A Brisbane ‘Detour’

I think the gluten free savvy learn to scan restaurant and cafe reviews for those precious words :GLUTEN FREE but what is more exciting about Detour in Woolloongabba Brisbane is that the kitchen will be entirely gluten free.

While the restaurant won’t be opened until 2nd January 2017, I am sure that it will be well supported by all those who must eat gluten free.




Creamy Rice


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I have taken to making this recipe every couple of weeks, to take to my 91 year old father.  It is easy and needs about 20 minutes of one’s time and Dad loves it, not only because he enjoys its sweetness but also because it reminds him of Mum and the recipes she would make.  The other pudding Mum used to make was Apricots and Rice : stewed apricots with lots of syrup and plain unsalted boiled rice…

tastes of my childhood

Creamy Rice and Stewed Prunes

1 packet prunes, a spinkle of sugar and a little water.  Stew prunes on gentle simmer.

600ml full cream milk, 3 tablespoons short grain rice, 3 tablespoons caster sugar (a bit too sweet for me so I use 1/5 to 2 tablespoons), a bit of butter.  Combine ingredients in a saucepan and bring to the boil.  Reduce to a gentle simmer and stir regularly until 3/4 liquid has been absorbed by the rice.  Pour into a dish and sprinkle with nutmeg or cinnamon.







A Little Bit of Spice



Add a little bit of spice to the gluten free Christmas Stocking this year

Beerenberg is known for their jams and relishes and dressings but now they have added a few more tempting and tantalising  reasons to love their range: slow cooker Spanish Chicken, Moroccan Lamb, Cuban Mojo Port and Hungarian Beef Goulash.

And another good reason to love Beerenberg is that their products are gluten free.

You can find Beerenberg in the supermarkets but gourmet pantries and delis will have a wider range.

VIP Gourmet Cellar next door to the Victoria Park Hotel on Boundary Street South Townsville is well stocked with this new range of slow cooker items as is Christo’s Deli at The Precinct Fairfield.






Llenties: Catalan for Lentils



I learnt to eat lentils when I lived with a free spirited flatmate on the Atherton Tablelands.  Jane preferred vegetarian and so one of her mainstays was lentil pasta.  Different and interesting as was the lava rock home her boyfriend lived in which had a sauna but no kitchen sink.

 We have rediscovered lentils after a visit to my cousin Monsterrat in Sabadell near Barcelona.  Miquel her husband served us lentils as one of the many lunch courses and both my husband and I asked for seconds.  Its simplicity gives it its taste: four ingredients and a little time to gently stir.

Miquel’s Llenties

Ingredients for four people
1/2 onion, finely diced
400 g  mashed tomato or can of crushed tomatoes
1/2 kg lentils, cooked as per instructions on packet
1/4 kg mashed meat or black sausage (butifarra), decased Italian sausage, chorizo
Olive oil

Use a big pan (paella) and a bit of olive oil 10 cc aprox.
Cut the onion into small pieces and when oil is hot, put it in the pan.


When the onion is golden, add the butifarra or mashed meat.

Wait until meat or black sausage is melted down.


Add the mashed tomato and mix well with onion and meat.



Add lentils that have been cooked previously.

Wait 10 minutes.

Chickpea Fritters

Chickpea Fritters (1)

These chickpea fritters are cheap to make, vegetable based and easy to assemble.

Chickpea and Sweet Potato Cakes


500 g orange sweet potato, peeled, coarsely chopped

1 x 400 g chickpeas, rinsed and drained

1 brown onion, finely chopped

½ cup chopped fresh coriander

2 tablespoons finely grated parmesan

2 tablespoons gluten free plain flour

Extra finely grated parmesan cheese to coat

Olive oil spray

Mixed lettuce leaves to serve

Sweet chilli sauce to serve


Cook the sweet potato in a saucepan of boiling water for 10 minutes or until tender.  Drain, return to pan and mash until smooth.  Transfer to a bowl. Place in fridge for 30 minutes to cool.

Mash chickpeas or process chickpeas in another bowl.

Combine the chickpeas, onion, coriander, parmesan and flour to the sweet potato. Season with salt and pepper. Divide mixture into 10 portions and shape each into a patty.

Preheat oven to 180 C.

Line a baking tray with baking paper.

Place extra parmesan on a plate and press patties lightly into the parmesan to coat.

Place on the lined tray and spray patties with olive oil.

Bake in oven, turning once, for 30 minutes or until golden.

Serve with lettuce and sweet chilli sauce


Corn, Zucchini and Chickpea Fritters


400 g chickpeas, drained and rinsed

½ cup reduced fat milk

2 eggs

¾ cup gluten free self-raising flour

1 large zucchini, grated

310 g can corn kernals, drained and rinsed

2 tablespoons  chopped mint leaves

3 green onions, thinly sliced

Olive oil cooking spray

Salad leaves and tomato chutney to serve.


Process chickpeas until roughly chopped.  Whisk milk and eggs in a jug.

Place flour in a bowl.  Gradually add milk mixture to flour, whisking until smooth.

Stir in chickpeas, zucchini, corn, mint and onion.

Spray a large frying pan with oil.  Heat over medium-high heat.

Add ¼ cup mixture to pan.  Spread slightly with a spatula. Repeat to make 3 more in the pan.

Cook for 2 – 3 minutes each side or until golden and cooked through.  Transfer to a plate, cover and keep warm.

Repeat with remaining mixture to make 12 fritters.

Serve with salad and chutney.


Cheesecake Decadence




My sister Terese is our Dessert Queen and this is one more of her  creations.  A special celebration dessert, this cheesecake will more than please the gluten free-er and gluten eater alike.  The base is a rice bubble (gluten free of course) and white chocolate mix which Terese also used to adorn the top.  Use you favourite cheesecake filling recipe and VOILA! Here is Terese’s version.

Raspberry and White Chocolate Coconut Crunch Cheesecake

Prep: 35 mins + chilling

Cook: 5 mins

Serves: 12 – 16


  • 300 g Cadbury White Chocolate Melts
  • 60 g butter
  • 2 cups puffed rice cereal
  • ¾ cup coconut
  • 750 g Philadelphia Original Block Cream Cheese, softened
  • 1 cup caster sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla essence
  • 1 tabs gelatine, dissolved in ¼ cup boiling water
  • 1 ½ cups cream, whipped until stiff
  • 3 x 125 g punnets raspberries


  1. Place chocolate and butter in a bowl and place over a saucepan of gently simmering water, stirring until smooth. Combine puffed rice cereal and coconut in a bowl, then add the melted chocolate and butter and mix well.
  2. Line the base of a 24 cm springform pan. Evenly press half the mixture into the base and chill.  Reserve remaining mixture at room temperature.
  3. Beat the cream cheese, sugar and vanilla essence with an electric mixer until smooth. Stir through the dissolved gelatine, then fold in the whipped cream.
  4. Scatter 1 punnet of raspberries over the base, then pour over half the cream cheese mixture. Top with another punnet of raspberries, then pour over the remaining cream cheese mixture.  Lightly crumble over the reserved chocolate mixture, top with the remaining raspberries and chill for 3 – 4 hours or until set.


Matilda’s Pasta

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Nowadays, one would call this a beef ragu pasta sauce but to us, pasta sauce was just pasta sauce.  There are no apologies for a lack of instructions.  Generally speaking your start with heating the butter and oil then adding the onions and bacon.  Add the meat and then the other vegetables then the liquids and herbs and spices.  You can simmer over low heat until the meat is tender and falls apart or my mum always made her pasta sauce in the pressure cooker… 10 – 12 minutes.  If the sauce is still too liquidy, then simmer until excess liquid is reduced.


Version 1


1/3 block butter

2 medium onions (diced)

Chop rosemary bunch

Chop 2 cloves garlic

1 cup celery (diced)

1 carrot, chopped

½ red capsicum (diced)

Chop end of salami (diced)

2 rashers of streaky bacon (diced)

2 fatty pork chops, trimmed and chopped

1 piece of rump (diced)

1 chicken breast (diced)

Chicken stock

Chilli flakes


All spice (little)

1 bottle Sugo


Tomato paste if needs more red


Version 2

4 oz butter




1 large onion

1 carrot, finely chopped

2 to 3 sticks of celery, finely chopped

2 bacon rashers (diced)

½ capsicum can diced

Rump steak, lean diced

Pork, lean diced

1 bottle tomato salsa – Bertolli

Small glass wine

Chicken stock



All spice

1 teaspoon sugar


Christmas Stockings – Retro Style

Back in the day, when Christmas wasn’t quite so commercialised, one would receive a Christmas Stocking and one other gift.

Life was simple and uncomplicated and many of my peers have memories of this Christmas Stocking : cardboard backing with material netting and containing a comic, a packet of lollies and a few bits and bobs such as whistles, yo-yos, toy car, tin clickers.

Xmas Stocking

With too much time on my hands, I decided that a gluten free Christmas Stocking could be easily (if not roughly) made.

Xmas Stocking (3)

A cookbook, lollies, caramels, chocolates and there it is, my version of a gluten free Christmas Stocking.

So if you are still looking for inspiration: gluten free or otherwise, then put together a few items, sew together cardboard and a scrap of curtain material and personalise a Christmas Stocking gift.

Xmas Present – Gluten Free




Can I afford another Gluten Free Recipe Book?

Can I find space on my bookcase for one more recipe book?

Do I really need another gluten free recipe book?

Will I make any of the recipes?

Yes. No. No. Maybe.

But my husband has already bookmarked a number of mains and I have taken note of a number of sweets.  So I think that I really did need to have this book.

Perfect as a Christmas or special occasion gift, this Women’s Weekly recipe book lives up to its reputation.

There are lots of new ideas for produce already in your kitchen but also a few yummy recipes:

Raspberry and Chocolate Brownie

Almond, Coconut and Pineapple Slice

Orange and White Chocolate Blondie

Banana and Maple Syrup Loaf

Baked Ricotta with Caramelised Onions and Flatbreads

Pina Colada Smoothie

Gluten Free Shortbread


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Short and Sugary

What caught my eye about this recipe is the small amount of rice flour it uses. And the currants.  Rice flour can make a biscuit chalky and sandy – my son’s words and texture has become an important criteria for rating new products.

Too short for a lunch box, but perfect with a cup of tea.

Gluten-free shortbread with lemon and currants 


250 g butter, softened

1/2 cup caster sugar , plus extra to sprinkle

2 tablespoons of currants

2 teaspoons of lemon zest (lime zest works well)

2 1/4 cups gluten free plain flour

1/4 cup rice flour

1/4 teaspoon salt (optional)


In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat butter and sugar together until pale and creamy.  Mix in currants and zest.

Sift in combined flours and salt.  Mix to combine.

Turn dough out onto a board and knead gently.  Roll into an even 5 cm x 20 cm log.  Wrap in plastic and chill for 1 hour.

Preheat oven to moderately slow 160C.  Line two oven trays with baking paper.

Cut dough into 1 cm thick rounds.  Arrange on trays 2 cm apart and sprinkle with extra sugar.

Bake 20 – 25 minutes, until lightly golden.  Cool on trays 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.

(From Woman’s Day : Baking – Kate Brown)

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