Trombone Squash Rounds

​As ever, things have been getting on top of me slightly these last few months, I am working on it, promise! But apologises for the long gap between posts. I’ve been in a slight rut recently just eating the same meals over and over again so haven’t felt too inspired to write about any recipes but I realised that I’ve become slightly obsessed with a particular side dish. So I thought I’d share this one as it may appeal ☺

My dad has an allotment not too far from my parents house which means throughout the year I get gifted with all sorts of goodies from summer berries to winter squashes. And the big plus is that I know no chemicals have been used to help them grow, it’s just all natural goodness. It does however mean I get various things that I then can’t always find in the supermarket.  Recently there has been trombone squash a plenty at my parents house and I’ve not been able to eat them quick enough (trust me, not for lack of trying). When I first got given one of these I had no idea how to cook it and as I don’t normally cook similar stews to my mum I’ve been experimenting.

I stumbled into this really simple recipe and just became a bit obsessed with it, it’s just little squash rounds or wedges (how I cut them seems to change daily) with paprika and veggie seasoning, all bunged in the oven until soft on the inside and starting to crisp on the outside. Sounds simple but I love it.

Ingredients
450g trombone squash (peeled and cut into circles)

1 tbsp.  Coconut Oil

2 tsp paprika

2 tsp concentrated vegetable seasoning (e.g. maggi)

Method

1. Pre heat the oven to 200°c, place the coconut oil on the tray and place in the oven until the coconut oil has melted.

2. Ensure the oil covers the tray and sprinkle half of the vegetable seasoning and paprika so it mixes in the oil slightly. Add the rounds evenly spaced on the tray and sprinkle over the remaining seasonings.

3. Place in the oven for roughly 15 minutes, turning after about 10 minutes. 

4. Once the rounds have started to go a bit soft in the middle, turn the oven down to roughly 150°c to start crisp up the  edges slightly without burning for 5 minutes.

5. Take out the oven and serve alongside your main dish.

Nutritional Information

Serves 1

Calories: 150

Protein: 3.1g

Carbohydrates: 31g

Of which is sugars: 12.4g

Fibre: 12.4g

Fat: 0.0g

Of which is saturated: 0.0g

Gluten Free Vegan Lentil Chilli

​As the British Summer that never began has now come to a close, I’ve started swapping my salads for stews and chia puddings for chocolate quinoa (recipe to come). What I love most about this type of weather is that it’s so easy to batch cook for the week ahead which for someone like me is perfect, if I don’t have all my meals planned and usually prepared then I end up all off track and before I know it I’ve eaten a whole bag of granola bars in one sitting. But when I get planning, boy, do I plan.


So, all ready to get the saucepans out, I’ve also been experimenting with some more vegan dishes and there are just so many recipes out there to try that suit this brief! I was getting some inspiration on pinterest and stumbled upon this little beauty from littlebroken.com that has made the last couple of days at work when it’s wet and windy.
Ingredients

450g Red Lentils

1 Onion

1 Red Pepper

2 Tins of Tomatoes

950ml Vegetable Stock (gluten free if necessary)

4 cloves Garlic

4 tsp Chilli (mild or hot depending on your preference)

1 tbsp mixed herbs

2 tbsp Preferred Oil (I went with coconut)

Handful fresh Parsley


Method

1. Finely chop the onion and add to a saucepan pan with the melted oil on medium heat, once they start to brown add in the crushed garlic cloves and chopped red pepper and cook for another of minutes. 

2. Add in the chilli powder and herbs then stir in, incorporate the lentils and once all coated add the tomatoes and stock.

3. Bring to the boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook for around 50 minutes or until the lentils are soft.

4. Take half the mixture and pulse in a food processor until smooth then add back into the original mixture.

5. Top off with a bit of chopped parsley and serve.


Nutritional Information

Serves 7

Calories: 293

Protein: 17.9g

Carbohydrates: 32.4g

Of which is sugars: 8.1g

Fibre: 10.9g

Fat: 7.5g

Of which is saturated: 3.8g

​Gluten free and gluten full cheese and pancetta muffins

I have to start with some apologises, it has been far too long since I last updated you all, but everything has just got a bit on top of me since starting a new job and getting into some new routines. But, never fear, I think I’m getting there!
As mentioned in my previous post I mentioned that I had made numerous things to take into work to suit all tastes and dietary requirements. I have made these muffins a couple of times and attempted to make them gluten free but they didn’t really work, so unlike the peanut butter cookies, I didn’t have the  confidence to only make them gluten free just in case the same thing happened again. Luckily, they didn’t, previously they were far too dry, crumbly and just had a really unpleasant aftertaste which the gluten full ones definitely didn’t have. So you can guarantee that when I was taste testing these I was hyper critical. This time, I was rather impressed that I couldn’t really tell the difference between them and I was happy to take them into work. They went down really well! I am determined to help change the way some people view gluten free baking which means I’m really picky about which recipes I take into work, so I’m happy to have a savoury option to take in. 

Ingredients

1 Pack Lean Pancetta

1 Cup Grated Mature Cheddar

1 Cup Whole Milk

1 Cup Gluten Flour

1 Cup Gluten Free Flour

2 Tbsp. Salted Butter

1 Tbsp Gluten Free Baking Powder

1 Tsp. Salt

½ Tsp. Xantham Gum

2 Eggs


Method

1. In a frying pan, cook the pancetta lardons until cooked through then leave to one side to cool.

2. Preheat the oven to  175°c and grease 12 muffin tins/cases.

3. Over a medium heat, melt all the butter then allow to cool to room temperature.

4. In a bowl, whisk the eggs and milk together, then add the butter, cheese and  bacon lardons and divide the mixture into 2 separate bowls. Ready for the gluten and gluten free versions.

5. In a separate bowl combine the flour and half of the baking powder, salt and sugar. Add this to one set of the bacon mixture.

6. In a fresh bowl, mix the gluten free flour, xantham gum and remaining baking powder, sugar and salt then add to the second bacon mixture. With this mixture if it begins to look a lot thicker/drier than the gluten version just add a bit more milk to ensure the mixture doesn’t get too dry once baked.

7. Spoon the mixture into your prepared tins (I use a different type so it’s easy to remember which are which), only fill them about 2/3 full to give them room to rise.

8. Bake for roughly 20 minutes or until they begin brown.

9. Leave to  cool on a wire rack then enjoy!

Nutritional information

Serves 12

Calories: 209

Protein: 9.3g

Carbohydrates: 18.7g

Of which is sugars: 1.4g

Fibre: 0.8g

Fat: 10.6g

Of which is saturated: 6.0g

Gluten Free Peanut Butter Cookies

​With everything going on more recently, it’s been ages since I did any baking to take into work.  But being as I’m changing jobs I thought it was about time I got my mid-week bake back on. I’m glad I did as I got spoilt rotten by the people at work and I’m not even moving that far away! 

I decided to  make a couple of different things as there are some people who prefer savoury over sweet and some people who are gluten free. 

I’ll share all the recipes but today I thought I’d start with my favourite which is a tweak to the hummingbird bakery recipe to make some gluten free peanut butter cookies. These went down a storm with both gluten full and gluten free folk and out of a batch of 28 that was made, I only came away with 2 bring home. Which I naturally polished off as I couldn’t have them sitting in the cupboard, that would have been nothing short of blasphemy. 
These are pretty straight forward to make, they just take awhile for me as I can only fit 1 baking  tray in my oven at one time, so it takes me a lifetime to bake them all, but they are worth it.

Ingredients

340g Gluten Free Flour

225g Salted Butter

240g Peanut Butter (this time used smooth but crunchy adds amazing texture)

80g Dark Chocolate (chopped)

200g Caster Sugar

200g Light Brown Sugar

2 Eggs

2 ½ Tsp Gluten Free Baking Powder

½ Xantham Gum

½ Tsp Salt

½ Tsp Vanilla Extract

Method

1. Preheat the oven to175°c. In an electric mixer, whisk together the butter with both sugars until light and fluffy.

2. Turn the mixer down slightly and add the eggs one at time.

3. Once fully incorporated add in the flour, gum, salt, baking powder and vanilla extract and mix together then add in the peanut butter and chocolate chunks and thoroughly mix again.

4. On some prepared baking trays put a good dollop of the mix, ensure there is enough space between them when they spread out on the tray, depending on which tray I use I can either fit 5 or 6 per tray.

5. Put in the oven for 10 minutes until they start to spread out and go slightly brown but they should still look a bit soft in the middle as this will keep them gooey and soft. Leave them on the tray to cool, if you transfer them to a wire rack as this point they will fall apart.

6. Once cooled and set, enjoy!

Nutritional Information

Calories: 201

Protein: 3.3g

Carbohydrates:  22.5g

Of which is sugars: 13.4g

Fibre:  0.7g

Fat: 10.7g

Of which is saturated: 4.8g

Peanut Butter Raworeos

With the weather now starting to warm up (if we ignore the dismal weather last weekend), I’ve  been trying to find some recipes that don’t involve me melting away in the kitchen for hours on end. So instead I spent a few hours flicking through pinterest for some inspiration when I came across ‘‘Fettle Vegan’  with an amazing recipe I just had to try of some raw, healthy oreos. I did tweak the recipe slightly, because what’s better than oreos? Peanut butter oreos, of course!  So here are my peanut butter raworeos. Now they did need a couple of hours prep, to allow the filling to set nicely but they’re definitely worth it. I’m not going to lie, I ate far too many and couldn’t even resist having them on a non treat day as well.
The calorie information does seem quite high but I didn’t make that many out of the mixture I had, I don’t think I rolled the base out thin enough so I ended up with 5 monster cookies! Well worth it, but obviously you can make them slightly smaller with a bit less filling in each to bring it down if you wish, but sometimes it’s nice to be a bit indulgent.

Ingredients
¾ rolled oats (gluten free if necessary)
1 cup pitted dates
1 cup cashews (75g)
½ cup crunchy peanut butter
2 ½ tablespoons maple syrup
2 tablespoons cacao powder
2 tablespoons melted coconut oil
1 teaspoons vanilla essence

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Method
1. In a food processor blitz together the oats and cacao powder until you have a rough flour. Then add the dates. As my processor isn’t the strongest one going, I have to gradually add them 2-3 at a time to stop it burning it. It does take a while but eventually it will  come together in a well mixed dough. Remove from the processor and place in a bowl and leave in the fridge to cool as it will be warm and sticky after mixing.
2. To make the filling, mix together all the ingredients with the exception of the peanut butter in the food processor until you get a smooth filling, then gradually stir in the peanut butter until it starts to thicken up and you get the desired amount of peanut buttery goodness. I know some people don’t like too thick a texture but I love it.
3. Leave to cool in the fridge for a couple of hours until it’s started to firm up and it able to  e spread.
4. About 10-15 minutes before you want to start building the cookies, remove the dough from the fridge so it starts to warm up slightly making it easier to roll out. Then roll out and cut out cookie shapes until you use all the dough (making sure it’s an even number) and place onto a parchment paper lined tray.
5. Remove  the filling from the fridge and spread/dollop the filling evenly over half of the cookies and build. Hey presto all made 🙂
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Nutritional information
Calories: 429
Protein: 10.4g
Carbohydrates: 49g
Of which is sugars: 25.7g
Fibre: 7.4g
Fat: 23.7g
Of which is saturated: 7.6g

Sausage, Onion and Potato Omelette

After having porridge nearly every morning for breakfast at work for a couple of months, I’ve decided I need a change. I still love porridge, especially how quick and versatile it is, but I’ve been thinking I could do with having something a bit different and maybe with a bit more protein in it to help set up my day. Flicking through a cookbook I was given nearly a year ago for some inspiration, I came across a recipe for a sausage and potato omelette that I thought would be a good one to try. It’s similar to the frittata I made not that long ago so I knew I was on the right tracks.

It doesn’t take too long to make and is super easy to batch bake on a Sunday ready for the week ahead. Just make sure you have a good frying pan with a heat resistant handle so it can be placed under the grill.

Ingredients

2 Potatoes
1 Onion
1 Pack of Sausages (I went for gluten free turkey sausages)
10 Cherry Tomatoes (which I forgot about to include in the picture)
6 Eggs
1 Tbsp Mixed Herbs
12 Tbsp Water
1 Tbsp Oil
Pinch of Black Pepper
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Method

  1. Peel the potatoes and chop into rough big cubes and boil until soft. Drain and leave to cool at one side.
  2. Grill the sausages until cooked through and set to one side to cool.
  3. Add the 6 eggs and the water together in a large bowl and whisk together until thoroughly mixed.
  4. Once the potatoes and sausages have cooled cut into smaller bite size pieces.
  5. Heat a frying pan with half the oil, once hot add the potatoes and cook until they are starting to go crispy then add the onions and continue to cook until browned without burning.
  6. Remove the potatoes and onion and add the remaining oil to the pan, ensure all sides are coated then add the potatoes, onions, sausages and tomatoes and stir so there’s an even mix of ingredients across the pan.
  7. Pre heat the grill onto a high heat.
  8. Add the egg and water mixture to the pan and leave to cook on the hob for 3-5 minutes until the bottom of the omelette is good.
  9. Remove from the hob and place under the grill to cook for roughly 10 minutes until the top of the omelette

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Nutritional Information

Serves 5
Calories: 362
Protein: 26.1g
Carbohydrates: 40.7g
Of which is sugars: 4.3g
Fibre: 5.3g
Fat: 10.9g
Of which is saturated:3.2g

Gluten Free Avocado Brownies

I’ll be honest; I’m not someone who’s a massive avocado fan. I don’t mind a bit of guacamole but I won’t eat it in a salad or on toast. I keep seeing all these recipes to make various chocolaty goods with avocado, so I thought I’d give it a go. I was pleasantly surprised with the outcome. I really couldn’t taste any avocado in the brownies but found they gave it a really nice texture and one I preferred over the buckwheat brownies I’ve made previously when attempting gluten free baking.

This recipe is so easy to make as well as it only required 1 baking tin and a food processor which is always a positive because, as much as I enjoy baking I do not love the washing up that inevitably ensues. I was rather chuffed with how fudgy and rich these brownies turned out, having only had relatively inconsistent success with gluten free baking, I was dubious as to how much I would genuinely enjoy these or if I’d end up eating them just because I’d made them and not wanting to waste them. But, thankfully, I really like these and would definitely consider making them again, despite being moreish you can’t eat too many due to how rich they are.

 

Ingredients

2 Eggs

100g Dark Chocolate

1 large Avocado

1 Cup Cacao Powder (You can use normal cocoa powder but you may want to reduce the amount of sugar, depending on how sweet you like it)

½ Cup Caster Sugar

2 tsp Vanilla Extract

1 tsp Baking Soda

2 Tbsp Water
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Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 180⁰c. In a food processor blitz the avocado until it’s completely smooth, you may have to stop and clean down the sides a couple of times to avoid any bits.
  2. Add the baking soda, eggs, sugar, cacao powder and 1 tablespoon of the water and thoroughly mix.
  3. Melt the chocolate then add to the mixture and blitz until the chocolate is fully worked through. If the mixture is looking a bit thick then add the second tablespoon of water.
  4. Tip the mixture in a greased baking tin and pop in the oven for 15-20 minutes. Check the brownies regularly with a skewer and once it comes out clean remove from the oven and leave in the tin to cool before removing and finishing on the wire rack.
  5. Cut into pieces and serve, I like mine with a dusting of icing sugar.image

Nutritional Information

Calories: 217
Protein: 5.9g
Carbohydrates: 25.6g
Of which is sugars: 18.3g
Fibre: 5.7g
Fat: 10.8g
Of which is saturated:4.6g

 

Recipe slightly tweaked from here 🙂