Tag Archives: Lemon

Guilt-Free Breakfast. Gluten-free and delicious!

27 Jun

Over the last few months I have been testing new recipes for gluten-free/grain-free baking and cooking.
I wanted breakfast that was satisfying like toast and honey, and filling like a bowl of granola, problem is, I can’t eat any of those things because I’ve recently discovered that grains, of any type, are not my friend. I’m talking wheat, rice, corn, couscous, you name the grain, I can’t eat it. Which means I don’t get any of the ‘good stuff’ so to speak. I can’t even eat the gluten-free alternative as rice flour is used.
To be honest I’ve been pretty bummed out for the last few months over this.
Anyways, The Spunky Coconut pretty much saved my life.

Kelly and her family have been gluten-free/grain-free, sugar-free and the rest for some time now. I would check out her website for the full story, as I wont do it justice, but it’s all pretty inspiring. She reminded me that there were loads of grain alternatives, and with a little, tiny, weenie bit of effort (not much at all) you can have delicious baked and cooked yummies, that A) wont hurt you’re gut or give you crazy blurry vision (yep that’s what happens folks) and B) are really high in protein and all that good stuff.

So I’ve taken inspiration from Kelly and I’ve been making my own grain free pancakes! The recipe is one I’ve made up myself, and has worked well all the times I used it. And you don’t have to feel guilty eating them as they are almost completely carb free, no sugar and high in protein. This version is also dairy free, but not out of intention. It can be altered by replacing the coconut milk with cows or goats milk if you like.

Vanilla Almond Pancakes with Honey and Lemon drizzle

Serves 1

30g blanched almonds

20g tapioca flour

10g quinoa flakes

5g coconut flour

1/4 teaspoon of gluten-free baking powder

1/4 teaspoon of baking soda

1 egg

A little coconut milk to thin.

Drop of vanilla bean essence

Coconut oil for cooking

1 dessert spoon honey

2 dessert spoons fresh lemon juice

 

Put you’re almonds and quinoa in a grinder, I use a coffee grinder myself, and find it works perfectly. Grind until you have a fine flour.

Put all the dry ingredients to a bowl and add the egg, mix until well incorporated.

Add coconut milk and vanilla to thin down you’re batter, depending on how thick you want you’re pancakes.  Alternatively you can have waffles by adding only a drop of milk. Leave for a few moments while you heat you’re frying pan to a high/medium heat.

While you wait, mix together the honey and lemon in a small bowl or cup. Set aside.

Add a touch of coconut oil (or a little butter) to your hot frying pan, and add a couple of spoons of batter. Cook one side for about a minuet,  flip and cook the other side. Repeat until all your batter has gone. Personally I have mine quite small, more like waffle size, but they work just as well if you want a thin pancake, just add more milk and spread across the pan.

Pour on your honey and lemon drizzle, and ta-dah! You have yourself a healthy stack of Almond Pancakes! Enjoy!

 

Say “Cheese”.

8 May

What is the secret of the perfect cheese cake?

Pretty Tray

Is it a fluffy filling or densely creamy? Plain and simple or full of fruit?

These are the questions I asked myself and The Boy yesterday.

Yes I do kind of value his opinion, but don’t tell him that or he’ll think he’s always right…

We came to the conclusion that we both preferred a non-baked cheese cake as it is the most refreshing and probably the most calorific.

A thick crumb base is always good. It’s always frustrating when you order a cheesecake and there isn’t enough base!

Because I really want an excuse to photograph my new cake stand/tray, I want it to be a simple looking cake. So instead of just vanilla, and because I am sure summer is poking around out there somewhere, I decide it must have some citrus notes, as this cuts through the creamy-ness of the filling perfectly. Organic lemons are lovely. I say organic because I find they have more flavour and for some reason have less pips…So I am decided. Simple Lemon Cheesecake….

“Chocolate” he says while whizzing round the supermarket. “Cheesecake must have chocolate in it”….*Cue a slightly horrified & confused face from me*.

Now don’t get me wrong, in most cases he would be on the money, but I wanted a beautifully crisp looking cake, and I was not envisaging me getting into a chocolatey mess (which happens with me and chocolate).

We settle for a chocolate chip base instead.

See, I can compromise 😉

So here it is.

Simple Lemon Cheesecake (with a chocolate chip base)

Ingredients:

Base

275g biscuits (any flavour you like, but I used chocolate-chip)

125g butter, melted

1 tbsn honey

pinch of salt

Filling

600g cream cheese

150g icing sugar

2 organic lemons, peel and juice.

285ml double cream

First of all you need to grease and line a 8 to 10 inch springform tin. Set aside.

Base

1. You need to smash those biscuits up, I know, this could be a difficult moment for some of you, but I promise, it’s worth it.

Using a food processor, pop the biscuits in and whizz up until you have what resembles fine bread crumbs.

If you do not have a food processor (like me), a sandwich bag and bashing implement will do.

I used a knife sharpener…Stick them in and smash away.

2. Melt honey and butter together in a small pan on a medium heat.

3. Put biscuits in a mixing bowl and add butter/honey mix and salt. Mix.

4. Once all the crumbs are covered, press the crumbs into the base and sides of your tin. Making sure you compact the mixture as much as possible.

Place in fridge for 1 hour to set.


Filling

1. In a spotless mixing bowl whip the cream cheese to a smooth consistency.

2. Add half the sugar and stir in. Grate the lemon peel in the bowl and add the juice of 2 lemons, little at a time. Add the remaining sugar and mix in.

3. Add all the cream to the mixture and beat with an electric mixer for 5 minuets.

4. Once you have a stiff mixture, spoon it into you’re biscuit base and smooth out. Place in fridge overnight to set.

5. Remove from fridge 5 minuets before serving.

Cherry Brandy Ganache Macarons.

23 Apr

The last few days have been manic. So much so, I haven’t even really had a chance to enjoy the beautiful, yet unusual april weather and sunshine.

Having a bit of a house re-jig moving the living room around to make room for the shinny new tv, in turn I now have space for a little table, so for the 1st time I get to sit here looking out my patio doors, rather then slumped on the sofa, laptop in hand (or on lap…) it’s the simple things, but they make all the difference for some reason.

Also getting ready for guests tomorrow as it’s Easter. I’ve never been that traditional about anything really, so there will be a mix of friends and family at mine tomorrow, I invisage enjoying the sunlight, kids searching for Easter eggs, BBQ and nibbles, and lastly but not least, cakes. And this is also why I am extra super busy, I’ve been baking.

I tell you, my kitchen, it is rather tiny, and the sun shreams through the window in the afternoon, and while that is lovely (I am not complaining sunsine), when I have my oven on the whole kitchen is around 10c hotter then the outside temperature. I came to cream my butter today to find all that remained was a sorry looking pool of buttery liquid. Hmm…

Anyways, onwards and upwards, the recipes today.

Cherry brandy Macarons with chocolate ganache.

150g Ground Almonds

150g Icing Sugar

2 Egg Whites, fresh.


2 Egg Whites, aged (left at room temperature for 24-48 hours).

150g Caster Sugar

37g Water

Food Colouring

Method

Sift the almonds and icing sugar togther in a bowl. Add the fresh egg white and mix to a paste. Set aside.

Put water and caster sugar in a sauce pan and heat to 118c, swirling the pan once and a while as to not burn the sugar.  You can add a few drops of liquid colour to the sugar syrup if you like, or if you have powdered colouring, even better, as the colour is more intense and you won’t be adding any extra moisture.

When the syrup reaches 115c start whipping the egg whites. At 118c pour the syrup down the side of the bowl into the whites, keep whipping for 3-5 mins until your have a glossy but firm meringue.

Add a 3rd of the meringue to the almond paste and mix in, knocking a little air out. Fold in remaining meringue until the mixture is thick and glossy, and flows slowly, almost oozing. This should take no more then 20-30 folds as the batter will get too runny otherwise.

Fill you’re icing bag 2 3rds full and twist top the secure. I just use disposable bags as they are convenient. Snip the end of the bag, not to big, I don’t have a picture of this, but I will rememeber next time. Pipe out little circles onto baking parchment, about 1″ round.

Give them a few wraps on the counter, then leave them to dry for 15-30 mins to form thin skins. They should not stick to your finger when lightly touched.

Pop them in the oven at around 150c and bake for around 15mins, but the oven temperature and times will all depend on you’re oven, so experiment with that.

Hi there!

Once cooled, sandwich together with cherry ganache, cream, jams, buttercream or fresh fruit.

Mmm Macaron with Chocolate Ganache

Refridgerate for 24 hours, trust me when I say this is most immportant. Take them out 30mins before eating.

24 hours in the frigde, no air pockets!

Chocolate Ganache

112g Dark Chocolate

180ml of whipping cream or similar.

25g of soft butter.

Break up the chocolate and place in a bowl.

In a pan heat the cream, just under boiling. Pour over the chocolate and mix until all the chocolate has melted. Add the butter and any flavouring and mix. Refrigerate for 20mins then pipe into macaron shells.

Flavours

1tbls of cherry brandy.

Some grated lime or lemon.

Strawberries and Cream

Alternately fill macarons with fresh cream and strawberries for a light summery treat. Yum!

I hope you enjoy making them!

1st Post!

22 Apr

Well, here it is, the 1st post. Honestly I am rather nervous…I can’t be sure why, because I’ll be lucky if my family even reads this….but I’m looking forward to posting online anyway.

I am writing here for a few reasons. 1st and foremost as a tool to show you guys what I do here at The Lilac Bakery, weddings, birthdays, maybe even some recipes, but also because I want to share this journey with you, from a little seed of a business to global empire (okay I know that’s a little far-fetched, but we can all dream eh?! 🙂

I’ve probably started writing far to late in the day, it’s been a busy one and my whole day plan was thrown out the window, and half the stuff I should have done I didn’t do, so I am now trying to catch up. But I guess I can blame my lack lustre writing on this being my first blog. No?

So yeah, my name is Aimee by the way….nice to meet you.

I look forward to sharing some foody thoughts with you.

Love Aimee x