Sunday, December 28, 2008

Butternut Pumpkin Bread

Gluten free bread is the pits. The stuff you buy in the shops is like rubber and I just cannot eat it. It also has heaps of additives and is usually high in fat. So I spent a couple of years eating no bread at all, and just stuck to organic corn thins and then I got fed up with it. So now I make my own bread. Homemade gluten free bread is 100 times better than store bought and you can make it to suit your own tastes. This pumpkin bread is delicious, light and full of goodness. I'm mathematically challenged - so don't expect measurements in my recipes ;)


  • 1 whole small butternut pumpkin or a larger one split into 2.
  • rice bran oil
  • gluten free SR flour
  • Massel vegetable stock
  • Healthy additives to suit you: caramelised onions, cranberries, nutmeg, fruit (if you want a sweeter bread), garlic - the possibilities are endless.

First you need to bake your butternut pumpkin whole or in two halves as pictured, trickle with a little rice bran oil if desired and bake for 45 minutes at 200c

Once your pumpkin is baked, let it cool before removing the seeds, peeling off the skin and mashing. If you baked the larger pumpkin, then only mash half of it. Put the other half aside.
Add vegestock powder to taste, a dash of oil and add the additional ingredients if desired. I added caramelised onions and cranberries this time. Mash well, then start adding flour in small increments. Use one hand to mix and one to hold the bowl. Keep adding flour until you form a pliable dough that doesn't stick to your hand.

Form your dough into a loaf shape, and score the loaf with criss cross patterns as shown. Place in a 200c oven for 35minutes.

If you have some leftover roast pumpkin. Top with cranberry sauce and enjoy while the bread is cooking ;) Yumm Alternatively, you could add it to a soup to serve with your bread.

To check is bread is ready, tap with a knife. If it sounds hollow, it's ready! Put it on a cooling rack to enjoy later.

Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

'twas the night before Christmas and all through the house, not a creature was stirring - Not even a mouse!

Well, I do believe Santa has been tonight and has enjoyed his delicious snack. He even left a lovely thankyou note. I'm glad Santa was here to eat it, because I definitely wouldn't be drinking milo or eating gluten filled ginger bread. No wonder Santa is so bloated ;) It was lovely of Rudolph to share the grapes and apple with me however :)

Santa snacks

Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Umeboshi? Perche?

I first discovered umeboshi, which are preserved salty Japanese apricots (ume), in Italy of all places. I was working in Firenze (Florence) as a nanny, and my boss, who once owned a vegetarian supermarket, only bought the best organic and biodynamic produce. She also had a chef come in once a week to cook her a special lunch. The rest of the week I was cooking for them, and believe me - Italian families love to eat. I learnt so much about cooking while living there, mostly Italian, but surprisingly some Asian cooking.
One of the things that this family liked to use in their cooking was umeboshi. . They also taught me about the therapeutic properties of umeboshi - which came in handy, as I got travel sick every time I went in their car.
The first time I tried umeboshi, was in a vinegar form on top of a light tofu salad. I would also take the whole umeboshis in the car with me to eat when I felt car sick.
I loved umeboshi instantly, and knew when I got home to Australia that I'd miss this lovely red salty stuff. Lucky for me, they sell it here too.
I now have umeboshi vinegar, puree and whole fruits on hand at all times and use it for many different dishes, especially for onigiri (rice balls) and sushi. My little boy loves to have it on everything.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Blog at last

So after years of blog envy and being dared to start a blog of my own - I'm here in all my pinkness. Being a procrastinator of the highest order, expect this blog to be slow. My blog is about cooking. I am very passionate about food and cooking. I am a vegan coeliac, so my diet is very restricted and that forces me to be a little creative. My five year old son, is not vegan or coeliac - but he is dairy free. Here I will tell you about great new recipes I've tried, with some help from experts and some of my own creative attempts. Whatever I make, I promise it will be delicious - as I only eat the best ;)
My particular interest is in Japanese cuisine, especially Bento boxes. Yes, I'm one of those mad bento mums! I also have an interest in Khmer cuisine, because my son is from Cambodia. Italian cuisine, because I lived in Italy and am studying an MA in Italian. And anything else that is vegan and delicious. Hope you will enjoy my blog.