Apple And Cheese Muffin Recipe With Or Without Wheat Flour

Recipe For High-Protein Tasty Muffins.

This is a wonderful recipe which I have adapted from a basic muffin recipe to include grated apple with cheese.  You can make it either with Gluten free flour, or use plain wheat flour.

It is a recipe you can rely on for muffins which have a high protein content and which are full of flavour, with a light texture.

Apple and Cheese Muffins are an ideal thing to make for those ‘bring a plate’ occasions, or to give to people in need of a little TLC.  I have been making them for my elderly neighbour who needs building up.

You can use white self-raising flour in this recipe, if you are not allergic to it.  The negative effects of white flour can be offset by the raw apple and onion, as well as the generous amounts of good-quality protein. Sometimes this combination is OK with people who have only a mild senstitivity to wheat flour.  Or you could use a gluten-free flour if you wish.

You can use white self-raising flour in this recipe, if you are not allergic to it.  The negative effects of white flour can be offset by the high fibre content of the raw apple and onion, as well as the generous amounts of good-quality protein. The phytochemicals found in the skin of the apple, as well as the pectin, can help weak stomachs to digest the gluten in wheat flour, if the sensitivity to wheat is but a mild one.

People with coeliac diseases, or extreme sensitivity to wheat, should use the gluten-free option.

Gluten Free Flour Option: I suggest a combination of one cup of soya,  3/4 cup each of rice flour, arrowroot or tapioca flour, and  fine yellow cornmeal as a substitute for the  two and a half cups of wheat flour.  Using gluten free flours increases the already high protein content of these cheese muffins.

Ingredients and Method for Making Apple-Cheese Muffins: 

First, turn on the oven to 180 C.  Prepare your muffin tins by oiling them or buttering them thoroughly.

Grate two cups of cheese into a dish.  Gruyere gives a great flavour, but Cheddar is also good.

In a separate mixing bowl, put two and a half cups of Self Raising flour, or three cups of the gluten free combination described above.  Use two teaspoons of baking powder if you use the gluten free flour.

For the Blender.  Prepare in another bowl:

One medium-sized apple, grated with the skin still on.

One small onion, skinned and chopped up.

One handful of freshly picked greens from the garden:  A few sprigs of parsley, thyme, and a few leaves of rocket make a tasty combination. If you don’t have any of these, you could simply use a couple of leaves of spinach.

Four large free range eggs, or five if you are using smaller bantams’ eggs.  I am fortunate enough to be able to buy free-range bantam eggs in the town where I live. They are wonderfully nutrient-rich eggs to use in baking.

One cup of water.  Use the same size cup you measured out the flour and cheese with.

2teaspoons of curry powder.

Method:  Put the flour into a mixing bowl.  Tip over the grated cheese and fold gently into flour.

Next, put the grated apple, onion pieces, eggs, curry powder, chopped greens, and the cup of water into your blender.  Blend up for one minute.

Pour the egg and greens mixture from the blender into the centre of the flour and cheese mixture.

Fold all together carefully.  Be careful not to over-mix.

Using a large serving spoon, drop enough of the mixture into each of the greased muffin tins.  Aim at filling them at least halfway, or three quarters of the way up, allowing some room for the muffins to rise.

These muffins are ‘sure to rise’:  Aside from the baking powder, they have a good quantity of beaten eggs which aid with the process of rising.

Bake in a relatively hot oven for around 20 minutes, or until brown and their delicious cheesy smell tells you that they are done.

Depending on the oven, you might need to start the cooking off at 200 C, cook for 10 minutes, and then turn the oven down to 150 C for a remaining 5-10 minutes.  I have an oven door which is not sealed properly when closed, so this is the routine I need to follow for making muffins if they are to be cooked nicely.

Gluten Free Almond Fruit Cake Recipe

Healthy Treat Recipe Uses No Wheat, No Butter, No Oils.

This Almond Fruit Cake Recipe Uses No Grains At All

Here is a welcome little recipe for people with sensitivity to wheat and other grains.  Those who have coeliac diseases will enjoy this one.

Just the thing for a children’s party when some children are on gluten free diets, or for those school lunches to provide a healthy snack filled with protein-rich goodness.

If you prefer, and no one is allergic to peanuts, then peanuts could be substituted for the almonds.

You will need:

4 eggs

1/2 cup boiling water

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon cream of tartar

3/4 cup brown sugar

2 cups ground almonds – or use cashews or peanuts if preferred

1 cup of minced sultanas or raisins

1 cup of minced dates

Beat up the eggs well.  Add the sugar and beat again.

Pour the boiling water over the baking soda and stir.

Add all other ingredients, including the cream of tartar, into the bowl containing the beaten egg mixture.

Now pour over the hot water and baking soda mixture.

Stir all ingredients well.

Put the cake mix into a buttered and floured tin or pyrex dish.  About 23 cm square is fine.

Bake on 180 C for around 3/4 hour, or until the cake is lightly browned and smelling delicious.

Leave to cool, and then ice if desired.

You could use a straight icing sugar icing with cocoa powder.  Alternatively, you might like to use a philadelphia cheese icing with a little lemon juice added.  Simply add enough icing sugar into your philly cheese to make a smooth, spreadable consistency.  Add the lemon juice.  Mix in well.  Then spread over your Almond Fruit Cake.

Or use without icing and simply slice into squares when cold.

Delicious treat for school lunches.

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Gluten Free Protein Rich Dumplings For Soup

Gluten Free Recipe Using Chick Pea Flour:

How To Make Wheat-Free Dumplings.

These are really delicious things:  Great for celiacs or other people following wheat free or gluten free diets.  The chick pea flour dumplings will give richness and flavour to your winter soups, and provide good protein as well.

They come out well when they are cooked in a vegetable soup which has plenty of clear liquid in it.

These gluten free dumplings are a great protein resource for vegetarians.  Of course, you can add a little gravy beef or fish if you wish.

Take one regular cup of chick pea flour, also called besan flour.  Put into a clean dry bowl.

Add one free range egg, preferably organic.

Add half a teaspoon of sea salt and two teaspoons of baking powder.

Add enough water to mix – around half a cup or a little more.

If you like, you can add some spices to the dumpling mixture.  A little turmeric for colouring, or some chopped fresh chilli, or some chopped fresh coriander, are some additions which you can use to excite the taste buds.

Get your wooden spoon and stir the mixture well, grinding out any lumps of pea flour as you go.

The mixture should resemble a stiffish batter – just thin enough so that you can drop balls of batter into your boiling soup.  Be careful not to add too much water in the mixing of it, as it will not hold together if it is too runny.

Get your soup up to simmering point, but not boiling heavily.  It should be simmering away gently when you add your dumplings to it.

Use all the mixture up, dropping balls of dough into the soup.  Cook for 10 minutes on one side, then turn the dumplings over for 5 minutes or so.

Serve the soup with the dumplings.

You can experiment with using the same recipe above, but fried in olive oil instead of being boiled as dumplings.

You can make the batter slightly more runny, and put slices of zucchini, or aubergine, or slices of onion with it.  Take a piece of  your chosen vegetable, surrounded with a spoonful of the pea flour batter,and pop it into the hot oil.  Fry until brown.  Turn over and cook on the other side.

Eat while hot.



Homemade Gluten Free Pickled Ginger (Uncooked)

Herbal Recipe:  How To Make Your Own Gluten Free, Uncooked, Pickled Ginger.

This easy recipe can be used as a condiment and as an herbal remedy.

Making your own pickled ginger is a rewarding exercise. Apart from the creative process of making it, you can also gain satisfaction from the knowledge that your homemade product does not contain any added harmful preservatives which a commercial product might use.

Homemade pickled ginger is useful as an addition to curries, meat, fish or vegetarian dishes, and can also be used as a medicine, taken a teaspoon at a time.

Ginger has been used in traditional Chinese and Indian ayurvedic medicine for thousands of years.

Ginger is an amazing herb:  In modern language, it is known as a ‘blood thinner’, as a heart and circulation booster, as a digestive aid, as an antidote to nausea and food-poisoning, for motion sickness, as an antioxidant and detoxifyer of poisons in the liver, and as a catalyst for other herbs and nutrients to be assimilated efficiently.  It is a common ingredient of many traditional herbal remedies, because of its ability to increase the effectiveness of herbs and nutrients in foods.

So – here is how to make your gluten-free,  homemade pickled ginger.

Take fresh, peeled, ginger roots. Grate up enough to fill two cups.

Pour boiling water over the grated ginger, and leave to soften for one minute.

Strain the ginger and reserve the water for tea,

Into a glass jar which has a good fitting lid, put:

1 cup wine vinegar or cider vinegar

2/3 cup brown sugar

1 teaspoon sea salt

Stir the sugar and salt into the vinegar.

Now pack your grated and softened ginger into the jar, making sure that the ginger is covered with the vinegar.  Top up with a little more vinegar if necessary.

Put on the lid and shake for a minute or so.

Leave the jar on the window-sill for two days, shaking every day.

After two days, put the pickled ginger into the fridge and use as needed.

This is best if it is used within two weeks.

A slice of pickled beetroot added to the jar will give the ginger a pinkish colour. Alternatively, you can buy some shiso leaves from an Asian grocer, and add a little to the pickle mixture.  These will give your homemade pickle a pink colour.

As a digestive tonic, take one teaspoonful per day at mealtimes.  Note:  Do not use ginger in your food, or as a herbal remedy if you are taking a chemical blood thinner such as warfarin.  Ginger, like Vitamin C, and Vitamin C rich fruits such as grapefruit,  is a natural blood-thinner, so if you take it along with a prescribed medicine such as Warfarin, then you will be doubling up on the blood-thinning effect.  Use only one or the other – traditional remedies, or the medication prescribed for you.

Personally, I think it is better to use herbal remedies, and eat the appropriate foods, so that the blood is thinned naturally, rather than take pharmaceutical preparations.  Drugs which are commonly prescribed often turn out to have very deleterious effects on the vital organs and nervous system of the body.  The side effects of warfarin are not so pleasant, and it can even induce a stroke, the very thing it is meant to prevent.  But if you have decided on the standard medical approach for preventing strokes, then do not use ginger as well.

Merrilyn’s new book is available on Amazon:

Gluten Free Gingered Cabbage Soup Recipe

Nutrient-Rich Cabbage-Ginger  Soup To Help Fight Flu and Colds

Note:  I don’t believe that Warfarin and other chemical blood thinners are good for anyone, and I believe that the natural sources are the way to go.

However, if you ARE taking warfarin, or any other blood thinner, then you should steer clear of this recipe.  Cabbage and ginger are both natural blood thinners, and so if you include them in your diet, together with a synthetic blood-thinner such as warfarin, the result might be too much blood-thinner.

Natural Food-Based Blood Thinners:  You might ask yourself, ‘Well.  Perhaps I should switch to the natural remedy and use food-based blood-thinners instead?  Up to you and your doctor to answer that question.

This recipe creates a very tasty and warming soup – Ideal for those winter months, or even spring time, when the weather fluctuations tend to bring on those unexpected bouts of cold and flu.

It uses fresh ginger and a dash of red cayenne pepper to spice it up, drive out those flu germs,  and make it interesting.  The soup mixture is blended at the end of the cooking, with a little extra cold water, and  just half a raw onion added to the blender.  This gives the soup a real fresh zest which gives extra potency to the antioxidant, anti-vital properties of the cabbage and ginger combined.  You re-heat the blended soup, which slightly cooks that raw onion, but you do not boil the soup.

Cabbage is a great antioxidant and anti-inflammatory food.  It is very high in calcium, and contains folate, vitamin C, iron, beta-carotene, and B vitamins.  Cabbage is one of the foods which helps prevent cancer, especially of the lungs, the colon, and the breasts.  It is good to include cabbage in your diet  several times a week.

Ginger in this recipe provides more germ-killinig and cancer-destroying agents.  These specific compounds found in ginger are called gingerols and terpenes.  They are antioxidants  which are helpful in preventing and treating cancer of the colon, ovaries and rectum, as well as having a general anti-viral effect on the health.

The carrot provides more carotene-Vitamin A, an important constituent for health and, particularly, for eye-sight.

Onion provides zinc for healing,  chromium which helps regulate blood sugar levels, diallyl sulphide which helps protect against viral diseases and cancer, and other important antioxidant compounds such as quercetin.

ToMake Gluten Free Gingered Cabbage Soup:

Roughly chop up half a medium-sized cabbage.  Put into a large saucepan which has a lid.

Now peel a large knob of ginger.  Chop it up finely.  There should be at least a tablespoon of chopped ginger – use more if you would like.

Add the ginger to the cabbage.

Add one chopped onion.

Add one chopped washed potato with its skin still left on.

Add one roughly chopped carrot.

Add one litre of water, put the lid on, and bring to the boil.

Once the vegetables are  cooked, add another half litre of cold water to cool the vegetables.

Put some of the vegetables and some of the liquid into the blender.  Blend until smooth, just about a minute.  Pour the blended vegetables into a bowl.  Then gradually blend the rest of the vegetables and liquid in the pot.

Return all the vegetables to the saucepan.  Reserve about 2 cups of soup to use in the blender.

Next –   Chop up half a medium sized onion and add to the blender with the blended soup.  Put in a half teaspoon of red paprika, one teaspoon of sea salt,  and blend up with the raw onion.

Add the blended raw onion mixture to the soup in the pot.  Reheat the soup to hot, but not boiling.

Serve with grated cheese on top of the soup.  Alternatively, add a dollop of sour cream, or some basil-flavoured hummus.

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