Category: Baking.

Bananas and I have reached a sort of impasse. I’ve talked before about how they are genuinely gross and I hate them…however I can stomach them baked and blended into things like pancakes, smoothies and banana bread.

Banana bread is the bomb. However, last time I made it it ended up getting all stuck in the tin and I was eating chunks of it out of there with my hands like a cave person. I wanted to make it again but in an easier and less messy way – in comes my mini muffin tray! Mini food is the best.

I’ll be eating these for breakfast a lot I reckon. Of course if you don’t own a mini muffin tin you can use a normal one – just adjust the cooking time accordingly.

This recipe makes approximately 36 mini muffins.

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 large ripe banana, mashed
  • 1/2 cup soft light brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup soy milk mixed with 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 flax egg (1 tbsp ground flax mixed with 2 tbsp water)
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil or other light tasting oil
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 cups plain flour
  • 1/4 cup oats
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt

  1. Preheat the oven to 180c/350f. If your muffin tray is not non-stick, line it with mini muffin paper cases.
  2. Prepare the flax egg, mix the ground flax with the water and set aside for at least 5 minutes.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer add the mashed banana and brown sugar and mix on low until combined.
  4. In a large jug add the soy milk mixed with the apple cider vinegar, oil and vanilla extract. Whisk together and set aside.
  5. In another bowl sift together the flour, oats, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Pour the dry ingredients into the mixer, mixing on low until incorporated. It will form a soft dough.
  6. Pour in the wet ingredients and the flax egg, beating on medium until the mixture resembles a batter.
  7. Carefully spoon a teaspoon of batter into each muffin case until all are filled. Tap the tray on the counter a few times.
  8. Bake in the oven for 8 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean.
  9. Leave the muffins to cool in the pan for 5 minutes then carefully remove them from the pan to cool on a wire wrack.
  10. Repeat for the rest of the batter.
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It’s nearly Christmas!! Meaning I’ve basically had time to do nothing. I really wanted to make some vegan gingerbread this year and I finally found some time to do it. I was a bit wary because this was my first time baking anything in our new oven – our old oven sadly died a couple of weeks ago (we had it for 20 years and it was here when we moved in!). The new oven is all in centigrade and has a fan so everything cooks a lot quicker.

These turned out great however! I’ve used wholegrain spelt flour because I wanted a deeper darker cookie but if you want to you can use regular flour. If you want to use these cookies as christmas tree decorations make a small hole in the dough before baking – then thread through some ribbon after they are chilled.

INGREDIENTS

Recipe adapted and veganised from here

  • 400g  wholegrain spelt flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  • 125g vegan butter
  • 175g soft brown sugar
  • 3 tbsp aquafaba
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup
  • 2 tbsp golden syrup

  1. Preheat your oven to 350f/180c. Line two baking trays with parchment paper or silpat mats and set aside.
  2. In a large bowl sift together the flour, baking soda, salt, ground ginger, cinnamon and cloves. Set aside.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer add the butter and brown sugar. Beat on medium to cream together. Drizzle in the golden syrup and maple syrup. Add the aquafaba until everything is well mixed
  4. Slowly add the flour mixture bit by bit until the mixture comes together in a dough.
  5. Tip the dough out onto some clingfilm and knead lightly for about 3 minutes. It will be sticky – kneading it in the clingfilm will help reduce some mess!
  6. Wrap the dough up in the clingfilm and leave it in the freezer to chill for 1 hour.
  7. Remove the dough from the freezer. Tip it out onto a well floured work surface. Using a floured rolling pin roll the dough out thinly, to around 1cm thick. Use cookie cutters to cut out your desired shapes until all the dough is used up. I used a mixture of star shapes, christmas tree and holly leaf cutters.
  8. Carefully place the cookies onto the prepared baking trays – making sure to leave a good distance between them as they will expand outwards when cooking.
  9. Bake the cookies in the oven for 12 minutes or until golden brown.
  10. Leave the cookies to cool on the parchment before peeling off and dusting with icing sugar.

 

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It’s Thanksgiving on Thursday! So it’s prime pumpkin pie time. Now that I’m pretty much half American it’s time to make my own. I never made one of these pre-vegan so I had to come up with a way to make the same eggy custard that the “normal” pumpkin pie has.

It was pretty much the worst day ever weather wise when I took these photos so it’s a really moody looking pumpkin pie!

I’m using my aquafaba sweet pastry from my cherry pie that I made back in the summer.

This recipe makes one 9 inch round and 2 inch deep pie. I use this dish from Le Creuset. The pie needs to cool completely before serving because of it’s custard like nature. Serve it cold with coconut whip or soya cream! It’s also yummy with a little bit of coconut sugar sprinkled on top.

INGREDIENTS

For the pastry

  • 8oz plain flour
  • 4oz vegan butter
  • 2oz aquafaba
  • 1oz caster sugar

For the pumpkin pie filling

  • 1 cup raw cashews, soaked for at least 8 hours
  • 1 can pumpkin puree
  • 3/4 cup coconut milk
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 3/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp arrowroot powder

  1. Start by making the pastry. Add the flour and butter to a bowl and either using your hands or the dough hook on a stand mixer, rub the butter into the flour until the mixture resembles a coarse sand. Stir in the sugar. Make a well in the centre of the mixture and add the aquafaba. Mix well with a wooden spoon or beat with the dough hook until the mixture comes together in a dough. Either continue beating with the dough hook for another 3-4 minutes until smooth or tip out onto a well floured work surface and knead until smooth – about 5 minutes.
  2. Wrap the pastry in clingfilm and place in the fridge for at least 1 hour, preferably 2.
  3. Preheat the oven to 350f. Whilst the pastry is chilling, make the pumpkin pie filling. Drain and rinse the cashews and add to a blender with the 3/4 cup coconut milk. Blend on high until smooth, scraping down the sides as necessary.
  4. Add the pumpkin puree, water, maple syrup, pumpkin pie spice, salt and arrowroot. Blend again until everything is well incorporated. Set aside.
  5. Remove the pastry from the fridge. Tip out onto a well floured work surface and using a floured rolling pin, roll it out into a 10-11 inch diameter circle. Using the rolling pin to help, carefully lay the pastry over the pie dish, letting the excess hang over the sides.
  6. Carefully press the pastry into the bottom of the dish. Prick the bottom of the pie dish all over with a fork – paying particular attention to the areas near the sides of the pie crust.
  7. Fold the pastry over the edges of the pie dish and cut away any excess pastry. Carefully press the pastry onto the sides of the dish – here you can add a fluted pattern to the edges if you like. Any excess pastry can be frozen or used as decoration!
  8. Line the pastry with a piece of parchment paper and fill it with baking beans – making sure to push them right to the edges to support the pastry. Bake the pie crust in the oven for 10 minutes, then rotate and bake for a further 5 minutes. Remove the parchment paper and baking beans then bake for an additional 5 minutes to crisp up the bottom.
  9. Remove the pie crust from the oven and pour in the pie filling, using a spatula to smooth it out.
  10. Bake the pie in the oven for 20 minutes, then rotate and bake for another 20 minutes. The top should have formed a crust and have a golden brown appearance. It will still have a bit of a jiggle to it but should not be completely liquid in the middle. If the middle seems too wet still, move the pie to the bottom shelf and lay a piece of parchment paper on the shelf above – this will stop the pie from catching too much and bake for additional 5-10 minutes.
  11. Remove the pie from the oven and leave to cool completely before placing in the fridge. The pie may crack as it cools – this is purely cosmetic and it tastes fine!

 

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One of the Le Creuset pans I received was a Madeleine pan. It’s the kind of baking pan I’ve always wanted to own but never really felt justified in buying. I mean, a pan that you only use for one thing? But now I have one!

I’m using orange extract here but feel free to sub it for fresh orange juice if you can’t find it although you may not get as an intense orange flavour.

This recipe makes approximately 24 madeleines.

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 cup plain flour
  • 2/3 cups cane sugar
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp fine sea salt
  • 6 tbsp aquafaba (liquid drained from a can of chickpeas)
  • 150ml/2/3 cup melted vegan butter
  • 1/4 tsp orange extract
  • 1/2 tsp orange zest
  • 2-3 tbsp icing sugar

  1. Preheat the oven to 375f/190c.
  2. Melt the butter in a small pan and set aside to cool slightly.
  3. In a large bowl sift together the flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
  4. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, add the aquafaba and sugar. Beat on low for a few minutes until mixed and slightly foamy.
  5. Slowly add the flour mixture whilst beating on medium until well mixed. Slowly drizzle in the melted butter. Add the zest and the orange extract.
  6. Beat until the mixture is smooth and shiny. It will resemble a thick batter.
  7. If your pan is not a non-stick pan, butter and flour the madeleine pan and carefully spoon a tablespoon of the mixture into the pan. Bake in the oven for 4 minutes, then rotate and bake for another 4-8 minutes until golden brown. The middle of the madeleine should spring back when touched.
  8. Remove from the oven, leave the pan to cool for 2 minutes. Carefully remove the madeleines from the pan. Cool the madeleines with the flat side on a wire wrack.
  9. Repeat the baking process with any leftover batter.
  10. Once cooled, dust the madeleines with a little icing sugar.
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It’s PUMPKIN TIME!

Now that I’m one half of a UK-US power couple I figured it was time to bring out the big guns. I definitely bought 4 cans of pumpkin this week.

These are overnight cinnamon rolls, meaning you mix up the dough the night before and leave it to rise in the fridge over night. In the morning, with a little bit of time and patience you can have fresh cinnamon rolls which is perfect for lazy people like me.

INGREDIENTS

For the cinnamon roll dough

  • 3 tbsp vegan butter (I use Pure or Earth Balance)
  • 170ml unsweetened almond milk
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3 tbsp caster sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
  • 340g self raising flour
  • 2 1/4 tsp dried active yeast

For the filling

  • 3 tbsp softened vegan butter
  • 3 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon

For the cashew frosting

  • 1/2 cup cashews, soaked 1 hour in boiling water
  • 1/2 cup icing sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 140-150ml  almond milk

  1. The night before you wish to eat the cinnamon rolls begin the dough. In a small pan on a low heat melt the butter. Add the sugar and stir until dissolved. Set aside to cool.
  2. Add the flour, salt and yeast to a big bowl and mix well. In a jug add the cooled butter mixture, pumpkin puree, vanilla and almond milk. Whisk until well combined.
  3. Make a well in the flour, add the pumpkin mixture and mix using a wooden spoon. The dough will be sticky.
  4. Once the dough has come together, tip onto a well floured surface and knead for 5 minutes until smooth.
  5. Return the dough to the bowl and cover with cling film. Leave in the fridge over night.
  6. The next morning lightly flour your work surface and remove the dough from the fridge. It should have doubled in size. Using your fingers punch the dough down to remove the air.
  7. Roll the dough out into an approximately 18 inch rectangle. Spread the butter over the dough making sure to reach the edges. Mix the cinnamon and sugar together and sprinkle it evenly over the butter.
  8. Starting from one end, roll the dough up into a large sausage shape. Using a sharp knife cut the dough into 1 inch sections. Repeat until you have used all the dough.
  9. Grease a baking dish and arrange the rolls so that they are touching. Cover the rolls with a dish cloth and leave for 1 hour to rise.
  10. Whilst the rolls are rising preheat the oven to 350f/180c. Prepare the glaze, drain the cashews. Rinse them and add them to the blender. Blend on high until smooth. Add the sugar and vanilla. Slowly add the almond milk until the frosting is smooth.
  11. Scrape out the frosting into a container and refrigerate until time to use.
  12. Bake the cinnamon rolls for 20 minutes or until golden brown. Pour over the cashew glaze!
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Ever since I made the meringues with chickpea brine I’ve been wanting to experiment with different sugars. I’m not anti-sugar in the slightest but I felt like the taste of the meringues could be improved by the flavour of the sweetener. I’m a huge fan of maple syrup so I wanted to see if it would work in place of the icing sugar! It does!

I’ve dipped these in chocolate – the caramelised maple meringue and the dark chocolate reminds me a lot of Cadbury’s Crunchy Bars – minus the dairy.

INGREDIENTS

For the maple meringues

  • Chickpea brine drained from 1 can of chickpeas – approximately 1 cup of liquid
  • 3/4 Grade B Maple Syrup
  • 1 tsp vanilla bean paste
  • 1/4 tsp cream of tartar

For the chocolate dipping

  • 50g dark chocolate (70%)
  • 1 tsp coconut oil

  1. Preheat the oven to 200f. Line two baking trays with parchment paper or silpat mats.  First reduce the chickpea brine. Pour it into a saucepan and boil for 2-3 minutes until reduced 2/3 of a cup. Set aside to cool for at least ten minutes.
  2. Once the brine is cool, add it to the stand mixer and beat on high until foamy. Once soft peaks form, add the cream of tartar. Beat for 3 minutes.
  3. Start adding the maple syrup in 1/4 cup increments, pouring slowly and beating until fully incorporated. The meringue will form stiff peaks.
  4. Beat in the vanilla bean paste. Spoon the mixture into a piping bag and pipe the meringue into medium sized rounds.
  5. Repeat until there is no more space on the trays. Bake the meringues in the oven for 2 hours.
  6. Remove the trays from the oven and allow the meringues to cool for 20 minutes.
  7. Whilst the meringues are cooling, prepare the chocolate dip. In a heat proof bowl over a pan of boiling water, melt the chocolate and coconut oil, stirring to incorporate.
  8. Once the meringues are cooled, carefully peel them off the paper and dip half of each into the chocolate mixture.
  9. Store in an airtight container in the fridge.

I had some extra meringue mixture leftover so I mixed it up with some raw cacao powder and drizzled through some of the chocolate dip and froze it! Chocolate ice cream! 

 

 

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Ever since the dawn of aquafaba I’ve been thinking of other ways to use it as an egg replacer. I’ve used it to make meringue and to give body to ice cream without using an ice cream maker.

Here I’m using it to make a simple sweet pastry (one used by my grandma) without the need to use any expensive exotic ingredients. Obviously, the pie is filled with cherries because there’s a damn fine crop of cherries popping up this year!

A tragedy befell us in the kitchen. My beloved Salter digital scales got water in them and died! So I’ve gone back to the old school with this recipe and measured them using my great-grandma’s weighted scales which are in ounces. I’ve done my best to convert to grams but be aware!

INGREDIENTS

  • 8oz/226g plain flour
  • 4oz/113 fat (I used a half/half ratio of vegan butter to vegetable fat)
  • 2oz/56g aquafaba (liquid drained from a can of chickpeas) + more for brushing
  • 1oz/28g caster sugar
  • 300g cherries, pitted
  • 2 tbsp caster sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract

  1. Preheat the oven to 350f. Get a 7 inch pie dish ready.
  2. Start by making the pastry. In a large mixing bowl add the flour and fat. Using your hands rub the fat through the flour until the mixture resembles a coarse sand.
  3. Stir in the sugar. Make a well in the middle of the flour then add the aquafaba, using a wooden spoon to mix it all together.
  4. Lightly flour your kitchen surface, then plop the dough out of the bowl. Knead lightly for around 5 minutes until the pastry is smooth. Roll into a ball and place in a ziplock bag. Chill the pastry in the fridge for at least 1 hour.
  5. Whilst the pastry is chilling, start on the cherry filling. Pit the cherries – I find the easiest way is to use an empty wine bottle and a chopstick. Place 1 cherry in the opening of the wine bottle and use the sharp end of the chopstick to push out the pit.
  6. Once all the cherries are pitted add them to a saucepan with the 2 tablespoons of sugar and vanilla extract. Cook on a medium-low heat until the juices run out and the fruit is soft. Set aside to cool.
  7. Divide the pastry into two equal parts.Flour your surface and roll out one piece of pastry into an 8 inch circle and carefully lay it over the pie dish.
  8. Using your fingers press the pastry into the dish. Cut away the excess pastry. Scoop out the cherries using a slotted spoon, making sure not too take too much of the juice, into the pie casing.
  9. Roll out your second piece of dough and carefully lay it over the top of the pie. Using your thumb press all the way around the edge of the dish to seal the pastry. Cut away the excess pastry.Then using your finger, press the thumb sealed part inwards to make a little flute.
  10. If you want to, you can use your excess pastry to make a little decoration! Cut two slits in the top of the pie crust then brush it with a little aquafaba.
  11. Bake the pie in the oven for 25 minutes  or until golden brown, rotating half way.

 

 

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I don’t eat gluten-free very often. I happen to be quite a big fan of it (hello seitan) but I understand that it can make some people pretty ill!

These breakfast cookies take about 20 minutes to make. Sweetened with maple syrup and golden raisins! Because of the quinoa flour these cookies have the bonus of having protein – so you can shove one of these cookies in the mouth of the next person that asks you where you get your protein from!

(The beautiful walnut scoop and pinch pot I’m using in these photos is from Luke of Hope in the Woods)

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 cup Quinoa flour
  • 1/2 cup Gluten-free oats
  • 1/2 cup Grade B Maple syrup
  • 1/3 cup Coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup Almond butter
  • 1/4 tsp Cinnamon
  • 2 tsp Vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp Sea salt
  • 1/4 cup Golden Raisins

  1. Preheat the oven to 350f. In a saucepan add the coconut oil, almond butter, maple syrup, cinnamon, salt and vanilla. Heat on a medium heat until all the ingredients are melted together. Whisk until smooth.
  2. In a bowl add the quinoa flour and oats. Pour in the melted mixture and stir together. Add the golden raisins and mix to combine.
  3. Scoop out  two teaspoon amounts of mixture and roll into a ball using your hands. Place on a silpat or baking parchment lined tray and then press them down using a fork.
  4. Bake the cookies for 12-15 minutes, rotating half way until they are golden and firm to the touch.
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It was National Donut Day recently and god knows I really wanted to get my donut on but I had already had my day off so there was no time to make anything! Maybe one day I’ll have one of those schedules where I can blog as much as I like!

So basically I’ve thought about donuts for a solid week. I brought back some Grade B maple syrup from America in May and my husband has been egging me on to use it for a long while now. So these are some transatlantic fancy pants donuts.

INGREDIENTS

For the donut dough

  • 3 tbsp coconut oil
  • 170ml  unsweetened almond milk
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3 tbsp caster sugar
  • 2 vanilla bean pods, split and seeds scraped out
  • 340g self raising flour
  • 2¼ tsp dried active yeast
  • Vegetable oil or neutral tasting oil to fry

For the maple glaze

  • 1/4 cup Grade B Maple syrup
  • 3/4 cup icing sugar
  • 1 tbsp almond milk

  1. In a saucepan over a low heat melt the coconut oil and add the sugar, salt, scraped vanilla beans and almond milk. Set aside to cool slightly.
  2. In a bowl add the flour and yeast. Pour in the slightly cooled coconut oil mixture. Using your hands, mix into a shaggy dough.
  3. Tip the dough onto a floured surface and knead for 5 to 10 minutes until smooth and glossy.
  4. Clean the bowl then return the dough to the bowl and cover with a damp tea towel. Leave to rise until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
  5. After the dough has risen, punch it down using your finger tips then roll out to about 2cm thick.
  6. Using a 4cm round cutter, cut out circle shapes until all the dough is used up. Using a smaller cutter cut holes into the middle of each donut.
  7. Place the donuts and donut holes on a baking sheet, put the baking sheet into a plastic bag and then leave to rise for another hour.
  8. Whilst the dough is rising prepare the maple glaze. Mix the maple syrup and the icing sugar together, adding almond milk to thin. Set aside.
  9. Once the dough is risen, add the oil to a large saucepan or dutch oven and heat it to 160c.
  10. Drop the donuts into the oil one at a time, don’t crowd them. Fry for 3-4 minutes each side until golden brown.
  11. Scoop the donuts out of the oil onto a wire rack to drain. Once all the donuts are fried, turn them upside down and dip them into the glaze. Leave to dry for about 2 minutes and then dip once more into the glaze.
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A little treat I made on a Sunday afternoon.

INGREDIENTS
Adapted and veganised from Short and Sweet by Dan Lepard

  • 250g wholewheat spelt flour
  • 2 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 3 tbsp soft brown sugar
  • 40g vegan butter, softened
  • 25g strawberries cut into bite size pieces
  • 25g blueberries
  • 50g sultanas
  • 1 flax egg (1 tbsp ground flax mixed with 3 tbsp water)
  • 75ml almond milk
  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tbsp vegan butter, melted

  1. Preheat the oven to 425f. First, prepare the flax egg. Mix the flax seed with the water in a small bowl and set aside for 10 minutes to thicken.
  2. Prepare the vegan buttermilk mixture, in a jug combine the almond milk and vinegar then set aside.
  3. In a bowl sift together the spelt flour, baking soda and sugar. Add in the softened butter. Using your hands, rub the mixture between your fingers until it resembles a fine soil.
  4. Add the flax egg to the almond milk mixture and beat with a fork until fluffy, about 30 seconds. Pour into the flour mixture and mix with a spoon until it comes together.
  5. Tip the dough out onto a floured surface and knead lightly for about 20 seconds. Using a rolling pin, roll out to about 5 cm thick. Cut out approximately 4-5 cm rounds using a pastry cutter or upside down glass.
  6. Place on a non-stick or parchment lined baking tray making sure the scones are touching each other. Brush with a little vegan butter.
  7. Bake in the oven for 15 minutes, rotating the tray once at 7 minutes. Serve warm with butter or a good jam. Yield: approximately 10 scones.

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