Gluten Free Christmas: Gingerbread Wreath

We are 12 days into advent and I finally feel as though I’m getting into the full swing of the festivities. So far most of Advent has been spent in the kitchen working on festive bakes, most of which have involved copious amounts of edible glitter which I keep finding everywhere, including in my hair, on the floor, on the cat…

Today I’m going to share with you my recipe for this gingerbread wreath which is definitely an excuse to get out the edible glitter.

 

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The Gingerbread wreath is completely edible (except for the Red Ribbon) and although it looks impressive and difficult to achieve, it was actually incredibly easy! You don’t need any fancy equipment, just a large dinner plate, a sharp knife and a few different sized cookie cutters. Whipping up the gingerbread dough takes only a matter of minutes and the construction of the wreath isn’t too daunting, as long as you follow the instructions step by step. The wreath is not really design to be used as a decoration as the ribbon won’t support the weight of a wreath – but it would make a lovely edible Christmas gift.

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Gluten Free Gingerbread Wreath

This recipe is inspired by Cassie Best’s Gingerbread Wreath for BBC Good Food

Ingredients

For the Gingerbread:
125g gluten free self raising flour blend
200g rice flour, plus extra for dusting
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
2 tsp ground ginger
2 tsp cinnamon
125g unsalted butter
150g soft dark brown sugar
2 tbsp golden syrup
1 tbsp black treacle
1 large egg

To Decorate:
200g Ready to roll Icing
30 ml cold water
250g icing sugar
1 egg white
Edible glitter

You will also need:
A sharp knife
1 x large dinner plate
1 x inch piping nozzle
1 x 9cm round cutter
1 x small star cutter
1 x medium star cutter
1 x large star cutter
1 x small angel cutter
1 red ribbon

Method

1) In a large bowl, sift together the flours, bicarbonate of soda, ginger and cinnamon. Using your hands, rub the butter into the dry ingredients until it becomes like fine bread crumbs and then stir through the dark brown sugar.

2) In a separate bowl whisk the egg with a fork, then add this to the cookie mixture along with the golden syrup and black treacle. Mix until the ingredients come together. The cookie dough will appear quite wet at this stage but don’t be tempted to add more flour or you will dry out the dough!

3) Gently knead the dough on a floured surface with floured hands until it turns into a smooth, soft and slightly sticky ball of dough. Dust the dough with flour as you knead to stop it sticking to the work surface. Wrap the dough in cling film and leave to chill in the fridge for at least 2 hours – chilling helps the dough to firm up so it can be rolled out.

4) Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C/160 fan/gas mark 4. Roll half of the dough out in between two sheets of greaseproof paper until it is the thickness of a 1 pound coin. Remove the top layer of greaseproof paper, then place a large dinner plate face down into the centre of the dough and use a sharp knife to cut out a large circular disc of gingerbread.

5) Transfer the gingerbread onto a baking tray (you can use the bottom sheet of baking paper to line your tray) then use a 9 cm circular cutter to cut out a circle of dough from the centre of the gingerbread disc and a 1 cm piping nozzle to cut out a hole for the ribbon.

6) Bake the base of your wreath for 10 to 12 minutes – watch out for the edges catching.
Once baked, leave the wreath to firm up on the baking tray for a few minutes before transferring it to wire rack to finish cooling.

7) Roll out the remaining dough and cut out 5 large stars, 4 medium stars, 11 small stars and 2 angel shapes. Arrange the shapes onto a baking tray and bake for 10 to 12 minutes – the smaller cookies will need checking after 8 minutes.

8) Once baked, leave the cookies to firm up on the baking tray for a few minutes bering transferring them to wire rack to finish cooling.

9) While the cookies cool, make the royal icing: place 1 egg white in a bowl and slowly sift icing sugar in batches. In between each batch of sugar, stir the icing with a wooden spoon or a balloon whisk until the icing thickens up, then transfer the icing into a piping bag fitted with a small writing nozzle.

10) Next, make the fondant icing: break the ready to roll icing into pieces and place them in a bowl. Add a splash of water and use a spatula to break up the icing until it starts to become more paste like, then add the rest of the water and beat with an electric hand mixer until the fondant becomes runny.

11) Spread the fondant icing over the 5 large star shapes and sprinkle each one with edible glitter. Decorate the remaining pieces with the royal icing and leave all the pieces to dry for about an hour before you assemble the wreath.

12) Use the remaining royal icing to stick the biscuits to the wreath. Sprinkle the wreath with edible glitter and thread a red ribbon through the hole to finish.

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There will be plenty of festive bakes coming your way really soon. Meanwhile, why not come and see what else I’m getting up to over the festive season by following me on Instagram or Facebook. Remember, If you give this recipe take a snap of it and share it with me on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter using the hashtag #titchytonbakes and I will share my favourites on my Facebook page!

Gluten Free Peanut Butter & Chocolate Chip Granola

It’s a well known fact that I love Peanut Butter and that I would put it in everything and anything, if I could!

In my opinion, granola is made infinitely better with the presence of peanut butter which not only delicious, but dairy free too. To make this granola recipe completely dairy free, just miss out the chocolate chips or use chunks of dairy free dark chocolate instead.

The recipe is easily adaptable, so you can change up the ingredients depending on what you fancy and it’s also lovely healthy way to start to the day, as the oats will give you that energy boost to get through until lunch time!

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Gluten Free Peanut Butter Granola  

Ingredients:
250g gluten free oats
3 tbsp Smooth Peanut Butter (preferably one containing only natural sugars)
1 tbsp Sunflower Oil
2 tbsp Maple Syrup
50g Dark Chocolate Chips (optional)
A handful of chopped unsalted peanuts

Method:

1) Preheat Oven to 180 degrees C/Gas Mark 4.

2) In a large heavy bottomed pan mix the peanut butter, oil and maple syrup over a low heat, then add the oats and stir until combined.

3) Spread the oats into a thin layer across a baking tray lined with greaseproof paper, then scatter across the chopped peanuts.

4) Bake the mixture for 5 minutes, give the oats a a quick stir with a wooden spoon, then return them to the oven and to bake for a further 5 minutes or until golden brown.

5. Once the Granola has cooled completely, stir through the chocolate chips (optional).

If you want to keep up to date with my kitchen adventures you can find me on Instagram @titchyton or on my Facebook page.

I would also like to mention a very exciting project which the good folks over at Delicious Alchemy are getting up to.

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To celebrate their 10th birthday, Delicious Alchemy are setting up a charity called ‘The Delicious Alchemy Charitable Foundation’ which will aid people on a restricted diet, particularly those who are going hungry, by donating gluten free food to food banks such as those supported by the Trussell Trust in the UK.

For their first fundraising project they are planning to produce a recipe book – all proceeds will go The Delicious Alchemy Charitable Foundation – but they need funding to help make this a reality!

Crowdfunding for the project starts on the 18th of April, but in the meantime you can help spread the word signing up to the Thunderclap, a platform that sends a one time message out about the project on the 18th of April via your chosen social network.

To sweeten the deal, everyone who signs up to the Thunderclap will be entered into a prize draw to win one of 10 Delicious Alchemy goodie boxes.

You can sign up to the Thunderclap here: https://www.thunderclap.it/projects/37982-delicious-alchemy-crowdfund?locale=en

I’m proud to support such a great cause and I hope you will get involved too!

Find out more about The Delicious Alchemy Charitable Foundation here: http://www.deliciousalchemy.co.uk/2016/03/the-delicious-alchemy-charitable-foundation/

 

BBC Good Food Eat Well Show

Recently, I attended the first ever BBC Good Food Eat Well Show –  an event dedicated to healthy eating and special dietary needs, including gluten free diets. 11037763_832116943527074_8783331699261664250_nThis was the first time I have attended a food show and I was hugely impressed at the amount on offer, which included over 70 stalls where you could try out and purchase various products, the ‘Eat Well Forum’ and an Interview Stage where you could query the experts, a Dietitian’s Clinic and the ‘Healthy Kitchen’ where you could watch celebrities and chefs creating exciting dishes from which to grab inspiration. I attended on the sunday so I saw Hemsley + Hemsley and Lorraine Pascale!

Among the exhibitors I spotted various Gluten Free companies including BFree, Delicious Alchemy and HECK to name just a few. It was great to speak to the companies first hand, get better idea of the products available and to try before you buy! The ladies at the BFree Stand were particularly helpful and were happy for me to sample everything, they also had some great offers available and I managed to stock up on gluten free bread and wraps at very reasonable price.

I would highly recommend attending the BBC Eat Well Show and I am already looking forward to next year – I hope they will expand the show to include more gluten free products. These shows are also a very good idea for newly diagnosed Coeliacs to attend, as it gives them the opportunity to try gluten free products without spending a fortune and to stock up very cheaply.

You can also find out more about the BBC Good Food Eat Well Show at http://www.bbcgoodfoodeatwellshow.com. 

If you want to keep up to date with my kitchen adventures you can follow me @titchyton on Instagram or you can find me on my Facebook page.