Quinoa and Amaranth Flour Bread

 photo WP_20170318_007_zpsjbu2jsb3.jpgFresh out of the oven.

Hmm? You again? Dear reader, you are a jewel of the ocean, the acme of blog readers, etc etc, but you can’t expect me to stay with you forever and ever, can you? Okay, fine one more recipe and that’s it. I mean that. I had wanted to test out quinoa flour and amaranth flour, but there was no quinoa flour that wasn’t absurdly expensive, so I gave up, no, sorry, made my own, again. It’s tedious, but at least you avoid the nasty taste so many store bought flours possess. I’m going to cut this short, it worked, but it’s nearly identical to the all Quinoa Flour Bread. That’s not a disparagement, that bread is really great. I’d praise it more if it weren’t my own recipe, but modesty prevails and I quietly mumble its praises. The one thing I love about this is that one minute out of the oven it was cut without any crumbs. I do think the texture is slightly firmer, but that might be the lessened water. Go to the quinoa flour bread page and you’ll get all the information you’ll ever need. This is just here because it worked. It’s never a bad thing to know additional flours work and because it was too different to list as a variation. I used two small tins, I think they’re four and a half inches each, because you get a better crust to, ummm, not crust? ratio, but you could use a normal sized loaf tin and it should be fine. I just prefer to list what I used so you’ll hopefully avoid any failures due to me. Your failures are yours to accept. I’m perfect! Heh. Okay, until later.

 photo WP_20170318_006_zpszlo5spcs.jpgLook! It’s tulip time. More tulip time…

 photo WP_20170318_005_zpsmfygdwv5.jpgPotato time too. I’ll have to cover them with more compost and feed soon.

Ingredients

170g Toasted Quinoa Flour
30g Raw Amaranth Flour
25g Ground Flaxseed
150ml Water
2 Tbsp Olive Oil
2 Large Eggs (70g to 75g in Shell)
1/3 Tbsp Baking Soda
Pinch of Salt

Makes two small loaves.
Can be frozen.

Method

1. Preheat oven to 175c (No Fan).

2. Grease (With Butter or Olive Oil) and line a 6×3 inch loaf pan.

3. In a large bowl mix together the Egg, Olive Oil and Salt. Add the Quinoa Flour, Amaranth Flour, Flaxseed and Baking Soda and stir until combined, then add the Water and stir together until smooth. Rest for 5 minutes until batter has thickened. It will be lumpy.

4. Pour batter into prepared tins and bake for 40-50 minutes, turning halfway if needed, until brown, the tops firm when pressed, and a skewer comes out clean.

5. Remove from he tin and let cool completely on a wire-rack.

Toasted Buckwheat Groats

 photo WP_20170227_004_e_zpsjmhre5wo.jpgWhat colour is this? Brown. Golden brown. Everything is golden brown!

But it’s a seed you say. A groat is a hulled grain you say. Hey, my head hurts from reading the pack of buckwheat groats that are certified 100% whole grain and on the back of the package it states that it’s a seed. Are we ashamed of seeds? Have they had cause to be shunned so? Me and buckwheat are bosom buddies and you had better prepare for an onslaught of groaty recipes. This one is tweaked a little from here. I actually have had a suggestion to toast the buckwheat before cooking and I will be trying that too. This just popped up last night and I decided to test it out and see if the toasted seeds would retain their crunch after a night. They do. Really well. I poured them over pasta and the made a really groat, heh, substitution for croutons. I have stated, and won’t continue to state, have no fear, that these recipes will probably be common place, but they’re new to me, so, yeah. Er, I mean I’ve done, what feels like at least, everything with the flour, breads, pasta, wraps, crackers etc so I think I can be forgiven for taking the easy way for a while. As for the recipe: It’s real simple, but the groats, I’m doing that to mess with you, dear reader, really crisp up well and they didn’t burn at all, I’ve had that trouble with other seeds before this. Whether you want them as a snack or as an addition to a meal you could do a lot worse than good old buckwheat. I have one more recipe to try with it this week, then I have another marinade recipe that has been converted to a no-marinade, it’s ready already but I need a photo. So for a change there are a lot of recipes.

I am busy in the garden still, but I doubt anyone but me would be excited to see photos of pots of potting compost. I’m still waiting on my dual-coloured rose. I have my seeds, but no germinating weather yet. I’m filling pots gradually and storing them in recycled trays in the greenhouse. The weather has been extremely changeable these days and it’s making Jack weary, but have no worries, dear reader, I have recipes to test and little gardening tasks to occupy me and flowering treasures to behold. I’d pick up again soon and the Jack posts will be plentiful. So, for now, eat your groats, gobble your seeds and know that Jack is always here, except when he’s not. Until we meet again.

Ingredients

45g or 1/4 Cup of Raw Buckwheat Groats
1/4 Tbsp Olive Oil or Butter
Salt to Taste, If Desired

Method

1. Add the Olive Oil and Buckwheat to a pot or non-stick frying pan and cook on a medium heat until the Buckwheat is fragrant and has taken on a dark golden colouration. Pour onto a plate to cool. Store in an airtight container and use as needed.

Microwave Buckwheat and Rice Flour Cake

 photo WP_20170114_013_e_zpsf9r8q4hx.jpgA microwave bread recipe for every reader of the blog. All seven of you.

I’m joking of course, there are far more than seven readers. There are right? I better check! Here I am again, this time no hyper-linking, with another slight twist in the saga of microwave cakes and breads. I wanted to try buckwheat and rice flour because they often marry well in fast to bake or cook recipes. Pancakes and quick, instant almost, cakes are the perfect medium for the basic rice flour and the ever outstanding buckwheat. Outstanding, me? Well, yes, I guess I am often out standing…in the garden. Not much to say here. As a standard these breads and cakes are fluffy, easy to get ready and are all just slightly different enough to be interesting. This one is much nicer than an all rice flour version, it has the lightness, but none of the rubberiness. I went with sweet as I felt like a peanut butter and chia jam sandwich. The all buckwheat makes for a great sandwich bread if you omit the sweet elements. These prove how easy gluten free can be even without gums or added starches. A quick post as I have another coming in a moment. Pop to the microwave category and you’ll get a better idea of what these breads offer. See you in a moment.

Ingredients

23g Buckwheat Flour
23g Brown And White Blend Rice Flour
7g Ground Flaxseed (1 Tbsp)
1 Tsp GF Baking Powder
1 Large Egg
50ml Milk or Water
15g Sugar
Dash Vanilla Extract

Method

1. Grease microwave safe bowl with Butter or Olive Oil.

2. Whisk together the Egg, Milk, Vanilla Extract and Sugar. Then Whisk in the Flours, Flax and Baking Powder. Batter will be smooth and thick. Pour into greased bowl.

3. Cook on full heat for 3 minutes. Cake should be springy to the touch and will double in size. Place plate on top of the bowl and turn out. Let cool slightly and serve.

Variations:

 photo WP_20170119_006_e_zpsxceaounr.jpgSticky Coffee Gingerbread

For the Cake: Use 25g Brown Sugar. Add 30g Treacle alongside side Egg and replace Milk with strongly brewed Espresso. Add 1/4 Tsp Ground Cinnamon, Ginger, Allspice, 1/8 Tsp Ground Nutmeg, Cloves and a pinch of Black Pepper, or 1 Tsp Gingerbread Spice Blend, along with Flour. Cake may take up to 3 minutes to cook.

For the Sauce: Add 25g Brown Sugar and 50ml strongly brewed Espresso to a saucepan. Keeping stirred, heat on a medium-high heat until Coffee has evaporated and Sugar has thickened slightly and started to Bubble. Remove from heat and stir in 1 Tbsp Butter and a dash of Vanilla Extract. Return to the heat and cook until everything has combined and thickened slightly, should take a few minutes at most. Pour over Gingerbread.

Buckwheat and Quinoa Flour Baps

27th November 2016 Update: Just a quick note. You can toast these and they do get a nice crunch to the exterior, though as they cool they will soften, but still retain that slight crunch. They freeze fine too.

 photo WP_20161124_001_e_zpsgbpejkad.jpgQuinoa Flour always seems to have a slightly yellow tinge.

Okay, why a bap? Well, I can only draw from the well of my own recollections and from what I remember of breadables, which is less and less as time keeps to its inexorable pace, a bap was soft, all but crust-less and fairly light but with a bit of chew. So, yeah, this is a bap. I could call it a roll, a dinner roll, hey, I could call it a trombone and you could still be as well off. The more observant, or those with seniority, or the ravingly devoted, may notice that this recipe reads familiar and HOW DARE YOU! I mean here I am, robbing from my own recipes, whoops!, yeah this is Buns Redux. Now instead of the slightly crusty light sweet bun we have a slightly chewer bap. I’ll get to the nitty gritty in a moment, first I’d like to confound and confuse you, dearest reader, what’s left of you that is, we seem to be hitting a rough patch in regards views, any mentions appreciated as always. What is most difficult in describing texture is out shared pool of knowledge. I usually judge these recipes by extremes. You have gluten free breads that are almost mush, baked but unappetising, I’ve made and eaten them in my time, but these days I prefer a firmer, less sodden texture. Of course you also have the other extreme: The bone dry bread. I’ve danced along the spectrum in my time, taking what I need from each end to reach a happy middle ground. But as I say it’s hard to get the idea of what texture to expect. What can be done? Nothing much really. You just have to do what you can, be descriptive and hope that the reader has enough of a grasp of how the flours used taste when baked. Again, we’re relying on them being able to use their own knowledge and if lacking to build it up. I’m a bit under the weather, my hand seems to be moving independent of my brain, so I’ll sincerely hope this makes some sense.

 photo WP_20161124_002_e_zpstakf91fa.jpgI knew they reminded me of something. Not as mushy or bitter though.

I just had to empty the compost in the cold, didn’t I? I won’t even recall this post in a few hours. Okay, onwards, ever forwards, dear reader. So, what the difference between this and the Buckwheat and Quinoa Flour Bread? You know how to be a pest, imagined reader. The simple answer: Speed. Gotta go fast and all that. This rises fast and that changes the texture. There is more egg and fat too, but the quick bake changes how it turns out the most. It’s one of the reasons I wouldn’t just do a single loaf with this, I’d be weary on the inside cooking enough. You do end up with the usual risen top, but it’s just as soft as the rest of the bread, so it’s just an aesthetic consideration. Other than that it hasn’t got many downsides. It’s firm, not dry and only tastes faintly of quinoa flour, though that might be me getting used to it. It is very close to the buns, but the sugar being ditched and flaxseed added for extra liquid retention and softness changes it into a different experience. It really shows the important of balance in these kinds of recipes. A little change creates something new when the understanding of ingredients is there. Man, that’s smug, I’m sorry, but it’s true. Just simpler than it sounds. Keep grinding away in that kitchen and you’re bound to level up. One heads up: The batter will be extremely thing, just a bare hint of resistance, that’s the way quinoa breads seem to work for some reason. I dumped in the 100ml of water, but it needed a little more, hence the odd instruction below. Now, what you’ll use this for is up to you. I do have to plug another recipe, not my own, it’s here. I did once toy with travel sandwiches, but I bow to better experience and skill contained three in. The buns are really wonderful too, I’ve made something similar with another of the site’s recipes. Check it out and see what you’ll find to try. I have one in the freezer that’ll probably just become a peanut butter and jam sandwich. I’m just not fancy, but much beloved regardless, right? That’s why you’re here, for me, not the recipes. Shhhh. Don’t say anything or I might cry. Okay, all joking aside, I’ll be somewhere. You’ll see me when you see me. Go eat your baps and be good.

P.S I didn’t bother with salt as I’ve heard, maybe erroneously, that it breaks down eggs when resting, I didn’t want to risk it. You can season them as you see fit.

 photo WP_20161124_003_e_zpsjekx15vm.jpgCut hot, but gets softer and nicer as it cools.

Ingredients

50g Buckwheat Flour
50g Quinoa Flour
12g Ground Flaxseed
1 Tsp Baking Powder
60ml Olive Oil
2 Medium Eggs
125ml Water

Makes 2 Baps.
Can be Frozen.

Method

1. Pre-heat the oven to 175c (Fan). Grease, with Butter or Olive Oil, and line two 4 1/2 Inch Spring-form Tins.

2. Add the Flours, Flaxseed and Baking Powder and add in Olive Oil and Eggs. Mix everything together. Add about 100ml water and then keep adding water, a little at a time, until a runny batter has been formed. Let rest for 5 minutes. The Batter should be stirrable, but not thick.

4. Pour Batter into Tins, about half full and bake for 20 minutes, turning half way if needed, until light golden and a skewer comes out clean. Then remove from oven and cool for 15 minutes then remove from tins and transfer to a wire-rack to cool completely.

 photo WP_20161124_005_e_zpsr6jsmvkh.jpgDo other people use the term bap? I hope it isn’t something terrible somewhere else.

Microwave Banana Flour Cake

 photo WP_20161103_004_e_zps89jutpq9.jpgWibble wobble, goes the cake. I wonder if it’s cooked goes the baker.

In your heart of hearts you believed in me. You knew that given enough time I’d make something decent with banana flour. Your faith in me is boundless. I am the rock that you stand on. Truly I am humbled by your great admiration of me. Or not, whatever. So, here we are, yet another microwave cake, this recipe could almost be described as foolproof. It seems to work with almost any flour, bar almond flour, and each only changes the recipe slightly. But you know me, I won’t make claims without tests. So, banana flour, in a microwave cake. It’s still got that strong taste, the sugar cuts that down, the cake is really light and airy. Less spongy than when using quinoa flour, just puffy and airy. I did find it very filling. You might be best to share this with someone. Nothing much to note here. It’s fine, fine and dandy. I’ve run out of anything to say, honestly. I planted some garlic today. A bulb’s worth of organic garlic cloves. It worked last year. I also have two miniature roses I’ll be growing in the greenhouse. I hope to get cutting and to repot these when they start to become dormant. These force grown flowers don’t always do well, but they were really cheap so I thought I’d take a chance. Okay, I have another recipe, which will be posted when I can figure out what to call it. See you soon.

 photo WP_20161103_006_e_zpsoncefdko.jpgIf you have friends you could foist some of it off on them. They may not be your friends for long. Joking….sorta.

Ingredients

45g Banana Flour
7g Ground Flaxseed (1 Tbsp)
1 Tsp GF Baking Powder
1 Large Egg
50ml Milk or Water
30g Sugar
Dash Vanilla Extract

Method

1. Grease microwave safe bowl with Butter or Olive Oil.

2. Whisk together the Egg, Milk, Vanilla Extract and Sugar. Then Whisk in the Flour, Flax and Baking Powder. Batter will be smooth and runny. Pour into greased bowl.

3. Cook on full heat for 2-2 1/2 minutes. Cake should be springy to the touch and will triple in size. Place plate on top of the bowl and turn out. Let cool slightly and serve.

Amaranth Flour and Yoghurt Flat Breads

 photo WP_20161012_001_e_zpswoxuogtn.jpgFreshly ground flour. “For freshness?” Nah, I just can’t buy it.

Ah, amaranth flour, or rajgira flour. Favoured in Indian cuisine…Hah! Got ya! You thought I was going into a generic spiel about amaranth flour, with smug overtones when I speak of Indian cooking as if I’m some expert. I tell you I wish I could eat more Indian recipes, but my many restrictions put the kibosh on that, sadly. I have been on a lot of Indian blogs recently because of my many searches for uses for amaranth flour. I ended up going to my own Quinoa Flour recipe and adapting it. I left out the water as amaranth flour and too much water don’t mix, literally and figuratively. So, I hope India will forgive yours truly, dearest reader. The forgiveness, eagle-eyed reader? I’ve, er, never eaten flatbread outside of what I’ve made myself. Today we have a flat bread recipe using amaranth flour. I’m getting a better understanding of amaranth flour, I have another idea in the works so watch this space.

 photo WP_20161012_002_e_zpspnqucdox.jpgFlat bread and…dirty sink. Ah, food photography.

So, there’s not much to say on the preparation. It comes together fast, there’s no need to add water at all. You can get it fairly thin but push it too far and it’ll tear apart, thankfully it can be easily reworked and re-rolled. A quick fry and Jack’s your forever friend. It tastes of yoghurt, that slightly bitter edge that natural yoghurt has and there is an after taste of amaranth. Nothing too much if you’re used it it. They’re best hot. They have a slight crunch at the edge and a chewy centre. Not a raw chewiness, just a pleasant bite. They’d be great with  a yoghurt based curry, I have a couple of nightshade free kormas and one yoghurt curry (Here, here and here respectively) so you have options. The nice thing with this recipe is that you’re getting a serving of amaranth and all its respective worth. Even if you only eat one that still a decent hit of nutrition. That’s it for today. Not much I can really say on it. A simple recipe, but a nice one to have. Okay, I’ll see you later.

 photo WP_20161012_003_e_zpsvahx6k9x.jpgI didn’t eat it before taking the photo this time!

Ingredients

50g Amaranth Flour
35g Low Fat Natural Yoghurt
1 Tsp Olive Oil
Pinch Salt

Makes Three Small Flat-breads.

Method

1. Add dry ingredients to a bowl. In a separate bowl mix together the remaining ingredients and stir into the Flour with a fork until everything has combined. Knead the mixture until a slightly sticky firm dough has been formed. Form Dough into a ball and cover in cling-film and leave in the fridge for half an hour. Dough will be firm to the touch, but slightly sticky when worked.

3. Split the dough into three parts and roll out, between two sheets of greaseproof paper, into rough fairly thin circles. Handle carefully when transferring to the pan.

4. Heat some Oil in a pan and on a high heat cook the Flat-bread for until browned and blistered then flip and do the same for the other side. Repeat for all Flat-breads.

Amaranth Flour Peanut Butter Biscuits

 photo WP_20160925_001_e_zpsnacdkgjj.jpgI was left wondering if they’d even bake.

I was reading a book that explored the idea of the little parts of our personalties that make up the whole, the ego, or whatever, the id? I forget, as individual voices. It was a horror book nothing that deep, but it did get me thinking about how I write these posts. I often tell the bare truth, sometimes pessimistic sounding I’m sure, but I don’t intend to be that way, really I don’t, dear reader, it’s just I hate to mislead or give a false idea of anything I’m doing here. So if ever the posts here seem to be a shade negative please remember that it’s not ill intentioned, the opposite is probably closer to the truth. Now, in saying that I like to think we keep it breezy and light on the whole We? Why Jack and I! Jack is me, right? Of course. I think Jack is the part of me that’s come about from trying to be better, it’s not the realist in me that drove me to be better, that pushed me to success, that’s the hard voice in all this, instead it’s the part that willing to try, to accept failure and not be crushed by it. Jack is the part of me that’s hoping and believing in hope. You came here for cookies, biscuits whatever, not for a psychological breakdown of your favourite blogger. I am right? Don’t answer that, I think it’d break my heart if you told me the truth. I’m joking, I’m obviously well-beloved. You’re good people is what I’m saying.

 photo WP_20160925_002_e_zps6ipkxtpp.jpgHere, have a biscuit.

I’m going to run through the biscuits preparation, tweaks and baking, fairly quickly and then talk a little about the future of amaranth flour in this kitchen. Sounds cool, hah, just wait, it’s mundane as all out. You’ve seen this recipe three times already, you don’t need hyper-links, right? Good. Just search for biscuits and they’ll pop up. What makes this recipe interesting is that with three very different flours it came together and baked nearly identically. Here, not so much. It was a very light dough, more of a thick batter really. I had to just scoop and plop it out. It took longer to bake and stayed very soft until it cooled. At which point it flattened and became slightly chewy, pleasantly so. So it’s a decent recipe on the whole. I used coconut sugar on a whim and it gave it a wonderful taste. I also skipped creaming the butter and sugar as it’s hard to cream so little to a fluffy consistency. So what of Amaranth? Well, it’s an oddity. It’s an absorbent seed that when used as a flour absorbs liquid but doesn’t dry or firm up. It stays light and fluffy. Where buckwheat and quinoa will take in moisture and become firm amaranth doesn’t. It feels like porridge even when used as a flour. Now what I think so far is this: It’d be better used sparingly and in conjunction with another flour. I can see it giving a bit of bounce to a recipe, but with too much it could just make baked goods soggy. I haven’t reached a real understanding of it yet, I will, I hope, in time, but that will take a lot of tests and trials. But when I do it will be more than just a flour used in a blend, seemly at random, it’ll be used to its fullest potential. That takes time. Thankfully I have amaranth and ample time. Watch this space.

Ingredients

90g Amaranth Flour
85g Coconut Sugar
60g Natural Peanut Butter or Any Natural Nut Butter
60g Butter
1 Flax Egg (1 Tbsp Flaxseed and 3 Tbsp Water)
1/2 Tsp Baking Powder
Dash of Vanilla Extract

Makes 13 Biscuits.

Method

1. Preheat oven to 160c (Fan) and line a baking tray with greaseproof paper.

2. Mix the Sugar and Butter together with a fork until combined. Then mix in the Peanut Butter and the Flax Egg until fully incorporated. Finally stir in the Amaranth Flour and Baking Powder until a slightly sticky and very light dough has been formed. Rest for 5 minutes.

3. Scoop 1 Tbsp worth of the dough onto the prepared tray. Don’t flatten out as they will spread while baking. When all the dough has been used up bake the Biscuits for 20 minutes until golden and just slightly firm to the touch. Let the biscuits cool on the tray for 10 minutes, they should be firmer, though still a little soft they should be able to be handled, by then and then transfer to a wire-rack to cool completely.