Showing posts with label dairy-free. Show all posts
Showing posts with label dairy-free. Show all posts

Monday, December 20, 2010

Mulled wine granita

One thing I'll miss from living in Europe, is the northern hemisphere Christmas. Wrapped up in your many layers, at Christmas markets outside, holding a steaming, cup of mulled wine .. Awesome! An experience I recommend to everyone!

Still, hardly an experience I can replicate here - Christmas here in Sydney is glorious and hot. We're outside, but holding onto an icy cold drink.

So how to somehow combine the two? Mulled wine granita!!

Monday, April 19, 2010

Crazy/Wacky/Dump Cake

This one's for the allergy crew!

Our family seems to suffer from lots of allergies .. Allergies to eggs and dairy being too common which is unfortunate, as it rules out quite a few sweet things and I am all for the sweet things! Sadly that means less cake for the afflicted - though not necessarily more cake for me.

Since sharing is caring, I went in search for a cake recipe that someone with these allergies could eat and came across the recipe below. Alternately called crazy/wacky/dump cake, this cake was thought to have been developed either around World War I or perhaps the Depression, when households were subject to rationing and ingredients such as eggs and dairy were rare. Not quite sure why the cake is crazy/wacky but dump cake kinda makes sense because mostly the recipes call for the dry ingredients to be 'dumped' and mixed in the tin the cake is supposed to be baked in.

There are lots of versions of this cake on the internet - some have the occasional egg or dairy - but the recipe listed below has neither.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Chiffon cake

Paper wrapped chiffon cakes ... The kind bought from Chinese bakeries .. Light, fluffy and egg-y, they are definitely a childhood favourite! It's been a long held ambition to learn how to make them myself.

After some research on various recipes, most of the Asian sourced recipes include an emulsifier common to households in Asia, but not readily available here. I'm not a fan of adding more chemicals than necessary to my food, and as it was so common in all these recipes, I thought my ambition to make my own paper chiffon cakes had come to end. Luckily, I am also obsessed with all sorts of French baked goodies and I came across a French food blogger who had a chiffon cake recipe that is free of unrecognisable ingredients - just what I was after!

Ingredients I used:
  • 130g plain flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 6 large barn laid eggs, separated (from a 700g carton of 12)
  • a pinch of salt
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • 11 tablespoons of granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup of water
  • 1/3 cup of extra virgin olive oil
  • Line 12 waxed paper cups with baking paper (mine were 280ml cups).
  • Preheat the oven to 170ºC.
  • Sift flour and baking powder into a bowl. (Cos I'm lazy, I didn't do as suggested and sift it 3 times and found it still turns out okay.)
  • In a separate bowl whisk the egg yolks, salt, vanilla extract and 6 tablespoons of sugar until mixture is a pale yellow. Add in oil and water, whisking after each addition.
  • Add the egg mixture to the dry ingredients and whisk til blended.
  • Using my bright-shiny-red Kitchenaid stand mixer (awesome x'mas present - thanks D!), I beat the egg whites til I got soft peaks, then gradually added 5 tablespoons of sugar until I got stiff peaks. To test whether your peaks are stiff, a fun test is to turn the mixing bowl upside down - if they don't move, your egg whites are stiff!
  • Fold a third of the egg whites into the batter to lighten the batter, then fold in the rest of the egg whites.
  • I lined my baking tray with some more baking paper, because previous experience taught me that sometimes the wax from the paper cups melts onto your baking tray and then you have to choose whether to scour your non-stick bakeware or not ... Hmm .. Prevention is always better than cure!
  • Divide the batter evenly between the 12 cups and place on baking tray.
  • Put in the oven to bake for 30 minutes. Try not to open the oven doors whilst baking, because like soufflés, your chiffon cakes can deflate if the oven suddenly cools down early on in the baking process.
  • Once done take them out and turn the cakes on their heads! This is to minimise shrinkage as they cool down.
  • When they're finally cool, they are ready to be enjoyed!
I've been experimenting with flavour - coffee being a family favorite! - and to do this to the recipe is relatively simple. I've substituted the 1/2 cup of water for 1/2 cup of Illy coffee espresso with some additional grounds to give it an extra kick. Green tea is another flavor I'd be keen to try and classic citrus flavors using zest and juice should work too.

As chiffon cake is relatively low-carb (roughly 2-3 cups of carbs yields roughly 12 cups of cake), low fat (no butter and you can choose a low cholesterol vegetable oil) and has no dairy in it (hence it's popularity in Asia), I think it's a healthier alternative to normal sponge cake. Not that I need another excuse to indulge .. :)

Sugar and spice and all things nice,
la chouquette sucrée