Zucchini carob brownies

After a long break, I am finally back! I am no longer following the RPAH elimination diet but I do continue to avoid soy, dairy and gluten. It is definitely hard to keep up the diet but I try still try to cook most of my meals so at least I can keep track of my intake of certain food groups that I know aren’t the best for me. My skin has gotten a lot better since then as I have been placed on some oral medication which has been extremely effective. The recipes I write from now on will all be gluten free but will not always follow the RPAH elimination diet. I’ll always try to give suggestions to keep it RPAH elimination diet friendly.

It is Spring in Australia and the zucchini has been very cheap. One week Aldi had 500g packs for 79c! I bought a little too much so I had a lot to use up before they went bad. I came across a zucchini brownie recipe which I thought I could make a gluten-free version and with carob instead of cocoa (cocoa is super high in amines). The brownies turned out pretty well, so much so that I converted my boyfriend to carob! He likes to zap them in the microwave to warm them and then cover it with coconut yoghurt and fresh blueberries.

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Zucchini carob brownies

Gluten free, dairy free, soy free, egg free, vegan

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups gluten-free plain flour (I use Aldi’s)
  • 1/2 cup carob powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons bicarbonate soda
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil (I used canola)
  • 1 cup caster sugar (up to 1 1/2 cups if it is not sweet enough for you)
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 small zucchinis, grated
  • 3-5 tablespoons water
  • Handful of chopped raw cashews

Method:

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 180°C and line your baking tin with baking paper.
  2. Add dry ingredients to a large mixing bowl and mix thoroughly. Ensure that the bicarbonate soda is not in clumps or it will taste horrible when you bite into one.
  3. Make a well in the middle of the flour and add all the wet ingredients and grated zucchini and mix well with a spoon/spatula. It is a very dry batter, practically a dough so just make sure that there are no dry spots. For my batch, I needed 5 tablespoons water. Let it stand for 5-10 mins to let the dough soak up some of the zucchini moisture.
  4. Transfer to the baking tin and spread it out evenly. Sprinkle the chopped cashews on top and bake for approx. 30 mins depending on your oven. Use a skewer to check it is cooked, it should come out clean when ready.
  5. Let it cool on a cooling rack before cutting them into pieces. It makes about 16 small brownies.

Enjoy!

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Carob cookies (RPAH elim friendly)

carob cookies

Carob cookies

Gluten free, (dairy free), soy free, nut free, failsafe, vegetarian

Ingredients:

  • 125g butter or nuttelex
  • 1 cup soft brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 1/3 cups of GF plain flour
  • 1 teaspoon bicarbonate soda
  • 2 tablespoons carob powder

Method:

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 180°C.
  2. Cream butter and sugar together with an electric beater.
  3. Add the egg and beat till mixed.
  4. Stir in the dry ingredients with a spoon or spatula (flour, sugar, bicarb soda, carob powder).
  5. Line a baking tray with baking paper and spoon 1/2-1 tablespoon of the dough on to the tray. Flatten with the spoon. Make sure you space them out as the cookie will spread when cooking.
  6. Bake for around 10-15 mins, go for a shorter time for a softer chewy cookie and longer for a more crunchy cookie.

Enjoy!

Pear Pie (RPAH elim friendly)

Dad just bought another box of pears at the market for $2! I know, it is a bit crazy isn’t it? Now we have a surplus of pears and I literally just finished making a batch of pear roll ups and I am stocked up on all my sauces… Too many pears and they are all ripening really fast! I decided to try make an apple pie but just substitute out the apple and put pears in instead. It worked out pretty well! I am not great with following recipes so I winged it this time around but here is the gist of it. I took a recipe for the pastry from the Taste.com.au website which was a plus because I could skip using the egg whites which is what my boyfriend thinks makes his hands itchy.

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Pear Pie

Gluten free, dairy free, soy free, nut free, vegetarian, failsafe

Ingredients:

Pastry –

  • 1 cup plain flour (I use Aldi’s)
  • 1/2 cup self-raising flour (I use Aldi’s)
  • 1/2 cup GF cornfour
  • 125g nuttelex, chilled and cubed (I used butter for this one)
  • 1/3 cup caster sugar
  • 1 egg yolk
  • A bit less than 1/4 cup cold water

Filling –

  • 8-9  small ripe pears (or enough to fill your pastry), peeled, cored and diced.
  • 1/2 teaspoon of citric acid (adjust to taste)

Method:

Pastry –

  1. Place flours, sugar and nuttelex in a food processor. Pulse for a bit and then blend on low till it resembles bread crumbs. You might need to stop and mix up the flour at the bottom.
  2. Add the egg yolk and water and process till it forms a dough.
  3. Take it out and knead into a ball and then wrap in cling film and refrigerate for 30 minutes till firm.
  4. Peel your pears and dice. If they are really ripe and soft like mine, then dice into larger cubes so they don’t turn into mush. If they are still a little firm still then go smaller so they can cook a bit when you bake the pie.
    If you have the type of pears that are hard then you will need to dice and then cook them on the stove till they are tender, just add a touch of water into the saucepan to avoid burning. 
  5. Add the citric acid to the pears and mix well.
  6. When the dough is cooled take 2/3 of the mix and roll it out between two sheets of baking paper till it is about an inch bigger than your tart tin. Peel off the paper every now and again to avoid deep cracks and fix cracks as you go.
  7. When it is big enough roll it onto your rolling pin and roll it on top of your tin. Push it in and fix up the edges.
  8. Put the pear mix into the pastry shell, don’t put any of the juice at the bottom to avoid a soggy pastry.
  9. Now roll out the last 1/3 of the dough cut into thin strips with a knife of a pizza cutter and criss-cross them on the top of the pie. Apply pressure to stick the dough together at intersections and the edge of the pastry.
  10. If you want, you can brush the top of the pastry with the egg white or melted butter. I skipped this so it didn’t brown as much.
  11. Bake in the oven at 180°C for 40-45 minutes or until pastry is golden brown.
  12. Allow to cool and serve warm!

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Serve with some vanilla custard or whipped cream. If we had Rice Dream ice cream, that would be perfect… Or maybe you could dust with some powdered sugar.

My parents and I found it tasted exactly like apple pie! Hope you enjoy it!