Gluten Free Battenberg featuring Delicious Alchemy’s Gluten Free Vanilla Sponge Mix

There is less than a week until ‘The Great British Bake Off’ returns to our screens, and even though it’s been delayed slightly thanks to the Rio Olympics, I am no less excited to see what surprises lie in store this year.

The return of Bake Off means that Delicious Alchemy’s Gluten Free Magic Bake Off is also back for another year and to celebrate I’m going to share with you my Gluten Free Battenberg Cake which I made using Delicious Alchemy’s Vanilla Sponge Mix

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Back in 2014 I entered Delicious Alchemy’s Gluten Free Magic Bake Off for a bit of fun with a Gluten Free Red Velvet Cake that I made for my sister’s birthday. I ended up making it to the final three bakers and although I didn’t win the overall competition, I was chuffed to bits to make it that far. I hadn’t been on a gluten free diet that long and it gave me the confidence boost I needed to start writing that gluten free food blog my friends were always nagging me to write… the very blog you’re reading now!

Regular readers of my blog will know that I am an enormous fan of Delicious Alchemy’s products, particularly their baking mixes and I always have a few stashed away in cupboard for emergencies just incase I need to whip up something super quick.

Their Gluten Free Vanilla Cake Mix is perfect for this Battenberg Cake as it makes the process much simpler – you need very few ingredients, whipping up the mixture for the sponge takes only a matter of minutes and the construction of the cake isn’t too daunting as long as you follow the instructions step by step!


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My top tip when making a Battenberg Cake is to use food colouring which is bake stable – I recommend using either a gel or a paste as many liquid food colourings aren’t bake stable which means the sponge won’t retain its colour when baked.


Gluten Free Battenberg

Ingredients

You will need one packet of Delicious Alchemy Vanilla Sponge Mix (400g) spilt into two 200g portions.

Yellow Sponge:
200g Delicious Alchemy Gluten Free Vanilla Sponge Mix
100g softened butter (or dairy free alternative)
2 eggs
2 tbsp milk (or dairy free alternative)
A few drops of a yellow food colouring (make sure it’s bake stable)

Pink Sponge:
200g Delicious Alchemy Gluten Free Vanilla Sponge Mix
100g softened butter (or dairy free alternative)
2 eggs
2 tbsp milk (or dairy free alternative)
A few drops of pink food colouring (make sure it’s bake stable)

For assembling the cake:
400g ready to roll white marzipan
3 tbsp apricot jam

Method:

1) Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C/gas mark 4 then grease and line a square tin with baking paper.

To save time (and washing up) I decided to bake both sponges in the same tin. To do this, I made a divider out tin foil and placed it down the centre of tin. The divider should fit snuggly into the tin which and should be sturdy enough to stand up by itself. Make sure you grease the divider too so that you can remove the cake more easily.

3) Firstly make the yellow sponge: Place half (200g) of the Delicious Alchemy vanilla sponge mix in a large bowl with the butter, eggs and milk, then beat with a electric hand mixer for 15 seconds. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, add the yellow food colouring and mix for a further 10 – 15 seconds ensuring the food colouring is fully incorporated.

4) Next, make the pink sponge: Place the remaining half of the Delicious Alchemy vanilla sponge mix into a large bowl with the butter, eggs and milk, then beat with a electric hand mixer for 15 seconds. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, add the pink food colouring and mix for a further 10 – 15 seconds ensuring the food colouring is fully incorporated.

5) Carefully spoon the mixtures into the prepared tin ensuring the divider properly separates them.

6. Bake the sponges for 20 – 25 mins. Check the sponges are cooked by inserting a skewer into the middle of each sponge, if the skewer comes out clean then the sponges are ready.

7. Leave the sponges to cool in the tin for a moment and then transfer the cakes onto a wire rack to cool completely – If you attempt to assemble the cakes whilst they are still warm they will crumble.

8. Once your cake has cooled, trim the tops with a sharp knife or a cake wire to ensure they are flat and even in height.

9. Place the sponges on top of each other and trim the edges so that they are nice and neat.

10. Cut the sponges in half, straight down the middle so you are left with four long pieces of sponge.

11. Gently heat the jam in a pan or a microwave to make it easier to spread.

12. Take one of the yellow and one of the pink pieces of sponge, brush the top and sides lightly with the apricot jam then place them side by side. Brush the next two pieces of sponge with jam and then place them on top so that they create the iconic checked pattern.

13. Knead the marzipan in icing sugar until it becomes more pliable then roll it out into a large square which is longer than the length of the cake and wide enough to wrap around the cake.

14. Make sure the cake is evenly covered in apricot jam to ensure that the marzipan sticks to the sponge. Place the cake onto the marzipan and tightly wrap it around the cake.

15. Trim off the the excess marzipan to create neat edges and leave the ends exposed so the  checked pattern can clearly be seen.

16. Serve!

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You can find out more about Delicious Alchemy’s Gluten Free Magic Bake Off, including how to enter, on their website.

They also have 25% off their baking and bread mixes on their online shop until the 4th October 2016 to celebrate the start of GFMBO so you can stock up and get practicing your skills!

Gluten Free Easter: Carrot Cake Recipe

Today, I’m going to share with you my Gluten Free Carrot Cake Recipe – perfect for those of you who aren’t too keen on chocolate but still want something sweet to celebrate the Easter weekend.  
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I love Carrot cake, and whilst it isn’t necessarily thought of as a traditional Easter bake, I really can’t think of a better time of year to enjoy it. After all… Easter, Spring, Bunnies… it all makes sense really!

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This cake is really quite simple to make and keeps really well –  In fact, it tasted as good, if not better a few days later. It can also be kept at room temperature, although, if your house is a bit warm it may be best kept in the fridge.

Gluten Free Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

Ingredients

For the cake:
300g gluten free self raising flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
200g grated carrots
50g walnuts, roughly chopped
175g light brown sugar
1 tbsp maple syrup
150ml sunflower oil
3 large eggs

For the frosting:
2 x 180g tub philadelphia cheese
1 x 250g tub mascarpone cheese
4 tbsp icing sugar, sifted
1 tsp vanilla extract

Plus decorations, I used these House of Cake Carrot Sugar Decorations from Sainsbury’s.

Method:

1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C/gas mark 4 and grease and line a round 7″ tin with greaseproof paper.

2. In a large bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and spices, then stir through the grated carrots and chopped walnuts.

3. In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs, sugar, sunflower oil and maple syrup, then add this to the dry ingredients, mixing until the ingredients are just combined.

4. Spoon the ingredients into the prepared tin and then bake for 50 – 55 minutes or until a skewer inserted through the middle comes out clean.

5. Remove the cake from the tin and leave to cool completely before assembling. `

6. For the frosting, gently mix together the Philadelphia, Mascarpone and vanilla extract then gently fold through the icing sugar.

7. Carefully cut the cake into two halves using a sharp knife or cake cutting wire.

8. Place the base of the cake onto a serving plate, cover it with and even layer of frosting then place the second piece of cake on top. Spread remaining frosting across the top using a palate knife and finish off the cake with your chosen decorations.

I hope you have a wonderful Easter weekend. If you are looking for any more Easter baking inspiration why not check out my Gluten Free Mini Egg Ice Cream recipe which can be found over on The Daily Spectacle website. It’s a no churn recipe and it can be prepared ahead – the perfect dessert for Easter Sunday Lunch.

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There are lots of other Easter recipes for you to try here on my blog too, including my Mini Egg Millionaire Shortbread, Chocolate Nest Cupcakes and Easter Sugar Cookies or you can see what else I get up to over the Easter weekend over on my Instagram or Facebook Page.

 

Coeliac Awareness Week: Gluten Free Cheese Scones

Here in the UK it is Coeliac Awareness Week and to help raise awareness of this important campaign I am posting very simple Gluten Free recipes to help any newly diagnosed Coeliacs get started.

My first post was my Victoria Sandwich Recipe and today I will be sharing my recipe for Gluten Free Cheese Scones.
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Scones are a true classic and a bake that should be in every baker’s repertoire. They are perfect for beginners (they were certainly the first thing I learnt to make) and possible to achieve Gluten Free – you just need to make sure the dough is moist enough!

Gluten Free Cheese Scones

This recipe makes approximately 8 scones.

Ingredients:
250g Gluten Free Self Raising Flour
1 tsp Baking Powder
75g Butter, unsalted
Pinch of Salt
75g Mature Cheddar, plus extra for the top.
2 eggs (one for glazing)
75ml Milk

Method:

1) Preheat the oven to 220 degrees C/Fan Oven 200 degrees C/Gas Mark 6.

2) In a large bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder and salt.

3) Rub together the butter and flour mixture until you have a breadcrumb like texture, then stir through the cheese.

4) Add an egg and start to bring the mixture together using a wooden spoon.

5) Add the milk bit by bit and use your hands to bring the mixture together in a smooth dough.

6) Lightly dust a work surface with flour then roll out the dough to 3/4cm thick – don’t roll out the dough too flat or you will have very flat scones!

7) Place the scones on a baking tray lined with greaseproof paper. Lightly brush the top of each scone with beaten egg then sprinkle over a little bit more cheese.

8) Bake the scones in a preheated oven for 15 – 18 minutes until they are golden brown.

9) Leave the scones to cool on a wire rack or enjoy warm with lashings of butter! To refresh the scones, sprinkle them with a little cold water and gently warm them in the oven.

Please don’t forget to check out my Victoria Sandwich Recipe for Coeliac Awareness Week or if you are looking for more inspiration take a look at my Recipes Page.

You can also keep up to date with my kitchen adventures on:
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Gluten Free ‘HP Sauce’

Today I had a bacon Sandwich with HP Sauce for the first time in almost 3 years, and it was GLORIOUS.

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If you asked me which foods I miss the most since giving up Gluten, top of the list would be HP Sauce.

It has always been my favourite and was a firm fixture on my family’s dinner table, in fact, we couldn’t live without it so much that we would take it on holiday to Italy with us – that, and Yorkshire Tea!

I was upset once I realised I could no longer eat HP Sauce as it contains Malt Vinegar… but, I am a firm believer that with creativity it’s possible to eat everything thing I used to before and so I decided it was finally time to attempt making my own HP Sauce. The aim? To make it as close to the real deal as possible.

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Gluten Free HP Sauce

This recipe makes approximately 500ml.

You will need 1 550ml Glass Preserve Bottle or a Twist Top Bottle which you will need to Sterilise:

1. Remove the wax seal or lid. Wash the bottle in hot soapy water, rinse well then and leave to dry.
2. Place the bottle in an oven on a low temperature (140 degrees C/ Gas Mark 1) for 15 minutes, do this shortly before the sauce is ready so that the bottle remains warm.
3. Sterilise the wax seal or lid in a pan of boiling water for 10 minutes.
4. If you are using a clip top bottle, replace the wax seal once the bottle has been sterilised.

Ingredients:

1 tbsp Olive Oil
4 Shallots, finely chopped
2 Garlic Cloves, finely chopped
65g Dates, with the stones removed and chopped.
2 tbsp Tomato Puree
200 ml Water
1 tsp Ground Ginger
1 tsp Ground Cinnamon
1/2 tsp Turmeric Powder
1 tsp Ground Pepper
100ml Apple Juice
150ml Cider Vinegar
50ml Balsamic Vinegar
1 tbsp Molasses or Black Treacle
1/2 tbsp Dark Brown Sugar
1 tbsp Cornflour

Method:

1) Heat the Olive Oil in a large heavy bottomed pan over a medium heat.

2) Fry the Shallots and Garlic for 4 -5 minutes until soft, then add the dates and 150 ml of the water.

3) Using a hand blender, blend the ingredients into a thick paste.

4) Add the remaining 50 ml water, tomato puree, ginger, cinnamon, ground pepper, and turmeric powder. Give it a good stir and then simmer the ingredients over a low heat for 10 minutes.

5) Remove the pan from the heat, then press the mixture through a sieve with a wooden spoon into a clean pan.

6) Add the Apple Juice, Cider Vinegar, Balsamic Vinegar, Molasses and Sugar then return the pan to the heat and boil the sauce for 5 minutes.

7) Place the cornflour into a small bowl, then add a few tablespoon of liquid from the sauce to to make a paste.

8) Add the cornflour paste to the sauce and then whisk with a balloon whisk to ensure there are no lumps.

9) Boil the sauce for a further 4 minutes whilst whisking continuously.

Tip. Don’t worry if there are a few lumps after you’ve added the cornflour – just sieve the sauce again.

10) Remove the sauce from the heat and leave to cool slightly before carefully pouring the sauce into your sterilised bottle –  you may need to use a funnel to help you do this safely.

11) Leave the sauce to cool before storing -the sauce should keep up to 3 – 4 weeks in the fridge.

I hope you give my recipe a try this weekend. If you are looking for Gluten Free inspiration you can check out all the recipes I have posted to date on my Recipes page.

Remember that you can also keep up to date with all my kitchen adventures on:
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