi adapted from the Harvest Cake on Roost.

Makes one double layer 20cm cake.

  • 5 cups almond meal
  • 3 tsp bi-carb soda
  • pinch of salt
  • 2 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 100ml coconut oil, melted
  • 100ml honey
  • 2 vanilla pods, seeds scraped
  • 5 eggs
  • 2 cups grated carrot
  • 2 cups grated zucchini
  • 2 cups chopped apple

Preheat oven to 180 degrees C. Grease and line two 20cm cake tins. In a bowl, combine the dry ingredients. In a separate bowl, combine the wet ingredients. Pour the wet mixture into the dry mixture and mix thoroughly. Pour into the cake tins and bake in the centre of the oven for 45 mins or until a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean.

Cashew Cream Frosting

  • 2 cups raw cashews, soaked in water for three hours, water discarded
  • 225ml fresh apple juice
  • 4 Medjool dates, pitted
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • seeds from 2 vanilla beans

Blitz all ingredients in a blender or Thermomix until super smooth. If the frosting seems too loose, add some almond meal and blitz again, until you achieve your desired consistency.

gluten-free-harvest-cake

Store in an airtight container for up to 4 days.