Archive | September, 2013

The Mothership’s Lemon Cake with JM’s Lemon Curd

28 Sep


Continuing today’s productivity, and using JM’s delicious lemon curd I am now onto the Mothership’s Lemon Cake! I was about the claim that the recipe is dairy-free, however having just watched JM making the lemon curd, I see that it contains butter, so it IS gluten-free but not dairy-free though I did use dairy-free spread, so the amount of dairy in the cake is minimal.


Mum made this for me for my brother’s birthday, so I know it is a good gluten free cake to make, I think because it is so moist due to the lemon curd there is less of a risk of it all drying out, as some gluten-free cakes do.

This is another very easy cake to bake, an all-in-one recipe (you may have started to notice these are my speciality… I am not a fan of overcomplicating things, or washing up!). I think it’s probably the first cake I ever made, and it is oh, so tasty!



7.5oz x gluten free self raising flour

51/4oz x caster sugar

1/2 tsp xanthan gum

4 x medium eggs

6oz dairy free margarine

4 tbsp lemon curd

grated rind of one lemon


juice of 1 lemon

2 tbsp caster sugar



  • Preheat the oven to 160 degrees C
  • Add all of the cake ingredients to a bowl
  • Mix all the ingredients together until a smooth batter forms – make sure you beat in a lot of air
  • Pour mixture into one or two greased and lined cake tins
  • Bake in a pre-heated oven at 160 degrees for 40 minutes
  • Once removed from the oven, mix the sugar and lemon juice together and pour over the top of the cake.
  • Wait until the cake has cooled before removing from the tin.

It’s great with a cup of Earl Grey tea!




slow cooked FODMAP-Friendly Chilli

28 Sep


We’re having a very productive day over here in the FOD-a-licious kitchen. JM is beavering away making some lemon curd which, once done, I am going to use to make a GF version of the Mothership’s Lemon cake which she made me a few weeks ago! Very excited about that! While she’s doing that, I have just popped a FODMAP-friendly chilli in the slow cooker to have with some jacket potatoes for dinner. Perfect on a rainy Saturday!

This is a great slow cooker, one pot, pop it on in the morning when I go to work meal. And it could not be more perfect that on a miserable winter’s evening. Warming and satisfying! I cook it in my slow cooker but it can be cooked in a pan if you prefer. I have tried my best not to over-spice it, but I guess we’ll only know when we try it! I m looking forward to having this on a steamy jacket potato this evening! This is another one where I chop and change the spices or vegetables depending on the contents of my fridge. So I have added some additions if you fancy making any changes.


1 x bunch of spring onions (green part only, chopped)

2 x peppers, mixed colours (chopped)

1/2 x courgette (chopped)

3 x tomatoes

1 x tin tomatoes

1/2 fresh chilli

400g x lean beef mince

1 tbsp tomato puree

1 tsp dried chilli flakes

1 tsp dried coriander

small bunch fresh coriander (if available)

Other Ingredients (that I sometimes add)


Butternut squash


You can also use chilli powder/dried chillies if you don’t have any fresh

glug of red wine


If you are using a slow cooker

  • … it really is as simple as cutting up all the ingredients, putting them all in the pot, giving it all a good stir, turning it on and leaving it for about 5 hours on a medium heat and giving it the occasional stir!

Some slow cooker advice – I made the error the first time I made chilli of adding extra liquid to the slow cooker pot thinking that it would evaporate – it doesn’t!! It resulted in a very liquid chilli, effectively a soup – it still tasted nice, but it did not go well with a jacket potato! Also the spice can sometimes cook out, so give it a try a couple of times just to see how it is getting on.

If you are cooking it on the hob

  • Brown the mince in a pan
  • add the chilli and spices to the meat
  • add the vegetables and stir
  • add the tomato puree and tin of chopped tomatoes
  • give it a good stir and leave to cook for a minimum of 30 minutes, though with chilli I think the longer you cook it the better!



Pesto, bacon, Feta FODMAP Frittata

28 Sep


So on Thursday I was due to meet my friend for dinner, we’d planned to go to Pizza Express so I hardly ate all day in preparation and was really looking forward to another one of their GF pizzas. I was also STARVING! When I met her, she then told me she wasn’t feeling well and suggested we went for a cuppa instead. So we had a cuppa and a chat which was lovely, but by the time I made it home at 9 I was so, so, hungry! I had to whip something up from whatever I had in the fridge, and came up with a frittata! I had never made one before, but for a while I had been thinking it would be a great FODMAP-friendly option. Having never made one before I had a quick look online and found this recipe for an “as-you-like-it tortilla” which is perfect – it basically says, use whatever you’ve got! It did give me the idea of adding pesto to the egg mix which I wouldn’t have thought of otherwise!

Frittata’s are also a great next day lunch option, or as a snack at parties or last minute dinner! I made a fairly small one had half for my dinner and half for lunch at work the next day. So the measurements below are for a frittata for two, but you can obviously add more depending on your numbers.


4 x eggs

1 x spoonful of pesto

3 x smoked bacon rashers chopped

1 x spring onion (green part only)

60g x feta

1/2 x courgette

chopped potato (if you have some cooked, great, if not cook as you go, like I did!)

salt and pepper to taste


  • Beat the eggs together with the pesto
  • Add the chopped bacon (and potato, finely sliced, if uncooked) to a frying pan and cook for about 5 mins until it has a bit of colour. I don’t use oil when cooking bacon, but if you do, add some to the pan before cooking the bacon and potatoes.
  •  Add sliced courgette and spring onion and cook for a further 2 minutes.
  • Remove half of the mix from the pan and add half the feta
  • Pour in the pesto egg mixture and place the ingredients removed from the pan and the remaining feta on top
  • Cook on the hob until its cooked about three quarters through
  • Place under the grill until fully set and slightly browned on top
  • Serve!


Fish Pie – the ultimate in comfort food!

23 Sep


Fish Pie – great comfort food when the weather is starting to change, it’s getting a bit cold out and you just want to snuggle up. It is also very easy – my kind of food. This one, best of all, is Gluten- and lactose-free. It is not 100% FODMAP-free I am afraid, as the gluten-free parsley sauce I used did contain a bit of dried onion powder, but thankfully not enough to have an effect on us, so hopefully that will be the same for you! I was delighted to find gluten- and dairy-free sauces in asda recently and best of all they taste great and save a lot of time, and eliminate the risk of lumpy sauce!


Obviously if you are OK with lactose you can just use normal milk, butter and cheese and if not, the lactose free versions work perfectly -this is what I used (apart from a bit of double gloucester on the top at the end…)


  • 700g mixed fish pieces – you could either use a couple of the fish pie mixes available in most supermarkets or pick out a selection of your favourite fish
  • 1/2-3/4 pint of milk – soya, rice or “normal” milk will all work
  • 1 pack of gluten- and lactose- free cheese or parsley sauce mix (I used parsley for a change)
  • Spring onions (green part only)
  • 1 tin of sweetcorn
  • 4 large potatoes (I used a mix of sweet and normal potatoes)
  • Butter or lactose free spread to mash
  • Lactose-free or normal cheese


  • Chop potatoes and put onto the boil for approx. 15 mins or until soft
  • While potatoes are boiling place the fish in a saucepan, cover with milk and bring to the boil.
  • Add spring onions and cook for 5 mins for fresh fish/10 mins for frozen fish (or check cooking instructions)
  • Place sweetcorn in a casserole/oven proof dish and add the cooked fish and spring onions – drain the milk into a jug – you’ll need it for the sauce!
  • Pour the milk back into a saucepan and add the cheese or parsley sauce mix (or make it from scratch if you are better at it than me!!) stir until thick and pour over the fish and sweetcorn
  • drain and mash the potatoes with a little butter/dariy-free spread and milk
  • Spread the mashed potato over the fish mix and pop in the oven for approx 20 mins. I always have to pop a baking sheet under my casserole dish as 9 times out of 10 the sauce bubbles away (as it should) but then also bubbles over the edge of the dish and cleaning that off of the oven is not my idea of fun!!
  • If you want to add cheese sprinkle over the top and pop under the grill for 5 minutes until bubbling
  • Enjoy!




Scot’s Tablet

18 Sep


How to describe Scot’s tablet to someone that’s never had it? Well, it’s kind of like fudge but with a more crumbly texture. In fact the first time I ever made it was when I was attempting to make fudge with my dad but we could not get the mixture to a high enough temperature, so out came Tablet. You don’t need a sugar thermometer or anything for this, you can basically do it all by eye.

I have made this five times now, three times it has worked well, once it was a disaster and the fifth – well, time will tell!

If you do not cook it long enough and it doesn’t set, it’s all over I am afraid, you do have to throw it away and start again. Following time number 3 which was a disaster, I tried all remedies I could find online and NOTHING works. Certainly not putting it in the freezer, this just appeared to freeze the bits that were still liquid, cause it to separate from the sugar and then when it comes out of the freezer (or if you accidentally leave it at a slight angle) it goes everywhere. I had to take everything out of the freezer and clean it – it was not a fun afternoon, and there wasn’t even any tablet to cheer me up!

I have been off work with the cold today, so thought Scot’s tablet may be just the remedy I need!

Two things to remember:

  • Sugar is hot and sticky when it boils, so as tempting as it looks, keep your fingers away! Especially as if you do touch it and it is hot, your natural reaction is to stick your finger in your mouth – double burns! Very unpleasant, and yes, I have done this, every time I have made tablet!
  • You will need a big pan – the mixture pretty much triples in size when boiling! I used a wok for my first attempt and it was pretty successful though involved a lot of stirring!

I have looked at and trialled a number of recipes but the one that I have had the most success with is Scruss’s.

JM likes to think it’s FODMAP-free but I guess that depends on your ability to tolerate lactose, and I have no idea of the types if sugars and how that relates. All I know is it tastes amazing and JM and I can both tolerate A LOT of this.



1kg caster sugar
1 tin (405g) condensed milk
100g butter
Fresh milk (enough to damp sugar – approx 1/4 pint)



  • I repeat myself, but make sure you have a BIG pan! The last thing you want is boiling hot sugar boiling over the pan!
  • Add the sugar to the pan, and wet with milk, I used about 1/4 pint, maybe a little more, just to make sure it is all wet – this will stop it burning.
  • Add the butter and condensed milk
  • Put on a medium heat, when the butter is melted pop a dollop on a plate or spoon rest – this will help you to see the difference in colour as sometimes it can be a little difficult noticing the subtle changes.


  • Mix the mixture continuously until it boils


  • Once boiling turn the heat down low – it will continue to bubble at the same level. The mixture takes about 20 minutes until it is ready, make sure you stir it every few minutes and keep an eye on the colour (and how close to the top of the pan the boiling sugar is getting!)
  • You’ll notice the colour of the mixture will darken over time – the below two images are two different mixes, they both worked well and set, but the second one was cooked slightly longer.


  • you can keep an eye on the colour by comparing it to the original mix on your plate


  • After the 20 minutes grab a tea spoon and pour a little of the mixture into a glass of cold water, if it sets you are ready. I think you are maybe meant to dunk the whole spoon in, but I find if you pour it and it sets you can eat it, whereas if it is a blob on spoon it is still boiling and you will burn your mouth!


  • Next comes the hard bit, take the pan off the heat and mix the mixture with a wooden spoon – vigorously for about 10 minutes.  As you are doing this, a the sugar will start to set on the edges of the pan, so scrape that off and combine it into the mixture as you are going. You’ll notice that the mixture starts to set slightly, you’ll see the mixture holding the ripples from your stirring slightly, when this happens, you’ll know it is ready!


  • It’s always quite nice to see the ripples as you pour. Again these are two different mixes – the second being cooked slightly longer.


I wonder if it is set yet…. mmm

The Mothership’s Banana Bread

13 Sep


On this rather miserable, damp Friday, feeling inspired by the latest series of Great British Bake Off and spotting some rather brown bananas in our fruit bowl, I decided the best way forward this evening was to de-gluten and de-dairy my mum’s banana bread. I also have a huge cupboard full of baking materials which I haven’t made the most of since starting the FODMAP diet – 20130913-192112.jpgSo here goes…

This time, as I intended to do when making the Nutella Cookies, I have provided the weights of the ingredients as well as the “cup” measurements.



  • 1/3 cup (80g) Butter/Margerine/dairy free alternative (I used a free-from spread)
  • 2/3 cup (130g) sugar
  • 2 x eggs
  • 1 1/4 cup (150g) flour
  • 2tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp xanthan gum (I found this in Asda, and was always a little unsure of the difference it would make, but I think it is great and would definitely recommend the purchase of this for any gf baking)
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1tsp vanilla essence
  • I cup (I forgot to weigh this, as I go for my mum’s advice which is “approx. 4”)



  • Preheat oven to 180
  • Butter and line loaf tin (if you don’t have a loaf tin, it would work in a normal cake tin, but you may have to adjust times slightly). I like to line my tin in a “rustic” manner (read, too lazy to find scissors and cut properly).
  • Cream butter and sugar together until light and fluffy
  • Beat in the eggs one at a time
  • Add the vanilla essence and give it a mix
  • Add all of the dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, xanthan gum, salt) and mix well


  • Mash the banana in a separate bowl – you don’t want them to be too finely mashed, as I personally think it’s quite nice to have some bigger chunks of banana in there


  • Mix the mashed banana into the other ingredients
  • Pour mixture into the loaf tin and pop in the oven


  • Cook for approx. 45 mins in a fan oven/ 1 hour in a non-fan. If you have gone for a different tin, you may have to reduce the time a little


  • I checked mine was cooked with a skewer stuck into the middle, one thing to remember – as it has banana in it – it won’t be as dry as a normal cake so if you get a little bit of banana consistency on an otherwise dry skewer it’s probably done.
  • Voila! Leave to cool on a wire rack and enjoy!

As I was making this I decided to sprinkle a little brown sugar on top, to make it a bit “prettier” (which I confess, has not really worked (coarser sugar required!)) but I also thought, some dried bananas on top would look quite nice. Though I didn’t have any of them, so none to see here!

I am so impressed by the amount it has risen (see gluten-free Yorkshire puddings for an example of a semi-rise!) and for the colour – I remember hearing gluten-free foods never brown! There I proved you wrong! (though this, of course, may be down to the flour I used, in that case – thanks Doves Farm!)


If I am going to keep up with this blogging/baking thing, I think I may also have to invest in some prettier mixing bowls!

Gluten free Yorkshire puddings

8 Sep


My family are lovers of Yorkshire puddings! I know, traditionally, Yorkshire puddings should be served with Roast Beef. We have them with ANY roast, and they work with everything! I also am a big fan of Toad in the Hole it’s not something I have made in a long while but it is great comfort food – so I am sure the recipe will be here for you soon, now that Autumn is on its way.

I use soya, or rice milk as I find lactose affects me, and this recipe works well with normal or dairy-free milk.


75g gluten-free flour

25g corn flour

1/2 tsp xanthan gum

1/2 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp salt

1/4 tsp pepper

3 x eggs (2 x whole eggs + 1 additional egg white)

300ml milk

2tbsp oil + extra for oiling tins


  • Heat oven to 220 degrees.
  • Mix together the plain flour, cornflour, baking powder and xanthan gum
  • Add 2 full eggs, plus one egg white and milk
  • Whisk together, either by hand or an electric blender – this is very important to get lots of air into the mix to ensure your Yorkshire puddings rise.
  • Beat in the 2 tbsp oil
  • Add salt and pepper to taste
  • When the oven is hot, add oil to your muffin tin or loaf/cake tin and place in the oven.
  • Once the oil is hot, beat the mixture again, to beat more air into the mixture.
  • Ladle or pour the mixture into the hot tin – be careful of the hot oil – I use a ladle when making individual ones as it is a bit easier to control and you are less likely to get splashed by the hot oil.
  • Bake in the oven – 40-45mins for a large Yorkshire pudding and 25-30mins for individual ones.