Gluten free strawberry crumble

Gluten free strawberry crumble

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Although we are not on a restricted gluten free diet, I like to explore different possibilities for gluten, when I can. It also seems that going gluten free greatly improves my husband’s control of his diabetes.
Spring in the air, fruits are looking better and better every day, I found this amazing recipe here, and had to give it a go.
Huge success, the combination of oats and shredded coconut was brilliant, gluten free and very yummy. Easy to put it together, a great dessert for the warm evenings that are about to start.

Gluten free strawberry crumble

4 cups (1 L) halved hulled strawberries
2 tbsp packed brown sugar
1 tbsp cornstarch
1 tsp vanilla

Crumble Topping:

1-1/2 cups pure uncontaminated large-flake oats
1/2 cup sweetened shredded coconut
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
Pinch salt
1/2 cup (125 mL) cold unsalted butter, cubed

Stir together strawberries, brown sugar, cornstarch and vanilla; scrape into 8-inch (2 L) square baking dish.

Crumble Topping: In bowl, whisk together oats, coconut, brown sugar and salt. Using pastry blender or two knives, cut in butter until in coarse crumbs with some larger pieces. Sprinkle over strawberry mixture.

Bake in 350 F (180 C) oven until topping is golden and filling is bubbly, about 30 minutes. Let stand for 10 minutes before serving.

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Strawberry and spiced chai tea sorbet – Frozen treat to make before summer is over

Strawberry and spiced chai tea sorbet – Frozen treat to make before summer is over

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I’ve been experimenting with ice creams and sorbets all through this summer and loving it. I thought it would be my first step towards making my mind about buying an ice cream maker. I had lots of fun and my food processor did the job, so far.

I am a big sorbet fan. I find it is a great way to get cooled off with the goodness of chilled fresh fruits. I just love the fact that there is no fat at all, which makes an awesome way to end a BBQ meal, for example. Great to snack on if the weather outside is steaming hot too!

It is really easy to make this sorbet but it takes time to freeze. The spiced chai added a surprising twist in the strawberry mix, subtle enough to become refreshing and sweet. And the beautiful colour brings the joyful summer feeling to the eyes and the palate! Ah, if only summer would stay a bit longer in this part of the hemisphere, the days are getting shorter and shorter now.

Strawberry and Chai spiced tea sorbet

4 to 6 portions
adapted from Style at Home Magazine

1 chai spiced tea bag
1/2 cup boiling water
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 lb fresh strawberries

Steep the chai tea in boiling water for 15 min. Remove the tea bag and discard. Put the sugar and tea in a saucepan and stir until sugar is dissolved, boil for 1 min. Let it cool at room temperature.

Hull and quarter the strawberries and place in a blender or food processor along with the steeped tea syrup and purée until the mixture is totally combined. Chill the mixture in the fridge for 1 hour. At this point you can pour the mixture into your ice cream maker and follow the manufacturer’s instructions. Or, pour the mixture in a large freezer bag and freeze until solid, about 4 hours. i placed the bag in a cookie pan, laying horizontally for faster freezing.
Break the sorbet in smaller pieces and place it in the food processor , stopping the machine occasionally and pressing the mixture toward the blades. Continue to process until the sorbet spins smoothly with a light, fluffy texture. Serve straight away or freeze in a covered container for another couple of hours until firm.
It is also a good idea to use different tea infusions with the strawberries. For this particular batch I used a fruity tea, The Fruta Bombay from Teaopia.

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White chocolate and coconut strawberries

White chocolate and coconut strawberries

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I was so successful with my chocolate strawberries for Valentine’s that I had to make them again last weekend when we had company for dinner.
Talking about a favorite that also fits my husband’s ongoing diabetes-friendly diet!
A couple of tricks will help to cut the sugar down, if you need to: dip just half of each strawberry in the melted chocolate (which I haven’t done here this time, as you can see in the pictures) and use unsweetened shredded coconut.
I saw one of my favorites chef Michael Smith making them for Valentine’s on his TV show, tried it out and wow! So easy, fast, pretty and beyond yummy!

White chocolate and coconut strawberries

1 pint strawberries
170 gr white chocolate
1 1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut

Wash the strawberries carefully and pat them dry with a paper towel. This step is very important to make sure the chocolate sticks well to the fruits.

Line up a piece of parchment paper on your counter top.

Cut the chocolate into small pieces.

Take a medium glass bowl inside a small pan with water (no more than 2″) and bring it to a simmer. It is very important that the bowl is completely dry. Try to get a glass bowl that is larger than the pan, overlapping, to ensure no water gets in the melting chocolate while you are stirring it. If just a one single drop of water gets in the chocolate, the whole mixture will be lost. I know, it is sad.

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When 80% of the chocolate is melted, take it out of the heat and bring the bowl to your work area. The chocolate will eventually melt completely while you are dipping the strawberries.
Start dipping the strawberries, gently grabbing the stems, or use a fork to do so. After every dip wait a few seconds for the chocolate to stop running and then roll them out on the coconut. It is a delicate process but very fast you will get a grip of it and will be amazed with the result!
Lay the dipped strawberries on the parchment paper and wait for them to cool off, around 1 hour.
Serve them in the same day.

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Enjoy and thanks for stopping by!

Light raspberry mousse – healthy dessert

Light raspberry mousse – healthy dessert

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For many years my mom would make this dessert for my birthday dinner. She would do with prunes and a fine custard on top. Not too sweet, I was never a big fan of super sweet desserts that are very popular in Brazil, but light and tasty, perfect for the December summer weather down there.
I was thrilled when I found the original recipe the other day. It would be perfect for a light dessert and I decided to modify it from the original, to make it lighter and diabetes friendly. I used raspberries that I had in the fridge, but strawberries would do too. It is so easy and fast to prepare and a great change for the plain jello, rich with protein and fruit, fun and pretty!

Raspberry mousse – perfect light and healthy dessert

6 portions

4 whites
3/4 cup sugar (Splenda also works very well)
1 cup raspberry or strawberry coarsely mashed and mixed with 1 tbs sugar or Splenda
4 tsp gelatine, flavorless

Sprinkle the gelatin in 1/3 cup cold water. Add 1/4 cup boiling water, mixing well and let it cool off for 3 to 5 min.
In the mean time beat the whites in hard peaks with an electric mixer, add the sugar, still beating. Fold the strawberries into the whites, add the gelatine mixing gently but well.
Pour the mousse in a bunt cake pan, previously rinsed with cold water – do not wipe, the pan should be wet when you pour the mixture, which will make it easier taking it out of the pan.
You also can do in small ramekins for individual portions, as I did.
Cool in the fridge for at least 30 min.

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Enjoy and thanks for stopping by!

Raquel