Individual Plum Cakes (Vegan + GF) and Plum Wood Tablespoons!

Individual Plum Cakes-1212 You might remember a while ago I posted about some lovely tablespoon measures carved by Barnaby Carder a.k.a. Barn The Spoon. Well I’ve got a restock in my shop so anyone who missed out last time can grab one. This time they’ve been crafted from English plum wood so are slightly different to the last batch which were sycamore. It felt fitting to therefore make a small batch recipe using plums to suit the wood!

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My Fave Gluten Free Pancakes (and Sticky Toffee Pudding Pancakes!)

My Fave Gluten Free Pancakes (and Sticky Toffee Pudding Pancakes!)

Long time no..blog, eh? So long in fact that I am yet to say happy new year to you all!!

2014 was probably one of the most draining (but awesome!!) years of my life. Exams blah university applications blah blah the cookbook blah blah. I was saying yesterday on instagram to someone that I think that by October I’d used up my quota for being able to get my shiz together! It’s pretty evident from the fact that I have like 2 reviews, 2 giveaways and 4 recipes currently in my drafts to finish writing. Whoooopsie.

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Cranberry & Walnut Challah Bread

Cranberry & Walnut Challah Bread 062

I’m on another visit-a-friend-at-uni trip this week (this time Bristol, which I’m loving so far!) but fear not, there’s still a recipe for you. I made this challah of GB Chefs a while ago and the recipe is now up on their site here. I was using fresh cranberries and, as I’d usually use dried ones in bread, it took a bit of thinking to get the right method for incorporating them into the dough. I ended up making a super thick cranberry sauce (cos dayuumm they have a lot of pectin in them) and rolling it into the dough. Therefore I think that you can probably use leftover cranberry sauce from Thanksgiving if you still have some instead of making that sauce if you want.

I’ve got a new brunch review to write up (I found some GOOD PANCAKES guys, omg. So yes, there is a syrup pouring shot involved….) for next week.

Cranberry & Walnut Challah Bread 008

(P.S. I’ve already said this on my instagram but AHH I love how much sliced challah looks like clouds!! It makes the cutest French toast ever)

Vegan Coconut Bostock + We’re going on a blog tour……

…we’re going to catch a big one..(?) (I hope someone got the bear hunt story reference there)

Vegan Coconut Bostock

Hola everybody,

The blog tour of my cookbook kicked off this week as it has just been released in America! For the next few weeks bloggers all over the place will kindly be posting recipes from my book (sometimes with mini interviews too!). Check the schedule out here so you can read (& cook) along with us :)

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Grain Free Matcha Granola and Iced Coconut Matchaccinos

Grain Free Matcha Granola and Iced Coconut Matchaccinos

No, that’s not what you might think it is – it’s actually granola (which is addictive as heck). I veeeery nearly called this Munchies Granola and then thought I should maybe not do that. Let’s save the weed puns for the comments sections, yeah? K Cool.

It IS green but that’s due to the heavy-handed sprinkling of teapigs organic Matcha powder that I threw into this grain-free granola mix. Having never tasted matcha before I wasn’t sure if I’d like it but given the jazzy colour and health benefits it boasts I was pumped to try it. I’m already a fan of green tea (especially the genmaicha version with brown rice in it) so of course I fell head over heels for the matcha powder, which is made of very finely ground green tea leaves. It has a slightly grassy/green taste to it (well, yeah) so pairs super nicely with fresh fruit e.g. it’s a perfect granola add-in.

Being pretty much 95% almonds/pecans/pumpkin seeds, the granola is mega yum all by itself. The matcha adds the ‘superfood’ quality and a kick of flavour so you don’t just have boring granola as per ushe. If you don’t have matcha powder you can leave it out of the granola mixture but I’d advise adding some cinnamon (what else would you expect?) to the mixture.

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Chewy, Coconut Granola Bars {GF, Vegan} + Cinnamon Swirl Bread {Vegan}

Chewy, Chocolate Chip, Coconut Granola Bars {GF, Vegan} and Pecan-Raisin Cinnamon Swirl Bread {Vegan} So I’m about to leave to go festival-ing at T in the Park (praying that I’m not going to get too drenched by any downpours when I’m there) for the weekend. I’ve made a couple of things this week which I had zero intention of blogging, I just instagrammed them and thought that was it. However a few people asked for the recipes and my no.1 hate is typing out recipes in Instagram comments so I thought I’d just give you a short, to the point post.

Have a good weekend everybody!

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Bumpy Cherry and Almond Pie

Bumpy Cherry and Almond Pie Before I made this pie (and then ate a quarter of it during a revision break), I’d never actually eaten cherry pie before. I think this is down to two factors: I basically never bake with cherries (yo, £4.50 for a 400 g carton. I’d normally rather just eat them straight up) and I also don’t bake pie that much; check my archives, you’ll see how true this is. I adore pastry, especially this almondy, mega buttery one but I usually find that there’s just TOO much fruit in pies for my taste. I want a generous pastry:fruit ratio, man. I want butter.

Bumpy Cherry and Almond Pie

I haven’t really been around all that much pie in my lifetime, save one pie: Gooseberry pie.

As my dad grows gooseberries, my mum always ends up making pie with them (because other than making fool, there’s not much else you can do with them) using a special pastry – the amount of butter in it and the use of ground almonds makes it a verrrry delicate dough which sinks down and hugs the fruit as the pie bakes. The resulting pie has a bumpy, kinda cobblestone-y look to it which is ADORABLE. The key to success there is the large, rounded shape of the berries..

..and what’s similar between gooseberries and cherries? Their shape! So I subbed the gooseberries for whole, pitted cherries which had been soaked in amaretto (*insert thumbs up emoji*) and voila, the same bumpy pie effect was achieved.

Bumpy Cherry and Almond Pie

(Err do you see what I mean about the amount of pastry I require in order to enjoy pie?)

It was a bit more effort than I was anticipating to pit the cherries (if you don’t bake with cherries, you probably won’t own a cherry pitter…e.g. me) but I found using a paring knife and a pastry tip was easy enough. It just looked a bit like I’d had a knife accident and bled everywhere for a lil bit :/ so make sure you don an apron/don’t wear a white top if you’re in the make-shift cherry pitting game.

I think that cutting the cherries in half and removing the pits that way would also work but the bumpiness wouldn’t be as extreme soo it’s totally up to you! oH and if you DO happen to have gooseberries and wanna use them instead Go. For. It. You might just have to increase the sweetness of the filling cos gooseberries are tart az.

Otherwise I really recommend trying pie my way (I’m talking about how it’s like 50% crust) or if you really have to make it fruitier then double up the filling and just don’t tell me you did that.

Bumpy Cherry and Almond Pie

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Flourless Browned Butter Brownies {Gluten-Free + Grain-Free}

Flourless Browned Butter Brownies {Gluten-Free + Grain-Free}

It’s no secret to people who know me that I am a stress-eater.

PMS-ing: Time for chocolate.

60 billion pieces of homework due for tomorrow: Give me all of the shortbread please.

Exams: Ima cry-eat this brownie.

And as a particularly daunting round of exams is looming, it probably won’t be surprising to find me drinking endless mugs of tea alongside all of that food, either.

Flourless Browned Butter Brownies {Gluten-Free + Grain-Free}

I find it easier to control my insane sugar cravings during these times by trying to bake things which happen to actually make me feel full. Eating a regular brownie never makes think ‘wow I am so stuffed’. It’s more like ‘that brownie was a pre-brownie trial round. Now for the real thing, gimme another good sir!’.

And that’s why I often use things like flax seeds and oat flour when baking – the fiber and protein (and healthy fats in the flax seeds) are what keep me satiated so I don’t end up gorging.

Flourless Browned Butter Brownies {Gluten-Free + Grain-Free}

Another ingredient akin to those I just mentioned is coconut flour. It’s basically the dried pulp leftover from making coconut milk. It is really high in fiber (because that’s pretty much all that it is) with some protein and good fats in there to boot. It does have a coconutty aroma but the flavour is easily masked when baked with ingredients like chocolate…for example…

So if it’s such a cool ingredient, then why is this one of the first times I’ve mentioned it on here?

Well, the frustrating thing is that coconut flour is a pain in the arse to develop recipes with. It absorbs crazy amounts of liquid and has no real binding quality so usually requires a LOT of eggs to go with it. I’m not a fan of overly eggy textured desserts (i.e. souffles or custard-like things) so I haven’t used it much in the past.

When I was looking through my friend Josh’s new book The Slim Palate Cookbook (full disclosure, that’s an affiliate link), I noticed he’d used coconut flour in a brownie recipe. I had a bag of coconut flour in the cupboard (and, at £6 a bag, I was like ‘yeah okay lets do this, use up some coconut flour!!’) so decided to give the recipe a go as it looked normal for egg quantities and the picture was making me pretty hungry.

Flourless Browned Butter Brownies {Gluten-Free + Grain-Free}

Holy woah they’re good. They’re not as dense as traditional brownies, I think due to the use of coconut flour and small amount of baking soda, and have about half of the amount of sugar. Of course I went all classic food blogger and browned the butter before mixing in the rest of the ingredients. I amped up the chocolate flavour too, by sneaking some extra cocoa powder into the batter 😉

Verdict: Now I know what I’m going to be using the rest of my coconut flour for.

If you don’t have coconut flour/can’t  get it/ don’t want to spend dolla on a bag for one recipe (I wouldn’t blame you) then you can sub in almond flour (see the recipe notes) which also has a healthy fats, protein and fiber. Win win. We all get filling brownies. Hooray!

Flourless Browned Butter Brownies {Gluten-Free + Grain-Free}

(If you want to check out more about Josh’s blog, Slim Palate, go here!

He also has a really nice book trailer that you should totally go and watch here)

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Coconut Milk Ice Cream w/ Pistachio Crumb + Blueberries {Vegan + GF}

Coconut Milk Ice Cream with a Pistachio Crumb and Blueberries {Vegan + Gluten Free}

PaNCaKE daY is tOmoRRoW

oh my gah

how can it be legal to have a day dedicated to pancakes, eh? Too good to be true. I can/will eat pancakes for all meals EVEN if they are actually crepes (I have talked about my pancake/crepe opinions before: they are different things. They have their own good qualities…buut pancakes totally win over crepes IMO).

Coconut Milk Ice Cream with a Pistachio Crumb and Blueberries {Vegan + Gluten Free}

I want to say that I’ll be motivated enough to wake up tomorrow and make some pancakes for myself buuut let’s be honest: I’ll end up giving in to the extra 15 minutes of being buried under my duvet….

Then there’s a 90 to 95% chance that I may make up for the lack of breakfast pancakes by having after school pancakes topped with a scoop of this coconut milk ice cream.

I mean if pancake day can be a thing, why can’t it be pancake (with ice cream) day?? That brackets make the ice cream implied so it’s okay, I think.

Coconut Milk Ice Cream with a Pistachio Crumb and Blueberries {Vegan + Gluten Free}

I finally gave in to the whole coconut milk ice cream thing and I am soooo smitten. First of all I find coconut milk naturally sweet so it means I barely had to add any syrupy stuff to the mixture. Secondly I didn’t have to even turn on the stove to make it, I literally stirred the ingredients in a bowl and poured them straight into the ice cream maker. What a win.

Ughgh why did no one tell me that this is so awesome!? I wanna live in a coconut world, man because side note: whipped coconut cream is a thing that is delicious and amazing, too.

Coconut Milk Ice Cream with a Pistachio Crumb and Blueberries {Vegan + Gluten Free}

As some one who’s verrry texturally sensitive (that is a thing, isn’t it?) food-wise I sprinkled a toasty pistachio crumb onto the ice cream for some crunchy variation and some uplifting, spring-y colour.

It’s perfect for the days when it almost doesn’t rain and feels like warmer weather might actually be on its way… A feeling that I’ve only had about 3 times in the past month. But hey, that leaves me with more ice cream for Pancake ( with Ice cream) day, RIGHT!?

Coconut Milk Ice Cream with a Pistachio Crumb and Blueberries {Vegan + Gluten Free}

 

Also guys, I collaborated with West Elm on this post (we have a West Elm in London now YAY!). You can see the recipe on their blog, Front & Main, here with links to all of the pretty, pretty props that I used from their store :)

I’m going to have 3 more spring recipes that’ll be up on my blog and their blog over the next few weeks, too.

If you’re in London btw there’s an Etsy Pop-Up event going on this Thursday at the West Elm (which Ima be visiting…because of a) cake but also b) cute prop things).

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Cranberry-Pecan-Rye Soda Bread

Cranberry-Pecan-Rye Soda Bread

 

First just a little thing (I feel like I keep bugging you guys with this, sorry! haha – do you accept cake payment..?)

Soo you know how a few days ago I told you I was nominated for an award? WELL I’ve made it through to the final 10 in The Kitchn‘s ‘The Homies’ blog awards which is pretty insane. I’m in the blogs from abroad section :) I’m in amazingly good company over there!

Anywho if you’d like to vote for me (it takes a few mins just to register) then that would make me so happy!

You can vote here 

Okay thanks everyone for that awkward side note! On to the recipe, eh?

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Who’s had the most tiring half-term in the WORLD?

ME.

I barely feel like I stood still for those 7 days, dayum! Waffle/cocktail parties, taking the train all over the place, shooting photos ahhhh. At least I did something I guess haha. (I did manage to fit in watching about 10 episodes of Charmed – it is the best show. Holy woah. I’m at the part where Cole was the source and then DIED but is still half-alive and has powers again??? It’s plot twist central. Anyone know what I’m talking about? I know I’m 15 years late on this…)

Cranberry-Pecan-Rye Soda Bread

I also managed to get my friend Tess (she blogs over at The Yes Chef) to come over and make soda bread with me! We had a mini Adobe Lightroom session and styled butter into cute little stacks (as you can see). It’s good to know people who understand the importance of styling butter.

She also got to see me in my most elegant state – ‘photographer mode’ – where I climb all over the sofa and kneel on the floor taking photos.

I’m good at making friends, I think :/

Cranberry-Pecan-Rye Soda Bread

So if you’ve never had soda bread you might be like ‘what even IS it? Are you adding cola to bread dough, Izy? are you insane?’.

Soda bread is pretty much magic. It’s like cakey bread which requires no kneading or rising because it’s made with bicarbonate of soda- super useful for weekdays when there is NO BREAD left. Everything seems to kind of feel a lot worse if there is no bread around, doesn’t it?

I need carbs, people. NEED.

 

Cranberry-Pecan-Rye Soda Bread

And how do we make carbs better? Buttah! and a liiiitle drizzle of honey.

Seriously try it out if you haven’t before.

We used the  Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s recipe but switched a few of the ingredients up and added a few handfuls of pecans and dried cranberries for extra flavour. Pretty epic.

Although I think next time, I’ll have to get some cinnamon in there too hahah 😉

Cranberry-Pecan-Rye Soda Bread

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