Thursday, June 26, 2014

Recipe - Coconut Gooseberry Crumble (gluten and dairy free)


500g Gooseberries
90g Raw Cane Sugar
2 tbsp water

100g dessicated coconut
75g brown rice flour
85g coconut oil
75g coconut sugar 

Top and tail the gooseberries.  Put them into a good sized oven-proof dish, sprinkle over the raw can sugar, and add the water. 

Put the other ingredients into a food processor and whizz until the texture of breadcrumbs. Alternatively you can mix together in a bowl using a knife to 'cut' the fat into the other ingredients. Sprinkle the crumble topping on and cook at 180 degrees C (170 for a fan oven), gas mark 4 for 45-50 minutes.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

June in the Garden - Gathering Gooseberries and feeding with Nettle Stew

Gathering Gooseberries

We put a very small gooseberry bush in last year and it is putting down runners and spreading quite well. It has been attacked by aphids, and got at by snails, so not had the best year.  But it has given us a crop which has more than covered the outlay of buying the bush.  I have been sending hubby out on an evening to catch the snails, and surrounding my plants with crushed eggshells, which does seem to be deterring them at last.  I continued to spray the aphids with soapnut liquid which seemed to keep them down a bit.  Then I started spotting ladybirds - the aphids' natural predator - and the aphid population very quickly declined.  (See my post from last month regarding the soapnuts - May in the Garden - Apple blossom, Aphids, and soapnuts )

Now into the kitchen to use those gooseberries - see my recipe here Coconut gooseberry crumble - gluten and dairy free

Earthing up Potatoes

I have only planted a few potatoes as myself and daughter cannot eat them - so these are for the boys. Due to health problems, and a long wet spring, I haven't been looking after them at all really. Earthing up - drawing soil up around the stems to encourage them to grow more underground stems and therefore more spuds should have been done some time ago and repeated by now. Ah well I gave it a bit of a go today and will see how they do.

Weed and Feed - Nettle Stew.

Apart from that it's been a case of weeding - lots of weeding. The wet weather has certainly agreed with the weeds.

 And feeding. Nettle leaves make for an excellent liquid fertiliser.  The nettle leaves need to be chopped up. If you have a lot, you can lay them out on the grass and run over them with a mower to do it.  You need to put them in  a large bucket or similar container and cover them with water and let them 'stew' for 3 or 4 weeks. Then you can add the liquid (which may be a tad smelly but the plants will love it) to water - about 1 part nettle stew to 10 parts water and use to feed your plants. Much cheaper than buying liquid fertiliser and 100% organic. You can achieve similar results using comfrey leaves and / or seaweed.  With any of your 'stews' you can keep adding more leaves and water to the brew once you have got it started.

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Gluten and dairy free Yorkshire Puddings

Being gluten and dairy free can't keep a Yorkshire woman away from her Yorkshire puds.  Although I like to have a healthy diet, there's got to be room in my life for treats and tradition - good for the soul.

I promise you these do rise and come pretty close to normal Yorkshires.


1/3 cup cornflour
1/3 cup brown rice flour
2 medium eggs
2 floz coconut milk (the sort you buy in a 1 litre carton)
salt and pepper

Preheat the oven to 220 Celsius/gas mark 7.

Sieve the flours into a jug and season.  Add the eggs and milk and whisk vigorously to make a smooth batter.

Pour a little vegetable oil into the bottom of your tin/s - I use a six hole muffin tin.  Pop in the oven until the tins are piping hot. Then take them out and quickly pour your batter in. Return to the oven and cook for 15 mins or until well risen and golden. Don't open the oven door while they are cooking.

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Eddoes - an alternative to potatoes

My daughter and I are both intolerant to potatoes so we have been trying out some alternatives

This week we decided to try Eddoes, as they have them in Tesco quite often now.

They look like this:

To prepare them you need to boil them for about five mintues then let them cool before peeling them. I leave them on a sheet of kitchen roll as they can go a bit slimy if they don't dry out as they cool.  Once peeled you can treat them like potatoes. I tried them roasted first. They roasted a little bit quicker than potatoes, though they don't go quite the same colour as they are more a pure white to start with. They taste quite a lot like potato, but a rather waxy variety, so I decided that they were actually better mashed or boiled. My daughter however thought they were really good roasted.