Sunday, 21 August 2016

Besan flour, banana and choc chip loaf - gluten free

Well we are still in banana cake mode here as I  hate to see them go to waste and the fruit bowl every week seems to contain at least one unloved spotty specimen. I like to ring the changes when it comes to recipes, so this recipe is another gluten free one featured bananas.

I wanted to experiment with cake making using besan flour, naturally gluten free, this earthy high protein high fibre flour is made from chickpeas and some times lentils or other beans. This flour is much more cost effective when compared with other gluten free flours and I am pleased to say produces a very tasty bake too, no hint of  lentil or chickpea at all.

Its moist and decadent and the loaf has just the right amount of sweetness and the chocolate chips provide just the right amount of chocolately flavours in every bite.

What you need
  • 2 large very ripe bananas- mashed
  • 3/4 cup of Thick live yogurt
  • 1 egg - free range
  • 1/2 cup light brown soft sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla paste
  • 1/3 cup coconut oil - melted
  • 1 1/2 cups besan flour (different brands have different mixes, mine was chickpea and lentil, some are just chickpea) - above all check gluten free if required most are
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • 1 pkt of dark chocolate chips
What you do
  • Pre heat the oven to 180c and prepare your loaf tin, either oil spray or base line a 2lb loaf tin
  • In your mixer blend the bananas, yogurt and egg, until well combined and the mixture is creamy.
  • Seive the besan flour, baking powder, bicarb, salt and cinnamon on to the wet mixture, incorporate using a wire ballon whisk to retain the air in the mixture.
  • Stir in the chocolate chips and pour the batter into your prepared tin, smooth the top
  • Place in the oven and bake for approximately 50 minutes until well risen and golden. Test with a skewer to ensure done.
  • Cool initially in the tin for 10 minutes and then remove to cool fully on a wire rack.
  • Store in an airtight tin
  • Freezes well when double wrapped

We are linking up to Love Cake this month, created and hosted at JibberJabberUk, the theme this month being in the words of the lovely Toyah "Its a Mystery !" as besan flour isn't usually used in cake baking.

                                                           Link up your recipe of the week

And recipe of the week , over on A Mummy Too

Sunday, 14 August 2016

Credit Crunch Munch Round Up - July 2016

I have been very tardy of late and I am quite late in posting the round up of all the lovely recipes entered into Credit Crunch Munch for July whilst we were hosting.

                        Credit Crunch Munch - Fab Fod 4 All

Credit Crunch Munch is the creation of Fab Food 4 All and Fuss Free Flavours, as a way of sharing moneysaving or frugal recipes, which are low in cost but high in flavour and above all amazing food. Hosted both by the creators and other food bloggers in turn its a fun way of sharing recipes.

You can always find inspiration over on the Credit Crunch Munch page, for August the linky is taking a break but will be back with a bang in September,  so check out the page to find this months host.

On to our round up, all in all we had 11 lovely entries for July, not bad at all considering it the start of school holidays in the UK and lots of bloggers are away.

Our first link up was from yours truly with some pretty tasty (if I do say so myself) Lemonade Scones, ideal for a quick impromptu bake when you have guests.


Our next link up came from the lovely Shaheen who blogs at Allotment to Kitchen with Simple tumeric potatoes with fava bean and carrot chilli, a colourful tasty dish to accompany a hearty vegan chilli.


Our entry from Fab Food 4 All is some very summery Lemon and Elderflower curd cupcakes a perfect seasonal bake, ideal for afternoon tea or a summer picnic.

                                                       Lemon & Elderflower Cupcakes - Fab Food 4 All

Next we have a delicious fish dish of Crispy Grilled Mackerel with lemon and garlic from Family, Friends, Food. Wonderfully healthy and a perfect dish for alfresco eating.

                                                                 We love the crispy, smoky skin & juicy, flavourful flesh of this delicious grilled mackerel! Packed with Omega 3, it's a healthy family favourite dinner.

EasypeasyFoodie joined in the fun with a Kale and Red Onion Dhal with buckwheat recipe, a tasty looking easy recipe perfect for the Sirt Diet.

                                                       Kale and Red Onion Dhal with Buckwheat

Camilla of Fab Food 4 All brought us another seasonal recipe perfect for sipping in a summer garden, a refreshing Old fashioned Lemonade recipe

                                               Old Fashioned Lemonade - Fab Food 4 All

Our next recipe is for Smoky Tofu Sandwiches from The Taste Space, this sustaining healthy sandwich looks amazing.

                                             Smoky Tofu Sandwiches

Our lovely linky party was then joined by Ren Behan with Kasza and lentil salad with griddled courgette and halloumi.  The beautiful dish sums up what makes for wonderful summer eating.

                                                             Kasza Courgette Salad

The Veg Hog linked up with some very interesting Potato Spelt rolls, cleverly using some leftover roast potatoes in the recipe.


Roast Chicken and a Country walk shared with us a fab recipe for Quickest leftover chicken stir fry, which would make a great supper recipe when you need to get food on the table fast.

                                                    Quickest Leftover Chicken Stir Fry

Our final recipe is for a Smoky Butternut Squash soup from The Improving Cook , frugally made in the slow cooker.

                                                                 The Improving Cook- Slow Cooker Smoky Butternut Squash Soup

So that's all folks for this month and remember Credit Crunch Munch will be back in September.

Tuesday, 2 August 2016

Off to the Tower ! - Afternoon Tea at Hoghton Tower

It's not often you get invited to Afternoon Tea at a castle (well a Tower actually but what passes for a castle around these parts and very castle like too), reputed to be the location of where King James knighted his "Sir" loin of beef, the ancestral home to the De Hoghton family in situated on a rise in rolling Lancashire countryside just outside Preston, Chorley and Blackburn. Hoghton Tower and its grounds have magnificent views of the surrounding area and the venue plays host to many and varied events throughout the year including a very popular "Merchants of Hoghton Tower" farmers market.

We were recently invited to the relaunch of their Vaio tearoom (vaio due to the decoration on the walls of the tea room), the new Manager has carefully sourced lots of local producers for the tea room and the emphasis is definitely on a traditional English afternoon tea and tea time favourites.

We dined in splendour, sipping bubbles and being entertained by a string quartet, the canapes delicious and appetizing.

I particularly loved the abundant floral displays featuring garden and wild flowers, perfectly in keeping with the country castle ambiance of the venue.

The tea room also serves a selection of platters, the Tower platter being for the meat eater and featuring pies, meats and homemade chutneys. The Seafood platter celebrating some great local seafood all sourced carefully from local producers, many of which attend the Merchants event on a regular basis.

The tea room also have a "picnic menu" if you wish to organise a special celebration and will happily quote for outside and event catering as well.

Featuring cakes from Lathams of Broughton, homemade scones and cake of the week, there is a sweet treat to delight all.

Local bakers "All you knead" are supplying bread and baked goods, ice cream is being sourced from Mrs Dowsons just down the road. Cheese from Leagrams cheese.

Hoghton Tower is a great place for a visit and is bursting with history, I have enjoyed many visits over the years and you can even hold your wedding here.

We were  also featured in an Article in LEP , our local County paper in connection with the event.

Hoghton Tower

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