Dairy free croissants …… In a can

Yes you read that right, dairy free croissants in a can. 

As some of you might have seen, I had a bit of a thing about Jus Rol pastry, as most of it is dairy free (not the all butter ones though, bit of a clue in the name there). It seems like they have recently had a bit of a rebrand, and up popped this strange looking can in the chilled pastry section. Naturally, when I see something new in the supermarket, I check the ingredients. I was just a little excited to see that there was no dairy in this can of supposed croissants. A Saturday morning after my first ever park run seemed like a good time to crack these out. 



Given that you can buy pre-formed, ready to cook croissants, this does seem to be a bit pointless. But the can stores easily in the fridge, and you can just about trick yourself into thinking that you made these. The instructions are a bit interesting – peel back the paper wrapping and let the can open itself. Sure enough, it does open itself! 



The dough was soft and springy, and unrolled into a length of tear apart triangles, you don’t even need to cut them. Then you just roll them up and pop them in the oven for ten minutes. So easy!











The verdict? Not as flaky as I remember croissants, and didn’t have the distinct buttery flavour (unsurprisingly!). But they are definitely croissants, and I loved the novelty, and being able to have dairy free croissants without spending days making my own pastry. I liked them so much I’ve bought another two cans, and the pain au chocolat and the cinnamon swirl varieties (both dairy free!).

Has anyone else tried these yet? I bought mine in Waitrose, haven’t seen them anywhere else?

Tagged , , ,

Paleo Cafe caramel slice

Hello! You’re still here? Amazing!

I’ve been away for a while. I’m sorry, but I’m back and I’ve got an awesome recipe I came across in Australia, am I forgiven?

Yup, that’s where we spent Christmas and New Year – Australia. We were visiting my boyfriend’s family on the Gold Coast, which was so relaxing, and hot! 39’C in Brisbane one day!

IMG_1551.JPG

We found that healthy diets were much easier to follow out there, and paleo has quite a big following. We follow a sort of paleo diet, well, I do because I don’t eat dairy and I’m trying to cut down on gluten and refined sugar. But we do like potatoes and cous cous!

Anyone who has done any paleo or vegan baking will probably be very familiar with the list of ingredients – dates, almonds, cashew nuts, coconut milk and coconut oil, it’s amazing what you can do with these!

Paleo Cafe was one of our favourite places to eat in Burleigh Heads, mainly because I could have whatever I wanted off the menu. This recipe is from the Paleo Cafe cook book which we bought before we left. I’ve slightly adapted it because I don’t eat any kind of dairy, and the original contains ghee.

IMG_0344.JPG

This recipe will give your food processor a bit of a workout, and you probably don’t want to do it very early in the morning! I’ve left the measurements in cups, as there’s not actually any baking involved, so you don’t need to be that precise.

If you fancy a sweet, indulgent, caramel treat, this absolutely hits the spot!

IMG_0339.JPG

Ingredients

For the base:
1 cup almonds and macadamia nuts (I used 100g bag of almonds, and made it up to 1 cup with macadamia)
1 cup dates, roughly chopped
1/4 cup coconut oil, melted

For the caramel:
1 1/4 cups raw cashews
1/4 cup coconut milk
1/3 cup coconut oil
2 cups dates, roughly chopped

For the chocolate:
1/3 cup coconut oil
2-3 tbsp cocoa powder
1/4 cup honey
1 tbsp coconut cream

Method
Line a small baking dish with baking paper.

For the base, put the nuts in the food processor and blitz til finely chopped. Add the dates and coconut oil and blend until combined.
Press the mix into the baking dish in an even layer and put in the fridge for 20 minutes.

For the caramel, put the cashews and coconut milk in the food processor and blitz until the mixture resembles a thick, smooth butter. Add the coconut oil and dates and blend until smooth.

For the chocolate, place all the ingredients in the food processor and process until smooth and glossy.

Remove the crust from the fridge and spread with the caramel, then layer with the chocolate.

Refrigerate for 1-2 hours until set. Cut into squares and eat, quickly!

IMG_0341.JPG

IMG_0346.JPG

Tagged , , ,

Sticky Toffee Cupcakes (dairy free)

This weather has been uncharacteristically lovely for England. It is wall to wall sunshine outside, but I’ve been stuck inside most days at my desk, with Jeff (the cat) keeping me company. At the moment he is lying across my arm in front of me, so I am typing with my hand protruding from underneath his soft furry belly.  He’s needy but I love him. Working normal office hours again really does make you appreciate the weekends, and we have been making the most of them, with trips to food fairs, long bike rides and visiting friends. Last weekend we were back up in London for dinner with my amazing group of friends, where everyone brought some item of food to contribute to dinner. Of course, I was charged with pudding….

dairy free sticky toffee cupcakes Continue reading

Tagged , , , , ,

Minion Twins

Today, for the first time ever, we had the whole family together including all of our boyfriends. We were also celebrating me and my sister’s birthday (yes, we’re twins!). Add to that some degree results, a pay rise and a promotion, and you’ve got some pretty good reasons to celebrate. It has been a truly lovely day.

It couldn’t be CakeyKate’s birthday without a birthday cake. I spoke to my twin a few weeks ago and she requested a “proper cake like we used to have when we were kids, like the minie mouse one?”. So the first thing that came to mind was obviously Minions. For anyone who hasn’t seen Despicable Me a) go treat yourself to a dvd and b) this whole theme will go straight over your head.

I am going to say this now, these are not professional cakes! Nor are they professional photos, we just took them quickly in our kitchen, sorry…. They’re kind of mini minions, and one is definitely more Mike from Monsters Inc than Dave from Despicable Me, but you get the idea….. I left it a bit late as well, I only made them this morning, so I had both my sisters helping me decorate them this afternoon and they did an awesome job. If only I had two helpers every time I made a cake!

As I made two, I did one dairy free vanilla cake, with vanilla buttercream and strawberry jam. The other was dairy-full lemon cake, with lemon buttercream and lemon curd. It was quite strange using butter again, I found the buttercream was much easier to work with, but apart from that there was little difference, I just had to force myself not to lick the spoon! My sister honestly couldn’t guess which one was which. I indulged in buying some “buttery caramel” flavour and added it to my dairy free frosting, which made it taste like actual butter buttercream!

There was no recipe, just weigh the eggs and the same weight of flour, sugar and butter (or Trex/vegetable fat), + 1tsp baking powder and 1tsp of flavouring (lemon zest or vanilla bean paste) and a few tablespoons of milk. Put it all in the mixer and mix away until smooth. For the slightly squatter one, I did a 4 egg mix, in two 15cm tins and a hemisphere pan. For the bigger one I did a 5 egg mix, in three 15cm tins and the hemisphere pan. The sandwich tins took about 25 minutes at 170°C in a fan oven, with the hemisphere pan taking about 40-50 minutes at 160°C. For each cake I made quite a lot of frosting, I did 240g butter/fat and 750g icing sugar, with a few dribbles of milk, plus flavouring.

So without further ado! Minions!

Minion Twins

SONY DSC

CakeyKate's birthday

SONY DSC

SONY DSC

SONY DSC

SONY DSC

SONY DSC

 

Spot the bamboo skewer holding the whole thing together!

SONY DSC

Tagged , , , ,

Architecture and Doughnuts

It’s finished! SIX years of architecture school is finally finished! And what did I do when I handed in my final piece of work? Moved home and started working….. I now go by the title “Designer” at the family business designing and constructing buildings. And I am also a country bumpkin once more.

The first thing I wanted to make when I had some free time again was doughnuts. Jake has been nagging me for months, maybe even years, to make doughnuts. So, I finally delivered with vegan Apple Cider Doughnuts “holes” from the latest addition to my recipe book collection “Chloe’s Vegan Desserts”. Apparently she won some show in America…. I just love that she has put these in a chapter called “Dessert for Breakfast”.

Don’t fool yourself into thinking that because these are vegan they are healthy. These are deep fried, rolled in sugar, addictive little balls of dough. Or not so little as my first attempts turned out to be. If you are in need of a sweet, doughy treat, these are super easy to make and incredibly satisfying to eat! I might suggest making half the recipe though, depending on your will power. They do look quite a lot like chicken balls when they’re freshly fried, but once you’ve rolled them in the sugar they are definitely doughnuts. And don’t worry that they’re not perfect little “holes”, the gnarly crunchy bits just make them better, in my opinion!

vegan doughnuts

 

vegan doughnuts

 

vegan doughnuts

 

vegan doughnuts

Being American, the book is in cups, and I haven’t attempted to convert it for us Brits, sorry!

Apple Cider Doughnut Holes, from Chloe’s Vegan Desserts, with a few tweaks
 
For the Coating
1 cup golden caster sugar
1 tsp ground cinnamon
 
For the Doughnuts
2 ²/3 cups plain flour
²/3 cup caster sugar
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp ground nutmeg
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp salt
1 cup flat apple cider or juice
¼ sunflower oil
¼ apple cider vinegar
1 tsp vanilla extract
Quite a lot of sunflower oil for frying
 

To make the coating, combine the sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl and set aside.

To make the doughnuts, in a large bowl mix together the flour, sugar, baking soda, nutmeg, cinnamon and salt. In a medium bowl, mix together the apple cider, oil, vinegar and vanilla. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and stir together quickly until just combined. Do not overmix.

Refrigerate the batter, covered, for 3 hours or overnight. Once the batter is chilled, fill a deep sided saucepan with about 2 inches of oil, but no more than a third of the depth of the pan. Heat to 350ºF, use a thermometer to get it just right and turn the heat down slightly when it is nearly up to temperature. Use a spoon to scoop out about 1 tablespoon of batter and drop it carefully into the hot oil. It doesn’t matter if they are not particularly spherical when they go in, they will puff up and turn into balls with the frying.  Do not overcrowd the pan, fry them in batches.  Let each doughnut fry for about four minutes, flipping occasionally until crispy and lightly browned on all sides. Just remember, the bigger they are they longer they will take, I’d do a tester to start with, cut it open and check that there is no raw batter in the middle. If the doughnuts begin to lose their shape when frying, refrigerate the batter for about 10 minutes. Drain on paper towels and rolls in cinnamon sugar. Devour  Serve immediately.

 
 
Tagged , ,
%d bloggers like this: