Although I’d never pretend to be a cake expert (a cakespert?), I’ve got to say, these gluten-free cupcakes from Genius don’t appear to be any different from their un-gluten-free counterparts. I’ve only tried the lemon one so far which had a sweet lemony frosting on top of a light, fluffy sponge with none of that cardboard texture you can sometimes get with gluten-free products.
If you’re thinking they look a bit squished, that’s because they were sent to me, so I’m sure they’ll be in a more pristine condition in the shops. If you do want to check them out, also in Genius’ gluten-free range are other cakes and treats (including muffins and crumpets), bread and rolls, and pastry and pies.
Anyone who loves cupcakes but needs them gluten-free should definitely give these a go.
As you’ll know from my fitness blog – JogBlog – I’m a finely tuned athlete (cough cough) and athletes need protein. I’m not sure if they also need ice cream but if they do, then they won’t find any better than this protein-rich ice cream from Wheyhey. After putting it off for a while (I mean, come on, ‘protein ice cream’ doesn’t sound appealing does it?) I tried the banoffee flavour and, oh my god, this stuff is flipping delicious!
It’s sweet, creamy, bananary and toffee-ee and although the texture is slightly chewy rather than having a more traditional ice cream texture, this isn’t a bad thing. I loved this ice cream so much I don’t know whether to try the three remaining flavours I have in my freezer right away or to save them so I’m not sad when they’re gone.
Along with the 20g of protein and 100% deliciousness, Wheyhey protein ice cream is also:
I’ve wanted to make a vegan chocolate mousse for ages now but most of the recipes I’ve seen contain avocado, and you should all know by now my feelings about avocado but just in case you don’t, my feelings generally revolve around the word ‘bleurgh’.
So, silken tofu to the rescue. Tofu in a dessert sounds weird, I know, but don’t let that put you off making this chocolate pudding – it’s absolutely delicious and only takes a minute to make.
This recipe is another taken from the Jus Rol 30 Best Loved Recipes book. As a lazy cook, this was too time-consuming for me. If you’re also a lazy cook, you’d be better off getting your maid/cook/housekeeper (we all have those, right?) to peel and slice the apples.
I had no idea what dessert apples were and none of the apples in Sainsbury’s were labelled ‘dessert’, so I bought Granny Smiths.
You can tell I don’t eat many apple pies, as it reminded me of McDonald’s apple pies and I haven’t had one of those for at least twenty years.
The original recipe made one big parcel, but I divided the pastry into four to make four smaller ones.
Apple and Chocolate Parcels (makes 4)
5 dessert apples, peeled and sliced
1/2 lemon, juice only
140g caster sugar
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1tsp vanilla extract
80g dark chocolate chips
1 x 320g Jus Rol All Butter Puff Pastry Sheet, cut into 4 pieces
3 tbsp milk
Pre-heat the oven to 220C/gas mark 7.
Put the apple slices in a large bowl and drizzle with lemon juice.
In a separate bowl, mix together the sugar, cinnamon and flour. Add this mixture to the apples and sprinkle on the vanilla extract. Mix well, then add the chocolate chips.
Place some filling in the middle of each piece of pastry.
Mix the egg and milk to make an egg wash. Fold one side of the pastry over the filling, then fold over the other side. Press the ends down and wash with egg wash.
Turn the parcels over and lay seam-side down on a baking sheet. Wash with egg wash.
Bake in the oven for 20 minutes.
Lower the heat to 190C/gas mark 5 and bake for another 10 minutes until golden brown.
When I bought the Jus-Rol Puff Pastry last weekend, I also picked up a pack of Jus-Rol Pain au Chocolat. I hadn’t made them until now as, for some reason, I didn’t know you had to assemble them yourself. I have no idea how I thought Jus-Rol fitted 6 pastries into a little cardboard box, but there you go.
Anyway, assembling them was as easy as could be. The box contains chilled uncooked dough in a little tin, and a pack of chocolate sticks.
You simply tear the paper covering away from the tin and the tin unravels – no need to use a tin opener. To make it super-simple to use, the dough has been perforated so you just pull the sections away from each other without needing a knife.
You place a stick of chocolate at each end of a piece of dough.
Then fold over each end so they meet in the middle, then place seam-side down onto a baking sheet.
Bake them in the oven for about 12 minutes and they come out beautifully golden.
Considering there’s no butter in them (all Jus-Rol products are vegan, except their All Butter and Sweet Shortcrust products), they’re wonderfully buttery, along with being fresh and flaky and chocolatey. For purely research reasons, of course, I also tried one cold and can confirm they’re just delicious as they are when they’re warm.
Jus-Rol Pain au Chocolat can be found in the chiller cabinet in supermarkets, next to other pastry products.
Ssh, don’t tell anyone, but when my delivery of raw cacao arrived in the post this morning, I got excited and skived off to the supermarket to get the rest of the ingredients I needed to make this raw vegan fudge my friend Vivianne had told me about on Facebook. I should have been writing my assignment, oops. Still, this fudge only takes five minutes to make, so I don’t feel that guilty.
You won’t need to feel guilty eating these either, as they’re raw, only using natural ingredients, which makes them super-healthy (although the coconut oil is slowly melted, so I’m not sure if that makes them not raw? Feel free to let me know. I’m aware of the 45C degree thing but have no idea how warm the oil got in the pan. Probably not very warm as it melted almost immediately).
They’re so super-healthy, I’m going to totally ignore how many calories they have in each piece. Not that I’ve counted them, but I’m sure it’s zillions.
The original recipe is here but I’ll post what I did below (halved the ingredients and used peanut butter and soft dates).
I bought the raw cacao from Goodness Direct (free delivery) and the coconut oil from Tesco (on the shelf with the other oils). I couldn’t see any pitted dates, so bought Crazy Jacks Organic Soft Dates which are ready to eat, so I didn’t soak them.
This fudge is rich and bitter – if you like dark chocolate, you’ll love these. Next time I’m going to add some whole nuts – maybe macadamias, that’ll be amazing.
Raw vegan chocolate peanut butter fudge (makes 16 pieces)
1/2 cup coconut oil
1/2 cup crunchy peanut butter
1 cups raw cacao
1/2 cup soft read to eat dates
1 to 2 pinches of unrefined sea salt
Carefully melt the coconut oil on a very low heat.
Place all the ingredients, except the peanut butter, in a food processor and blend until soft and well combined.
Add the peanut butter at the end to keep the crunch.
Spread evenly in a 8” square tin.
Place in the fridge for about one hour.
Cut into 16 pieces and store in an airtight container.