16 November 2014

raspberries + white chocolate cookies {gluten free}



Cookies! (said in the cookie monster voice - if you have no idea what I'm talking about, something is missing from your education, that's all I'm sayin'). I made gluten-free cookies that taste just like normal cookies yo. Achivement!

I said before that I'm fairly new to gluten-free baking, and that I find it hard. Results are never the same, sometimes it taste a little grainy, and it ends up being crumbly and dry. Blah.

Well these cookies are a totally different ball game. They are moist and soft and definitely moreish. I brought a batch of these at my work last week and no-one even guessed they were gluten-free.



Now I always knew the secret to good cookies was to make the dough rest in the fridge for as long as you possibly can. 24 hours minimum but the recipe from Gluten Free Girl, which this post is inspired on, calls for 36 hours resting time. I was a little scared to make the dough rest if I'm being honest, because gluten-free flour usually absorb so much more moisture than traditional flour. But since I wasn't using rice flour for this recipe, I took a leap of faith and boy, was I rewarded!

I made these with white chocolate and raspberries.



I used freeze dried raspberries to get the flavour from the fruit, but without all the moisture fresh raspberries usually bring. Me no want no soggy cookies.

I also made these with plain old chocolate chips (which are notoriously hard to find in England) and they rocked too. So here you go, this is a winner recipe!

white chocolate + raspberries gluten-free cookies

inspired by Gluten Free Girl

100g (1 cup) sweet sorghum flour
90g (1 cup) tapioca flour
190g (2 cups) quinoa flour
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp pink Himalayan salt
285g butter, out of the fridge for about 1 to 2 hours, you don't want it too soft
180g (1 1/2 cup) dark brown soft sugar
190g (1 cup + 2 tbsp) caster sugar
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1 tsp vanilla extract
400g white chocolate, broken into chances (I use Green & Blacks)
freeze dried raspberries (found on Amazon)

Beat the butter with the soft brown sugar and caster sugar until all incorporated. Add the eggs, one at a time, and beat well in between each addition. Add the vanilla extract and mix through.

Now sift all the flours together with the baking soda, baking powder and salt. Add in 3 increments to the sugar and butter mixture, mixing well in between each addition. This will make it easier to mix the flour in (I made these by hands, but if you are using one of those fancy mixers, by all means put it all in at once!).

Add the chocolate pieces and mix to evenly distribute throughout the dough. Now cover and put in the fridge for 36 hours. Be patient! Good things comes to those who wait.

Then when the time comes, preheat your oven to 180 C/350 F. Prep a cookie sheet, lined with baking parchment. Then take the dough out of the fridge, press the dough into cookies the size of a golf ball, roll them into raspberry crumbs and bake for anywhere between 8 and 10 minutes. The cookies will look undercook when you take them out of the oven, but they will firm up and be all soft once they cool down. I recommend that you let them cool down about 20 minutes before transferring them to a cooling rack, this way it will be easier to lift them up the parchment paper in one piece.

Look at that money shot.


Me trying to be artsy with da cookie.


Give them a try and let me know what you think!

2 November 2014

garden pea + ham hock soup



Another soup recipe. You now my drill, I love soup!

So this is a soup that can easily be found at any supermarket. In England anyway. But it takes so little time to make, and it's homemade, so in my head this equals more fresh. Nothing beats homemade. Am I right?



I use frozen garden peas, which everyone has in their freezer. Easy pea-sy. Sorry, too easy a pun not to make!



And shredded ham hock. Oh dear, my favourite part of ham is you ask me. For some reason, I always prefer ham being shredded than sliced. I think it tastes better. Am I the only one with this weird preference?

garden pea + ham hock soup

1 tbsp butter
3 small shallots, roughly chopped
500g garden peas
500ml (2 cups) good quality chicken stock
salt + pepper
170g shredded ham hock (I bought mine at Tesco, and I know Waitrose have some too)
chives, optional but tasty!

Melt the butter in a pan and cook the shallots gently until they becomes slightly transparent.

Then add the garden peas and chicken stock and  bring to a simmer. Let cook for about 10 minutes.

Season to taste. Then blizt to bits with your blender (you can leave a few chunks in if you prefer too), or immersion blender.

Pop into a bowl and top with a generous handful of ham hock.  A few optional sprinkles of chive. And there you go, soup! In under 20 minutes!