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Low-FODMAP, Gluten-free, Dairy-free Pancake Recipe – With Chocolate Orange or Goats Cheese & Walnut Fillings.

Shrove Tuesday, Mardi Gras, Pancake Day – it always comes as a surprise – consider this advance notice, it’s the 28th February – you’re welcome!

My brother is a something of a pancake king, not a crepe or an American style pancake but a slightly thicker British-style pancake. When you make pancakes you have to allow for the first pancake to go wrong. When I was younger we christened this practise pancake ‘Sporran’. No idea why, it’s one of those ‘family sayings’ that is met with blank looks from outsiders!

Classic lemon and sugar

Classic lemon and sugar

Either eat your pancakes with lemon and sugar or with one of the two filling suggestions. I’ve used two specific ingredients – Mature Goats Cheese and Clementine Jam – the supplier details are below. The recipe is very easy to double or treble. You can freeze pancakes in an airtight container with greaseproof paper between the pancakes. 

Makes 6 pancakes and a sporran.

110g gluten-free plain flour blend.

2 large eggs

280ml coconut milk

Pinch of salt

Up to 1 tbsp. sunflower oil for frying

Using a balloon whisk, whisk together the eggs and coconut milk. Sift the flour and salt into a separate bowl and make a well in the centre. Pour the eggs and milk into the well and whisk until blended. Allow to stand for 20 minutes.

Heat a large frying pan over a medium high heat (5/6 on my hob). Put a teaspoon of oil into the pan, swirl it around then wipe the excess away with paper towel. Pour 1/3 cup of batter into the pan and immediately tilt the pan, swirling the batter until it covers the bottom of the pan in an even layer. Cook until the pancake is lifting from the edges and set on top, about 1 minute. Using sleight of hand or a fish slice flip the pancake and cook for a further minute until the pancake slides free around the pan.

If you are keeping these warm, place on a plate in a warm, not hot, oven and layer the pancakes with greaseproof paper. Lightly grease the pan again, using a couple of drops of oil and the paper towel and repeat until all the batter is used up.

Cheese and Walnut Pancake-1.jpg

Goat’s Cheese and Walnut Filling

I have already waxed lyrical about the joys of St. Helen’s goat butter and cheese, not least because unlike some goats’ products it doesn’t taste of goats! Have you tried the mature version of their cheddar type cheese yet? It’s delicious! See here for details. You can use other sorts of low-FODMAP friendly mature cheese, or a chevre but I do so love the walnut/ goat’s cheese combo.

 

Per pancake

40g goats cheese

20g walnut pieces

Handful of finely chopped curly parsley.

When the pancake is cooked, cover one half in cheese and walnuts. When it is just starting to melt, slide out of the pan onto a warm plate. Scatter the parsley over the cheese and flip the other half over the filling. You can do this with a ready cooked pancake by reheating it in the pan before covering with cheese.

Clementine Jam and Chocolate Chip Filling

A pancake that tastes like Jaffa Cakes? Yes please! I get my Corsican clementine jam from French Flavour. Clementines are thankfully low-FODMAP and the rest of the ingredients are FODMAP friendly. Although untested, it’s closest relatives are marmalade or strawberry jam both of which have a portion size of 2 tbsp. You could use another orange jam or marmalade but I can’t guarantee it’ll be as Jaffa-Cakey!

Per pancake

1 tbsp. clementine jam

15g dark chocolate chips

When the pancake is cooked, spread the jam over one half and sprinkle the chocolate chips on top. When the chips are just beginning to melt, fold the other half of the pancake over and slide onto a warm plate. . You can do this with a ready cooked pancake by reheating it in the pan, before adding the filling.

I have not been paid to endorse these products but I've found them and enjoyed them - I hope you do too! 

Low FODMAP servings

UHT Coconut milk – 125ml

Eggs – high in protein and do not contain carbohydrates

Flour – My flour by Dove’s Farm is a blend of rice, potato, tapioca, maize and buckwheat

Sunflower Oil – high in fat and does not contain carbohydrates

Walnuts – 30g

Cheese – 40g hard and a goat’s cheese such as chevre are high in fat so low in FODMAPs. Do check your individual cheese if you are using a different sort.

Clementine Jam – Marmalade is 2tbsp, Strawberry Jam is 2tbsp. Check your ingredients for high fodmaps.

Dark Chocolate – 30g

Baked Swede ‘Chips’* (Rutabaga) - Low-FODMAP, gluten-free recipe

I’ve lost track of the times I’ve had social media conversations about swedes (that’s the root vegetable, not the Scandinavians!) Outside of the UK this root vegetable is known as rutabaga, from the old Swedish word ‘rotabagge’ which roughly translates as ‘short, stumpy root’. Sounds so appealing! Parts of the UK call these swedes (from ‘Swedish turnip’) but some areas call this a turnip (not to be confused with white turnips.) In Scotland they are called neeps, unless you’re in an area where they’re called baigie or tumshie. Confused much?!

If nothing else, this complex introduction shows how deeply ingrained this useful vegetable has become in British cuisine since C18th. I’ve added the ubiquitous turmeric to really bring out the colour of the golden flesh. The strong flavour of the swede can take the fragrant punch of the rosemary.

Now the difficult portion control bit - a low-FODMAP serving is 65g. An average swede is 800g. I have chosen to cook the entire swede as my family are happy to eat more than I am allowed. There is also the option to freeze any leftovers. I layer mine between greaseproof paper in an airtight container. Keep the chips apart and it will be quicker to defrost a single portion to add to a lunch. As a guide, I weighed the chips and 5 1x8cm chips came in as a low-FODMAP serving.

These work well as a side to my Cheese and ‘Onion’ Potato Bake.

Swede Chips with Termerick and Rosemary-104.jpg

800g swede

1.5 tbsp. olive oil

1 heaped tbsp. fresh rosemary needles

½ tsp. turmeric

½ tsp. sea salt flakes

¼ tsp. freshly ground black pepper

Pre-heat a standard oven to 220°C. Peel the swede and cut into 1cm wide chips. Place the oil in a large baking tray, add the remaining ingredients and turn everything over until all well covered and in one layer .

Bake for 30 minutes, turning over halfway through.

*I could have gone on about the international differences in ‘chips’ but it felt like a bridge too far. I mean a British style chip as opposed to a ‘crisp’…

 

Christmas Clementine Carrots - A Low-FODMAP and very orange recipe

As much a part of Christmas as Christmas trees and stockings, a bowl of clementines becomes our table centrepiece for most of the festive season. I love it when I am able to get a box of clementines with their glossy green leaves still attached. 

Low FODMAP Christmas Clementine Carrots recipe

Thankfully low-FODMAP, a clementine can add a much needed vitamin C boost to a season peppered with colds and chills. Aside from the pleasing alliteration, this side dish provides a festive twist on my favourite combination of carrot and oranges. Carrots are another Low-FODMAP vegetable that Monash says we can 'eat freely and according to appetite' no less! Please do endeavour to find mace – it adds a delicious nutmeg-y spice to the carrots. If you can only find blade mace, grind it yourself in a pestle and mortar. You can watch a video of how to prepare this FODMAP friendly dish here.

Serves 6-8 as a side dish

Prep 20 mins

500g carrots, peeled and cut into batons

2 clementines

25g butter

100ml water

1/8th tsp. ground mace

Small pinch of ground white pepper

Place the carrots in a lidded pan with 100ml of water. Wash and lightly scrub the clementines to remove any residual wax. Finely grate the zest from one clementine over the carrots and add the juice of both clementines to the pan. Add all the remaining ingredients, cover and bring to the boil. Turn down to a low simmer for 10 minutes to allow the carrots to steam but not burn the juice.

Remove the lid and turn up the heat for 5 minutes to reduce the liquid, taking care not to boil the pan dry. Serve in a warm dish. 

Carrot & Walnut Bake for Autumn - low-FODMAP, gluten-free and vegan

Doesn't it scream autumn?

Doesn't it scream autumn?

Autumn weather is confusing this year and it’s confusing my usual autumn Low-FODMAP menu. Daddy-long-legs are drunkenly drifting about in the sunshine wondering what to do with themselves next. The apple tree has snapped in two under the weight of tiny red apples – as they are not FODMAP friendly I need to give these away – please pop in if you’re interested

I had intended to do something entirely different for teatime yesterday but I had an ingredients disaster and had to look to the store cupboard for salvation. Ras-el-Hanout came to my rescue again and gave a warm spiced pumpkin pie flavour to some decidedly normal carrots. Autumn means walnuts but to stop the flavour becoming too overwhelming I ‘cut’ them with some pumpkin seeds.

A low-FODMAP portion of dried cranberries is 13g so you’ll be within your ‘safe’ limit. Do check the ingredients of your ras-el-Hanout – there shouldn’t be any garlic. I seem to be strewing brown rice breadcrumbs over everything at the moment – I got mine from the local market. Eat for teatime or it slices well cold to have as leftovers.

No-one is more surprised than I that I got it out in one piece!

No-one is more surprised than I that I got it out in one piece!

Serves 4 generously, prep 15-20 mins, baking time 40 mins

1kg carrots, peeled and sliced

160g walnuts

50g pumpkin seeds

30g dried cranberries

Large pinch of salt

Heaped tsp. ras-el-Hanout

Heaped tbsp. brown rice breadcrumbs

Heaped tbsp. sesame seeds

A little olive oil for greasing.Pre-heat an oven to 180°C. Lightly grease a 22cm pie dish.

Cook the carrots either by steaming, microwaving (or boiling, although you will lose some vitamins) until soft. While the carrots are cooking place the walnuts, pumpkin seeds and cranberries into a food processor then blitz to fine crumbs. Tip the nut mixture into a bowl and stir in the ras-el-Hanout and salt.

Drain the carrots really well and allow to cool slightly so the steam can escape. Place the carrots in the food processor (you don’t need to wash it first!) and blitz until nearly smooth. Add the nuts back in and blitz again until everything is thoroughly combined. Press the mixture evenly into the pie dish. I did make a pretty pattern on mine using a spatula but I’m not sure I’d bother next time!

Mix the rice breadcrumbs and sesame seeds together before scattering evenly over the top. Bake for 40 minutes. You may need to loose the edge of the bake with a knife before cutting out wedges.

Cantaloupe Granita - Low-FODMAP and gloriously orange

Low FODMAP Cantaloupe Granita 2

Cantaloupe Granita - Low-FODMAP and gloriously orange

Aside from IBS and accidental-ingestion-of-a FODMAP associated pain, lots of childhood ‘illnesses’ elicit the same response from me. These are responses that can be said with a degree of concern in my voice but without betraying the scepticism I’m feeling. Nothing will quicken the turn of a perceived illness or injury into a full-blown illness, than a child who doesn’t believe you are genuinely concerned.

Low-FODMAP Cantaloupe Granita 1

Child – “Mummy, I’ve got a…”

Me, (in my best concerned voice, wearing my best concerned face) “Oh dear. Have you tried having a glass of water/ going to the loo/ having a little lie-down on the window seat/ putting a wet flannel on it/ opening a window/ running it under a cold tap/ putting on a jumper/ having a bath to relax your muscles/ putting a plaster on it/ not bending your leg/finger/arm backwards?”

Any of these seem familiar?

Heartless I know, but sometimes just having someone acknowledge your stress and pain is all that is needed. Often it turns out the illness/ injury was just a prelude to what has really been bugging them. A bad day at school, an injustice on the playground or disappointment that something didn’t turn out quite as anticipated. I think this is also true for grown-ups. When was the last time someone gave you their best concerned face? A little kindness can go a long way.

Sometimes, the struggle is real and you need to bring down a high temperature. Granita is a great to administer as a cooling-aid. Give 90g of cantaloupe melon granita, safe in the knowledge that you won’t also be tending to FODMAP related pain.

Check out the matching nails ;-)

Check out the matching nails ;-)

Prep - 5-10 minutes,

Freezing time 3 hours.

 1 ripe cantaloupe melon

Juice of half a lime.

Deseed the melon. If you have a hand-held blender, scrape the gorgeously orange flesh and lime-juice into a bowl. You could also use a blender or food processor. Whizz together, taking a moment to enjoy the wonderful perfume and wish you had a nail varnish the same colour.

Pour into a shallow freezer safe container. Cover and freeze. Every 30 minutes scrape in the ice that starts to form around the sides back into the mix, using fork. The mixture will start to get a granular slushy consistency. After 3 hours your granita will be ready.

For a grown-up slushie I recommend a shot of limoncello poured over the top.

If you keep it frozen, it will turn into a solid block. Leave to defrost slightly and show it some welly with either a food processor or blender to loosen things up.

Just realised I've given you a Low-FODMAP, sugar-free, vegan recipe - my life has changed immeasurably since 2012...

 

LowFODMAP Canteloupe Melon Granita 3

Parenting the poorly - learning to feed yourself Low-FODMAP and fairy cake recipe

Cocoa Lumps

Cocoa Lumps

Little Miss Low-FODMAP has been poorly with some sort of viral rash that was suspected to be shingles but having spoken to other parents I suspect wasn't as severe as all that. She had a couple of 'peaky' days but the rash has scabbed over and she's back, oh yes she's back! It was the bouncing off the window seat onto the sofa whilst singing 'Let it Go' that convinced me.

 Poorliness may not demand a lot of medical attention but it does demand a lot of attention. There is no point trying to fight that as a parent you are expected not only to be the constant carer but also the entertainer. As you'd expect, in our house my entertainment tends to involve a lot of cookery. Luckily, the poorliness co-incided with the arrival of some Masa Harina from Sous Chef (www.souschef.co.uk). She really got into the hang of making tortilla and there have been 5 different tortilla-based meals. It was worth every penny of the tortilla press! We've also had the ubiquitous green cheese sauce drowning anything that stopped moving long enough.

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     Tortilla faces in the sunshine.

Tortilla faces in the sunshine.

However, my favourite cooking activity was making Cocoa Lumps. Cocoa Lumps happen when you unclench for long enough (Let it Go) to let your children to invent something. It is highly unlikely it will be haute cuisine but it's only experience that divides those who can cook without a book from those who can't. What better time to get this experience in than now?

 Use a little gentle guidance to make sure the invention isn't an unmitigated disaster - the idea is for children to learn what does and doesn't work, not to scare them off from ever trying again!

 If you are cooking meat, be sure you cook it for the right amount of time and at the right temperature, Google if you need to.

 When using sugar, as a general rule if you bake it below 175C your baked goods will be soft. Above that will make for a harder biscuit/ cookie/ splodge.

  I'm of the school that often it is best to smell if something's cooked, particularly baked goods. If the kitchen smells of biscuits they're probably cooked. If it smells of burning use a time machine and get them out 5 minutes earlier.

Very painted nails.

Very painted nails.

Chocolate and orange goes together, lemon and sultanas go together but don't let yourself get too hung up on these details. Be curious - someone came up with the idea of salted caramel once and now there's no getting away from it. Worst-case scenario, it won't taste very nice and you won't make it again.

 Take notes. If you happen upon a brilliant idea or recipe you can replicate it. If it's awful you won't make the same mistake twice. If the experiment is 'almost' there, it's easy to fiddle with next time. Note-making is lots of writing and weighing practise that children may not even notice they're doing.

 When baking you need some sort of raising agent - self-raising flour, whisked egg whites, bicarbonate of soda, yeast, baking powder - see what happens when you don't use any and see what happens when you use too much!

 Experiment with substitution - if you have a recipe that you're missing ingredients for what happens when you use white sugar instead of brown, raisins instead of chocolate chips, maple syrup instead of golden syrup? We are constantly trying to make meals Low-FODMAP so this is particularly significant if you have a child with a restricted diet - they need to learn how to feed themselves!

Chalk Drawings

Chalk Drawings

If failure is not an option, make a basic sponge. You can ice fairy cakes if you feel so inclined or if you've run out of any other activities. The following guidelines makes enough for 12 fairy cakes but you can easily double or halve the ingredients.

Preheat the oven to 180C. Line a 12 hole bun tin with paper cases.

 Weigh 2 eggs, then weigh out the same amount of (gluten-free) self-raising flour, soft butter or (dairy-free) margarine and caster sugar.

 Cream the butter and sugar together using a wooden spoon, electric hand beaters or mixer until pale and fluffy. In another bowl, lightly beat the eggs and add to the butter and sugar with a tablespoon of flour. You can add a teaspoon of vanilla extract if you fancy. Mix together thoroughly, it will curdle but that will not effect the final result. Fold in the remaining flour until it's thoroughly combined. Add a tablespoon of milk until it makes a 'dropping' consistency.  This is nothing more than it dropping off the spoon in a splodge but I suggest you use the term for added credibility. Gluten-free flour sometimes needs a 1/2 tbsp more and we would use coconut milk.

 Spoon the mixture as evenly as possible into the cases (remembering to let the child have some input) and bake for 20 minutes. Clear up during this time, it's as an important a lesson as the cooking. The cakes will be cooked when the tops spring back when lightly pressed. Remove from the tin and allow to cool on a rack.

 Decide whether you can bear the thought of decorating the cakes or whether it's now time for the millionth viewing of Frozen.

Elderflower fritters - low-FODMAP, gluten-free, vegan, flowery, summer treats.

The finished Elderflower fritters.

The finished Elderflower fritters.

When we moved house (pre-low-FODMAP days) I was thrilled to discover an elderflower tree in the garden. This was before I realised that outside of London, elder trees are pretty much everywhere. The children have been on elderflower-watch for a couple of weeks, monitoring the progress from tiny green balls, to white balls to sweet, fragrant flowers. It has been a tense countdown to elderflower fritter season.

A good haul of delicate green.

A good haul of delicate green.

When we moved house (pre-low-FODMAP days) I was thrilled to discover an elderflower tree in the garden. This was before I realised that outside of London, elder trees are pretty much everywhere. The children have been on elderflower-watch for a couple of weeks, monitoring the progress from tiny green balls, to white balls to sweet, fragrant flowers. It has been a tense countdown to elderflower fritter season.

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     Fritters with built in handles.

Fritters with built in handles.

Pick over your elderflowers and remove any insects or detritus. Warm a plate lined with paper kitchen towel in the oven. Place the sugar on a small plate.

Heat 2-3mm oil in a frying pan. Whilst it is heating, place the flour in a mixing bowl and pour in the soda water. Whisk together to remove any lumps and dip in the elderflowers, keeping the stem free from batter. This will be your handle when you are eating.

Fry the heads, flower side down in the hot oil until the batter is crisp and bubbled. You may need to do this in batches so as not to crowd the pan.

Remove from the pan, giving a small shake as you go and drop onto the sugar. Place on the warm plate while the rest cook. Eat by using your teeth to pull away the batter and flowers from the stem.

See you again next year pretty flowers, heralds of summer.