Gluten and dairy free carob truffles

I did it! Another triumph in the kitchen! I took an old fashioned favourite and turned it into a treat my middle son can eat! He’s going to be one very excited little kiddywink when I surprise him with these truffles tomorrow afternoon when he gets home from his father’s 🙂

I wracked my brain for ages to come up with a dairy free alternative to sweetened condensed milk and just last week, whilst reading a post on a Facebook page, I had an epiphany! So here it is…..

300g of dairy and gluten free shortbread biscuits (I used Orgran)

1 cup of raw cashews crushed (in the food processor until they are quite fine)

1/2 cup of carob powder

1/2 tsp of ground vanilla bean (or 1tsp vanilla extract)

1/4 cup of rice malt syrup

1/4 cup of maple syrup

1/4 cup (55g) nuttelex (or other dairy free spread)

naturally coloured sprinkles for rolling in (or for a less festive look, more crushed cashews)

Crush the biscuits until they’re fine crumbs then mix with the crushed cashews, ground vanilla bean and carob powder (if using vanilla extract, add that with the wet ingredients). Heat the syrups and nuttelex until just melted (1 minute in the microwave) then stir through the dry ingredients and mix well. Allow to cool for a few minutes then roll into teaspoon sized balls and coat in natural sprinkles or crushed cashews. Place in the fridge to set.

Df gf carob truffles

Prawn Curry

My big guys were at their father’s yet again and all “not-hubby” wanted for dinner was a curry with rice, basmati rice. Who was I to argue? Just so long as it wasn’t too spicy as “belly baby” doesn’t seem to like overly spiced foods these days, and it was a seafood curry of some sort.

I found a curry in a book some time ago that I have made a few times, but of course I always change it slightly. I find that most curries in regular cookbooks lack something…usually a bit of oomph. Now I’m no spice expert, but I do know when a curry is lacking something and I can generally work out what it is. I think most recipes keep it quite mild and almost bland so as not to offend too many Western tastebuds. Well when the kids aren’t around, I like my food to be anything but bland…just not too spicy hot at the moment. So here is my adaptation of the prawn curry from one of my rarely used cookbooks. Oh, by the way, it is far from Failsafe. Another thing, if prawns aren’t your thing, you can use chicken fillets, firm white fish like rockling or you can even make into a vegetarian dish by using potatoes, cauliflower, snow peas, aubergine (eggplant), capsicum. I have even made it with a mix of prawns and white fish.

1/2 kg of raw prawns (peeled)

knob of butter or ghee or just some oil if you want a dairy free option

1 large onion diced

4 cloves of crushed garlic

1 tbsp fresh grated ginger

1/4 tsp cayenne pepper (or to taste. I normally use at least half a teaspoon)

2 1/2 tsp of cumin

1 1/2  tsp of ground coriander

1 tsp garam masala

1/2 tsp of turmeric

1 can of chopped tomatoes (about 425g)

200ml of coconut cream

1 finely chopped green chilli

handful of roughly chopped fresh coriander

salt to taste

Heat oil or butter in a medium saucepan then sautee the onion until just tender. Add the garlic and ginger and cook a further minute. Toss in the dried spices and cook until fragrant (about a minute or 2). Add the prawns and tomatoes, bring to the boil then reduce heat and simmer gently for about 10 – 15 minutes or until prawns are cooked through. Add the coconut cream, chilli and salt and heat through but do not boil, then add the coriander. Serve over fluffy basmati rice.

Vanilla coconut ice cream

Oh it’s all becoming far too much effort! But making frozen desserts isn’t 😉 I’m now 31 weeks pregnant and really starting to suffer. I’m getting too old for this pregnancy game and my pelvis is really not coping too well. That said, my pelvis has been doing really well (as long as I take it easy) and I’ve barely used the crutches my physio has put me on for the duration of the pregnancy, but I haven’t been doing much either, thus reducing my need to rely on them so heavily.

Meals around here have become a little boring and I’m shuffling through a small selection of easily prepared dinners and opting for take away when the big guys are at their father’s. So no inventive new dishes to write about. In fact, I have hardly anything in the cupboard if I should wish to create something new and different. I haven’t done a proper grocery shop in a couple of months because I can no longer push a trolley without aggravating my pelvis so I must shop in small doses where I can put everything on the pram. And I refuse to pay the ridiculous prices for home delivered groceries, as convenient as it is, besides, I can’t read any labels if I shop online and hen feeding kids with food intolerances, that just doesn’t work. So I apologise for my lack of posts but I’m sure you all understand and can find it in your hearts to forgive me.

I recently discovered the most amazing product at my local health food store a couple of weeks back, ground vanilla beans. It cost me just $11 and a little goes a long way. It tastes so much better than vanilla extract and has no alcohol in it and is much cheaper and easier to use than whole vanilla beans. Just a quarter of a teaspoon (or less) is equivalent to 1 vanilla bean but I LOVE vanilla so I’ve been doubling the dose.after stumbling across this, I will never again bother buying vanilla beans or use vanilla extract in cooking…I suggest you go and hunt some down for yourself 😉

800ml of coconut cream

3/4 cup of rice malt syrup

1/2 tsp of ground vanilla bean (or 1 vanilla bean, seeds scraped, or 1 tsp of vanilla essence)

Place all ingredients in a bowl and whisk until combined. Pour into ice cream machine and churn until the desired consistency is reached.

Yep, it’s that simple!!

Savoury storm in a teacup

It was lunchtime and there was nothing interesting to eat. I was getting rather hungry and impatient. I could have cooked some pasta or noodles but we’re having noodles for dinner tonight and pasta tomorrow so I didn’t fancy either for lunch today. I thought so hard that I nearly blew a gasket! Then I opened the fridge. Sitting there on the bottom shelf was my middle son’s carob storm in a teacup and it got me thinking……could I concoct a savoury one????

I got to work. My mind was awash with ideas but my body was feeling a little lazy. “Best to start simple” I thought and then I may have something to add to down the track. Afterall, I don’t want to peak too soon.

So this isn’t quite Failsafe as it contains tasty and parmesan cheeses but the equivalent amount of say ricotta or bocconcini will result in a Failsafe version. Next I plan to try it with left over veggies……

2 1/2 tbsp of gluten free self raising flour
2 tbsp of besan (chickpea) flour
1 tbsp of butter
2 tbsp of cheese
1 spring onion finely chopped
1 tsp of chopped chives
4 tbsp of milk
Pinch of salt
Pinch of garlic powder

Place flour, butter, milk, salt and garlic powder into a bowl and mix well to form a smooth batter. Add onions, chives and cheese and stir through. Pour into a lightly greased mug or ramekin then pop in the microwave for about 2 minutes. You’ll know it’s done when it just comes away from the sides. Eat while hot!


Storm in a teacup!

I’ve been craving cake today. Ooey gooey choccy cake. I tried to ignore the urge but as I perused through a few blogs, I kept coming across cake and cookie recipes which, of course, made my cravings stronger and stronger. I still tried to resist but then I saw a recipe for a chocolate cake for one and I realised I could run but I couldn’t hide. It looked interesting, very interesting…..and delicious! But of course, I didn’t have half the ingredients, in fact I think I only had 1 of the ingredients, so I tuned in my creative brain and got to work. It took me 2 attempts but since this such a quick and easy thing to make, that was no problem at all.
Now I must mention that this is not 100% Failsafe, it’s only good if you tolerate amines but hey, us hard working mums need a quick, easy treat that we can whip up from next to nothing in next to no time at all. In fact, this is the perfect decadent treat for once the kiddies are in bed…but I must warn you, you need to eat it while it’s hot….and DO NOT share it with anyone.

My first attempt was in a tea mug and my second, only because I had no clean, suitable mugs left, I used a ramekin. Well, you’ll need to use a mug, unless your ramekins have handles, otherwise you’ll need to fumble around with a tea towel, and when you’re anxious to dive into your little, hard earned treat, that will just take up too much valuable eating and relaxing time. Ok, I’ve garbled on enough…here it is………

2 1/2 tbsp of gluten free self raising flour (1/2 tbsp is about 2 tsps)

2 tbsp of cocoa powder

1 tsp brown sugar (if you like things a little sweeter, add extra sugar. I like the bitterness of chocolate)

1 tbsp golden syrup

1 tbsp cashew spread (or peanut butter)

4 tbsp of milk

Place all ingredients into a bowl and mix really well. Pour into a lightly greased mug (or ramekin) and pop in the microwave for about 90 seconds. If you want a gooier treat, cook a little less. Eat whilst hot! It still tastes good once it’s cooled but the texture changes and I think it needs cream…of which I have none



Chicken veggiballs

My little fella is at the age where he refuses to be spoon fed, preferring to feed himself, but he hasn’t quite mastered the spoon or fork technique so the only way I can get food into him is if it’s finger food. I never had this problem with the other 2, if there was food, they’d eat it no matter how it came! Not that my little guy is a fussy eater, I think he’s just SUPER independent with a temper and a stubborn streak… someone else I know 😉
My agenda this week has been to make a few different finger foods that I can freeze, that are also tasty and suitable for all the boys so they all have to be dairy, egg, gluten and soy free but also low in salicylates, amines and glutamates…I must admit though, the chicken balls I made do have carrot in them but I figured that after they have been frozen, my super sensitive middle guy won’t be eating them so a little carrot on one occasion won’t hurt. If, however, you must remain very strictly low chemical, just leave the carrot out and perhaps add a little extra of something else, or even a potato (just squeeze out the excess moisture from the tatie).

Another confession too, I wasn’t going to blog these, rather keep them close to my chest to add to my book, but one of the super mums on one of the Faisafe forums I’m on is struggling with getting veggies into he little guy, so I decided to share this today to help her out a little. I just hope it works 🙂

I have no photo of these little balls of goodness because after a huge day in the kitchen I just could not be fagged fussing about with m”food styling” and photos, besides I wasn’t planning on writing them up today and knew I’d be making them again in the near future so planned to photograph them then.

3 small carrots

1 largish swede

2 stalks of celery

8 spring onions, whites and greens

1 choko

3 cloves of garlic (you can use less if you like)

1 kg chicken thigh fillets

1 cup of rice crumbs

2 eggs or equivalent egg replacer

1/2 tsp of saffron

2 tsps of salt

Preheat oven to 180°C. Peel all the veggies, including the garlic, then blitz them in a food processor until they are completely obliterated….yes, they need to be pretty much a pulp. Remove and set aside in a large bowl. Add the chicken fillets to the processor and blitz until almost a paste. Grind the saffron and salt to a powder  in a mortar and pestle  then throw all ingredients, including the egg and crumbs, into the bowl with the veggies and mix really well. Roll into balls, place on baking trays lined with baking paper and bake for 30 minutes or until cooked through.

Goodness, gracious, grrreat balls of rice!

A few weeks ago I made a batch of rice balls with ricotta and egg in them and called them “rice echidnas“. My big guys loved them but I couldn’t even let my little fella try one because he is allergic to dairy and intolerant to egg. He is at the age where he won’t let us feed him but he can’t manage a spoon or fork on his own, so in order to get enough food into him, I have to give him finger food. I decided that I’d make up a batch of meat balls for the freezer and cook up some veggies every couple of days but then I had an epiphany! Dairy and egg free rice balls!

I had planned to buy some egg replacer when I did the groceries on the weekend but my local Safeway is so incredibly useless that they don’t stock the stuff…along with hundreds of other things I can get from Woolies up the road in the next suburb. I’ve decided that the local Safeway needs to be bulldozed because it really is a waste of space and only good for buying milk. My goodness, I can’t even get the chocolate ice cream I am craving right now…..

Sorry, I digressed. So rather annoyed and too lazy to drive to the next suburb just to buy a box of egg replacer, I was ready to give up on the rice ball idea until I remembered I had 5 chokoes sitting on my kitchen bench. I decided I’d make some choko puree and use that instead….never used choko as an egg substitute before but there’s a first time for everything. So hear they are…my grrreat balls of rice!!!

I have used spring onion and celery in mine but you could use carrot or any other veggies you like as long as they are chopped finely or grated, but make sure the quantities are similar to what I’ve used or your balls might fall apart.

1 1/2 cups of uncooked short grain rice

1 1/2 cups of quinoa (I used black quinoa but you could use any colour you like)

2 chokoes (or 2 cups of choko puree)

8 spring onions, green and white parts

1 stalk of celery, leaves and all

2 tbsp of chives finely chopped

4 tbsp of tapioca flour

1 tsp of salt (or to taste)

Rinse the quinoa well. Cook with the rice using the absorption method you would for rice (I use a rice cooker so can’t give you directions, sorry). Allow to cool. Peel and roughly chop the chokoes and boil until just tender then drain well. Once cooled slightly, puree until smooth. Preheat the oven to 150° C. Blitz the spring onions and celery in food processor until well chopped then stir through the cooked rice and quinoa, along with the chives. Stir the tapioca flour through the choko puree and add to the rice and veggies and mix well. Season to taste. Using a soup spoon (I find this to be the ideal size) roll the mixture into balls then place onto baking sheets lined with baking paper (saves on washing up) and bake for about 30 minutes or until lightly golden.