Curtis Stone Pasties Recipe

Monday, 28 November 2011

I haven't had a pastie in ages so went looking for a pasties recipe to satisfy my craving. I was shopping at my local supermarket when I picked up one of the recipe pamphlets by Curtis Stone and found a delicious Beef and Vegetable Pasties Recipe.

Of course I changed the pasties recipe around a little. I don't like corn so swapped it for peas and I got rid of the egg and swapped that for melted milk-free margarine.

Note: Make sure you divide all the mixture between the four pastry sheets. You may think the pastry will not be able to take all the filling but it can. The pastry will stretch over and stay. Otherwise like me you can make five pasties. 

What I love about pasties is they are a meal in themselves. Just heat 'em up and eat. Wash one plate and then you can sit on the couch and relax!

Great recipe. Enjoy!

Curtis Stone Beef and Vegetable Pasties Recipe

2 tbsp olive oil
400g beef mince
1 small brown onion
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 medium carrot, peeled and cut into 1cm cubes
1 baby potato, peeled and cut into 1cm cubes
1/2 cup peas
1 medium truss tomato, finely diced
4 cups baby spinach
1/4 cup fresh parsley, roughly chopped
4 sheets Short Crust Pastry, cut into 20cm rounds, leaving plastic on base
1/4 cup melted margarine

1. Preheat the oven to 200°C.

2. Heat 1 tbsp oil in a large fry pan over high heat and sauté the beef for 5 minutes, breaking up any large clumps. Strain the beef and discard liquid from pan. Place the pan back on heat and add 1 teaspoon of oil.

3. Add the onion, garlic, and cook for 3 minutes. Add the carrot and potato to the pan and cook for an additional 3 minutes stirring often.

4. Return beef to the pan, add the peas, tomato and spinach and cook a further minute or until the spinach has wilted. Remove from heat and stir through the parsley, season to taste with salt and pepper and let cool for 7 minutes.

5. Lay the 4 rounds of pastry onto a clean work surface and divide the filling evenly between the centre of each round of pastry. Brush the edges of the pastry with the melted margarine and carefully fold and crimp the edges together to seal the pasties. Remove the plastic and poke several small holes with a knife in the pastry to allow steam to escape whilst cooking.

6. Place pasties onto a baking tray lined with baking paper, brush with a little of the melted margarine.

7. Bake for 18-20 minutes or until the pastry is golden brown and the filling is cooked through.

8. Let sit at room temperature for 5 minutes before serving.

9. Serving suggestion: for extra flavour, serve with tomato sauce.

Ginger Biscuits Recipe

Saturday, 26 November 2011

I went looking for a Ginger Biscuits Recipe as I went swimming with the dolphins a few weeks ago which I was very proud of myself for doing as I am terrified of deep water and while we were on the boat searching for dolphins to swim with we were handed ginger biscuits to eat.

I don't think I have ever eaten ginger biscuits before but I took one bite and was hooked. They were delicious. So once I got home after having a sensational day of swimming with the dolphins :) I went searching for a Ginger Biscuits Recipe.

The Ginger Biscuits Recipe I found was by Jamie Oliver as it was getting rave reviews. Always a good sign.  Firstly it took me ages to convert everything from grams into cups. Then I removed the egg from the recipe and used raw sugar instead of demarara sugar as it was all I had. I also used honey instead of golden syrup as again honey is what I had.

I found this recipe to be incredibly sweet after making in twice and reducing the sugar amounts considerably. 

I made them and they were incredibly sweet but also in credibly delicious.

Please note the strength of the ginger depends on how long it's been in your cupboard and please make sure the cookies cool completely before you pop them in your biscuit container as they will go soft.

These are incredibly delicious cookies. Every time I open the biscuit tin I get this wonderful sweet honey, ginger aroma float up into my nostrils and totally hypnotise me and demand I eat them all.

You won't be able to stop eating at one you will definitely eat two at a time or more! You have been thoroughly warned hahaha.

This recipe makes 12 biscuits of course if you want more cookies just double the recipe.

Ginger Biscuits Recipe

50gm Miracle margarine or any low lactose or lactose free margarine such as Nuttelex.
1 tbsp honey
1/4 cup raw or demarara sugar
3/4 cups plain flour
1 tspn baking powder
1/2 tspn bicarbonate soda
1 tspn ground ginger
Pinch of salt

1. Pre-heat the oven to 160c gas mark 3 and line two baking sheets with grease proof paper or the reusable baking sheets.
2. Put the margarine, sugar and honey in a pan and bring up to heat melting the margarine and allowing the mixture to amalgamate. Allow to cool slightly.
3. Sift together all the other dry ingredients into a bowl.
4. Pour in the warm butter mixture and bring it all together.
5. At this point the mix should be holding its shape but it will be slightly brittle but don't worry as this creates the ridges and finished texture of the biscuit.
6. You can roll the mixture into balls about 1-2cms in diameter or you can just place heaped teaspoons on the baking tray. These biscuits really spread so leave a bit of room between each so they don't stick together. 
7. Place in the oven for 10-15 minutes until they start to colour, they will be initially soft when removed but as they cool they will firm up nicely. Perfect with a cup of Chamomile Tea!

Please make sure the cookies cool completely before you pop them in your biscuit container as they will go soft if still warm.

Enjoy :)

Vanilla Cupcakes Without Butter or Eggs

Monday, 17 October 2011

I love this recipe for vanilla cupcakes without butter or eggs. I was thrilled when I found it. It was a friends birthday and I wanted to make him some cupcakes I could enjoy too.

The photo looked really good and they looked appetising so I gave it a try. The batter is very runny which is very different to anything I have made before. The end result is a cupcake that is dense but delicious.

These vanilla cupcakes without butter and eggs are perfect for those with allergies or are lactose intolerant.

They are very gentle on your stomach and easy to eat. You won't feel like you are missing out at all.

Vanilla Cupcakes Without Butter or Eggs

1 1/2 cups plain flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
a pinch of salt
2/3 cup soft, light brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons canola oil
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
1 cup water

Preheat your oven to 180 degrees. Put patty cases in a 12 muffin tin pan. Sift the flour, baking powder, and salt into a bowl.

Stir in the sugar, then add the remaining ingredients and beat until you have a smooth, liquid batter.

Pour the batter into the patty cases.

Bake in oven for about 25 minutes until risen and firm to touch. Then remove from oven allow to cool and add icing.

Glace Icing

1 1/4 cups pure icing sugar, sifted
1 tablespoon boiling water
1 tablespoon melted milk free margarine (optional)

Stir icing sugar, margarine and boiling water together in a small bowl until smooth. Just add more water as required if you do not get desired consistency.

Use icing immediately. If it starts to set before you have finished icing the cupcakes, stir in a few drops of hot water.

Milk and Egg Free Recipe for Carrot Muffins

This recipe for Carrot Muffins is different to the one below. I did like that recipe but it still left me slightly bloated. It didn't have any milk in it which is what I think is always the main culprit. I noticed it had eggs in it so thought that may be the issue.

So I went Googling and found this recipe. It's actually a Carrot Cake recipe but I changed it into a Milk and Egg free recipe for Carrot Muffins.

It is light, healthy, tasty especially with the madnarin zest (I didn't have an orange) which gives it a lovely, fruity flavour and very delicious.

Milk & Egg Free Recipe for Carrot Muffins


1 1/2 teaspoons lemon juice
150 ml soy milk
80 ml vegetable oil
1 teaspoon orange zest
83 gm raw sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups wholemeal flour
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 carrot grated


Preheat oven to 180 degrees. Place patty cases in 12 cup muffin tin. In a small bowl, add lemon juice to milk. Stir together and let stand 5 minutes. Sift flour, baking powder, cinnamon and salt together and set aside.

In a large bowl, cream oil, orange zest (or mandarin if you choose) and raw sugar. Add milk and vanilla. Add flour mixture and beat until smooth. Stir in the grated carrots.

Pour the batter into patty cases. Bake at 180 degrees for 30 min or until a toothpick inserted into the muffins comes out clean. Allow to cool and then enjoy this delicious milk and egg free recipe for carrot muffins.

Lactose Free Recipe for Carrot Muffins

Tuesday, 27 September 2011

I was looking for a recipe for Carrot Muffins because I wanted something really healthy to snack on instead of bread with jam or bread with honey.  Also my naturopath put me on an Alkaline diet so wanted something that would be very alkaline.

I came across this recipe for carrot muffins but have altered it a bit. The taste is very wholesome, fresh and delicious. It's like something you would eat on a farm out in the field with the green grass blowing and cows mooing!

If you want Spicy Carrot Muffins add a teaspoon of Mixed Spice for that added spiced flavour.

Recipe for Carrot Muffins

• Olive oil, to grease
• 2 carrots grated
• 1 ½ cups wholemeal self-raising flour
• 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
• 1/2 cup raw sugar
• 3/4 cups good quality olive oil (I used Altis)
• 1/2 cup honey
• 3 eggs
• 1 tsp vanilla essence

1. Preheat oven to 180°C. Place patty cases in a 12 cupcake tin.
2. Peel and grate the carrots, and set aside. Sift the flours and cinnamon into a large bowl.
3. Put the raw sugar, oil, honey, eggs and vanilla in a separate bowl. Use a balloon whisk to mix until combined. Stir in the grated carrot.
4. Pour the carrot mixture into the dry ingredients. Use a wooden spoon to stir gently until just combined.
5. Pour the mixture into the pan and bake for 30 min. Set aside for 5 minutes, before turning out onto a wire rack to cool.

Chocolate Nut Cake Recipe from Scratch

Wednesday, 21 September 2011

Chocolate Nut Cake recipe made from scratch

I came across this chocolate nut cake recipe from scratch while looking for a recipe to use up all the nuts and prunes I had that had been sitting around for a while.

It is a perfect recipe because I used up all the nuts and only have half the prunes left. I was getting a bit worried about the prunes as they were sitting around for a while.


Chocolate Nut Cake Recipe

Preparation Time -20 minutes
Cooking Time -90 minutes

Melted butter, to grease
200gm  dried diced prunes
1/2 cup water with 1 teaspoon vanilla essence
1 cup self-raising flour
3/4 tsp ground allspice
100gm almond meal
175gm milk free margarine, softened
1 cup sugar
3 eggs, at room temperature
100gm macadamias, roughly chopped
75gm toasted slivered almonds
200gm dark cooking chocolate (Plaistowe brand), broken into squares

1.Preheat oven to 160°C. Brush a round 20cm cake pan with melted butter to lightly grease. Line the base with non-stick baking paper.

2.Combine the prunes and water with vanilla essence in a large bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and set aside for 45 minutes to macerate.

3.Reserve 2 tbs of the flour. Sift remaining flour together with mixed spice in a medium bowl. Add the almond meal and stir to combine.

4.Use an electric beater to beat the butter and sugar in a large bowl until pale and creamy. Add the eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition, until combined. Use a large metal spoon to fold in half the flour mixture until just combined. Repeat with the rest of the flour.

5.Drain the water from the prunes and discard. Add the macadamias, almonds, chocolate pieces and reserved flour. Use a metal spoon to gently fold the prunes into the butter mixture.

6.Spoon the cake mixture into the lined pan and smooth the surface with the back of a spoon. Bake, in preheated oven, for 1 1/2 hours or until a skewer inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean.

7. Remove from oven and stand for 10 minutes before turning out onto a wire rack to cool. If desired, brush with the extra brandy over the top. Dust with cocoa powder and icing sugar before serving.

Little Caesars Menu - Lactose Free Pizza

Why am I asking you to look at Little Caesars Menu (just click on right tab on their site) and not at a recipe I just baked? That is because I went to Little Ceasars Pizzeria in Leederville and was thrilled to find you can substitute the cheese for Minicol which is a soy based lactose free cheese.

You would think the flavour is going to be different or not taste like Pizza but you are wrong. You lose none of the flavour. The pizzas are incredibley delicious. Being Greek they tasted just like mama makes with lots of flavour! It is owned by Greeks by the way.

If you choose the soy based option you pay $2 more or if you would like the gluten free version you pay $3 more. It is worth the extra money and trust me your stomach will thank-you later.

Some of the awards they have won just in case you are not convinced.

2006-Las Vegas Italian Chef Wars Winner
2006-Winner of Pizza Todays Italian Chef Wars
2004-Team member of Dairy Farmers Team Oz that won the Americas Plate in NEW YORK
2003-Australian winner of Dairy Farmers Best of the Best
first time ever there was a clean sweep in all 4 category’s; Meat Seafood Vegetarian Dessert
2003-Western Australian Pizza champion Best of the Best
2002-Australian finalist in Dairy Farmers Best of the Best
2000-Australian finalist Dairy Farmers Best of the Best

Check out Little Caesers Menu then head on over and enjoy one of the best pizzas in Perth.

 Image from Daitaoha's.

Basic Scone Recipe

Thursday, 15 September 2011

This basic scone recipe which is very low in lactose was given to me by an older lady I work with. She bakes them every Sunday for her family after church.

Basic Scone Recipe

Pre heat oven to 200C

Temperature needed may vary from oven to oven, but the oven needs to be hot!
2 cups of SR Flour
3 (good) teaspoons of Meadow Lea margarine
1 egg beaten in a cup
A little less than 1 cup lactose free milk

Add the margarine to the flour in a bowl.

Rub the margarine through the flour with your fingertips until mixture resembles breadcrumbs.

Add the egg and milk mix, stir through flour very lightly with a fork until well mixed.

Turn mixture out onto a floured surface and gently shape into a nice fat round shape approximately 5 centimetres thick - this is the secret to getting those nice big scones.

Using a scone cutter cut out shapes and place on a floured baking tray (I use baking paper to cover the tray).

Bake on top or middle shelf for 10 minutes or until golden in colour.

Serve with a choice of margarine & jam.

¾ cup of chopped dates.
¾ cup grated soy cheese – to make cheese scones extra spicy, add paprika, cayenne pepper, chilli flakes etc
½ cup mixed fruit
½ cup chopped dry figs

Add anything you fancy to the basic recipe – use your imagination.

Best eaten with tea and shared with good friends J

Easy Chocolate Sultana Cake Recipe

Sunday, 28 August 2011

A happy whisk creating a delicious batter


I found this easy Chocolate Sultana Cake recipe as I had some sultanas left over from making a very delicious tagine and wanted something sweet to eat with my cup of tea and found this incredibly easy recipe.

Be careful you won't be able to stop at one slice. Delicious and nutritious. See the nutritional content below.

Easy Chocolate Sultana Cake Recipe

1 cup self-raising flour
2 tbsp cocoa powder
2 eggs
1/2 cup sugar
3/4 cup rice milk
1 cup sultanas

1. Whisk eggs and sugar well
2. Add milk and sultanas and mix well.
3. Sift flour and cocoa into mixture and mix well.
4. Pour mixture into lined loaf tin.
5. Bake in preheated oven at 180°C for 40 minutes.

Nutritional Content

Energy792 kj/189 cal 
Protein5 g
Total fat1.7 g
Saturated fat0.5 g
Carbohydrates41 g
Total sugars24 g
Fibre2 g
Sodium30 mg
Cholesterol54 mg
Potassium189 mg

Baking Powder

Tuesday, 23 August 2011

So what is baking soda and baking powder?  Well they are not the same thing and they are not interchangeable. They are both leavening agents - a leavening agent is a substance used in doughs and batters that produces carbon dioxide and causes them to rise.
Do not add more baking powder to a recipe because it will:
1. Cause the batter to taste bitter
2. It can cause the mixture to rise too rapidly which will make the air bubbles grow too large and burst in turn causing the mixture to fall.

If you have plain flour and want to make self-raising flour then mix two teaspoons baking powder to a cup of plain flour then sift a few times.

Want to make your own baking powder:

To make 1 tsp of baking powder you need:
  • 1/2 tsp cream of tartar
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp cornstarch (Add this ingredient if you plan to store it as cornstarch absorbs moisture in the air  preventing a premature chemical reaction between the cream of tartar and baking soda)
A quick note – you have to work quickly when using homemade baking powder.

Lactose Free Jamie Oliver Lamb Moussaka

Friday, 19 August 2011

I have always wanted to make Greek Moussaka. You would think being Greek my mother would have found an easy Moussaka recipe and made it for us growing up but she never did, she always said we would never like it so never bothered.

Since I moved out of home a year ago a lot has changed. And the best thing of all I am now cooking for myself which I am deliriously happy about, pity about the washing up though hahaha. My mother never liked me cooking in the kitchen. It was her domain and gave me great grief whenever I tried to cook anything which I really resent her for hmpf!

Anyway I am ecstatic now that I am cooking and finally came across a recipe that seems easy enough so gave it a try, most important of all it's lactose free! No Bechamel sauce on top and you are not missing out at all! It still tastes divine.

A few things I noticed:

Firstly -  the recipe says minced lamb and I used beef! It still came out tasting delicious.

Second - It says to cook for 1 ½ hours on the stove and to stir occasionally. It started out like this but within 10 minutes the mixture dried up and started burning! So then I had to stand by the stove top and pour in about 1/4 cup of water alternating with some good splashes of wine to keep this thirsty meal quenched.

Thirdly - It says to cook for 1 ½ hours but I was exhausted and hungry so cut it back to 1 hr. I think even this is excessive. If I ever cook this again which I doubt, I will only cook it for 30 minutes on the stove top and about 15-20 minutes in the oven. The cooking time specified it excessive.

Fourth - This did turn out really oily. Try not to put in too much oil. The oil suggested is not enough especially when you are frying the eggplant and zucchini. I did this in batches and a few tablespoons of oil is not enough.

Good Luck!

Lactose Free Jamie Oliver Lamb Moussaka
(Serves 2)

3 tbsp olive oil
1 garlic clove, chopped
½ onion, chopped
1 can of chopped tomatoes
1/2 tbsp tomato puree
250g minced beef
½ cup red wine
½ tsp dried oregano
1 cinnamon stick
pinch of cumin
½ large eggplant, sliced
½ zucchini, sliced
salt and ground black pepper

1. In a large frying pan, heat 2 tbsp of olive oil and fry the mince until browned. Pour off any excess fat and place mince in a bowl to the side.

2. In the same pan gently cook the garlic and onion in 1 tbsp olive oil until the onion has softened then add the mince to the onion and garlic.

3. Add wine, puree, chopped tomatoes, oregano, cumin and cinnamon stick. (Do not cut in half because you will end up with pieces of cinnamon in your food, not a good look). Simmer uncovered for 1 hour, stirring continuously and pouring in about 1/4 cup of water every 10 - 15 minutes.

This is a thirsty dish, it just sucks up all the liquid you put in it. Remove the cinnamon stick (hopefully it hasn't broken up into shards) and season to taste. Preheat oven to 190C.

4. Fry the eggplant and zucchini slices in the remaining 2 tbsp of olive oil until golden on both sides and season well with salt and black pepper. Try not to add more oil otherwise your dish will end up very oily.

5. Place a layer of eggplant and zucchini on the bottom of an ovenproof dish (15 cms by 10 cms ), followed by half the mince mixture. Add another layer of eggplant and zucchini then the rest of the mince and finally a final layer of eggplant and zucchini.

6. Bake the moussaka for about 25-30 then serve.


In the end this recipe did come out really delicious but it is not easy. It is time consuming, messy and really oily (this was probably my fault) and takes ages. I was starving by the time it was ready.

I am waiting for my equally baking loving friend Tina to send me a better recipe, she said she has a good one from George Calombaris. A Greek would know better so let's see how I will go with that one.

This one I am not making again or if I do it will be my way with less cooking, less oil!

Caribbean Coconut Cake

Friday, 5 August 2011

This is a delicious recipe. It was taken from a book my friend gave me for my birthday earlier this year called the Big Book of Baking. I like baking something different and saw this one and thought yep I am going to try it. I have never used coconut cream before and the pineapple jam sounded irresistible.

I looked everywhere but could not find the jam but did find a Passionfruit Pineapple Jam from IXL at Woolworths. I picked out as many passionfruit seeds as I could and it turned out a treat.

Also the recipe called for two 20cm tins but I only have one so used one and just cut it in half. It still worked out incredibly well.

The measurements are also in grams not cups which makes it a bit tricky, I didn't want to write on my book and forgot to write out the measurements separately so you will need your electronic scale for this one.

Caribbean Coconut Cake
280g Meadow Lea Margarine
175g caster sugar
3 eggs
175 g self-raising flour
1 ½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp cinnamon
55 gm desiccated coconut
5 tbspns coconut cream
280 gm icing sugar
5 tbspns pineapple jam
Toasted desiccated coconut to decorate

Preheat oven to 180 C.

Grease and line a 20 cm round cake tin.

Place 175 gm margarine in a mixing bowl with caster sugar.

And eggs and sift in the flour, baking powder and cinnamon. Beat together until smooth, then stir in the desiccated coconut and 2 tablespoons of the coconut cream.

Pour mixture in the tin and smooth the top.

Bake in the preheated oven for 25 minutes or until golden and firm to the touch.

Leave to cool in the tin for 5 minutes, then turn onto a wire cooling rack, peel off the lining paper and leave to cool completely.

Coconut Cream Icing
Sift the icing sugar into a bowl and add the remaining butter and coconut cream. Beat together until smooth.

Cut the cake in half and spread the pineapple jam inside and top with just under half the cream. Place the other half of the cream on top of the cake and scatter with toasted desiccated coconut.


Lactose Free Pound Cake Recipe with Strawberries

Tuesday, 2 August 2011

Yes my lactose free pound cake is smiling a beautiful strawberry smile!

I found this really good recipe and only had to alter the milk so I could use lactose free milk or soy milk.

The strawberries were placed on the bottom of the loaf tin but made there way up through the cake but I guess this is good too as it added some deliciously sweet strawberry flavour throughout. It worked out really well. Just make sure you don't over beat otherwise it will get a little rubbery!

Don't ask me how I know, I just know hahahaha.

Lactose Free Pound Cake Recipe with Strawberries

2 large eggs
1 1/2 cups plain flour
1 cup sugar
3/4 cup Lactose Free Milk or Soy Milk
1/4 cup Canola Oil
1 1/2 tspns baking powder
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp salt
250grm punnet of strawberries
brown sugar

Preheat oven to 180 C.

Grease and line medium sized loaf pan with baking paper.

Mix eggs and sugar until fluffy.

Add milk, oil and vanilla and blend.

Sift flour and baking powder and then add to wet mixture.

In base of tin sprinkle brown sugar and then place slices of fresh strawberries. Pour in mixture.

Bake for 50 minutes. Once cooked take out of oven pull out baking paper and let cake cool on a cooling rack.



Just want to say a BIG THANK-YOU to all my friends for being so supportive of this food blog.

Delicious Madeira Cake Recipe

I love Madeira Cake so found this Madeira cake recipe as I hadn’t eaten any in ages and can’t have the store bought one because of all the butter in it. Also since I have been cooking almost everything I eat I prefer home made at least it doesn’t have any chemicals in it I don’t know about and it is much healthier for me.

So I found this Madeira Cake recipe and changed it around a bit. I like to use Meadow Lea margarine because it uses vegetable oils and has very little milk solids in it.

Madeira Cake
175gm Meadow Lea margarine
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon grated lemon rind
3 eggs
1 1/2 cups plain flour sifted
1/2 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 teaspoon baking powder

Cream margarine and sugar until light and fluffy. Stir in lemon rind. In a separate bowl beat eggs until thick. Stir in sifted flour and baking powder together. Add into creamed mixture alternating with the eggs. Stir to mix.

Squeeze in by hand juice of half a lemon, make sure to catch pips before they fall in, which basically means not too much lemon juice. Spoon mixture into a medium sized loaf pan greased and lined with baking paper.

Bake at 180 for 30 minutes or till cake springs back when lightly touched. Leave in tin for a few minutes then pull out loaf with baking paper and leave to cool on cooling rack.

Lemon Icing
1 1/2 cups (230g) icing sugar mixture, sifted
1 tbs lemon juice

Mix all ingredients until you get the desired consistently you prefer for icing. I like a thick icing so I put enough water until this is achieved.

Then enjoy a slice with a lovely cup of tea.

Homemade Mini Apple Pies

Monday, 1 August 2011

Now these homemade mini apple pies are not tiny they are just a smaller size, about the same size as a meat pie. This recipe is not totally lactose free. The shortcrust pastry does have butter in it but the rest of the recipe is lactose free.

It's hard to avoid milk and butter sometimes and there are days when you just want a nice homemade apple pie in cold weather to make you smile and warm you up

As you can see I had my yummy little pie with a delicious glass of Laurance Rose.
Mini Apple Pies
500gm granny smith apples, peeled, cored, cut into thin wedges
1/2 cup caster sugar
30 ml water
2 sheets ready-rolled frozen shortcrust pastry, just thawed
1 teaspoon honey
1/2 teaspoon Cinnamon Sugar (You can make this yourself or buy it ready made)
melted margarine to brush pastry

Preheat oven to 200°C. Combine apple, caster sugar and water in a saucepan over medium heat. Cook, stirring for 2 minutes or until sugar dissolves. Cover and simmer, turning occasionally, for 2-3 minutes or until apple is just tender. Set aside for 30 minutes to cool completely.
Meanwhile, line the bases and sides of two round 9cm (base measurement) pie tins with half the pastry and trim excess. Place in the fridge for 15 minutes to rest.
Using a pastry brush, brush the edges with melted margarine. Use a slotted spoon to divide the apple mixture evenly among the pastry cases. Then sprinkle in 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon sugar and drizzle 1/2 teaspoon honey. Once cooked you will taste the delicious honey coming through, it really adds to the flavour.

Use the top of  a pie tin which is 12.5cm round and cut 2 discs from the remaining pastry. Top each pie with a pastry disc and use a fork to press the edges to seal. Use a small sharp knife to trim any excess pastry and cut a small slit in the centre of each pie.

Make little pastry leaves as decoration on top. Simply cut small leaf shapes and then with the tip of the knife cut in a few leaf details.  Brush the tops with the melted margarine and sprinkle cinnamon sugar.
Place pies on a baking tray. Bake in oven for 25-30 minutes or until golden. 

This recipe is meant to make two pies but I found I could make three. 

Recipe from

Baking Conversion Chart

I hope this baking conversion chart helps all those from all around the world who use different temperature types and have different ovens to be able to cook the lactose free recipes I find and alter so those of us who are lactose intolerant can eat.


140 C   -  275 F  -  Gas Mark 1

150 C  -  300  F  -  Gas Mark 2  

160 C  -  325 F  -  Gas Mark 3

180 C  -  350 F  -  Gas Mark 4

190 C  -  375 F  -  Gas Mark 5

200 C  -  400 F  -  Gas Mark 6

220 C  -  425 F  -  Gas Mark 7

230 C  -  450 F  -  Gas Mark 8

250 C  -  475 C  -  Gas Mark 9

Chocolate Whoopie Pies the New Sensation!

Sunday, 31 July 2011

I think like most of us the first time we heard about Whoopies Pies was on Masterchef a few weeks ago when Dani came across them in New York.

I found this Chocolate Whoopie Pie  recipe online but changed a few ingredients for those of us who are lactose intolerant. You will find this one easy on the stomach and delicious to eat. I offered these to friends last night when they were over and was delighted to find one friend came back for thirds!

Chocolate Whoopie Pies Recipe
1 cup plain flour
1/2 cup cocoa
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp bicarbonate soda
120g Meadow Lea margarine
1/2 firmly packed cup (100g) brown sugar
1 egg, at room temperature
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup lactose free milk (I used Harvey)
100g white marshmallows
Preheat the oven to 180°C. Line 2 baking trays with baking paper.

Sift the flour, cocoa, baking powder and bicarbonate of soda into a bowl.

Beat the butter and sugar in an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Beat in the egg, followed by the vanilla and milk. Next add dry ingredients and beat until combined. Place tablespoonfuls of mixture a few centremeters apart on the trays. Bake for 9-10 minutes until doubled in size and firm on top when gently pressed. Transfer to cooling rack.

Marshmallow Filling
100 grams marshmallows
1 teaspoon water

Place marshmallows and 1 teaspoon warm water in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave on high for 20 seconds then stir until smooth. Once the mixture has cooled slightly spread it over half the rounds then sandwich them together.
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