Archive for the ‘Gluten-free’ Category

Gluten-free, Dairy-free Bibingka

In Bake, Gluten-free, Oven on December 19, 2015 at 1:00 am

Today, I read something beautiful from the Facebook Page of MS—Living Symptom-Free that says, “When MS knocks you down, roll over and look at the stars”. So that’s what I’m attempting to do today—look at the stars.

Anyway, ‘tis the season to be jolly, and in the spirit of nostalgia (and trying to add flavor to my life), here is my take on gluten-free, dairy-free bibingka that doesn’t use refined sugar.

First of all, preheat your oven at 190ºC before preparing your ingredients.


Get a small circular cake tin (about 7 inches in diameter), grease with either coconut oil or sunflower oil, then line with a banana leaf, cut to fit the container. Lightly spray with sunflower oil then set aside.

In a medium-sized bowl, sift together a cup non-glutenous rice flour, a fourth of an eight (or 0.03125) teaspoon (or let’s just say a very frugal Ebenezer Scrooge dash) of salt, and 1 ½ teaspoon of baking powder.


In a separate container, whisk together:

  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoons of coconut sugar
  • ¼ cup of Ayam™ gluten-free coconut cream
  • ¼ almond milk
  • 2 tablespoons of coconut oil
  • 1 tablespoon of Earth Balance™ dairy-free, soy-free and gluten-free butter
    Add the flour mix into the batter and mix till smooth. Pour into the baking container you prepared earlier. Top with the whites of the salted eggs and place it in the oven to bake. I included the yolk just for the picture, but removed it before eating it because it’s just too salty for my taste (or maybe it’s because this recent bug has compromised my tastebuds).

    After 15 minutes, shift the temperature to 150ºC and leave to bake for another 20 minutes. Lightly coat it with some Earth Balance™ dairy-free, soy-free and gluten-free butter, and top with coconut shavings. Eat with your favorite morning beverage.

    This should feed 4 people, so enjoy a piece and find 3 people to share this with (or chuck it in the fridge so you can heat and serve it later). It’s tempting, but don’t gobble this up on your own in one go. And that’s true for most of the recipes on this website.


    Beef, Corn and Carrots Chilli with Rice

    In Crockpot, Gluten-free, Uncategorized on December 12, 2015 at 10:24 am

    MS loves its surprises, and just when I think I’ve got a handle on things, it throws me a curveball, and I’m back to zero. Socrates once said, “The only true wisdom is in knowing you know nothing.” Being aware that I know jack (no, not the one who perished because he gallantly let Rose monopolize the use of a wooden door as a flotation device when that ship sank in that movie) is as close to true wisdom as I can get. 

    There’s a protocol for people with MS. It maintains that lean beef and chicken liver enhance brain function. Seeing as there isn’t any chicken liver handy at the moment, lean beef seems like a good idea. 

    Anyway, to make this mock chilli:

    1. Sauté ground beef (1 lb.) in 2 tablespoons olive oil. Season with 2 teaspoons of salt and 3 teaspoons of pepper.  


    2. Add 2 heads of onions (chopped), saute till translucent, then put in the following:
    — 2 cups of corn & carrots (or red kidney beans, if you’re allowed)
    — 2 bell peppers (chopped)
    — 2 cups of crushed tomatoes
    — 1 tablespoon of smoked paprika
    — 2 tablespoons of cumin
    — 1 tablespoon of chilli flakes
    — 1 tablespoon of chilli powder
    — ¼ cup of water
    — 1 cup of red wine

    3. Leave to simmer till cooked. Serve with parsley and RiCo™ Corn Rice. 

    Cashew Butter-Maple-Pili Cookies

    In Bake, Gluten-free, Oven on December 7, 2015 at 9:28 am

    My nutbutters arrived today. They are delicious and sourced from a local supplier. My husband has been so sweet about taking care of me that I decided to surprise him with this before my chronic fatigue sets in again, and I turn into a pumpkin. Been ill lately, and I’m trying to lighten things up because I want his memories of me to be happy, tinged with love, laughter, and good food.

    Anyway, it’s pretty simple to make. I can’t see that well so I’m hoping this turned out okay.

    Whisk the following together till creamy:

  • 2 tablespoons of Earth Balance™ soy-free, dairy-free and gluten-free butter
  • 2 tablespoons of walnut oil
  • 2 tablespoons of Made by Max™ Cashew Butter Crunchy Cacao
  • ½ cup of raw coconut sugar
  • 1 tablespoon of maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon of vanilla extract
  • 1 whole egg
    Add the following dry ingredients and blend well:

  • ¾ cup almond flour
  • ½ cup potato starch
  • ¼ cup of cassava flour
  • ½ cup of rice flour
  • 1 teaspoon of baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon of cream of tartar
  • ⅛ teaspoon of salt
  • Scoop each cookie ball on a lined baking tin, making sure to leave ample space in between each of them as they will expand.
    Drizzle with some raw coconut sugar and embed each cookie ball with glazed pili nuts.

    Bake in a preheated oven at 150ºC for 22 minutes.

    Cool and enjoy with your favorite warm beverage.

    Mug Cake

    In Bake, Dessert, Gluten-free, Oven on December 1, 2015 at 6:30 am

     After my recent relapse, I’ve been hobbling my way towards recovery. I’ve been given a cross, and told to have faith and manage my expectations.

    Admittedly, it’s a huge lifestyle shift. I’ve gone from being sturdy and efficient to relearning things that I used to be able to do with my eyes closed. No matter. I’m alive and will continue to fight the good fight.

    Moving on to happier things, my favorite kind of indulgence is one that is budget-friendly and easy to make.

    Combine the following in a huge mixing bowl:

  • ¾ cup of rice flour
  • ½ cup of potato starch
  • ¼ cup of cassava flour
  • ½ cup of raw coconut sugar
  • ½ teaspoon of salt
  • 1½ teaspoon of baking powder
  • 1 tablespoon of coffee powder
  • ½ cup of cocoa chips
  • ½ cup of dairy-free, nut-free and soy-free Enjoy Life™Semi-Sweet Mini Chips melted into 1 tablespoon of warmed up Earth Balance™
  • 1 tablespoon of Made by Max™ Cashew Crunchy Cacao
  • 2 tablespoons of coconut oil
  • 4 tablespoons of almond milk
  • a handful of crushed walnuts
  • ¼ cup of almond milk
  • 1 whole egg
    Pour in lightly greased mugs and bake in a preheated oven at 150ºC for 25 minutes (or in a microwave oven for 1 minute and 50 seconds at 1000 watts).

    Cool and top with strawberry slices. It’s in season now so I got a pack for about P100 at the supermarket.

    Holiday Banana Loaf

    In Bake, Gluten-free, Oven on October 26, 2015 at 4:40 am

    So blessed to have the kindest, most resourceful husband ever. Knowing that I haven’t been well enough to bake anything, he went through my recipes and made a loaf of Holiday Banana Goodness yesterday with stuff from our small pantry (because what could be better than cooking awesome food on a budget?). I normally despise raisins, but love them in this loaf. It was a bit charred on top, but I liked it. He also put some pumpkin seeds on it, which I think is creative (you don’t have to do this bit—you can sprinkle yours with muesli, granola, crushed walnuts or whatever strikes your fancy).


    Combine the following dry ingredients:

  • 1 cup of rice flour
  • ¾ cup of potato starch
  • ¼ cup of cassava starch
  • ½ cup of coconut sugar
  • 1½ teaspoon of baking powder
  • 1 tablespoon of coffee powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon of salt
    Include the following wet ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons of coconut oil
  • 1 tablespoon of butter
  • 113g of unsweetened apple sauce
  • ¼ cup of water
  • 2 mashed bananas
    Blend everything well then add:

  • ½ cup raisins
  • ½ cup walnuts
  • ½ cup of chocolate chips
    Fold in 2 egg whites beaten to a stiff peak. Pour in a greased and lined loaf tin, top with either muesli, crushed walnuts, pumpkin seeds, whathaveyou, and bake at 180ºC for 30 to 35 minutes.

    Eat with a scoop of dairy-free, gluten-free chocolate gelato from Gelatissimo™, and/or a dollop of cashew nutbutter in vanilla chai from Made by Max™.

    Mini Chocolate Pecan Cakes

    In Bake, Dessert, Gluten-free, Oven on October 9, 2015 at 8:06 am

    Down with the flu. It’s just the thing that a person with an auto-immune disease needs. Ah, well, what’s life without a bit of peril, eh? To cheer me up, my husband made me a sweet treat that‘s gluten-free and dairy-free. Huzzah!

    Can’t really see straight, but I really appreciate his effort, and his ability to follow my old recipes. This is a simple one.

    In a food processor, combine:

  • ¼ cup of almond flour
  • ¼ cup of potato starch
  • ¼ cup of tapioca flour
  • ½ cup of cocoa powder
  • ½ cup of coconut sugar
  • 2 tablespoons of coconut oil
  • 2 tablespoons of walnut oil
  • ¼ cup of crushed pecans
  • ½ teaspoon of salt
  • 1½ teaspoon of baking powder
  • ¼ cup of almond milk
  • 1 tablespoon of coffee powder
  • 1 whole egg
    Place in 4 regular-sized ramekins that have been greased and lined. Top each cake with more crushed pecans.


    Either bake the batter in a preheated oven for 35 minutes at 180ºC or microwave it at 1000 watts for 2 minutes.

    Serve with a scoop of gluten-free, dairy-free and sugarfree ice cream and some ripe strawberries. 

    No-bake Hazelnutbutter Balls

    In Dessert, Gluten-free on September 20, 2015 at 10:14 am

    This is my gluten-free, dairy-free version of an old favorite that I am no longer allowed to have, but have fond memories of. I figured this one out after I noticed how the dryer version of my hazelnutbutter was malleable like dough, and tasted like Ferrero Rocher™ (except, let’s face it, the original is waaaayyy better, but this is yummy, too, it’s just not too much like Ferrero—more like the niece of the wife of the cousin of its distant cousin). 

    It’s pretty simple: get a tablespoon of hazelnutbutter (used a homemade version which recipe appears after this), flatten it on your palm, put a dot of Made by Max™ cashew butter in crunchy cacao (or any nutbutter of your choice), seal and roll into a ball, then roll on a bed of crushed rice crispies or gluten-free cornflakes. Place each ball in a muffin cup and refrigerate for at least a couple of hours. Enjoy in moderation. 



    Pop the following in a blender and process till smooth:

  • 1 cup of hazelnuts (lightly roasted)
  • ½ cup of coco sugar
  • ½ cup of unsweetened cocoa
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon of salt
  • 2 tablespoons of coconut oil
  • 1 tablespoon of non-dairy, soy-free, GF butter like Earth Balance™
  • ½ cup of distilled water

    Place in a sterilized jar and enjoy!


    I chopped one ball into quarters and built my own chocolate treat with it on top.


    Gluten-free Soy-free Teriyaki Sauce

    In Bake, Bread, Dimsum, Gluten-free, Oven, Pie, Wok on September 16, 2015 at 2:33 am

    Since 2014, I have been exploring ways to make my highly restrictive diet more flavorful. That is why I was psyched to stumble upon Juniper’s Teriyaki sauce recipe. Made some minor revisions with some of the ingredients, but it’s more or less the same thing. Very happy with the result.


    In a heavy-bottom pan, over medium heat, stir together using a steel whisk:

  • a cup of water
  • 2 tablespoons of honey
  • 5 tablespoons of raw coco sugar
  • ½ teaspoon of ground ginger (I used my ground pickled ginger, which recipe is so simple, I will also share it here)
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • ¼ cup of coconut soy sauce replacement (I found an affordable version at the Saturday market—so yummy)
    Bring to a simmer then add 2 tablespoons of cornstarch that has been dissolved in ¼ cup of cold water. Turn off the heat. Cool and transfer to a sterilized jar before storing it in the fridge. Mine was good for up to a couple of weeks. It would have probably lasted longer, but we finished the sauce too soon to find out.


    This is what we used to create the savory filling of the Pao Dough we made. Really handy and yummy.


    Savory Tuna Filling for the Pao Dough

  • Sauté a cup of cubed tuna (or you can just pick canned tuna in water) over low heat in a tablespoon of safflower or sunflower oil. Add crudely chopped garlic and onions, and a couple of bay leaves.
  • Put in the corn and carrot bits (like the ones that come un freezer packs).
  • Once the veggies are cooked, press the tuna cubes with your ladle and let them flake.
  • Add 4 tablespoons of the teriyaki sauce that you made earlier on. Turn off the flame and cover the pan as you make your Pao Dough.
  • Fill each dough ball with the savory tuna mix, seal and bake for 20 to 25 minutes at 200ºC.

    Cranberry and Nutbutter Cashew Cakes

    In Bake, Breakfast, Dessert, Gluten-free, Oven on September 8, 2015 at 5:01 am

    Feeling a little bit like the Mad Hatter today, having tea with the awesome White Rabbit. Made a batch of cashew cakes for breakfast and the hubby’s packed lunch. The best kind of recipe is one which ingredients are simple and easily accessible. 
    Sift together:

  • 1 cup of rice flour
  • ¼ cup of cornstarch
  • ½ cup of potato starch
  • ¼ cup of cassava starch l
  • ½ cup of raw coco sugar
  • 1½ teaspoons of Calumet™ baking powder
  • ⅛ teaspoon of salt
    Create a well in the middle of the mix and add:

  • 2 tablespoons of sunflower or safflower oil
  • ½ cup of pineapple juice
  • ¼ cup of water
  • ¼ cup almond milk
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
    Mix the wet and dry ingredients well, then fold in 2 egg whites beaten to a stiff peak with a teaspoon of cream of tartar. Blend the first half of the egg whites in the batter till smooth then carefully fold in the remaining half.


    Cover the bottom of each greased cupcake tin with split cashews before pouring the batter. Bake in a preheated oven at 180ºC for 35 minutes, or till it passes the toothpick test.


    Create a small hole in the middle of each cupcake and place half a teaspoon of almond butter and half a teaspoon of cranberry sauce. For this recipe, I used a special sample jar of Made by Max™ plain almond butter (so yummy) and TESCO™ Cranberry Sauce (which, incidentally, is great with chicken, but that’s for another recipe). Crown with crushed roasted walnuts. Serve with black coffee or your choice of tea.


    This recipe should make 10 small cupcakes. Serving size is 2 per person.


    Coco Pao or Buchi Dough

    In Bake, Bread, Dessert, Dimsum, Gluten-free, Oven on September 5, 2015 at 5:30 am

    Having an autoimmune disease is tricky business. Apart from the chronic pain and fatigue that come with MS, food containing dairy, gluten, soy and yeast are not allowed. I miss real bread, but that has yeast, so that’s out of the question. I was looking for something that would give me a similar dough lift yeast has (because, let’s face it—there’s no way in heck I’m ever going to enjoy the good old yeasty rolls again). Here’s a play on the old pâte à choux recipe.

      Nice and crunchy on the outside, soft and hollow on the inside.

    Nice and crunchy on the outside, soft and hollow on the inside.

    Whisk together in a heavy-bottom pan over low heat:

  • 1 cup coconut cream (full fat)
  • ¼ cup water
  • ⅛ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup sunflower or safflower oil

    Fantastic texture—eat it plain or with a filling of your choice

    Fantastic texture—eat it plain or with a filling of your choice

    When the liquid starts to slightly bubble, turn off the fire and pour in 2 cups cassava flour in one swoop. Mix till smooth. This will require some muscle power, so brace yourself. Of course, if you have a standing mixer, you can use that, too.

    Gluten-free Pao

    Gluten-free Pao

    When the dough resembles a thicker version of the slime from Sigourney Weaver’s “Alien”, add eggs (1 whole egg and 1 egg white whisked together), and 2 tablespoons of Tofutti™ Ricotta.

    I filled this with homemade hazelnut spread.

    I filled this with homemade hazelnut spread.

    Mix till everything is well incorporated. Using an ice cream scoop, place the paos on a lined cookie tin, and bake in a preheated oven at 200ºC for 25 to 30 minutes, or until it browns and doubles in size.

    You can roll it in sesame seeds before baking. I didn't do that because I forgot.

    You can roll it in sesame seeds before baking. I didn’t do that because I forgot.

    Because it’s a dough puff, you can use it to make gluten-free buchi. Pick a filling of your choice. I picked my homemade hazelnut spread that uses no refined sugar and tastes like the center of a Ferrero Rocher™ (man, I have good memories of that product). Get a small scoop of your cassava dough, press the middle with your thumb, add a teaspoon of filling, then seal and roll into a ball before placing them on a lined cookie tin, and baking them in a preheated oven at 200ºC for 25 to 30 minutes, or until they brown and double in size.


    Gluten-free Hazelnut Buchi—yum!

    Gluten-free Hazelnut Buchi—yum!

    Next time, I’m using cooked tuna with veggies or some other savory filling.

    Next time, I’m using cooked tuna with veggies or some other savory filling.