Recipe: Lemon Drizzle Cake (Mothers Day Special)

Lemon cake is always a favourite in my household and so I decided to make this far healthier version as a treat for my mum. It’s super light and fresh and substitutes in yoghurt as a healthy alternative!

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Ingredients:

For the cake

  • 75ml rapeseed oil
  • 175g self raising flour
  • 100g ground almonds
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • zest of two lemons
  • 140g golden caster sugar
  • 2 medium eggs
  • 225g 0% fat natural yoghurt

For the syrup

  • juice of two lemons
  • 85g caster sugar

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 160c fan/180c
  2. Grease and line a large circular cake tin (around 20x5cm)
  3. Mix the flour, baking powder, almonds, sugar and lemon zest in a bowl
  4. Beat the eggs in a separate bowl and stir in the yoghurt and oil
  5. Pour into the main mixture and stir together
  6. Spoon into the cake tin and cook for approx 40 minutes
  7. Heat the lemon juice and sugar for the syrup on a low heat until a syrupy consistency is reached
  8. When the cake is cooked then make holes over the top with a skewer and drizzle over the lemon syrup so it absorbs in

Optional….

I chose to add some icing to make it look prettier which you can do by mixing 100g icing sugar with 1-1/2 tbsp of warm water.

Recipe: Cranberry & Pistachio Mini Loaf Cakes

 

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I made these little loaves for some family who came round to visit, perfect accompaniment for an afternoon tea break.

Ingredients:

225g unsalted butter

225g caster sugar

1 large orange

50g pistachio nuts (buy them unshelled if possible to save time)

125g fresh cranberries

1 tsp baking powder

225g self raising flour

4 medium eggs

Mini loaf cases x 10

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 160oc fan, gasmark 4 and arrange the mini loaf cases on a baking tray
  2. Cream the butter, sugar and orange zest until the mixture is light and fluffy
  3. Add the eggs one by one and then add the flour/baking powder
  4. Fold in the nuts and cranberries but keep approx a quarter aside to use for decorating
  5. Spoon the mixture into cases and top with the remaining nuts and cranberries
  6. Cook for approx 25 minutes until a skewer comes out clean
  7. Pierce the loaves and drizzle over with the juice from the orange

Recipe: Tagliatelle with homemade asparagus sauce

This is a super scrummy light dish and this recipe is based on a serving for 2 people

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Ingredients:

175g asparagus

1 garlic clove

160g tagilatelle

100ml double cream

zest of 1 lemon

Basil leaves (to serve)

 

Method:

  1. Cut off the asparagus tips and save for later, chop the remaining asparagus finely and boil for 3 minutes with the garlic clove
  2. Blend in a food processor or nutribullet till a sauce is formed
  3. Boil the tagliatelle and asparagus tips together for 3-4 minutes until al dente
  4. At the same time pour the double cream and asparagus sauce into a separate saucepan and mix together heating through (be sure not to let it boil)
  5. Combine tagliatelle with the sauce and the lemon zest
  6. Serve

Recipe: Lemon Drizzle Sponge Cake

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20151031_133953_resizedMy boyfriend had his birthday this weekend and so I made him a lemon drizzle cake. I’m not going to pretend that this is the healthiest cake you could make because it’s not but it is simply delicious and definitely worth making for a cheat day or a birthday ūüėČ

Ingredients:

225g unsalted butter

4 medium eggs

One can of light condensed milk

55g ground almonds

5 lemons

225g self raising flour

1tsp of baking powder

1tbsp of poppyseeds

200g of icing sugar

Method:

1)Heat oven to 180/160f fan/gas mark 5.

2) Grease a 20cm loose bottomed cake tin.

3) Put the butter, eggs, milk, almonds, baking powder, flour and poppyseeds in a large mixing bowl. Add the grated zest and juice of 1 lemon and whisk together until smooth and light in colour.

4) Bake for 50-55 until the cake turns golden.

5) Prepare the lemon syrup by mixing the the juice of 3 lemons with 100g of icing sugar in a saucepan on a low heat.

6) Make holes all over the cake using a skewer and pour the syrup over the top so it is absorbed into the sponge.

7) Leave the cake to cool.

8) Once cool then make the icing by adding the juice of one lemon to the leftover 100g of icing sugar and mix until a thick pouring texture is formed. (Ensure you add the juice slowly and that the mixture does not become too runny)

9) Drizzle over the icing and it is ready to serve!

Recipe: Almond & Apricot Buns

Apricot and Almond Chelsea Buns (4)           Apricot and Almond Chelsea Buns (3)

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These aren’t a super healthy treat but as cakes go they aren’t too bad and i’ve always loved chelsea buns!!

Ingredients:

(For the Buns)

450g strong white bread flour

2 x 7g sachets easy-blend yeast

50g caster sugar

150ml warm skimmed milk

1 medium egg, beaten

50g unsalted butter – melted

1 tsp salt

(For the Topping)

25g melted unsalted butter

85g dried apricots – chopped

85g flaked almonds

25g caster sugar

2 tbsp apricot jam

Method:

  1. Combine the flour, sugar, yeast and salt in a mixing bowl amd mix thoroughly
  2. Make a hole in the centre of the mixture and pour in the milk, water, egg and butter
  3. Mix together to form a dough and knead until it is soft and springy
  4. Put the dough into another greased mixing bowl, cover with a damp towel and leave to prove for an hour. It should roughly double in size.
  5. Preheat oven to 200oc/180oc fan and grease a deep 23cm cake tin
  6. Put the dough on a floured surface and knead before rolling out to form a rectangle (approx 20x30cm)
  7. Brush the dough with the butter and sprinkle the almonds, apricots and sugar over the top
  8. Roll the dough up tightly as if making a swiss roll
  9. Divide into 8 portions using a sharp knife so they make pinwheel shapes
  10. Put into the greased baking tin and cover with a damp towel before leaving to prove for 20 minutes
  11. Bake for 10 minutes
  12. Lower the oven by 20oc and cook for a further 10 minutes until the buns turn golden brown
  13. Melt the jam in a saucepan with a tbsp of water
  14. Brush over the buns to glaze them and top with some more flaked almonds

Recipe: Turkey & Spring Onion Burgers

 

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I am attempting to get my family to adapt to a healthier lifestyle so made my first homemade burgers. I served these with sweet potato fries (3 sweet potatoes worth) as they are a favourite of mine and some broccoli. The burgers came out really well and I can’t believe it’s taken me till now to make them, will definitely be making again in the future.

This recipe makes approx 4 burgers depending on how large/small you want to make them.

 

Ingredients:

500g Turkey Mince

3 Spring Onions

60g grated low fat cheese

 

Method:

  1. Chop the spring onions across ways so they become small circles
  2. Mix the onion with the mince and cheese
  3. Refrigerate for around 15-20 minutes
  4. Grill on a medium heat for approx 25 minutes until they are golden brown

Recipe: Gluten Free Fig, Date & Pecan Nut Bars

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I am a huge fan of Nakd bars and so decided i’d try and make my own version of them at home. This was my first attempt at making something raw and I am looking forward to trying lots more raw recipes in the future! These are so so quick to make and easy so something for everyone.

Ingredients:

200g of pecan nuts

250g of  dried figs

100g of dried dates

1 tsp of vanilla essence

The zest of 1 orange

1 tsp of ground cinnamon

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 160oc fan/180oc conventional and cook the pecans for 3 minutes, ideally till they are a shade darker but be VERY careful that you do not burn them.
  2. Leave to cool.
  3. Once cooled, put in a food processor with all the other ingredients and blend until everything is mixed well and sticks together.
  4. Spread the mixture into a rectangular tin and put in the fridge for an hour.
  5. After the hour, move into a airtight container and store in the fridge.

Recipe: Gluten Free Flourless Chocolate & Pear Cake

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Ingredients:

– 85g butter, plus extra for tin

– 85g golden caster sugar, plus extra for tin

– 85g dark chocolate, broken into pieces

– 3 eggs, separated

– 85g ground almonds

– 3 very ripe pears, peeled halved and cored

– Icing sugar, for dusting

Method

Cut a circle into baking parchment, thus fitting the base of a 25cm loose-bottomed tin. Afterwards melt 1 tbsp of butter and brush the inside of the tin, then line the base with the parchment and brush once more with butter.

Heat the over to 180’C/fan 160’C/gas 4. Melt the chocolate and butter over a bowl of hot water, remove from the heat. Stir in the brandy and leave to cool. Whisk the egg yolks with the sugar in a large bowl until pale and highly viscous. Fold the mixture into the chocolate with the hazelnuts.

In a separate bowl, with a clean whisk, beat the whites until soft peaks appear. Try not to whisk them too stiffly or you will have an issue folding them in.

Stir in a spoonful of the whites into the chocolate mix, then carefully fold in the rest in two separate additions. Spoon into the prepared tin. Level, then arrange the pears over the mixture, cut side down.

Bake for 40 minutes until the pears are soft and the cake is cooked all the way through. Leave to cool in the tin slightly before releasing it, then place on a rack to cool completely.

Dust with icing sugar and serve.

Recipe: Low Fat Cappuccino Cake

 

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I adore coffee cake so I decided to find a healthy alternative way of making on which includes one of my favourite foods – greek yogurt!

Ingredients for the cake:

  • 1 tbsp coffee granules
  • 225g self-raising flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 25g walnut halves
  • 50g ground almonds
  • 85g light muscovado sugar
  • 50g golden caster sugar
  • 2 medium eggs
  • 250g natural or greek yoghurt
  • 75ml walnut oil

Ingredients for the filling:

  • 100g quark
  • 1 tbsp icing sugar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp icing sugar
  • 140g light mascarpone
  • 2 tbsp golden caster sugar
  • 2 tsp coffee granules

Ingredients for the topping:

  • ¬†1 tsp coffee granules
  • 1 tsp of walnut halves
  • 140g fondant icing sugar

 

The method!!

Preheat oven to 180oc/160oc fan

Grease a 10cm round tin, ideally one with a loose centre

Mix the coffee for the cake with 2tsp of hot water and put aside

Mix the flour, almonds, sugars, walnuts and sugars in a mixing bowl and form a dip in the centre

Pour the eggs, yoghurt, oil and coffee mix in the dip and stir together

Spoon mixture into the tin and bake for 40-45 minutes (do the skewer test), once done then leave to cool

 

Now it’s time to make the filling!

Put the caster sugar and coffee in a saucepan with 3tbsp water

Heat till dissolved then do a hard boil for approx 2-3 minutes until it forms a syrup

Leave to cool

Mix the mascarpone, icing sugar, quark and vanilla essence and then add to the syrup

 

Last but not least, we need to make the icing

 

Sift the icing sugar into a mixing bowl and add the coffee with 1tbsp of warm water

Add a further tsp of water to make it a smooth consistency

 

Cut the cake into two halves and stick together with the filling

Spread the icing on top and sprinkle with walnuts

Eat and enjoy!!

 

(This cake will need to be stored in the fridge due to the yoghurt in the sponge)

Recipe: A healthy take on banana bread

Since going on holiday to Barbados last year and trying banana bread for the first time, I have always wanted to recreate something similar at home. This is delicious with some low fat spread as both a snack and a dessert.

Here is my recipe for a healthy banana bread (serves 10)

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Ingredients:

140g Wholemeal Flour

100g Self Raising Flour

1 tsp each of bicarbonate of soda and baking powder

300g of mashed bananas

4 tbsp of sugar free maple syrup

3 eggs

150ml of low fat natural yoghurt

40g of dried fruit of your choice

25g of pecans or nuts of your choice

Method:

Preheat the oven to 140oc (fan assisted) and grease and line a 2lb loaf tin with greaseproof paper

Mix bicarbonate of soda, baking powder, dried fruit and both flours together in a bowl (ideally using an electric mixer)

Mix bananas, maple syrup, yoghurt and eggs

Mix all ingredients together and pour into the loaf tin

Sprinkle the pecan nuts on top of the cake

Bake for 1 hour 10 – 1 hour 15 minutes

Transfer to wire rack for cooling