Thursday, 25 November 2010

Honey roast chicken with Thai pea mash and new potatoes

I came up with this scrumptious recipe last night and couldn’t wait to share it with you all! The sweet, honeyed chicken is so delicious with the chilli pea mash; a serious taste sensation. Who said peas had to be boring? Definitely try this one asap!

Serves 2
2 organic chicken breasts
drizzle of clear honey
300g frozen peas, cooked and drained
1 tbsp thai green curry paste
1 dollop natural yoghurt/ crème fraiche
6 new potatoes
sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper
4 tbsp olive oil
knob of butter

1. Heat the oven to 200C and line a baking tray with greaseproof paper.
2. Chop the potatoes in half and place on baking tray. Drizzle with oil and season with salt and pepper. Pop them in the oven straight away, as they’ll take a little while.
3. Meanwhile, on a hot non-stick pan, sear the chicken breasts, about 2-3 minutes each side with a little olive oil and butter. Remove from the pan and place on the baking tray with the already cooking potatoes. Drizzle some oil and honey on the chicken and cook in the oven for about 30 minutes or until chicken is cooked through. Make sure you keep an eye on the potatoes to ensure they don’t overcook.
4. Place the cooked peas, curry paste and natural yoghurt in a food processor and pulse until smooth.
5. Once the chicken has cooked through and the potatoes are nice and crisp, plate up with a good helping of mash topped with the honeyed chicken and roast potatoes; delicious!

Gluten free – Wheat free

Tuesday, 23 November 2010

something yummy to try for lunch

Hi all,

Sorry it’s taken me so long to upload some more scrumptious gluten free recipes. This month I’ve created ten great lunch/ side dishes to suit a variety of tastes, from simple salads to Mediterranean mushroom stacks, there’s bound to be something you’ll like! I am still working on the security settings for this blog and understand that most of you haven’t been able to “join”. I would really love to hear your comments so I’ll sort that out as soon as possible. In the meantime, get cooking and enjoy these delicious recipes.

Libby x

Vietnamese chicken salad

This is a slightly more complicated recipe but will not disappoint on taste. Just serve it up in a big dish and let everyone dig in. Yum!

3 organic chicken breast fillets
1 large carrot
½ cup (125ml) rice wine vinegar
2 teaspoons salt
2 tablespoons caster sugar
1 medium white onion, sliced thinly
1 ½ cups bean sprouts
2 cups finely shredded savoy cabbage
¼ cup firmly packed fresh mint leaves
½ cup firmly packed fresh coriander leaves
1 tablespoon crushed toasted peanuts
2 tablespoons fried shallots

for the dressing
2 tablespoons fish sauce
¼ cup water
2 tablespoons caster sugar
2 tablespoons lime juice
1 clove garlic, crushed

1. place the chicken in a medium saucepan of boiling water; return to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, for about 10 minutes or until cooked through. Leave to cool in saucepan for 10 minutes, then remove chicken from the liquid and shred coarsely. Discard the poaching liquid
2. Meanwhile, cut the carrot into matchstick-sized pieces. Combine the carrot with vinegar, salt and sugar in a large bowl. Cover and stand for 5 minutes. Add the onion, cover, stand 5 minutes. Add sprouts, cover, stand 5 minutes. Drain the pickled vegetables, discard liquid.
3. place the chicken in a large bowl with the picked vegetables, cabbage and herbs.
4. combine the ingredients for the Vietnamese dressing in a jar and shake well. Pour over salad mixture and toss gently to combine. Sprinkle with nuts and shallots to serve.

Gluten free – Wheat free – Dairy Free

Tuna fish cakes

An all time classic of mine; this is such a simple recipe that fills that hole every time. I love the polenta crust, which gives it a lovely crispiness. Serve these with a fresh rocket salad and sweet chilli.

2 tins canned tuna in spring water, drained
3 spring onions, chopped finely
1 free-range egg
1 tablespoon polenta, plus extra for coating
2 teaspoons sweet chilli sauce
salt and pepper to season

1.  Combine the tuna, onions, egg, polenta, sweet chilli and salt and pepper in a bowl.
2. Sprinkle some polenta on a plate in preparation to coat the fish cakes.
3. Shape the tuna mixture into burgers and coat well with polenta. Place on a clean plate and cool in fridge for 10 minutes.
4. On a Teflon pan, fry the fish cakes for 5 minutes on each side or until lightly browned and heated through.

Gluten free – Wheat free – Dairy free

String beans with roasted almonds and goat’s cheese

This is a great side dish for a dinner party or alongside some simple poached chicken.

Approx 500g French green beans
½ cup coarsely chopped roasted almonds
½ cup crumbled goat’s cheese
3 tablespoons garlic, minced
knob butter

Bring a large saucepan of water to a boil. Add the beans and cook until tender; about 1 to 2 minutes. Drain the beans and rinse under cold water. Return the beans to the saucepan and add the remaining ingredients and cook over a medium heat until the butter is melted and everything is well blended together.

*to roast the almonds, place on a baking tray in a 180C oven for 15 minutes or until lightly golden.

Gluten free – Wheat free – Dairy free

Rice paper rolls

This is a classic recipe I loved to make years ago. It is simply delicious and great to take to dinner with the girls.

1 cup shredded cooked chicken
1 small carrot, grated coarsely
1 small red pepper (capsicum), sliced thinly
100g fresh shitake mushrooms, sliced thinly
50g snow peas, sliced thinly
2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh coriander
2 tablespoons teriyaki sauce
1 tablespoon sweet chilli sauce
12 rice paper rounds (22cm)

1. Combine the chicken, carrot, pepper, mushrooms, snow peas, coriander and sauces in a large bowl.
2. Place one sheet of rice paper in a medium bowl of warm water until just softened; lift the sheet carefully from water, place on a board covered with a  tea towel.
3. Place some filling in the centre of the sheet; fold in the bottom, then fold in the two sides and wrap tightly. Repeat with the remaining rice paper sheets and filling.

Gluten free – Wheat free – Dairy free

Pesto chicken salad

This is a great fresh salad I love to make when I feel like something tasty and delicious but all the same healthy.

1/3 cup (90g) bottled basil pesto
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
4 organic chicken breast fillets
6 medium egg tomatoes, halved
125g baby rocket leaves
1 tablespoon olive oil
fresh parmesan to serve

1. combine the pesto and balsamic vinegar in a bowl.
2. place the chicken and tomatoes on a lined tray; brush half the pesto mixture over both.
3. cook the tomato on a heated oiled grill plate until just softened.
4. cook the chicken on the same grill until browned and cooked all the way through. Slice thickly.
5. in a large bowl, toss the chicken, tomato, rocket, oil and remaining pesto mixture.
6. serve with a little fresh parmesan and enjoy!

Gluten free – wheat free

Parmesan polenta (two ways)

This delicious, cheesy polenta is great alongside a wintery stew or fresh breast of chicken.

3 cups (750ml) hot water
1 cup (250ml) chicken stock
1 cup (175g) polenta
20g butter
½ cup (40g) freshly grated parmesan cheese

1. Combine the hot water and stock in a large saucepan and bring to the boil, reduce heat to a simmer.
2. Gradually whisk in the polenta and cook, uncovered, stirring frequently, for about 5 minutes or until mixture is thick and soft. Stir in the butter and parmesan.

To grill, place this cooked mixture into a lined baking tin and grill for 5 minutes or until polenta is golden and crispy. Remove from the grill and allow to set fully before cutting into slices.

Gluten free – Wheat free

Sun-dried tomato, parmesan and pine nut salad

This is a classic salad recipe I’ve inherited from my mum. I am a lover of nuts in salads so this is one of my favourites. Feel free to try using different cheeses or types of nuts to suit your taste.

70g baby spinach leaves
70g baby rocket leaves
100g semi-sundried tomatoes, drained and roughly chopped
50g roughly grated parmesan cheese
100g toasted pine nuts
1 tablespoon olive oil
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

Combine all the ingredients in a large bowl and enjoy alone or as a great side for a delicious barbeque.

*to roast the pine nuts, place on a baking tray in a 180C oven for 7 minutes or until lightly golden.

Gluten free – Wheat free 

Honey roasted parsnip and sweet potato chips with Parmesan

Chips are a great side for any meal, especially a barbeque! So why not try these delicious honey roasted parsnip and sweet potato chips for a flavoursome, healthy side dish.

Side serving for 4
2 parsnips
1 medium sweet potato
2 tbsp golden honey
sea salt and pepper
fresh grated parmesan cheese
olive oil

1. Preheat a fan forced oven to 180C
2. Wash and chop the parsnips and sweet potato into 7cm sticks, like chips.
3. Place the chopped veggies onto a baking tray. Drizzle with olive oil and honey and season with salt and pepper.
4. Roast in the oven for about 30 minutes or until the chips are golden and crispy.
5. To serve, sprinkle with grated Parmesan and extra honey to taste.

*These chips are great served alongside beef burgers and salad.  

Gluten free – Wheat free 

Date, sunflower seed and feta salad

I owe this recipe to my good friend Tiffany, a co-gluten free-er and food fanatic. This delicious combination of dates and feta gives a lovely texture to such a simple and easy salad.

200g pitted dates, roughly chopped
mixture of rocket and baby spinach leaves
100g sunflower seeds
goat’s feta cheese
2 tablespoons honey

1. Combine all the ingredients in a large salad bowl, flaking the feta cheese into the mixture.
2. Serve by itself or with grilled chicken breasts, a grilled salmon steak or with my fabulous chicken with Parma ham.

Gluten free – Wheat Free – Dairy free

Chicken and chorizo skewers with sweet chilli and sour cream

This is a great sharer that’s perfect for a Tapas plate or on its own with a fresh rocket salad.

Makes 8 skewers
2 organic chicken breats
1 ring smoked chorizo sausage (check that it’s gluten free)
drizzle of olive oil
sweet chilli and sour cream to serve

1. if you are using wooden skewers, soak them in cold water for at least 30 minutes before cooking. 
2. Cube the chicken breast into bite sized pieces. Slice the chorizo into 1cm rings. Thread the chicken and chorizo onto the skewers
3. Place the prepared skewers on a frying pan with a little oil and cook until chicken is cooked through and the chorizo is nice and crispy.
4. Serve with a dollop of sour cream and some sweet chilli. Yum.

Gluten free – Wheat free 

Almond rice pilaf

This is such a quick and easy recipe to whip up. A lovely lunch or side serving at dinner alongside some poached chicken.

Makes 6 servings
2 tbsps olive oil
1 tbsp unsalted butter
½ cup finely chopped spring onions
1 ½ cups long-grain white rice
2 cups chicken stock
1 cup water
1/2 clove garlic
½ cup roasted almonds*
¼ cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

1. heat the oil and butter in a large pot over a medium to high heat. Add the spring onions and garlic and reduce to a low heat. Cook, stirring occasionally for about 8-10 minutes or until tender.
2. add the rice and cook for 2 to 3 minutes, stirring to lightly toast.
3. add the chicken stock and water, stirring to combine, and raise to a high heat and bring to a boil.
4. reduce to a low heat and simmer, covered, until all the liquid has been absorbed by the rice (15-2-minutes). Remove from the heat and stir in the almonds and parsley.

*to roast the almonds, place on a baking tray in a 180C oven for 15 minutes or until lightly golden.

Wheat free – Gluten free 

Mediterranean mushroom stack

I could eat roasted veggies with every meal; it’s a bit of an obsession. This mushroom stack is seriously delicious and combines all my favourite flavours. Feel free to experiment with the vegetable combination and swap the zucchini for eggplant or any other vegetable of your choice. I love the big chunk of mozzarella on top but you could also sprinkle cheddar or another style of cheese. For a vegetarian version just leave out the bacon, it will still be delicious!

Makes 4 mushroom stacks
4 portabello mushrooms
1 medium sweet potato
1 medium zucchini
1 packet unsmoked bacon, fat removed
2 cloves garlic
1 small red or brown onion
2 lovely ripe tomatoes, halved horizontally
100g mozzarella cheese
olive oil/ fry light spray
mixed herbs
salt and freshly ground pepper

1. Heat the oven to 200C and line a large baking tray with greaseproof paper.
2. Chop the sweet potato into 1cm thick rounds. Cut the zucchini on the diagonal also about 1cm thick and place both on tray. Drizzle with a little olive oil or spray with fry light and sprinkle with mixed herbs and fresh salt and pepper. Place in the oven and roast until golden and tender.
3. Finely chop the onion and garlic. Start to fry over a medium heat with a little olive oil.
4. Remove the stalks from the mushrooms and chop finely. Add to the onion mixture and continue to fry. Dice the bacon and add to the frying pan. After a minute or so, add the mushrooms, stalk side up, to the pan and continue to cook.
5. Meanwhile, sprinkle the tomatoes with a little salt and pepper and drizzle with oil. Place in the oven to grill until they are soft and juicy. The tomatoes won’t take as long as the sweet potato so add this to the oven when the sweet potato is nearly finished.
6. Once the bacon mixture and roast vegetables are all cooked, remove everything from the heat in order to assemble the stacks. Firstly, line a baking tray with paper and place the mushrooms, stalk side up on the tray. Divide the bacon, onion and garlic mixture amongst the four mushrooms. Top with a couple of slices of sweet potato and zucchini, followed by a slice of tomato. Place a slice of mozzarella cheese on top of each stack and pop back in the oven to melt the cheese.

Gluten free – Wheat free 

Wednesday, 27 October 2010

butter icing

Now, it seems to be the extravagant, colourful icing that’s attracting most people to the cupcake trend. Butter icing is the key to achieving those ‘swirly’ topped cupcakes.

300g butter
700g icing sugar*, sieved
1 tsp vanilla
2 tsp milk
(A few drops of food dye if you like)

1. In a bowl, whisk together the butter and sugar. Add the vanilla. Gradually add the milk as required. For the perfect icing ensure the icing is quite thick.
2. Spoon the icing into a piping bag with a wide mouthed nozzle. Pipe over cupcakes in a circular motion starting from the outside and finishing in the centre of the cupcake. The thicker the icing the better.
3. Decorate with silver sprinkles or rice paper flowers, available from most supermarkets or specialist shops.

*ensure the icing sugar is gluten free

Gluten Free – Wheat Free

classic cupcakes

The humble cupcake has become a phenomenon in recent years with specialised cupcake shops popping up all over the world. Maybe it was Sex and the City that got us started but nevertheless we’re all addicted now. However, it’s still often difficult to find a gluten free option when scanning the cabinet. This basic cupcake recipe is sure to get you started on the trend.  Master this and then we can master the icing.

225g unsalted butter
225g Gluten Free Self Raising Flour
225g caster sugar
4 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp baking powder

1. Heat the oven to 180C/fan. Prepare two 12 hole cupcake trays with paper liners. Simply halve the recipe if you just want 12.  
2. In a mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, butter, sugar, eggs, vanilla and baking powder. Make sure the mixture is very smooth to ensure the perfect cupcake.
3. Spoon into prepared cupcake tin, making sure the batter is evenly distributed.
4. Bake in the preheated oven for 16-20 minutes, making sure the cupcakes don’t brown too much on top.
5. Remove from oven and allow cakes to cool for 5 minutes before removing from tray and placing on a wire rack to cool completely.

Gluten Free – Wheat Free

lemon polenta cake

This deliciously moist, flavoursome cake is perfect for afternoon tea with the girls or as a lovely end to a family dinner with a dollop of crème frache. Yum.

250g Butter, softened
250g caster sugar
3 eggs
100g polenta
250g ground almonds
1 tsp gluten free baking powder
3 lemons (3 zested, 1 juiced)

1. Heat oven to 160C fan forced. Butter and base line a 23cm springform tin. Beat together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
2. Add the eggs one by one and beat between each addition.
3. Fold in the polenta, almonds and baking powder.
4. Mix in the lemon zest and juice.
5. Pour into the springform tin, it will come nearly to the brim.
6. Bake for about 50 minutes to one hour until the cake is risen and golden (cover the top of the cake loosely with foil after 30 minutes to stop it browning too much).
7. Leave cake to cool in tin.

Gluten Free – Wheat Free 

date, banana and rum loaf

I love this loaf topped with mashed banana, a drizzle of honey and a sprinkle of cinnamon for a yummy weekend breakfast. But, on it’s own, it’s lovely with a hot cup of tea.

Makes one loaf
250g pitted, ready to eat, dates
2 small or 1 large banana
100g pecans, 85g roughly chopped, rest left whole
200g raisins
200g sultanas
100g fine polenta
2tsp mixed spice
2tsp gluten free baking powder
3tbsp dark rum
2 egg whites
Banana chips to decorate

1. Heat oven to 180C/fan. Line a 900g loaf tin with non-stick baking paper, using a little butter or oil to make it stick.
2. Put the dates into a small pan, with 200ml boiling water and simmer for 5 minutes. Drain the liquid into a jug, then put the dates into a food processor. Add the bananas and 100ml of date liquid and whiz until smooth.  Mix the nuts, dried fruit, polenta, spice and baking powder in a bowl, then add the date puree and rum and stir until combined.
3. Whisk the egg whites to soft peaks and fold into the cake mix. (To ensure perfect egg whites, make sure your bowl is perfectly clean and there are no traces of shell or yolk in your whites).
4. Tip the mixture into the prepared tin, it will be quite full, then top with the remaining pecans and banana chips.
5. Bake for one hour until golden and crusty and a skewer comes out clean.
6. Allow the loaf to cool completely before cutting into slices.

Gluten Free – Wheat Free – Dairy Free

creme brulee

This deliciously creamy dessert is perfect for dinner parties and will be sure to wow your guests. You will need a cooking blowtorch, which you can buy from any kitchen shop, and 8 shallow crème brulee dishes. I prefer to make this dessert in shallow dishes so you can have a shard of caramelized crackle with every bite.

Serves 8
600ml double cream
1 vanilla pod
8 egg yolks
3 tablespoons caster sugar
approx 6 tbsp demerara sugar

1. Put 8 shallow crème brulee dishes in the freezer for at least 20 minutes.
2. Put the cream and vanilla pod into a saucepan and bring to boiling point., but do not let it boil. Beat the eggs and caster sugar together in a bowl and, still beating, pour the flavoured cream over it, pod and all.
3. Rinse and dry the pan and pour the custard mix back into the clean pan. Cook over a medium heat (or low if you’re scared) until the custard thickens; about 10 minutes should do it. You want the custard to be voluptuous but not too thick as it will set more in the fridge.
4. When the cream’s thick enough, take out the vanilla pod, retrieve the dishes from the freezer and pour the crème into the severely chilled containers.
5. Leave to cool, then put into fridge until truly cold.
6. 20 minutes before serving remove dishes from fridge and leave until at room temperature. Sprinkle with demerara sugar, spoonful but spoonful, covering the entire top. Holding the torch 10cm from the surface, burn each brulee once over, then again after leaving to rest for 30 seconds.  The tops should be a lovely tortoise-shell colour that gives you that satisfying ‘crack’ when you plunge your spoon in for the first bite! Enjoy.  

Gluten Free – Wheat Free

chocolate orange mousse

This is a fantastic low-fat and delicious dessert that doesn’t taste like you’re calorie counting! The orange pairs beautifully with the dark chocolate but you can use alternative flavours like peppermint extract if you please.

Serves 6
85g Dark Lindt 70% Chocolate
4 large eggs, separated
4 tbsp artificial sweetener
1 tbsp ground orange zest (use a mortar and pestle)
142g fat-free natural fromage frais.

1. Melt the chocolate in a small bowl over a pan of simmering water. Remove the bowl from the heat and stir in the egg yolks and the sweetener.
2. Place the fromage frais and the orange zest into a food processor and whiz for 20 seconds. Stir into the chocolate mixture.
3. Whisk the egg whites until they form soft peaks. Gently fold the egg whites, bit by bit, into the chocolate mixture, keeping the air in the mixture.
4. Divide the mixture between the six serving dishes and pop into the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes before serving.

Gluten Free – Wheat Free

coconut macaroons

This delicious recipe is great for afternoon tea with the girls. I adapted this recipe from domestic goddess, Nigella Lawson, but thought it needed a bit of velvety chocolate to spruce it up!

Makes 8 large macaroons
2 large egg whites
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
100g caster sugar
30g ground almonds
Pinch of salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
250g shredded coconut
1 baking sheet, lined
100g good quality dark chocolate

1. Preheat the oven to 170ºC/gas mark 3.
2. Beat the egg whites until frothy - no more - then add the cream of tartar and carry on beating until soft peaks are formed. Add the sugar a teaspoon at a time and whisk until the peaks can hold their shape and are shiny. Fold in the almonds, salt, vanilla and coconut. The mixture will be sticky but should hold its shape when clumped together.
3. Form into nicely rounded domes and place on the tray. Keep them nice and high as they look better not being too flat.
4. Cook for 20 minutes or until they're just beginning to turn golden in parts.
5. In a bowl over simmering water, place the dark chocolate and melt.
6. Drop in the macaroons, one by one, and cover the bottom of each with chocolate. Cool in the fridge upside down. If there is any remaining chocolate, drizzle some on top of the macaroons. 

chocolate almond balls

I’m often craving something sweet after dinner but don’t want to feel guilty for that piece of chocolate or cake. That’s why I love these choc almond balls. They’re packed full of goodness and you won’t feel like you have to pound the treadmill after a few. These are lovely served with a little natural yogurt or crème fraiche.

Makes about 15 balls
200g unsweetened raisins/ sultanas/ dates
200g ground almonds
1 ripe banana, mashed
2 tablespoons good quality dark cocoa powder
2 tablespoons desiccated coconut, plus extra for rolling

1. Place the raisins in a food processor and process until chopped finely. The mixture will probably stick together but that’s ok.
2. Add the ground almonds, banana and cocoa powder and combine.
3. Move the mixture to a bowl and add the coconut. With your hands combine so the coconut is distributed throughout. Add more coconut or cocoa powder to your taste.
4.  Roll the mixture into small balls and coat with coconut. Place in the fridge for at least 20 minutes before serving.

Gluten Free – Wheat Free – Dairy Free

decadent chocolate brownies

This is a serious winner! Deliciously moist and decadent. It should be nice and crusty on the top and velvety smooth and moist in the centre. And it’s great when you come across those lovely chunks of white chocolate. Yum.

375g unsalted butter
375g good quality dark chocolate* (Greens or lindt 70%)
6 large eggs
1 tbsp vanilla extract
500g caster sugar
225g Doves Gluten Free plain flour.
1 tsp salt
150g chopped walnuts
150g good quality white chocolate, roughly chopped

1. Heat the oven to 180C/fan and line a 33x23cm brownie tin
2. Place the butter and dark chocolate in a bowl over a saucepan of boiling water until the mixture is melted and velvety.
3. In another bowl, beat the eggs, sugar and vanilla together.
4. Beat the sugar mixture into the chocolate. Then add the flour and nuts and combine.
5.  Pour the mixture into the prepared brownie tin. Sprinkle the chopped white chocolate over the mixture, pressing the pieces into the centre.
6. Bake for 25 minutes or until the top is nice and crusty but the centre is still gooey and delicious.
7. Allow the brownie to stand for 10 minutes and then cut and serve warm. Amazing.

Gluten Free – Wheat Free

orange and almond cake

This is possibly my all time favourite cake recipe. It is moist, light, delicious and so easy to whip up for a quick treat or after dinner pudding. Serve with natural yoghurt and berries or warm with a yummy scoop of ice cream.

2 large navel oranges
6 organic eggs
250g caster sugar
250g ground almonds
1 teaspoon gluten free baking powder

1. Put the oranges in a medium saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring to the boil then turn the heat down and simmer for one hour or until oranges are soft.  Remove from the hot water and leave to cool.
2. Preheat the oven to 170C.
3. Cut the oranges into quarters and remove the pips.
4. Place the oranges into a food processor, skin and all and process until smooth.
5. Add in all the remaining ingredients and process again.
6. Grease and line a 20cm spring form pan.
7. Pour the mixture into the tin and bake for 45-55 minutes.
8. Let the cake cool before removing from tin.

Gluten Free – Wheat Free – Dairy Free


Since moving to Glasgow from Australia last year, I've found it terribly difficult to find good quality and fresh gluten free treats and eats in and around the city. As I love to cook and experiment with ingredients, and also because I know how hard it is to find gluten free food (or even a simple cake with your coffee), i have decided to post all my favourite recipes to inspire gluten free eating in Glasgow. You don't have to be gluten intolerant to enjoy these recipes; test them, experiment with my ideas and let me know what you think, gluten free may be just what your body needs.