Chocolate Coconut Slice

Choc Coconut Slice



1 ½ cups pastry mix

½ cup sugar

1 cup desiccated coconut

2 tablespoons gf cocoa powder

185 g melted butter

½ teaspoon vanilla


1 cup gf icing sugar

2 tablespoons gf cocoa

30 g butter, melted

1 ½ tablespoons hot water



Preheat oven to 180C (160C fan forced)

Put all dry ingredients, melted butter and vanilla into a bowl. Mix well.

Press mixture into a 28 cm x 18 cm lamington tin.

Bake for 20 minutes.

Spread icing while slice is still warm.


For icing, sift icing sugar, cocoa into a small bowl and add the melted butter and water.

Mix until smooth.

Cut slice once icing has set.

Buttermilk Onion Rings

Usually, I do all the recipe spotting, but it was my gf son who found this recipe for Buttermilk Onion Rings  and asked “how difficult is it to convert it to gluten free?”  To which the answer was “should be easy”.

And easy it is….

Onion Rings


3/4 cup buttermilk

1 cup gf plain flour

1/2 cup gf cornflour

1 large brown onion, sliced into 3mm thick rings and separated

Canola oil for deep frying


Using a deep fryer* is best but you can also use a large heavy saucepan half filled with oil on medium-high heat.

Place buttermilk in a bowl.

Place flours in a flat dish, stir to mix the two flours and season with salt and pepper (you can add paprika).

Work in batches. Toss onion rings in the flour mixture and then dip the rings into the buttermilk and let excess drip from rings before returning to flour.

Fry onion rings in batches for 3 minutes or until golden.  Remove and transfer to paper towel.  Season lightly with sea salt.

There is a  bacon ailoi in the recipe which is very tempting indeed.

*Deep Fryer – If you have kitchen cupboard space then I suggest a deep fryer as I find  the temperature is more controlled than in a saucepan on the stove.  I use it for Ricotta Dumplings, Sweet Potato Chips, our alternative to KFC 

Found – A New Gluten Free Product

gluten free kitchen

Gluten Free Kitchen is a new Australian made product  and is the “first and only brand in Australian to specifically fortify all of their products with …vitamins and minerals to enable people to live a truly healthy gluten free lifestyle.”

Products available are Coconut Flour, Self Raising Flour, Plain Flour, Pasta, Pancake Mix, Chocolate Cake Mix,  Breakfast Smoothie and Diet Shake.

I am yet to try the product but I have seen them stocked at the Calanna Pharmacy on Ross River Road Aitkenvale.  Check the advertisement below to find our the other pharmacists which are stocking Gluten Free Kitchen.

Gluten Free Kitchen suppliers

Pudding in a Mug

pudding in a mug

I purchase my Well & Good flours and pastry mix on-line  and was pleasantly surprised with complimentary “Pudding in a Mug” sachets included in my order.

Options are Salted Caramel, Gooey Chocolate, Spiced Banana.

The “Pudding in a Mug” will be available for purchase on-line within the next four weeks.

They are part of the 8 new varieties available from Well & Good.

With two out of the three sachets missing from my pantry, I can say that this new gluten free snack has been given the tick of approval from my gf teenager.

Fruit Chips

Fruit Chips (2)

My husband is the proud new owner of a Mandoline Slicer which was

needed for a salad to accompany the Salmon Pastrami he cured.

Also perfect for thinly slicing fruit such as apples and pears (Corella), I came across a simple recipe for Fruit Chips.

Thank you Megan from Sweet Treats for this idea.

Thinly slice fruit and then layer on baking paper.

Preheat oven to 100 C and bake for 1 – 2 hours.  Turn fruit during the drying process.

Cool on trays to dry out further.

Use in granolas, with yoghurt, as a snack or as a decoration on cakes.

Team Work : The Gluten Free Kitchen

A gluten free diet for a child or teenager of coeliac disease requires a team effort.

Strawberry Jam

Family members and friends become an important support network to minimise  gluten contamination.

Siblings accept some changes to their own diet and also have to learn protocols regarding cross-contamination.

Parents source gluten free products and step outside their comfort zone to bake gluten free bread and make gluten free look appetising.

Grandparents scan magazines for new gluten free recipes and also learn to cook ‘gluten free’ for those special occasions.

Friends take on responsibility to make sure gluten free is on the menu at social events and functions.

Last week had my gf son, KJ and myself bond over a team effort to make Strawberry Jam. At this point, I will point out that I have never made jam myself.  At KJ’s instigation,  I purchased the ingredients.

Mum: Have you had a look at a few recipes for how to make Strawberry Jam?

KJ: No, but it can’t be that hard. (I hope she doesn’t take over like she normally does)

Mum: Well I printed three recipes that I think you should read first as they all different regarding ratio of sugar to strawberries. Do you want to use lemon juice, chia seeds, vanilla seeds as there are many variations on a theme?

KJ: How many strawberries do we have?

Mum: Well I think you should sterilize the jars first and I like this recipe but you have to let the strawberries and sugar sit for 1 – 2 hours. And don’t wash the strawberries, I am sure I read somewhere that the excess water will make the strawberries too soft.

KJ: Any chance of you doing the jars and I’m not waiting 2 hours before I can cook the jam. (Weighing, cutting and sterilising jars all at the same time)

Mum: Have you decided which recipe to use?

KJ: Simple… I’ll use the recipe on the (jam setting) sugar packet. I don’t know why you make things so complicated.

Mum: (Neither do I, but I always thought research was a good way to start if you wanted to succeed)  Have you put two plates in the freezer yet?

KJ: Why?

Mum: Because it says here in MY recipe that you need cold plates to test if the jam is ready.

KJ: Yep, this is looking good and EASY. (I told her so)

……continued banter regarding colour, what a rolling boil is, how long to boil for, if the sample was set etc…

KJ: What other kinds of jam can we make? What goes in a marmalade? What about mango chutney? Grandad used to make mango chutney.

Mum: (I wish KJ was more careful when he poured the jam into the jars and cleaned up the spills) What great colour!  (Maybe this time I can entice KJ to have a photo taken for my blog) You do know that I am already drafting a blog in my mind while we have been doing this!

KJ: Do you think Grandad would like a jar of jam?

Team Work : Success Guaranteed 

Banana and coconut Bread

Gluten Free Banana and Coconut Bread

Open Letter to Cafes : Gluten Free

This is so much wrong and confusing information about gluten free and coeliac disease that it really does make it hard for coeliac disease sufferers to feel comfortable about eating out.  I hear from many young adults that they find it embarrassing and awkward to go to a cafe and try to explain things to the wait staff. While others just don’t eat out as it is not worth the risk of eating contaminated food.

I recently had the opportunity to clarify a few misconceptions as a friend who is also a cafe owner asked for some advice.  Here are my penned thoughts…

gluten free

Open Letter to Cafes and Restaurants

There are two reasons why people eat gluten free: as a lifestyle option and as a medical necessity.

People who are diagnosed with coeliac disease must eat gluten free as a medical necessity.  “A person with coeliac disease should not consume any gluten. A strict gluten free diet must be followed at all times.” (Coeliac Australia)

Gluten is contained in wheat, barley, rye, oats and their derivatives (spelt, milo, malt, couscous). An easy way to remember this is BROW.

It is a common misconception that some coeliacs are more sensitive to gluten than others.  Please don’t say to customers “it all depends upon how sensitive you are” because there is no degree of sensitivity, only degrees of allergic reaction.

If a customer asks questions regarding gluten free options at the café, please don’t be defensive or dismissive. If you don’t know the answers to their questions, then ask the manager and/or the chef.

Coeliacs really do need to know if the icing sugar has wheat in it or if the gluten free bread is toasted in the same toaster used for wheat/gluten breads. And if a customer asks if the gf slice was handled by the same tongs as the other cakes, then they are not being fussy or picky or difficult, they are asking what they need to ask. The customer can then make an informed decision regarding their order.

Coeliac sufferers do not take risks as even a little bit of gluten is not okay.

“Can just one crumb of bread hurt a coeliac?                                                        

 Yes. 1/100 of a slice of bread is enough to cause damage to the small bowel of a person with coeliac disease. A crumb may also make a person with coeliac disease physically sick.” (Coeliac Australia)

What does this mean for your café?

Be honest. And make a determination about who you can cater for.

It could be that you can only cater  for customers following a gluten free diet as a life style option.

And that for customers following a gluten free diet as a medical necessity, your kitchen is unable to 100% guarantee the meal to be gluten free due to possible contamination issues.

But most importantly, be honest to your customers

because honesty is preferable to them eating contaminated food and suffering.

Chocolate Chia Cookies

Deliciously Ella

Thank you Ella for your fresh approach to wholesome, healthy and gluten free foods.

Ella started with her blog as a way to heal her body after a diagnosis of Postural Tachycardia Syndrome.  One thing lead to another and she is now author of two books: Deliciously Ella and soon to be released Deliciously Ella Every Day.

If ever there was a reason for me not to publish a photo, then MY version of Ella’s Chocolate Chia Cookies is it.

chocolate chia cookies (2)

However, these cookies are deliciously moorish.

My gf son, who has texture and colour as important criteria when deciding if he likes something, did give the cookies a try. Thumbs down from the gf teenager, but thumbs up from this non coeliac baker who loves to experiment.

Recipe Inspiration from Coles

Coles August 2015

The best things in life are free

Coles supermarket publishes a monthly free recipe magazine and August’s publication : Come & Get ‘Em! delivers many recipes which are gluten free by ingredient or can be made gluten free with a few substitutions.

This month there is a gluten free baking section: Whole Mandarin and Orange Cake and Rhubarb and Raspberry Muffins.

As well, these recipes also are worth a mention:

Winter Chicken Tray Bake

Quinoa, pistachio and Honeyed Carrot Salad

Lime Curd

Carrot Hummus

Pineapple Salsa

Honey Ginger Chicken Drumsticks with Chilli Asian Greens

Cauliflower Pizza Bases

Mushroom, Pumpkin & Spinach Risotto

Mexican Chicken & Bean Soup (still to check the Heinz Beanz)

Country-Style Pork Spare Ribs with Mustard Barbeque Sauce

Spiced Sweet Potato Wedges

Pulled Pork and Red Cabbage Slaw

So if you are looking for inspiration for meals this month, have a look at Come & Get ‘Em from Coles in store or download it on-line.

GF Wraps – BFree

GF Wraps

Making school lunches easier 

Spotted in the Woolworths supermarket last week.

This is one of those products that has been available in Australia for some time now, BUT took a while to make it north to tropical Townsville.

Pliable and soft, they are easier to work with and wrap than the other brands of wraps we have tried.


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