Xanthan-Free Zone

Real food, incidentally gluten-free.

Archive for July, 2010

Adult Chocolate Cake

The flourless chocolate cake is second only to the orange and almond cake as a GF baking standard. Here’s my version, not too sweet, but with powerful chocolate flavour.

1/3 cocoa
1/3 cup water
150g unsalted butter
150g good dark chocolate
1 cup brown sugar
1 1/4 cups hazelnut meal
4 eggs, separated

Preheat oven to 150C.

Combine cocoa, water, butter and chocolate in small saucepan and heat gently until everything’s melted and combined smoothly. Remove from heat, stir in sugar, hazelnut meal and and yolks. Pour into a bowl and leave to cool. Beat egg whites until fluffy then fold into chocolate mixture in two or more batches.

Bake in oven in lined springform tin for about an hour. It might still be a bit moist in the middle but should appear cooked and have a cracked surface. Leave to cool before removing from pan.

Can be served with some kind of dairy product and/or strawberries. Enjoy.


Pineapple Peanut & Kale Stew

This is my favourite kind of recipe, one that sounds so weird it must be gross, but is actually delicious. When my brother saw the giant purple kale I bought at the markets, he insisted I cook this recipe, which gave me an excuse to borrow his Moosewood Restaurant Cooks at Home book, from which this recipe is derived, and which is awesome. This recipe uses tinned pineapple but, no offense to Golden Circle, I think it’s sad to use tinned pineapple in Queensland. (The book also contains a recipe for how to cut up a mango. So sad!).

1 onion, chopped (I prefer red)
2 garlic cloves, chopped up
1 bunch of kale
2 cups diced fresh pineapple
1/2 cup peanut butter
couple of chilis or tbsp tabasco sauce
1/2 cup chopped fresh coriander
salt to taste

Crushed peanuts and spring onions as a garnish.

Saute onion, garlic and chilis (if using) in oil until lightly browned. Remove stems from kale and cut up finely or shred. Add pineapple to onions, then add kale and cook until tender. If it seems to dry out, just add some water (but you know that already, don’t you). Kale can be pretty tough and need a good blasting, so it’s good to taste it and check. Add peanut butter and tabasco (if using), and coriander. Salt to taste. Serve with rice and garnishes and enjoy!

Orange/Mandarin Baked Tofu

This recipe is adapted from an excellent one in Veganomicon by Isa Chandra Moskowitz and Terry Hope Romero, which is one of my favourite new cookbooks. They suggest theirs is “Caribbean-themed” but I’ve tweaked my version to be just vaguely Chinese-themed. This recipe solved my problem of having to use large amounts of tofu before it goes off; the marinated tofu keeps better in the fridge than unmarinated, and leftovers keep better than raw tofu. I buy this absolutely beautiful fresh tofu via Food Connect or sometimes at the Northey St City Farm markets,¬†which is made in Stanthorpe by Suveda and David Hardwick. It’s a firm-style tofu but much softer and creamier in texture than the ones you can buy elsewhere. I usually also make this with the super-delicious orange/mandarin juice available from Food Connect, but you can just juice an orange or use bought juice if that’s what you have.

500g firmish tofu
1/3 cup orange or mandarin juice
tsp or so orange or mandarin zest
2-3 tbsp lemon or lime juice
2 tbsp tamari or other wheat-free soy sauce
1 tbsp honey
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1 tbsp shao xing wine
2 star anise, broken up
few slices of fresh ginger

Slice tofu into 1cm slices, and combine with all other ingredients in a plastic container. You can cook it immediately, but marinating overnight makes it much, much better. When you’re ready to cook, just empty the container into a flattish baking dish (I use a china quiche dish) and bake at 180C for 45 minutes to an hour, or until most of the marinade has evaporated and the tofu is browned on the exposed corners. Serve with rice and something green.

On reflection, this could probably be baked with slices of orange, and could probably also be cooked on the stove. Enjoy!