Friday 29 April 2016

Citrus and Maple cake

Vegan, Sugar free

Last time we were in the cake kitchen we promised you a sugar free delight. Well here we are, hopefully the first of many gut-happy cakes!

1 large carrot
5 tablespoons maple syrup
2/3 cup unsweetened soya milk (or coconut milk)
2 ½ cup flour
7g yeast
1 lemon (or orange) finely zest
4 tablespoon sunflower oil

Cook carrot until soft. When still warm put in to blender add maple syrup, soya milk, lemon zest and blend.
Combine the flour with dried yeast, then add still warm carrot mixture. Mix with the spatula until it comes together. Slowly pour the oil and keep mixing until it is all incorporated. Mix for a several minutes until dough is completely smooth and starts to pull away from the sides of the bowl. If it doesn’t, you can add 1 tablespoon extra flour to help this along. Oil a very large bowl and put dough in bowl. Cover and let rise until doubled in bulk.

Knock it down and transfer into buttered and floured a 2-litre capacity Bundt pan. Let rise a second time until almost doubled.
Preheat the oven to 180°C. Bake for 30 minutes or until a skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean.
Cool in the pan for 10 minutes. Turn out onto a wire rack and take off the pan. Let it to cool completely.

If you would like use sugar for icing you can do mix 5 tablespoons icing sugar with ½ blood orange.

recipe inspired by: 

Monday 25 April 2016

Just BABA (Baba Ganoush)

vegan, gluten free

This aubergine dip is simply delicious served with warm pitta bread.


baba ganoush


1 large aubergine
2 garlic cloves
2 tablespoon tahini
1 tablespoon olive oil
juice of 1 lemon
salt and pepper
chopped flat leaf parsley
pomegranate to garnish (optional)

Grill the aubergine until the skin starts to bubble, turning it frequently until all sides are done and the aubergine feels soft. This can also be done in a hot oven.
Cut the aubergine in half and then scoop out the flesh into a food processor. add the garlic, tahini, olive oil, salt and pepper to taste and lemon juice, then blend until smooth.
Pile the Baba Ganoush onto a  flat plate, garnish with parsley and sprinkle with pomegranate seeds.

Kept in the fridge can last for up to 4 days but best enjoyed on the day of preparation.

recipe inspired by:
World Food Cafe, Vegetarian Bible
Chris and Carolyn Caldicott
2014 by First Frances Lincol 

Friday 22 April 2016

My father-in-law’s spring salad

vegan, gluten free

I haven’t seen him recently as he lives in Poland, but I have no doubts that he will be making his refreshing spring salad soon. After researching the best way to make his recipe Vegan I found some interesting information about the roots of his refreshing dish. He must enjoy the Olivier salad. 

It is believed that this cooked vegetable salad has existed for since at least 1864. Russian chef Lucien Oliver prepared this salad especially for Tsar Nicholas II. Oliver never shared the recipe. After his death, people tried to reconstruct the recipe, naming it Oliver salad. This salad typical made from chopped vegetables and meat in a mayonnaise base.

olivier salad

Instant traditional base we going to make vegan version;

Ingredients for base:
200g tofu
35g pine nuts
15ml lemon juice
10g agave syrup
1 ½ teaspoon dijon mustard
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
½ teaspoon black see salt ( you can use any salt if you like)
Aprox. 100ml good quality olive oil

Combine all ingredient apart oil in a blender for about 30 second. While blending slowly add in the oil until it emulsifies and it thickens. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed.

Ok we have base now. We can prepare salad.

Ingredients for salad:

3 large carrots
3 large potatoes
1 large parsnip
200g sweet peas
1 large leek (only white part)

 Boil potatoes, parsnip and carrots until they are soft in the middle and let cool to room temperature. Dice potatoes, parsnip, leek and carrots and combine in bowl. Steam peas for about 5 minutes and let cool to room temperature. Add to the bowl sweet corn. Add vegan mayo and mix all ingredients. Add salt and pepper to taste.

olivier salad

Monday 18 April 2016

Vegan and gluten free carrot cake

vegan, gluten free

Finally, we are going to bake some cake for people who can not eat dairy, eggs or gluten. Unfortunately, this recipe contains sugar, but watch this space that is our next step. We promise a sugar free delight soon.


vegan and gluten free carrot cake

300g gluten free flour
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 ¼ teaspoon baking powder
1 ¼ teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
Pinch of ground ginger
200g light brown sugar
200g granulated sugar
450g  carrots – peeled and grated
4 flax eggs


Adjust oven rack to the middle position, and preheat to 180C.
Then dust the inside of pan (9-inch round cake pan) with gluten-free flour until the grease is completely covered and no spots of the pan are visible.

In a separate bowl, whisk together the gluten-free flour blend, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt, cloves and ginger together until combined.

In a food processor fitted with the large shredding disk, shred carrots. Then transfer them to the mixing bowl with the flour. Wipe clean the food processor bowl, and fit with the metal blade (in place of the shredding disk). Add the granulated sugar, brown sugar and flax eggs and process until frothy and throughly combined, about 20 seconds. With processor running, add oil in a steady stream. Process until egg mixture is light in color and well emulsified, about 20 more seconds.

Transfer egg mixture to the large bowl with the carrots and flour. Using a rubber spatula, stir the mixture until thoroughly combined. If using nuts, stir them in until combined.

Pour batter evenly into the prepared pan. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean, about:

-25-30 minutes for the two 9-inch round cake pan

Let cake cool completely in the pan on a wire rack, about 1 hour. Run a knife around the edge of the cake to loosen. Remove cake, if transferring to a different serving platter, and frost as desired.

vegan and gluten free carrot cake

How To Make Vegan Gluten-Free "Cream Cheese" Frosting:

4 cups icing sugar
1 1/2 cups  vegan butter (I used coconut butter)
2 tablespoons non-dairy milk (I used unsweetened almond milk)
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon lemon juice
pinch of salt

Combine all ingredients in the bowl of a stand mixer or food processor, and mix until smooth and combined. If the frosting is too thick, add in some extra milk to thin. If the frosting is too thin, add in more icing sugar to thicken.

**To make the flax eggs, simply stir together 1 Tbsp. flaxmeal (freshly-ground) and 3 tablespoons of water until combined PER EGG. (This recipe called for 4 eggs, so you would times those amounts by 4.)

Then refrigerate the mixture for at least 15 minutes, remove and whisk again, and the mixture should be thick and sticky.
recipe inspired by:

Friday 15 April 2016

Home made ketchup

vegan,gluten free

The more I am learning about food, the warier I am becoming about the staple, supermarket foods we consume daily. A reaction to this is my new homemade ketchup recipe:

Home made ketchup


1 large red onion – peeled and roughly chopped
2cm fresh ginger – peeled and roughly chopped
2 cloves garlic – peeled and sliced
1 teaspoon coriander seeds
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
500g tinned plum tomatoes
50g tomatoes puree
100ml apple cider vinegar
70g soft brown sugar
1 teaspoon celery salt
1 teaspoon paprika
olive oil


Place red onion and garlic in a heavy – bottomed saucepan with a big splash of olive oil add coriander seeds, black pepper and celery salt. Cook gently over a low heat for 10 to 15 minutes until
softened, stirring every so often. Add all the tomatoes, tomatoes puree and about 300ml cold water. Bring to the boil and simmer gently until the sauce reduces by half.

Whiz the sauce in a food processor or with a hand blender and add vinegar and the sugar. Place the sauce on the heat and simmer until it reduces and thickens to consistency of tomato ketchup. Ad this point, correct the seasoning to taste.

Monday 11 April 2016

Spring salad with fennel

Vegan, Gluten free

The gorgeous colours of green, white, and red make this delicious salad so enticing! The combination of the sweet apple taste with the juicy and tangy salad dressing is always a big hit with all of my guests.


2 small fennel
1 large cucumber
½ apple
2 tablespoon lemon juice
For dressing
1 teaspoon wasabi
2 tablespoons water
4 tablespoons olive oil
salt and pepper for taste

Cut the fennel bulb vertically, so that you’re cutting through the trimmed shoots.

Once halved, you can see the hard core at the base of the fennel. Scoop it out and discard. Next, place the halved fennel on a cutting board, flat surface down. Slice it diagonally starting from the base, making sure to keep them as thin as possible, a mandolin would be ideal if you have one. Halve and core the apple. Cut into thin slices. Transfer the fennel, apple, sliced cucumber to a bowl and pour on the lemon.

In small bowl mix together wasabi and water until the wasabi dissolves then finish by adding the olive oil, salt and pepper. Pour the dressing over the salad.

Recipe taken from
Marta Dymek
2014 by Dwie Siostry

Sunday 10 April 2016

Manisha Parmar (Mistry)

Manisha Parmar (Mistry) is originally from India. She is famous for her participation in the exciting 3rd edition of The Great British Bake Off.

Here is what the BBC have to say about Manisha: “Her baking passion began when her mum showed her how to make a Victoria Sponge. Her strengths are classic English biscuits, cakes and pastry but she also makes some Indian biscuits and cakes too.”

GM: What inspired you to take part in this competition?
MM: I was watching the ending of the second series of bake off, was thinking ‘I can do all this’. How hard could it be to bake a few biscuits and cupcakes. So I applied instantly and within a day or two I got a response. Baking is my hobby and love to watch and try new ways of baking.

GM: How did you react to the news that you had been accepted as a participant on The Great British Bake Off?
MM:I was in my car with my brother, just finished shopping and the phone rang!!! They told me I was chosen to be one of the 12 contestant of the show. I was really shocked and excited. It really boosted my confidence up and I was ecstatic to start this new journey.

GM: Did you practise and learn new recipes before going on the show?
MM: I knew a lot about bread, but never made it before so that was something new I tried. I absolutely loved experimenting flavours for bagels and learning the techniques on making bagels.

GM: Can you describe to our readers what it was like the behind the scenes on the competition?
MM: It was great behind the scenes, lots of people, camera’s everywhere. For me it was more about being more sociable and experimenting what’s out there in the world. Watching others use different techniques and mix matching flavours.

GM: Which is your favourite Bake Off?
MM: I absolutely loved our series of bake off because it was fun and really exciting. However, I loved the latest bake off series with Tamal, Nadia and co. they all seemed to be a brilliant bunch of bakers

GM: We met on Bristol Food Connection Festival. What do you think about Bristol?

MM: I absolutely love Bristol, while I was filming in Somerset, we stayed in Bristol and it was a beautiful city especially in the summer. I was invited to come to the Bristol foodie’s festival. It was fabulous to see peoples love for different foods, and people coming to watch me bake. I visited Bristol to meet up with a few friends and hopefully will be attending the Bristol balloon festival and Bristol foodie’s festival this year.

GM: We run a health-conscious blog, which is aimed to help people who wish to change diet to becoming vegetarian, vegan or gluten free. What is your favourite nourishing dish?
MM: Since being pregnant, I seemed to love vegetarian foods, food such as lentil, vegetable rice dishes, simple chilli tomato pasta with spinach.

GM: Would like to take our challenge?
MM: Maybe :0)

GM: Would you like to share with our readers on of your favourite healthy recipes?
vegetarian, sugar free
Homemade fruit yogurt

Quarter of pineapple - small cubes
6 lychees - peels and roughly chopped
Hand full of blue berries
Hand full of raspberries
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp vanilla paste
Pot of fat free Greek yogurt


In a pan, put ½ tsp unsalted butter, heat on low.
Melt the butter. Add all the fruit in the pan and mix, medium heat and cover for 10 mins. Add the cinnamon and vanilla paste and mix, low heat and cover 15 mins till fruit is soft. Once cooked take off the heat and cool completely.
Use this mix fruit in Greek yogurt, granola or seeded crackers. This recipe has no added sugar and low in fat. Great for breakfast and snack

vegetarian, sugar free
Banana and blueberry pancakes

145g plain flour
1tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
130ml milk
1 large egg
1 large ripe banana (mashed)
Hand full of blueberries


In a jug sift flour, baking powder, salt. Add the milk and egg. Whisk the ingredients together. Fold the mashed banana and mix in the blue berries. Heat a non-stick pan, add a small amount of melted butter. Using a ladle, scoop some of the batter on the pan and cook. Once you see small bubbles forming on top of the pancakes you can flip the pancakes. Cook for 2 to 3 mins.
You can have these fluffy pancakes with homemade vanilla yogurt, honey and strawberries.

Interviewed by Greg Macalla

Friday 8 April 2016

Forest tart



For pastry
125g white flour
75g cold butter
1 small egg
Pinch of salt

For the filling
250g Brie
500g spinach
4 eggs
1 teaspoon nutmeg
Salt and pepper to taste

Let's start with the pastry:

Try to work quickly so the mix does not become greasy. Heat oven to 190C if you have a fan, 210C for traditional oven.

Put the flour and salt in a large bowl, mix then add the cubes of butter. Use your fingertips to rub the flour and salt into the butter until butter you have a mixture that resembles coarse breadcrumbs, with no large lumps of butter remaining. Add the egg, this will bind the dough together. Wrap the dough in cling film and chill for 10-15 minutes before using.
Grease a 22cm tart tin. Roll out the pastry, on a lightly floured surface, to about 0.5mm. Line your tin with the pastry dough. Let the edges overhang, don’t trim them yet. Chill in the fridge for at least 15 mins. Roughly line the inside of the pastry with baking parchment fill it with baking beans*. Place on a baking tray, then bake for 15-20 mins. Remove the beans and parchment, then return to the oven for another 5 mins to cook the base.

Meanwhile, for the filling, wilt the spinach in a saucepan with a little water. Set aside to cool, then squeeze out the excess water and chop finely. Whisk the eggs in a bowl, then whisk in the spinach. Add the Brie and using a hand blender whiz until combined well. Season well with salt, nutmeg and freshly ground black pepper.

Bake in the oven for 35-40 minutes, or until golden-brown and just set. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool for 10 minutes.
*(these keep the pastry in shape, you don't have to use official 'Baking Beans' - just any none toxic items of similar mass and weight to a handful of say uncooked beans)

Monday 4 April 2016

Vegan courgette fritters

vegan, gluten free

Are fritters a breakfast, lunch, dinner, or snack type of recipe? What’s your vote?

3 Medium courgette
3/4 cup chickpea flour
6 medium sundried tomatoes finely chopped
2 teaspoon capers
Flat parsley
Salt and pepper for taste
Oil for frying

Sit a sieve on top of a larger bowl so that their is room for liquid to drain through and collect in the bowl. Using the large holes on a cheese grater, grate the courgette into the sieve. Sprinkle the salt over the courgette then lightly toss the courgette with your hands.
Set aside for 10 minutes while you are preparing the rest of the ingredients. The salt will draw out some of the liquid in the courgettes, intensifying the flavour.

Now you can add chickpea flour, sundried tomatoes, capers and flat parsley and mix thoroughly.

Heat a large non-stick frying pan with oil over a medium heat. Add, by the tablespoon, patties of the courgette mixture to the hot pan and fry without moving for about 3 minutes, so they form a golden brown crust underneath. Carefully flip them over. Continue to cook until golden brown and crisp on each side, turning once or twice more if you need to. Remove and drain off any excess oil on kitchen paper. Sprinkle over a little salt, pepper and flat parsley. Serve on warm plate.

Recipe taken from
Marta Dymek
2014 by Dwie Siostry