Tag Archives: gram/chickpea flour

The ultimate gluten-free & dairy-free chocolate cake


A wickedly indulgent chocolate cake which is light and moist, with a rich, creamy icing.

The secret to the lightness and moistness of this cake is in the method. By using two cake tins, wrapping them in greaseproof paper and baking them for a longer, less heat-intensive time, the flours in the mixture cook through but don’t burn or get too dry on the sides. And I’ve used soya cream to make the icing. It’s worth getting this, even if you have to resort to mail-order, as it will keep in your storecupboard for a long time and makes all the difference to this cake!
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Chocolate and hazelnut brownies


Rich, dark chocolate with crunchy hazelnuts.
You won’t be able to tell these don’t contain gluten or dairy! It’s easy to find dairy-free chocolate – simply look for dark chocolate with a very high percentage of cocoa solids and often these don’t use any dairy products. But do check the ingredients on the packet carefully, as some do. And make sure you get pure vanilla extract, rather than vanilla flavouring.

preparation time 10 minutes cooking 12–15 minutes makes 20

contains: egg

150g dairy-free margarine, plus extra for greasing
200g dairy-free dark chocolate, with at least 70 per cent cocoa solids
200g fruit sugar
2 large eggs, beaten
1 tsp vanilla extract
50g rice flour
25g gram flour
1 tsp gluten-free baking powder
100g chopped hazelnuts
1 Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/Gas 4. Grease a 20 x 30cm baking tin with dairy-free margarine and line the base with non-stick baking parchment.
2 Break the chocolate into small pieces and place in a large heatproof bowl. Rest the bowl over a pan of gently simmering water, making sure that the bottom of the bowl does not touch the water. Stir from time to time until the chocolate has melted. Add the margarine to the bowl and continue stirring occasionally until it is completely melted and mixed in with the chocolate.
3 Remove the bowl from the heat and stir in the sugar, followed by the beaten eggs and vanilla essence. Stir to mix well, then sift the flours and baking powder into the bowl and carefully fold in with a metal spoon, making sure the mixture is thoroughly combined but not stirred too heavily, or the air will be lost. Fold in the nuts.
4 Spoon the mixture into the prepared tin, spreading it evenly into the corners with the back of the spoon. Bake in the hot oven for 12–15 minutes until risen and firm to the touch and a skewer inserted in the centre has just a little mixture sticking to it. Remove from the oven and leave to cool in the tin for 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack and leave to cool completely. Cut into 20 squares.

related ingredients: baking powder, fruit sugar, gram/chickpea flour, olive oil margarine, rice flour

Parma ham and rocket pizza


A deliciously crunchy-base and mouth-watering topping, with shavings of dairy-free cheese on top. The key to this is to sprinkle the d-f cheese over at the very last minute – after you’ve brought the pizza out of the oven – to prevent the d-f cheese becoming gloopy.
preparation time 1 hour 25 minutes cooking 12–15 minutes serves 2

contains: yeast

85g rice flour, plus extra for dusting
85g gram flour
30g maize flour
½ tsp salt
1 tsp easy-blend dried yeast
2 tbsp olive oil
dairy-free margarine, for greasing

4 tbsp passata
1½ tbsp tomato purée
150g nitrate-free Parma ham, thinly sliced
60–100g dairy-free cheese, shaved
a handful rocket

1 Sift the flours and salt into a large mixing bowl. Add the yeast and mix in well. Make a well in the middle and pour in the oil. Gradually work the flour into the oil, using a wooden spoon or your fingertips, until well blended. Pour in 100ml warm water, a little at a time, and continue mixing to form a soft dough.
2 Turn the dough out onto a surface liberally dusted with rice flour and knead thoroughly for about 10 minutes. Place in a clean bowl, cover with a damp cloth and leave at room temperature for 1 hour until doubled in size.
3 Preheat the oven to 220°C/425°F/Gas 7. Grease a baking sheet with dairy-free margarine. Turn the dough out again onto the floured surface and knead for about 4 minutes, then form into a ball. Flatten slightly, roll out into a large circle about 1cm thick and cut with a knife to neaten. Transfer to the prepared baking sheet.
4 Make the topping by mixing together the passata and tomato purée in a bowl. Spread this mixture over the pizza base and top with the ham. Bake in the hot oven for 12–15 minutes until the base is starting to turn brown and the tomato sauce is bubbling. Take the pizza out of the oven, sprinkle the cheese shavings and rocket over the top and serve.

related ingredients: corn/maize flour, gram/chickpea flour, rice flour

Brioche with caramelized peaches


This recipe is from my new book, Simply Gluten-Free & Dairy-Free. My favourite combination of gluten-free flours is rice, gram and maize because they balance each other in terms of taste and texture. In this recipe, I’ve used potato flour as well, to add moistness. When I had my baby, Zoe, I had to adapt my cooking. No more spending hours making something complicated and fiddly, or cooking whenever I felt like it. Instead, I had to find ways to make food easily (and often while holding Zoe with one arm) around whatever was going on at home. I discovered an amazing thing – that gluten-free dough doesn’t need to be kneaded. YAY! When you think about it, there’s no gluten needing to be bashed and pummelled to develop it. But what it does seem to need, though, is to be processed. I guess this aerates the dough, because when it is processed for a good 10 minutes in a food processor, it rises better, and whatever you’re making – pizza dough, bread or brioche, for example – comes out of the oven risen and light. I think I’m going to chalk this up as one of my greatest discoveries in life!

preparation time 20 minutes, plus 4 hours rising
cooking time 30 minutes
serves 4

gluten-free, dairy-free, nut-free, seed-free, citrus-free

100g potato flour
50g gram flour
50g maize flour
150g rice flour
1 tsp sea salt, crushed
1 tsp xanthan gum
2 tsp dried active yeast
165g dairy-free margarine, chilled and cut into small pieces, plus extra for greasing
100ml soya milk
4 eggs
6 tbsp fruit sugar or caster sugar
4 peaches, pitted and sliced into 8 pieces
Sift the flours, salt, xanthan gum and yeast into the bowl of a food processor with the dough blade attached and blend until mixed together. Add 150g/5½oz of the dairy-free margarine and blend until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Add the soya milk, 3 of the eggs and 3 tablespoons of the sugar and process for 10 minutes to aerate the dough. Put the dough in a large bowl, cover with cling film and leave to rise for 1 hour.
Grease a 12-hole muffin tin with dairy-free margarine. Stir the brioche dough thoroughly and pour evenly into the muffin tin. Cover loosely with cling film and leave to prove for 3 hours until light, puffy and doubled in size.
Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F/gas 6. Beat the remaining egg and brush it over the brioches, using a pastry brush. Bake for 20 minutes until golden brown. Leave to cool for 2–3 minutes, then turn out of the tin and transfer to a wire rack before serving.
While the brioche are cooling, put the remaining margarine and sugar in a saucepan and heat over a low heat until the dairy-free margarine has melted and the sugar has dissolved. Bring to the boil over a high heat, then turn the heat down again to low and simmer for 4–5 minutes until the mixture has caramelized slightly and become syrupy. Add the peaches to the saucepan and shake the pan to cover the peaches in the syrup. Cook for 2–3 minutes until tender, continuing to shake the pan occasionally. Serve immediately with the brioche.
related ingredients: corn/maize flour, fruit sugar, gram/chickpea flour, rice flour, sheep’s cheese, soya margarines, xanthum gum

Blueberry and banana muffins


Dive into a vitamin-packed Blueberry and Banana Muffin.

These make life deliciously easy! You can quickly make these the night before, or at the weekend – and then keep them in an airtight container for 2-3 days. Grab a breakfast on-the-run, pack them into your bag for a nutritious mid-morning snack, or eat them warm from the oven. Your whole family will love these, even if they’re not gluten- or dairy-intolerant.

preparation time 10 minutes cooking time 20–25 minutes makes 10
contains: egg

75g dairy-free margarine, softened, plus extra for greasing
50g fruit sugar
1 large egg, lightly beaten
100ml soya milk
100g rice flour
100g gram flour
1 tsp gluten-free baking powder
2 small bananas, mashed
150g blueberries

1 Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F/Gas 6. Grease 10 paper muffin cases and place them in a muffin tray. Put the margarine and sugar in a large mixing bowl and, using a hand-held electric whisk, beat well until light and fluffy. Gradually beat in the egg, a little at a time, then beat in the soya milk.
2 Sift in the flours and baking powder and stir quickly with a wooden spoon until mixed. Be careful not to overmix, and don’t worry if you can still see lumps in the mixture.
3 Carefully fold in the mashed bananas and the blueberries, then spoon the mixture into the prepared paper cases, filling each one about two-thirds full.
4 Bake in the hot oven for 20–25 minutes until well risen and just firm to the touch, or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Take the muffins out of the oven and either eat them warm or transfer them in their paper cases to a wire rack to cool.

related ingredients: fruit sugar, gram/chickpea flour, rice flour, soya milk