Doves Farm Flour Blend Pastry

I have been baking for a local fair and as I wanted to include a few gluten free options I decided to buy some pre-blended flour. I will say right now I can’t eat these, but I wanted to share what can be done with this specific flour blend, your millage may vary as blends vary greatly. I’m still not a fan of these flours or their texture, but I understand how useful they can be. These recipes are in no way sponsored or endorsed by Doves Farm, considering I may run them down they might pay me to stop, and they aren’t regular recipes so please understand that I can’t offer much outside of the recipe here, but I wanted to put them up as an example usage of the flour that may be of benefit to a few of my Dear Readers.

Yes, Dear Reader, you know honest Jack can’t lie, or won’t rather, I can only tell you about how I feel you might have a completely different reaction to these, a few people tried them and loved them, they fine as far as a pastry hat takes all of fifteen minutes to make with only two, three if you count the water, ingredients to make. They’re convenience and I understand that people enjoy that, not that many understand some of us just don’t have the luxury or convenience when it comes to food.

This is just your garden variety, unsweetened pastry, but I’ll try to help you as best I can. The preparation is the same as usual, from flour and marg to breadcrumbs, to a dough, to an, honestly, weak dough. It rips really easily, Dear Reader, you can see how thick I made it and even then when inserting it into the cases it tore. I warned you I would be honest, despite all the starches this is still an extremely weak flour, you might find that ground chia made into an egg may make it more durable, but I won’t be returning o this, this was a way to use it rather than waste it. It bakes fine, holding its shape well enough, but it has a sickly pallor that I had to disguise as it looked almost raw. I make a buckwheat chia pastry that is far closer to gluten based flour pastry than this ever could hope to be. If you use the flour then fine, I’m not saying you should change that, but I just want to point out hat there are other options. I will have two more recipes using this flour that are better, they’re heavily iced and flavoured to help mask the heaviness  of the flour. I did say it’d be a different kind of post, Dear Reader and I can only be honest. I’ll be back soon, see you then.

I had to coat them in watery honey to get any colour, the bottom is the original colour after a long bake time.

Yes, that is way too much jam, thank you. The kids loved them.

Ingredients

400g Doves Farm Gluten Free Plain White Flour
200g Margarine, Very Cold, Cut Into Cubes
Cold Water as Needed

Method

1. Add the Flour into a bowl. Add the Butter and mash together with your hands until it forms a dry, breadcrumb like mixture.

3. Add a Tbsp of Cold Water and knead together. Keep adding Water and kneading until the Dough holds its shape when pinched together.

4. Form into a flat disc and place in fridge for 15 minutes.

5. Dust a work surface with flour and roll out pastry. If it cracks then it’s too thin, if pastry cracks when inserting into a greased pie dish then cover the cracks with leftover pastry.

6. Bake at 180c (Fan) for about fifteen minutes, until dry to the touch, pastry will still be pale. Brush with Egg or Honey if a browner finish is required.

Bakewell? Yeah, I do Okay: Making a Bakewell Tart Step by Step Two Years Later

2017 Update: Due to a problem with Photobucket, see here, there will be a lot of recipes without photos. I will be slowly redoing the recipe pages, as best I can, but many other posts will be impossible to replace. I’m doing this in my own time, while continuing to update the blog with new recipes and posts. If you’d like to donate, any amount appreciated, you can do so here. The site will always be free, the recipes will never be locked behind a paywall, but this is a lot of additional work. I’m not demanding or begging, just putting it there so if you feel like repaying my hard work you have that option. I don’t make any money from the site, all that I do here is to help others, I couldn’t charge for that.

Due to the fact I don’t have all the original photos there might be some disparity between the photos and the text. I’ll do the best I can.

I’ll be writing this post in stages, some before, some during or just after, maybe some after that again, but hopefully it’ll all remain coherent. So, dear reader, here we are again. You might have seen my recipe for a Buckweat Flour Bakewell, has it really been two years? Time flies when it comes to pies, er, tarts. I’ve learned a bit since I last made this so it’ll be interesting to see how well it’ll all turn out. You might know the way I write these “tutorials”, depends on your level of devotion, dearly devote reader, you get a step, an elaboration and possibly some extra titbits. Now first I would like to talk about how I approach recipe writing. I think it’s important to be clear and keep it simple, that’s the reason most of my recipes follow a similar structure and style. But what I find important is having a baseline, as in: What’s the recipe at its most basic? It can be a tad confusing when you start with variations, but if you’re unable to piece together the additions and replacements then, not to be rude, you need to get better. I started knowing nothing, all of us do, and me sitting here trying to baby anyone isn’t going to help them learn. You can always ask, learn from mistakes, but if I sat here and thought of all the potential readers and the problems they might face I’d never get started. I can be a bit silly when it comes to these posts, trying for perfection I never expect to achieve or ever ask from anyone else. So, you might have to hunt around, piece these recipes together to suit yourself, but be thankful, arrogant, eh?, that not only do you have a recipe that tells you everything you need to make it, it lists the texture, taste and gives advice, for some of the older recipes that isn’t true, but from a certain point onwards and for the future it is. An unassailable truth. Because I want you to enjoy these recipes, I want you to succeed in making them and I want to make my struggle to get where I am now more worthwhile. I also hate to replace an entire recipe if it works as you never know who’ll find the first version useful. It’s all about finding your own groove and knowing how to adapt to other’s rhythms. No, I’m not demanding you dance to my tune, just boogie with me for a while. So, with all that out of the way, let’s go and see what a better bakewell looks like, yeah?

Step 0: Woah, woah. Man, That Recipe’s Old.

I appear to have stumbled at the gate, I haven’t looked at the recipe until now, though I’ve been planning it for a while. But I do remember making the tart. No egg, which is a testament to the binding power of buckwheat, but a nuisance. It ended up with too little pastry at first which meant making more and pressing it onto the first batch. It was delicate, but it held admirably. We’re going full chia egg in this version. I’ll elaborate on that in the appropriate step. I’m making mini tarts, but it’ll still be the same general idea. The filling needs no alteration as far as I can see. This should wind up as less work than the original. I’ll link from that recipe to here when it’s all finished. You might ask why wait so long, I’d ask the same thing. It’s a mixture of weight-loss, getting to grips with food, stomach capacity, ingredient cost and, if I’m honest, the fact that you could make this every day, but it’d never be as special as the first time. So, read this well, it might be a while before you see it again.

Step 1: Making the Pastry

(I’ll also break up the recipe here because I’m such a sweetheart. *Sigh*)

Pie Crust

220g Buckwheat Flour
100g Butter, very cold, cut into cubes
4 to 6 Tbsp Ice Cold Water (Only if you need them, but you won't)
1 Chia Egg (1 Tbsp Ground Chia in 3 Tbsp Water for 10 minutes in fridge)
1 Medium Egg (60-65g in Shell)
2 Tbsp Caster Sugar

Frangipane Filling

Raspberry Jam, enough to provide a thick covering to pie base.
125g Butter
125g Caster Sugar
125g Ground Almonds
1 Large Egg, Beaten

Topping

150g Icing Sugar (Probably more, I didn’t measure)
Cherries, halved.
Water as Needed

1. Add the Buckwheat Flour and 2 Tbsp of Caster Sugar to a bowl.

2. Add the Butter and crumble together with hands until it forms a lumpy, dry breadcrumb like mixture.

3. Here we change. Add the two Eggs, Chia and Chicken, and then mix without water. You shouldn’t need it.

4. Dust with flour, knead into a ball and then form into a flat disc and place in fridge for 1 hour.

It’ll harden up in the fridge, but should still be pliable. Step four, naturally.

Okay, we’re working with my buckwheat shortcrust pastry found here, just trust me, this way is best. What we’ll be using is the chia egg and also a medium egg which is about 60g-65g in shell and also doubling the recipe. I’ll say two things before we start in earnest: One: you’ll have to figure some of this out yourself, I’ll tell you everything, but you’ll have to use your noggin. I won’t insult your intelligence and assume you’re an idiot, I’ll instead assume that you can double a recipe and figure out what other changes are needed as I list them. As in: The egg goes in after the Butter crumbing, that’s listed in the chia egg part f the original. I’ll just carry on believing that. If you’re stuck, then ask away, I just can’t think of everyone at every level of skill here. I’d go mad. Madder. Secondly: This isn’t wheat pastry! It’s buckwheat, not buckwheat disguised as wheat. It’s buckwheat in all its glory! Okay? Yeah. That means you get a crisp pastry, that with the two eggs also gains a moistness and ease-of-work-ability. Shush, that’s a word. Buckwheat works well here because it is slightly drier and more crisp than a wheat based pastry which compliments the soft, richly decadently buttery filling. That’s a lot of -ys, but you get the idea. Not wheaty, nor gum-based, starch-added, fake wheaty pastry. New pastry. Adapt! Okay, I’m done. Er, sorry. But if it’s looked upon on its own merits it’s really wonderful. Not tooting my own horn, it just is really great.

So, pastry tips. Let’s see. Everything should be cold. Which reminds me that I have ice water in the freezer I forgot about as I didn’t need it. Oh well. You’re better to work in two halves rather then in one go. The more time this pastry spends in a warm room the more the butter melts, the stickier it becomes and the more of a mess you end up with. The chia egg and hen egg made an amazing pastry. Chia alone could make it too dry, though amazingly like gluten-based flour dough when worked, whereas just a hen egg would mean less of that ease of kneading and working, but moister. So we end up with the best of both worlds in our doubled recipe, with no down sides. To bring it together I work it in a bowl until it’s roughly a dough, crumbly is fine, then turn it out onto a floured work surface and start kneading it. Naturally there’s no fear of overworking the pastry, but do be weary of the butter melting too much. Don’t dust too much flour, a bit here and there works best. There shouldn’t be any cracks in this pastry if you’ve made it right.

Optional Step: Smooth Jam.

You can of course make your own jam, or conserve.

Just a quick detour. I really hate the seeds in raspberry jam, hate them with an unholy passion. So I went to the trouble of sieving the jam and left it until later. This is entirely up to you. If you can get a smooth raspberry jam then more power to you. If not and you want a seedless jam you could change it for another jam, but raspberry works best with the almond filling.

Step 2: Rolling out the pastry.

Divide or risk ruination. Possibly.

5. Grease the baking tin with Butter and scatter with Buckwheat Flour, shaking out the excess.

I had to guess at how many I’d need.

6. Let the Dough rest out of the fridge for a few minutes then roll out the Dough into a circle and place over the baking tin. Dough will be fragile (Not this one!) and may need to be dusted and re-kneaded. Prick the bottom with a fork.

hScrape the extra off the tin with the back of a knife.

So, what are we doing.. Firstly greasing and flouring those tins. What I do is melt the butter, just a note: From here on out say goodbye to moderation, butter and sugar city from this point on, and spread it on with a pastry brush. Then I dust with flour and shake out the excess. I made some in push-up tins and some in the muffin tins. I prefer the push-up tins, they just bake better. Rolling it out: You want it thick enough to hold together, but not so thick that it ends up heavy or taking too long to blind bake. Maybe 3-5 millimetres If you move it and it’s tearing then it’s too thin. You’ll have to gauge it yourself. What you want is a circle bigger than the tin, then you cut off the extra. If you’re making a full sized pie, all you do is drape it over and cut off the excess. Press it gently into the sides with your thumb, just pressing once, turning the tin and repeating until the whole tin is filled evenly. Don’t forget to prick the bottom, it’s important, so are the pastry beads but I’ll get to them in a moment.

Step 3: Blind Baking

7. Blind bake, with baking beads or rice in crumpled greaseproof paper, for 10 to 15 minutes at 180c (Fan). Remove from the oven and remove the rice and greaseproof paper then bake for another 5 minutes or until centre is dry to the touch. Leave on wire-rack. Spread the Raspberry Jam over the base.

The little ones baked more as they weren’t covered, covered is better. They should just pop up and support themselves.

These long posts are harder than you’d imagine. There’s a lot to get down and a lot I’m probably missing. So, blind baking. Right. That’s when you put on a blind-fol…no? Oh, it’s when you bake a pastry base without a filling. Why? Masochism. Kidding. It’s to ensure the pastry that the filling is going to be contained in isn’t going to end up mushy or undercooked. The reason for the beads is to prevent the pastry rising. Funny how that only happens when you don’t want it to, right? You can see the small ones did swell a lot. You do bake them without the beads too, but only enough to ensure the base is baked enough. This is a very useful skill to have. It’ll ensure that your pastry is perfect as your filling. You can also use this pastry for closed pies, like mince-pies, for that holiday that’s incoming. All I can add here is to not overcook, you want it dry and firm, but not too browned.
The tarts take quite a bit of filling

So, that’s the pastry stage. Hopefully it’s all made sense so far. I’m sleepy so if it doesn’t then that your problem. No. I’m joking. Maybe. Ask, but before you do: Read both recipe, read all this over and then after the madness ends conjure a bakewell with your mind. Remember this covers any tart made with this pastry. If it’s an open topped one: Blind bake. If not: Then just wet the edges, seal it and bake until browned. Now onto the topping.

Step 4: Frangipane

8. Melt the Butter on a medium heat until completely melted. (Or microwave it on defrost) Remove from the heat and whisk in the Caster Sugar, then the Almonds and finally the Beaten Egg until a thick Batter has been formed. Spoon into the Pie Base, making sure it reaches the edges.

eThe frangipane.

Heads up! This is going to be vague as hell, because that’s the way these recipes are written. How long it’ll bake is a guess at best. I’ll try to help alleviate it somewhat. I melted the butter in the microwave to make it easier. I then forgot if this was supposed to be runny or thick. It’s frightening in a way because most recipes fail to inform you, erm, mine included. I’ll fix it, eventually. The batter, or dough, or..mess, is thick, very stiff, almost a batter, but much thicker. You’ll spoon lumps of it into the pastry. You won’t be pouring it. So don’t freak if it looks terrible. It’s unappetising at this stage. I mixed it by hand, but the choice is yours. Large egg, 70g-75 in shell. This only takes a few minutes, but you’d be forgiven for being a worry-wart as this is way into the tart’s creation. A mistake here would be deadly. Or at least annoyingly wasteful.

Fill it as evenly as you can. Finesse isn’t my strong point.

9. Bake the Tart at 180c (Fan) and once it has browned on the top, about 5 minutes (Mine took 15 as there was a lot in the oven. Times vary), cover loosely with tinfoil (Greaseproof!) and cook for the remaining time. The Frangipane when cooked should have a firm top, a skewer will come out clean and will have risen up, but will still feel soft inside. Remove to a wire-rack and let cool completely. It will sink and become firmer.

Now I’m second guessing myself, but you learn a lot in two years. So, you spoon in your thick filling. It was really cold in the kitchen which might have affected the viscosity of the mixture, but as I say above once it’s in the oven it’ll spread. Now, here’s the hard part. The top will brown quickly, maybe too fast, maybe not, but it’ll still be jiggly and raw. So you cover it and test it every, say ten, minutes. More often if you smell it cooking. You want a firm, still slightly soft top. Feeling as if it were a shell rather than a sponge, if that makes sense, as well as a clean inside. Skewer it in other words. Clean is king. How long is anyone’s guess, mine took half an hour, but they are small, but also packed so it varies. Just don’t go assuming or wandering off. Observe, smell and stay vigilant. You’re on the home stretch. Let it cool, I took them out of the tins right away, the pastry was done enough, the top will sink slightly and harden a bit. Then onto the final step. One I can’t help much with, but I’ll try regardless.

Step 6: Decoration

10. Mix the Icing Sugar and Water until a thick Paste has been formed, spread over the tart and place the Cherry Halves around the edge. Let rest for around a day before cutting. (Hah! But seriously, do it for a large tart, it’ll be better)

tartI didn’t bother with vanilla or anything. There are enough flavours here already.

They might be rough, but they’re delicious. First and foremost: The icing: You could make a royal icing, but that’d be more work than I’d be bothered with. A simple icing like this suits it better. Nothing much to add here, make it thick, let it set and don’t forget to sieve it. The tarts themselves were amazing. The pastry was beautiful, the two eggs really worked wonders. The filling was just right, so decadent and buttery. The two elements worked so well together, a moist filling and a slightly crusty pastry. So that’s that. I hope you’ve learned something from this. This pastry is my own creation and I’m really very proud of it. If you want anything to be made clear just ask. If you want to praise me, whether I deserve it isn’t applicable, go for it. If you want my bakewell, well then, I’ll see you in hell! Ah, that slipped out. See you next time. Now to proofread….*Groans*

So good, even when warm. Let yours cool!

P.S It cuts clean, like the original. I just had to try one. I’ll probably take a better photo tomorrow.

O Carob! My Carob!

 photo IMGP4050_e_zpsazjjtqiq.jpgClumsily displayed, but packed with goodness.

You know what’s a real shame? That carob is so underutilized in savoury cooking and baking. I know there’s this strange stigma against carob, the whole “It’s the poor man’s chocolate” is an unfair argument. Yes, it makes a terrible chocolate substitute, but then again chocolate makes for a terrible carob substitute. Oh, yes, I’m going there. They aren’t interchangeable, at least as flavour goes, as a cocoa substitute it’s functional at least, but this little ingredient deserves better than to be used in dog biscuits.  I’ve used it in Curry and now I present to you, what I’ve started thinking of as the poor man’s matcha noodles: Carob Soba Noodles! I can feel the stares starting already. That’s why I made these and took a chance, I’m tired of looking for carob recipes and only finding reiterated benefits and cookies. I’ve used it in a few ways myself, breads and sweets mostly, but I’m going to take on the challenge of changing our idea of how carob should be used. I don’t know how many recipes I’ll manage to create or if there’ll be many at all. I’m just going to look at what I have and see where carob could be used. It’s too good a food to let it languish in the cupboard. These may be unique, I’ve never seen anything like then, but you never know. I think this time that tradition has been firmly defenestrated. But let’s talk noodles today.

 photo 2016-01-17-801_e_zpsh29ccyv5.jpgRoll it out. Flatter! Flatter!!

 photo 2016-01-17-802_e_zpsyevcnpdk.jpgAh, Chia Egg my ever wonderful binder.

Now I’ve already expounded the virtues of chia egg and buckwheat working with one another. So I’ll stick to the carob side of these noodles, as always the recipe is on the main recipe page linked above. Firstly: The inspiration or, What the heck are you doing!?! I was actually looking for a savoury tahini and carob sauce for pasta, naturally finding no luck in my searches, but I did see a site selling wheat and carob pasta and stubborn fool that I am I decided that if they could make it work I could too. Yeah, big factory manufacturing pasta by the ton versus, well, me. One problem instantly appeared, carob can make baked goods drier if used in excess. So I had to decide how much to use and when I was doing it I also read the ingredients to the pasta, which made me think of using carob to replace some of the flour instead of as an addition. I won’t keep you in suspense, it did work wonderfully that way. The noodles came together the same way, faster since I’m getting to be a practised hand at this, and they cooked just perfectly. The chia egg gives them a bit of bite and the carob gave them a wonderful aroma and a subtle taste.

 photo 2016-01-17-804_e_zpslx9quezd.jpgFold them if you like, they won’t stick or break when using chia.

So, what did carob do for the noodles? Well in conjunction with my Sweet Almond Tahini Sauce it gave the whole meal a sweetness that really popped. You see what I find with carob is that when combined with sugar the inherent sweetness of carob is brought out and when left with little to no added sweetness it has a much milder savoury flavour. I’d describe carob as a sweet dark chocolate, contradictory unless you consider what I just typed. It’s duality is interesting. It’s what you use it with that changes the carob. I also find it pairs well well with nut butters, especially peanut butter hence the sauce (Though I do have a Peanut Butter Dressing too). I’m no great shakes when it comes to combining flavours, I know what I know well, but when it comes to flavours and matching foods I do struggle. Carob is something I feel that in the right hands could blow us all away. There’s a flavour profile there that’s very complex, but it’d take better than me to figure out all the intricacies. I’m just me, eating brown noodles because I got pig-headed about it late last night. I’d re-visit these noodles though, mark my words, these are something unique and worth trying if you can. So, where does that leave us? I’m not sure, I may have to try carob in place of flour instead of as an addition in my baking to see if the breads can be made less dry, though it may be the fault of the buckwheat in some recipes. A vegetable or fruit purée is probably the answer in those cases. As for carob, well, maybe there’ll be a clever soul who can figure out other savoury uses, I’ll keep trying too, but help is always appreciated. For now I leave you with this, my knock against the unfair dislike of carob. We who do not eat chocolate salute your efforts carob, but it’s time to shine on your own merits. Until later!

 photo IMGP4049_e_zpsanzkwn2g.jpgThey look like some kind of strange alien chocolate.

Oh! A PS if you will. I made these last night and left them in the fridge in a container and they were just fine. I gave them a toss in flour before I put them away and there was no sticking or breaking at all. I will try freezing them eventually.

As Good As Gluten: Chia Buckwheat Pastry

Oh yes, I went there. Trust me, I’d stake my reputation on this dough. Waddya mean what reputation?!

I’m going to preface this free-from self-lovefest with a short preamble, it’s something I feel is necessary to say. If you follow this blog you’ll know I don’t use added starches or gums, I can’t eat them and I do believe they aren’t as necessary as we’re lead to believe. I won’t slam anyone who does though, don’t get me wrong, we all work within the limits that are set to us, some of us have a lot of restrictions and it can mean even small victories mean a lot to us. So like I say if you’ve used gums and starches and are proud of the results good for you, I really mean that, but I don’t stand behind the idea that we should settle for emulating gluten-based foods with whatever comes to hand. We should strive to be better than that. We learn more and more how truly terrible some of that food can be, yet we still try desperately to cling to it, making it with whatever comes to hand. I understand why, but at the beginning of this journey I cut all ties from that kind of thinking and started looking for better food. I believe it’s a better path than just settling for processed, gummed and starched up foods. A little is fine, but there’s a reason so many celiacs don’t feel better on a gluten free diet.

This is worth the wait, trust me!

I’m just one person, but I’ve run the gauntlet of celiac disease and you might question why then am I saying all this now. Well, for one, I won’t sugar coat anything or coddle people who seem, the majority of the time, to want any excuse to stop or to look for a magical work-about. It’s difficult, it’s tough and you’ll have to be even tougher to get through it. If anyone tells you otherwise  then they’re lying, that’s harsh, deal with it if you want to get, be and feel better.  You might wonder why I’m addressing this now, really I suppose it’s because there’s a fallacy that’s being perpetrated by accident. There is help for new celiacs everywhere, so many GF goods to choose from and yet, there are so many, years in that are still struggling. Where are the people helping them? They’re out there, they’re just being ignored for the easy-way-outers, the ones who’ll help you replace all your old food for something vaguely similar, ignoring the nutritional values completely or using buzzwords to catch inexperienced people. So the ones who aren’t new, but are still struggling are left confused and, yes, scared. Lord knows I’ve been there and still am in some ways. Here’s the simple truth: All That easy food and processed junk, no matter how they try and sell it to you, will catch up to you, not today, nor tomorrow, but someday. I know from experience that being unhealthy can build up until it’s seemingly impossible to break away from it, but it’s possible. I did it, and if you can fight everyday of your life you can too.

This is running on a tad. Have a a hand-pie.

So we finally reach the point of all this, if you accept the limits and uncross-able boundaries then you can start breaking down the walls that can be broken, and building yourself a better you in the process. Today I’m going to show you a dough with just three ingredients (Four if you count the water), that doesn’t need starch or gum to hold it together and that is in my opinion, and I knew my wheat-based pastry way back when, as good as any gluten based pastry I’ve ever used or eaten. I don’t say that lightly, I’ve worked at this, with only my own meagre knowledge and instincts to guide me and now I can revel in my own victory, however slight, knowing that I did something special. I didn’t need a company to make it or a fad diet to convince me to eat it, I just needed a love of baking and a hope that it will help someone like me. Now, onto the fun part.

What order are these in? “Order?” Kidding, they should be chronological or close. This is just before baking.

This whole recipe is on the Buckwheat Flour Shortcrust Pastry page. This is the chia-egg version I couldn’t wait to try and it really is a wonder. I don’t claim to know how this works so well. I know that buckwheat by itself will hold fairly well, I also know that a flax-egg helps it become better, but a chia-egg somehow blows all that away. The dough was smooth and in no way tacky. I could pull it apart and it would spring back. I rolled it, cut it, pulled and dragged it and at no point did it tear or crumble. It was like going back in time and making wheat-based pastry again. The chia-egg is a wonder here, I still will recommend it on a recipe by recipe basis, I like to be through and nothing is infallible. It failed in cookies if you’ll recall.

I wanted to soften the apple so I cooked it in sugary water, just a bit, until soft.

I don’t have anyone to share this with (Or fob off on if things went awry) so I wanted to make the most out of a small portion of dough. I decided on three pie shells, that I topped with apple and then filled with Microwave Sponge and microwaved (Duh), which worked well enough, but I realised that the dough could now make a closed pie that remained soft so it would be just as nice. Still, it was an excuse to try something new. I also made two hand pies, one I just folded over, the other I cut out two circles and pressed them together. I would probably make a pie with a top the next time around, it’s just I had no idea what would work before I started. Seat of the pants recipes here today.

My decoration fell off the round one as I forgot to wet it.

It was a  breeze to work with, even easier than the flax version. It stuck together when pressed and didn’t break when folded over. So I have hand pies that you can pick up and eat. The pastry is thinner too so you don’t have a huge wad of pastry with no filling. It also turned out softer than usual. It was like eating my Mother’s apple tarts again, but with the knowledge I wouldn’t feel in any way ill after. A really wonderful moment. This is a dough I could see being used in so many ways. It takes a lot to tear it and it doesn’t need a huge amount of flouring to roll it out. You end up with a light, slightly crispy crust, that tastes delicious.

Maybe if they’d been deeper the sponge topping would have been better. Not bad as a test and handy for a quick topping.

I added more to the others, but I still had some left over.

I’ve seen recipes that boast of how well they hold and how they’re just like wheat based ones and of course you invariably end up feeling lied to as you scrape up your mess of a dough and toss it away. I’ve never said that before now, so maybe you can trust me when I do. I love this recipe, I’ve worked with it and tried so much that I feel like I’ve watched a child grow up. It’s up to you to figure out what this pastry will become, whether it’ll be an inspiration or just the base for something amazing. As for me, well, I’m looking at better Soba Noodles and taking a moment to be a little proud of my achievement. Until later.

I could fit so much apple in there and no pastry tore around it.

Bites taken out and one pie gone before I took a photo. Shows you how good they are.

Cheesecake filled Buckwheat Shortcrust Pastry

It’s Lemon Cheesecake in Lemon Zest, Cardamom and Sugar Buckwheat Shortcrust Pastry. That’s a mouthful in more ways than one.

This is just another combined recipe deal, a late birthday treat and the first cheesecake I’ve had in about 3 years, carrageen intolerance is terrible since it’s used to thicken so many dairy products. The only tweak is in the pastry, it’s 1 Lemon’s worth of zest and 1/4 Tsp Cardamom alongside the optional Caster Sugar.

I didn’t want to go to the trouble of finding a buckwheat biscuit recipe, making it, crumbling it, mixing it with butter and smushing it all together. I though the flax egg version of the pastry (Best version hands down. A joy to work with.) would do just fine and I was given a chance to experiment a little.

The Cheesecake is my own recipe, it’s one of the first I cobbled together from lots of Googling. Still works well. Creamy and fluffy. Like eating a cheesy cloud.

I found out you can actually get five tarts since the pastry will roll way thinner with the flax holding it together. I decided to retry the hand pie, but it still was too much pastry to filling. On the plus side apple and buckwheat are a great combo, an open faced buckwheat apple tart would be a really great idea.

Waste not want not, a drizzle of icing takes away the dryness slightly. Also worth saying that my weight is now more stable than ever. Just shows you can have your health and sweet too, you just have to be careful.

This one is pretty simply to pull together. You’d be best to blind bake the pastry with baking beans or rice to stop it rising, then bake again to finish cooking the centre. A nice combo on the whole and a fun way to share cheesecake with others. Thanks again for reading these posts and have fun baking and cooking.

Carob and Peanut Butter Brownie Pies

Waste not, want not. I used the scrap dough for a silly topping and had to put a baking bead inside to stop it rising. Giggling ensued.

Sometimes you need to do something silly to just take a break from it all. With me it’s a 24/7 deal, I can’t take a break from this diet, I can’t walk in to a restaurant or a bakery or even a shop and just grab something whenever I feel like it. There’s no one to cook for me and no pre-packaged or all-in-one meal mixes I can use, not that I’m knocking anything like that, just giving you a little insight to how I live and eat.

Silently praying that the crust hasn’t burned from the double baking. It didn’t thankfully. Lemon meringues next time!

Now saying all that I’d never go back to the miserable, obese person I was. I’m better than I’ve ever been and I have learn to go against the grain (Puns) and not worry about arbitrary and imagined rules of food and preparation. I’d never claim a carob brownie was the same as a chocolate one (They’re worlds apart, appreciate them for their own flavours) , but that won’t stop me using carob and enjoying it. Sounds silly, but it took me a long to to learn. I’m not on any defined diet, I’m cooking and eating for a better me and I’ll make my own rules to follow as I need them.

Carob is so dark it always make me think it’ll taste much too strong and yet it’s almost always mild tasting.  Goes well with blackberry as well as peanut butter.

Now what that means is I’ll make something as silly as a carob peanut butter brownie pie and even if it isn’t perfect I’ll enjoy every single step from making to eating. This one is somewhat of a hodgepodge of recipes so I’ll try to make it as clear as possible.

Okay first the crust is the Flax and Buckwheat found here and the buttercream is found here and the brownies were from: Gluten Free Brown Rice Flour Brownies, now mine ended up a little dry, but that was probably the carob or the way they were baked in small tins. I didn’t want them too wet as they may not have baked so I left them as is. I know in changing the recipe it wouldn’t be the same, but they still taste just fine, crunchy on top and soft through. The original with cocoa and a full serve would no doubt be better, but I’m happy enough. You should check out the original if you can eat chocolate.

I had so much fun making these, they didn’t turn out too shabby either. Maybe they’ll inspire someone to try something similar.

Okay! You’ve made the crust, blind baked it, baked it again to dry out the bottom and have let it rest for a few minutes. Now the filling.

Ingredients

100g Brown Rice Flour
1/4 Tsp Baking Powder
56g Butter
75g Sugar
45g Carob
1/4 Tsp Vanilla Extract
1 Large Egg

Makes 4 10cm Tarts.

Method

1. Pre-heat the oven to 175c (Fan), same temperature as for the pie crust if you’re using my recipe. Add the Flour and Baking soda to a bowl and set aside.

2. Melt the Butter in a pot, over a medium heat, and then whisk in the Sugar until combined and remove from the heat.

3. Whisk in the Carob and then the Vanilla Extract and finally the Egg. Whisk until smooth and glossy.

4. Add to the Flour mixture and stir until just combined. If too thick add a drop of water until a thick batter that drops off the spoon is formed.

5. Pour into the pastry cases and bake for 20 minutes, turning half way if needed. Test with a skewer and when firm to the touch and clean through remove from the oven and let rest for 15 minutes before removing from the tin.

The Buttercream is 100g Icing Sugar and 25g Butter and 1 Tbsp Natural Peanut Butter more if you want to cover them completely.

Buckwheat Flour Shortcrust Pastry

2017 Update: Due to a problem with Photobucket, see here, there will be a lot of recipes without photos. I will be slowly redoing the recipe pages, as best I can, but many other posts will be impossible to replace. I’m doing this in my own time, while continuing to update the blog with new recipes and posts. If you’d like to donate, any amount appreciated, you can do so here. The site will always be free, the recipes will never be locked behind a paywall, but this is a lot of additional work. I’m not demanding or begging, just putting it there so if you feel like repaying my hard work you have that option. I don’t make any money from the site, all that I do here is to help others, I couldn’t charge for that.

Making a Bakewell Tart with this Pastry from Scratch Here.

Read about this handy pastry in greater detail: Here and Here. 

Made with both a Chia and Hen Egg.

Handpies made with the chia and egg version.

Ingredients

110g Buckwheat Flour
50g Butter, very cold, cut into cubes
4 to 6 Tbsp Ice Cold Water

Optional: Add 1 Tbsp Caster Sugar for Sweet Pastry.

Makes 4 10cm Tarts.
Chia Egg version is the best

Method

1. Add the Buckwheat Flour to a bowl.

2. Add the Butter and crumble together with hands until it forms a lumpy, dry breadcrumb like mixture.

3. Add a Tbsp of Cold Water and mash together with fork. Keep adding Water and mixing until the Dough is sticky, but firm.

4. Dust with flour, knead into a ball and then form into a flat disc and place in fridge for 1 hour.

5. Grease the baking tin with Butter and scatter with Buckwheat Flour, shaking out the excess.

6. Let the Dough rest out of the fridge for a few minutes then roll out the Dough into a circle and place over the baking tin. Dough will be fragile and may need to be dusted and re-kneaded. Prick the bottom with a fork.

7. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes at 180c (Fan) or until golden brown and firm to the touch. Rest in tin until cool.

Variations:

Flax Egg: Add 1 Flax Egg (Combine 1 Tbsp Ground Flaxseed and 3 Tbsp Water, mix and leave in the fridge for 15 minutes) instead of the Water and mix as normal. Dough will be less sticky and will be easier to roll out thin.

Chia Egg: Add 1 Chia Egg (Combine 1 Tbsp Ground Chiaseed and 3 Tbsp Water, mix and leave in the fridge for 15 minutes) instead of the Water and mix as normal. Dough will be barely sticky and can be rolled out as thin as possible.