Blondies with White Chocolate and Cranberries

Amongst my usual tasting crowd there are a few folk who don’t like dark chocolate. Last week I re-made my Marbled Cheesecake Brownies for them, so this week, I’m using white chocolate.

Adam Byatt’s Cranberry Blondies recipe from the Great British Chefs website was a great starting point; I’ve made them gluten-free and added a few spices and darker sugar.

Makes: up to 30 depending on size
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Toffee and Chocolate Bites

My 24-hole canapé tin gets pulled out whenever I want to do something elegant and special. Some supermarkets offer Toffee Bakewell Tarts and that got me going to develop this recipe.

Gluten-free shortcrust pastry with chocolate ganache and toffee will always be a winner. Garnish with whipped cream for an extra indulgence, although these are mighty rich as-is.

Makes: up to 60 bite-sized canapés (see Kit footnote for larger sizes)
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Nussecken – Nut and Fruit Bars

I recently bought Luisa Weiss’s ‘Classic German Baking’ and wanted to make this very popular German treat. But, I lacked the main ingredient of these hazelnut bars; so I used what I had to hand – pecans. (The original recipe says you could use almonds or walnuts instead of hazelnuts.)

These are the most luxurious and posh gluten-free flapjacks you’ll eat.

Makes: up to 24 bars depending on size
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Marbled Cheesecake Brownies

Since I personally don’t have much of a sweet tooth, I’ve held off on making brownies. But a special occasion crowd requested them, so I turned to Rachel Allen whose recipes always work.

I’ve made them GF, scaled up for a larger tin, and added a hint of coffee, chilli, & spices for a more grown-up brownie, and to modulate the sweetness. The chunkiness of the chocolate makes these quite moreish.

Makes: 30+ depending on size
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Mandarin and Lime Cheesecake

This is an alternate take on my GF Coconut & Cherry Cheesecake, but using sweet tinned mandarins with a hint of sharp lime. There’s also plenty of toasted coconut and white chocolate to make it rich and creamy.

Start the filling the day before serving, to have time to properly chill; bake the crust and assemble the next day.

Serves: 12 – 16
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Polenta and Chocolate Spice Cake

Polenta (fine cornmeal) is wonderful for GF baking. If you prefer chocolate today instead of citrus flavours, this recipe adapted from the ever-delightful Donal Skehan will be perfect for you.

I’ve spiced it up and scaled it up for a larger tin. There are also alternate topping suggestions if you don’t fancy the salted caramel (the photos show cocoa buttercream).

Serves: up to 24 depending on tin
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