Miniature Pavlovas – FODMAP/Fructose Friendly & Gluten Free

Miniature Pavlovas - FODMAP, Fructose Friendly & Gluten Free

Ignore the dietary guidelines that these Pavs suit in the title… these are not  a health food.

I didn’t think it was possible to love a dessert more than I love a good Pav but I found one. I suppose it might not really count, as these are still Pavlovas… but they’re mini, cute and you don’t feel like such a guts after eating one, as I find it easier to have just one of these than to cut a small slice from a big Pav.

Sweet, with a crispy outside and a perfect marshmallowy inside… what more could you want? Whipped cream and fruit on top? Of course you can.

These are perfect for a dinner party or a high tea (I really want to host one of those!), as you can bake them a day ahead and store them (once cooled) in an airtight container in a cool, dark place (aka. the pantry). They will turn a little soft in the fridge (though they still taste amazing) but once the whipped cream has gone on, that’s where they need to be stored.

Notes:

  1. Sucrose (castor sugar) is 1:1 fructose/glucose but if eaten in excess can overwhelm the co-transport method of fructose absorption, so for this reason I would recommend stopping yourself at one mini Pav per day. Which even normal people should do, really.
  2. Normal double cream can be swapped out for lactose free double cream or full fat coconut cream (both of which can be whipped) or lactose free yoghurt.
  3. Two raspberries and 1-2 tbsp. of strawberry sauce would fall within the label of a “single serving” of fruit.

Miniature Pavlovas

Makes approx. 16

  • 4 eggs whites
  • 1 pinch table salt
  • 250 g castor sugar
  • 2 tsp. corn or potato starch
  • 1 tsp. white wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 300 ml double cream – lactose free if required
  • Fruit of your choice to top

Pre-heat the oven to 150 C/300 F.

In a cool, airy kitchen (no dishwasher running!) beat together the egg whites and salt on a medium speed for 2 minutes, then a high speed for a further 3 minutes, or until satiny peaks form.

Then add in the sugar (in thirds) and beat on a high speed until stiff peaks form. This is important, as you need the batter to hold its shape or it will just pool once you’ve piped it onto the baking tray.

Finally, add in the potato starch, white wine vinegar and vanilla extract and stir on a slow speed for a minute to combine everything.

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Transfer the mixture to a piping bag (or a large zip lock bag with a 1 cm snip off the corner) and pipe about 1/3 cup batter in a swirl onto the baking tray. As Ev said, they will look like Pavlova dog poo – have a laugh and keep going. I spaced mine evenly and had eight mini Pavs per baking tray.

Bake for 50-60 minutes at 150 C/300 F, swapping the bottom/top trays half way through to ensure equal cooking.

Once they have cooled, top with whipped cream and berries and serve with this strawberry sundae sauce or passion fruit pulp drizzled over the top.

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Potted Raspberry Cheesecakes – Fructose Friendly & Gluten Free

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About a month ago I posted a recipe for a delicious baked ricotta cheesecake. When I made the batter to fill the cheesecake, I slightly really overestimated how much I would need and made way too much. Whoops! But instead of making an extra crust, I decided to bake these in ramekins, instead.

If you’re looking for an easy dessert for a dinner party that can be made ahead of time, then look no further. These cheesecakes are the perfect blend of fluffy and creamy; the zing from the lemon plays well with the berries and they are not overly sweet. They will keep well in the fridge for 3-4 days in an airtight container (which prevents the top from drying out and forming a skin – yuck). As long as you keep your serving to one ramekin, you won’t walk away from this dessert feeling terribly guilty – just pleasantly satisfied… but this of course depends on everything else you’ve eaten that night.

Notes:

  1. Ricotta and cream cheese are not low in lactose, so this recipe isn’t suitable for those who malabsorb lactose.
  2. The eggs I used were 50 g each.
  3. Pure maple syrup does not have additives in it that may increase the level of FODMAPs present, thus should be safe.
  4. Fresh lemon juice is generally better tolerated than lemon juice concentrate. If you use the concentrate, only use 20 ml.
  5. Pure vanilla extract is low FODMAP.

Potted Raspberry and Ricotta Cheesecakes

Makes enough to fill 8 x 4 oz. ramekins

  • 275 g ricotta cheese
  • 115 g cream cheese, softened
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup dextrose or castor sugar
  • 1 tbsp. lemon zest
  • 30 ml fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp. potato starch
  • 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • Raspberries to scatter over base of ramekins

Pre-heat your oven to 150 C/300 F and boil a kettle full of water.

By hand or in a stand mixer using the whisk attachment, blend the ricotta cheese, cream cheese, eggs, maple syrup, dextrose, lemon zest and vanilla extract together. A stand mixer will give a smoother end product and makes life a lot easier.

Meanwhile, mix the potato starch and lemon juice together to create a smooth paste. This step is important, because if you mix the potato starch into the mixture as a powder it may cause your baked cheesecakes to become gritty, which is not a texture we want to associate with this dessert.

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Scatter the bases of the ramekins with the raspberries and cover with the cheesecake batter. Lightly tap each ramekin on the bench top to eliminate air bubbles.

Place the ramekins in a large baking dish and place that dish in the oven. Pour the boiling water into the baking dish so that it surrounds the ramekins up to 3/4 height – this water bath technique allows the cheesecakes to bake slowly and evenly while providing steam to prevent them from drying out, thus eliminating those unsightly cracks from the surfaces that can form as they cool.

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Bake for 20 minutes at 150 C/300 F and then turn the oven off. Open the oven door for 60 seconds before closing it again and set the timer for 15 minutes more. Remove the baking tray with ramekins from the oven and then take each ramekin out of the water bath.

Let the potted cheesecakes cool for 30 minutes before refrigerating in an airtight container for 2-3 hours to finish the setting process. Store in the fridge for 3-4 days, max. If you do not store them in an airtight container, your fridge may dry out the surface and a skin will develop. You can also freeze these cheesecakes, if your ramekins/pots are freezer safe – again, in an airtight container is best to prevent frost damage.

Serve with vanilla bean ice cream or whipped cream to cut the richness if necessary… and enjoy!

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Miniature Raspberry and Rhubarb Pies – FODMAP/Fructose Friendly & Gluten Free

Miniature Raspberry and Rhubarb Pies

think you might have gathered by now that I am a fan of raspberry and rhubarb. It has replaced my pre-fruct mal love of apple and rhubarb and – this could just be a change in taste buds talking – I think I like it even more.

I especially like that these pies intentionally looks “rustic,” so if you mess them up a little it doesn’t matter. Perfect! The downside is that if you are like me and have no choice but to make your own pastry, it isn’t such a quick dessert, it requires planning. The pastry should really be made the day before, as well as the filling.The upside of this is that just before they need to be baked (or an hour or two before) you can just throw the ingredients together – the assembly is dead simple.

Notes:

  1. Raspberries and rhubarb are both low FODMAP fruits.
  2. If you cannot tolerate lactose, this pastry might not be suitable for you. Butter is lower in lactose than the cream from which it’s made, as lactose is water soluble and butter is mostly lipids; however, lactose is still present.
  3. If you cannot tolerate maple syrup, you could substitute it for rice syrup etc.

Miniature Raspberry and Rhubarb Pies

Makes approx. 24 pies, depending on the size of your muffin tins and how thinly you roll your pastry.

Pastry

Filling

  • 3 large stalks of rhubarb, diced finely
  • 2 1/2 cups raspberries – fresh or frozen
  • 1/4 cup dextrose
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup

Assembly

  • 12 hole muffin tin x 2
  • 1/4 cup icing sugar
  • 1/4 cup milk or egg wash

Follow the linked instructions for the GF puff pastry preparation and refrigerate until you’re ready to use it. Follow the instructions for my Gran’s stewed raspberry and rhubarb in cooking the filling, just adding maple syrup instead of water. The longer it simmers for on a low heat, the thicker and more flavourful the filling will be. An hour is a good amount of time, at least; rhubarb takes a while to soften properly.

Once you are ready to make the pies, let the pastry sit at room temperature for 15 minutes to make it easier to work with. Preheat the oven to 180 C/350 F.

Roll the pastry out in as square a shape as possible, to just under 5 mm thick. Too think and the pastry takes too long to cook, not thick enough and it tears more easily, leading to the pies sticking in the muffin pans. Oh yes, before I forget, go ahead and grease those muffin pans well, in case of seepage. Back to the pastry. Slice your big square into 12 x 12 cm squares, and gently press those down into the muffin tins, leaving space between the pies as required by the pan you have.

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Fill the pastry with 2-3 heaped tbsp. of raspberry/rhubarb mix – this may differ, again depending on the size of your muffin tins. Fold the flaps together and pinch them shut as neatly as possibly. Brush with an egg wash or milk to help with browning.

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Bake for 20-30 minutes, until the pastry is a nice golden brown colour. Let them sit in the muffin tins for 10 minutes before removing and placing them on a cooling rack, although they are best served warm.

Just before you are ready to serve, dust with icing sugar and whip some cream to serve alongside. Vanilla ice cream or vanilla bean custard would also work well. Most importantly, enjoy!

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Mixed Berry Crumble – Low Fructose & Gluten Free

Berries are still in season and cheap! Woohoo!

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I’m enjoying the on again, off again summer weather we are having. At least the on again part. It reminds me of Melbourne so much it’s creepy.

I always make the most of summer, when I am not just restricted to bananas, kiwi fruits and oranges. Does anybody else get annoyed with seasonal changes in foods that mean we have cop both the exorbitant fees for the fruits we can eat as well as the tempting aromas of apple pies and pear tarts over winter? It’s so unfair!

*End rant.*

Growing up, one of my favourite desserts was apple and raspberry crumble. I’m sure I still would love it, if it wasn’t for all the fructose lurking within. I’ve been thinking about making a blackberry crumble for a week or so now and after I stocked up on blackberries, I really didn’t have an excuse anymore. So…

Let’s get ready to CRUMBLE!!!!!

I’m sorry for that.

Mixed Berry Crumble

  • 1/2 cup/120 g butter/coconut butter
  • 1 cup GF oats
  • 1/2 cup almond meal
  • 1/4 cup dextrose
  • 2-3 tspn. cinnamon (to taste)
  • 1 tbsp. desiccated coconut
  • 3 cups blackberries
  • 1 cup raspberries
  • 1 tspn. vanilla extract

In a saucepan, combine the berries (4 cups in total, you can choose your mix) and the vanilla extract and simmer over a low heat for 30 minutes. Mash them until they are 50% pureed and let the mixture reduce for the rest of the half hour.

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Lightly butter a 10 inch pie dish and if you have an uber cute pie bird, pop it in there. They are supposed to let out steam as the pie cooks, thus ensuring you don’t have a runny filling. They’re more for proper pies that are sealed in pastry – preventing steam from escaping – but I couldn’t wait to use mine, so I did.

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Pour in the berry filling and let it cool a little while you are preparing the crumble topping.

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Put the butter, oats, almond meal, cinnamon and dextrose in a food processor and mix until combined. Or you could mix by hand if you wanted to, it would just take a lot longer. If you choose the latter method, make sure you combine all the ingredients thoroughly by pinching/smooshing them together.

Tear the crumble mix apart and spread it over the top of the slightly cooled berries. Sprinkle with desiccated coconut. If you have a massive sweet tooth, the 1/4 cup dextrose might not be enough. You can always add more dextrose/sugar to your own taste.

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Bake for 30 minutes at 180 C/350 F.

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Serve with whipped cream, cream, ice cream or a vanilla bean custard. Garnish with mint leaves or some more fresh berries and enjoy.

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A note on the ingredients:

  • Blackberries have sorbitol in them. If you are sensitive to polyols (the P in FODMAPS) then it would be best to sub in a different berry type.
  • Oats are naturally gluten free but are often contaminated with gluten from the equipment they are processed on. Some Coeliacs are able to cope with GF oats but some are so sensitive that they will still react. If you are also avoiding gluten, just take that into account and maybe substitute oats for a GF rice porridge mix or a different GF cereal.

Mixed Berry Clafoutis – Fructose Friendly

I love French pastries. LOVE them. And when I heard about a French pastry that requires basically no effort, I had to try it. I looked at a few recipes but decided to just go with the basic one to begin with. Next time I will definitely try adding some lemon zest or substituting almond meal and possibly research a few other alterations but this one was pretty delicious as is. And, even better, it is basically fool-proof.

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Just a word of warning, the pictures will show cherries in there. I am currently testing them to see how I react to sorbitol. When I was diagnosed seven (!!!) years ago, I was only told about fructose and fructans, so I am now beginning to test myself out on polyols. I already know that too much lactose can make me symptomatic but that requires a lot (like a huge milkshake) and doesn’t happen often, if ever. I mostly drink almond milk now, anyway.

Mixed Berry Clafoutis

  • Butter to grease your cake pan/pie dish
  • 1 tbsp. castor sugar (or glucose powder)
  • 300 g/10 oz mixed berries/fruits you can eat
  • 1/3 cup GF plain flour
  • 1/3 tsp. xanthan gum
  • 1/2 tsp. bicarb soda
  • Pinch salt
  • 1 cup icing sugar (and a little extra to dust before serving if you wish)
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup double/heavy whipping cream
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp. lemon zest (to try next time)

Preheat oven to 160 C/325 F. Grease a 9″ round baking dish and sprinkle it with the castor sugar and mixed berries – the berries will rise to the top when the clafoutis is baked.

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In a medium bowl, sift together the dry ingredients and put aside – if you want to try the lemon zest, add it here. In a small bowl, combine the eggs, cream and vanilla and beat thoroughly. Make a well in the dry ingredients and slowly pour in the wet, while beating. Continue to mix until the mixture is smooth.

Pour the mixture over the fruit and then make sure the fruit is evenly spread around the dish.

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Bake in the oven for 40-45 minutes; turn the oven off and let it cool down in the oven to prevent it from sinking.

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Serve warm, with whipped cream or ice cream.

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See, I told you it was easy.

It tastes like a warm, custardy tart minus the shell. Essentially the flour you mix through allows the otherwise custard mix to form a a base as it cooks. Be careful when you flip it out. A spring form cake tin would really be best, or a ceramic tart dish that you intend to serve it in.

Have fun!