What a week! We got news that Mel and Sue will be leaving the tent…… I got a promotion at work…… I got nominated for an Allergy Blog Award…… and then I ended the week in bed with the flu. I am still coughing, spluttering, sweating and freezing, but hey…… I figure it is better to get it out of the way now!
Most important things first though…… I have been nominated for an Allergy Blog Award! What me? Really? Did they get that right?
I really never expected that would happen….. ever! So thank you to whoever nominated me….. you absolutely made my week!
I always think of my blog as quite a ‘tin pot’ affair. My motivation for writing stems from my daughter’s Coeliac diagnosis 5 years ago and my absolute determination that she would be able to enjoy all the traditionally wheat-filled delights that her friends enjoyed, but in gluten free form. Although I subsequently established that I too am gluten-intolerant, I still see the blog as the recipe book for her future.
At the time when I first started the blog, the range of gluten free baked alternatives on the supermarket and internet shelves was woefully poor. What was there was dry, crumbly, stuck in the throat and needed ‘refreshing’ before you could eat it. Sure things have much improved and there are some fantastic contemporary products with new companies innovating all the time, but I grew up on home-cooked food and with expectations that learning to cook was an essential life skill….. Passing these basic values on to Miss GF and ensuring she has a family gluten-free cook-book in blog form seems only right.
It is also important to me that she has good instruction on blending flours to achieve the best results. Most commercial flour blends are over-dependent on rice, tapioca and potato flours, with rice being the primary ingredient, making them gritty and lacking nutrition. Their results for bakes are incredibly variable and rarely do they mimic the texture and flavour of traditional wheat-based products. I have yet to find a single flour blend which is truly all-purpose (although I have yet to road-test the Free From Fairy’s flour-blend, for which I have high hopes).
I often worry that readers may see my recipes as complicated and off-putting, but the flour-blends I test and re-test are specific to the bake I want to achieve and to get the best from. I have every intention of working on a couple of alternative ‘general’ blends (in addition to my mix A) that will work well for specific groups of bake, but there is never enough time…..
I am however, just happy to share whatever wisdom I can as I journey through our gluten free experience and if just one person benefits, then that is good with me (regardless of how great or rubbish my stats are on any given week)!
Anyway…… back to GBBO and the latest set of challenges in Batter Week. As luck would have it, I have been wanting to make dessert Yorkshire Puds for ages (ever since I saw Bananas-in-the-Hole over at Belleau Kitchen). Okay….. I know that the GBBO contestants made savoury filled Yorkies, but this was my best excuse for trying something a little different…..
The Yorkie recipe that I developed specifically for dessert (and made a couple of times to tweak to happiness), has a couple of tablespoons of maple syrup and some vanilla for a hint of sweetness. I have also added an extra egg-white to give lightness and extra rise and used dairy free coconut milk alternative to allow for a wider sharing with intolerant diets. You could of course use usual dairy milk or another dairy free alternative, but I picked the coconut version for it’s lightness (to compensate for any additional ‘weight’ to the batter from the maple syrup) and if you use a thicker milk, you may want to use a ratio of milk to water of 2:1.
Don’t they look amazing? They are filled with the most amazing seasonal British pears, lightly sautéed in coconut oil with vanilla and English walnuts and then coated with a brown-sugar syrup. The smell when they were cooking was incredible and the flavours and textures are divine….. fresh and perfectly offset against the soft pillowiness of the Yorkshires.
The crowning glory is the tart, purple coulis, made with Autumn blackberries picked from local hedgerows and poured over the top. Amazingly delicious! Serve with ice cream for extra decadence……
I am sharing my Sweet Autumn Dessert Yorkshires with the following linkies :
Great Bloggers Bake off over at Mummy Mishaps – Week 4 : Batter
Free From Fridays with the Free From Farmhouse
#FoodCalendar with Charlotte’s Lively Kitchen – celebrating British Food Fortnight
Simple & in Season with Feeding Boys – Pears and Blackberries are perfect right now
Sunday Fitness & Food with Ilka’s Blog and Marathons & Motivation
Sweet Autumn Dessert Yorkshires with Vanilla Sautéed Pear & Walnuts and Blackberry Coulis (makes 12 Yorkshires)
Dessert Yorkshire Puddings
1 additional large egg white
sunflower oil to roast
Vanilla Sautéed Pear & Walnuts
3 firm fresh pears – peeled, de-seeded and cut into cubes
250g blackberries (fresh or frozen)
65g golden caster sugar
3 tablespoons water
- Yorkshire batter : Put all the batter ingredients into a medium-sized bowl and whisk until well-blended, light and very airy. Set aside to stand for at least 30 minutes at room temperature.
- Blackberry Coulis : Put the blackberries, sugar and water into a small saucepan and gradually bring to a simmer on medium heat, stirring frequently and crushing the blackberries against the side of the pan with the back of a wooden/silicone spoon to release the juices.
- Continue to gently simmer for 15 to 20 minutes. Once the blackberries are soft and disintegrated and the liquid has reduced slightly, take off the heat.
- Use a sieve to drain and push through the liquid and pulp into a jug (discarding the pips and fibre) and allow to cool.
- If adding the cassis, do this to taste once cool.
- Vanilla Sautéed Pear & Walnuts : Put the coconut oil into a medium pan over a medium heat. Once hot, add the pears and walnuts to the pan and toss in the oil. Continue to cook, tossing occasionally for about 10 minutes, until the pears are cooked to a firmness that you are happy with.
- Add the vanilla powder part-way through the sautéing process and stir through thoroughly.
- Finally add the brown sugar and stir through thoroughly so that it dissolves and coats the pear and walnut in a sweet syrup.
- Baking the Yorkshires : When you are ready to bake the Yorkies, pre-heat the oven to 220 C/425 F/Gas 7
- Pour a dribble of oil into the bottom of a 12-hole non-stick muffin tin (you want enough oil to cover, but only just) and place the cake pan in the oven for 10 to 15 minutes to get the oil really hot.
- Whilst the oil is heating, give the batter a final whisk through and then remove the pan from the oven and pour the batter evenly (but quickly) into the muffin holes (about half to two-thirds full). – It should spit and sizzle.
- If you have any batter left, set aside and repeat stages 10 and 11 with a separate pan (but only once the first batch is safely out of the oven. Do NOT open the oven door once the first pan is in).
- Bake the Yorkies for 20 to 25 minutes. Do NOT open the door whilst they are cooking until at least 18 minutes have passed (use the oven light).
- Once the Yorkies are well risen, crisp and golden, remove from the oven and gently ease out of the pan using a mini-silicone spatula or knife. Place on a wire rack to cool, or if using straight away serve onto plates. (If the bottom feels a little oily, then stand the cooked hot Yorkies on kitchen paper to soak up for a few seconds).
- When ready to serve, fill each Yorkie with a good spoon of pear and walnut filling and a drizzle of blackcurrant coulis.
- Serve with your favourite dairy free ice cream (or dairy if you can eat it).
Gluten Free Alchemist © 2013-16 unless otherwise indicated