All posts filed under: Dessert

Colon Cancer, SIBO & Blueberry Breakfast Crumble

I don’t know about you, but until my recent colon cancer diagnosis I hadn’t heard of SIBO (Small Intestinal Bacteria Overgrowth).  SIBO can be responsible for symptoms such as fatigue, bloating, wind, constipation and diarrhoea, Iron and B12 deficiencies as well as more long term chronic disease.  It dawned on me (slowly),  how my ‘healthy’ diet had probably contributed to imbalance within my own system.  Despite enjoying whole food, I very definitely place emphasis on starches and carbs in the form of rice, beans and legumes.  I had no idea that the generic view of what is healthy, could actually be causing me a problem… When you’re diagnosed with a critical illness, it’s like a bomb goes off in the middle of your life.  Everything (literally everything) looks, and feels different.  I was torn between a longing for the oblivion of yesterday and wanting to wake up sometime in the future when it was all over.  Despite critical illness diagnosis, however, the body has a remarkable capacity to keep functioning ‘as normal’.  Sleep still comes …

Daim Bar Laundering Brownies… Post-modern and possibly gluten-free

These brownies represent the emotional wreck that I am this week… In a frenzy of duty-free chocolate buying which went something like this in my mind… “oooh Toblerone, oooh Daim bars, oooh nougat… snap out of it Lauren you don’t even like nougat… but daim bars…Mmmm”  and then I justified the buying of the Daim bars by thinking “it’s really only ever the airport of Ikea that I would buy them, so that amounts to about once or twice a year, so it’s a special treat, right?”…. I ate a handful on the plane until I felt sick… and then tried to fob them off on everyone else… and then, when I got home to the realisation that I had a year’s supply of daim bars and no self-control I went in to panic mode, no amount of yoga or meditation could fix this.  I had to wash the daim bars like dirty cash (I learned about this watching Ozark on Netflix by the way which is really good), transforming them in to something legitimate, …

Blackberry Breakfast Muffins & Recipe Share

In full fruit, in a hedgerow near you, the brambles are groaning under the weight of sweet, juicy blackberries.  And what’s more, they are free!  Free food.  It’s blackberry season and to celebrate I’d love for as many of you as possible to share your favourite blackberry recipes.  Please leave a link in the comments, it can be your own, or just a favourite… And in the mean time, here’s my own Blackberry Breakfast Muffin recipe… Ingredients (makes 9 large muffins or 12 Cupcake sized muffins): 200g  blackberries 100g oats 100g wholemeal spelt flour   100g golden caster sugar 100g butter 1 egg 1tsp baking powder 1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda 50g chopped pecans 1 tsp vanilla extract 90mls almond milk Method: 1) Pre-heat the oven to 180C.  Line a muffin tin with muffin cases. 2) Mix the dry ingredients together in a large mixing bowl 3) Gently melt the butter, allow to cool slightly and mix with the egg, milk & vanilla 4) Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir through …

Mango, Coconut & Chia Cream

It’s officially the first day of the school holidays for us… Amid various melt-downs there were moments of loveliness.  Breakfast was one of them.  I think we all thoroughly appreciated the slow morning we had.  The sun was shining and we sat in the garden eating and planning our day… With extra time comes a little more creativity and this delicious breakfast pudding was the result.  It was as easy as making a smoothie, and just took a few extra minutes for the chia seeds to do their coagulating business in the fridge… So here it is… hope you enjoy!   Ingredients: 1 mango 2/3 can coconut milk 1 tbsp chia seeds 1 tbsp cocoa nibs Method: 1) Quarter the mango, slice and dice and scoop in to a blender. 2) Add the coconut milk, chia seeds and cocoa nibs. 3) Blend and pour in to a bowl.  Set in the fridge for at least 10 minutes. Enjoy! PS – I watched Forks Over Knives last night, anyone else seen it?  Brilliant watch for anyone …

Retro Rhubarb and Ginger Compote

When I think of rhubarb I think of ‘Roobarb and Custard’ the 1970’s kids TV show, or Rhubarb and Custard penny sweets, or endless Rhubarb crumbles every Sunday through the summer…  I’m never very sure whether Rhubarb is a vegetable or a fruit and I’m always slightly panicked as to what to do with it.  However, when in doubt, compote.  The main reasons I love a compote are that it reduces the volume, it stores well in the fridge and it can be added to just about any pudding or breakfast.  Mixed with yoghurt, added to smoothies, dolloped on top of granola or porridge or mixed with ice-cream. Ingredients: 5 sticks of Rhubarb 1 Thumb of ginger 2 Tbsp Maple Syrup A little water Method: 1) Top and tail the rhubarb to remove any scraggly bits.  Cut in to approximate 1cm chunks. 2) Add the rhubarb to a saucepan on the hob with a splash of water and the maple syrup.  Heat and simmer, add a tbsp of water at a time if the compote …

Rich Chocolate, Cardamom Tarts

“Three, more sleeps”… said my children on the way to bed tonight.  They’re so excited, I’m so excited, we’re all so excited!  We’re officially on holiday!  Fairy lights are blinking everywhere we look, food and drink is stacking up in every conceivable corner along with paper napkins, socks and sneaky chocolate wrappers…  The dog has only pulled the tree down once and luckily hasn’t eaten enough chocolate to make herself really sick.  So far so good…  Any moments of real stress are countered by a quick visit to the fridge for another chocolate tart or perhaps a glass of 4pm wine.  Welcome to Christmas… Ingredients for the tart case (makes 12): 250g plain flour 125g diced butter (or coconut oil for a vegan alternative) 2 tbsp cocoa powder 2 tbsp icing sugar 6 tbsp cold (or iced cold) water Ingredients for the Chocolate Cardamom Filling: 170g dark 70% chocolate 160g coconut cream 10 cardamom pods (seeds crushed) Stardust, or edible glitter to serve… Method: 1. Pre-heat the oven to 180C. In a mixing bowl or …

Baked Apples… A Little Throwback to my Childhood

My grandparents had apple trees in the garden, crocuses that would grow up below them in early spring, and a tortoise in a pen who lived there in summer.  At the bottom of the garden they had a vegetable garden filled with potatoes, beans, herbs, fruit, salad, cabbages and probably more and it was bordered by roses.  When I stayed with them I always helped to collect vegetables from the garden. Mint for mint sauce, raspberries for pudding, apples for baking and when I went home my grampy would cut a rose for me to take with me. I remember there being so many windfall apples, and apart from making apple sauce, my nanny would make baked apples… She used golden syrup and condensed milk back then and stuffed them with nuts and raisins… My recipe is a little bit different, but most definitely dedicated to her and inspired by those baked apples I enjoyed as a child! For more on storing and preserving apples and autumn produce visit Patrick Whitefield. And for more on …