Sugar free hobnobs

My store cupboard is looking a bit sparse at the moment. I used to make a regular pilgrimage to the whole food shop to stock up on healthy baking ingredients, however it is a dangerous place when money is tight and there are far too many delicious things I like in there so we haven’t been for a while. Arthur asked to do some baking this afternoon, so we had a look to see if we could be inspired by the minimal ingredients we had.

One of the best things about making up your own recipes is that you don’t have the disappointment of not having the ingredients the recipe requires. Instead we take out the ingredients we have and see what we can do with them.

Today I had a hankering for a nice cup of tea and biscuit. So hobnobs it was, refined sugar free hobnobs that is. Yes they do have a fair amount of butter and honey in them but I’m not suggesting you eat them all at once….we definitely haven’t eaten them all…yet. These are just my kind of biscuit as they are huge, they really expand in the oven and come out all soft and chewy and yummy.

Now I don’t want to brag but these are really tasty, and actually very similar to hobnobs. don’t just take my word for it though, make them and then decide.

*Note* I have used salted butter in this recipe because i think it gives the biscuits that signature hobnobbiness, but if this just sounds too weird to you then feel free to use unsalted butter instead.

Sugar free hobnobs

Ingredients 

  • 100g self raising flour
  • 100g porridge oats
  • 1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 100g salted butter
  • 1/3 cup runny honey
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla essence

Method

Preheat the oven to 160/gas mark 3 and line 2 baking trays with greaseproof paper.

Sift the flour and bicarbonate of soda into a large mixing bowl. Add the oats and stir to combine.

In a separate bowl mix together the butter, honey and vanilla. We used an electric mixer for this for two reasons, 1. it makes the butter and honey fluffy and creamy super fast and 2. Arthur flipping loves a machine that makes a noise.

Gradually fold in the dry ingredients until everything is combined thoroughly into a wet mixture.

Take spoonfuls of mixture and dollop them onto the baking sheet. The mixture will be quite wet but don’t worry it will come together in the oven. Be sure to space out the dollops as they will expand quite a bit. We got 10 biscuits from this mixture.

Bake in the oven for 20 minutes, switching your trays around half way so each gets some time on the top shelf.

Allow to cool on the baking tray for a few minutes before transferring to a wire rack to continue cooling.

Now boil the kettle…

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Carrot & apple juice and juice pulp cookies 

We have been away the past week on holiday to Aberdeenshire which has been wonderful. Plenty of sun, sea, sand, parks,picnics and bbq’s.I have to say I was quite disappointed to get back to reality but very pleased to see my kitchen and get baking! Seeing as I’ve not been here for a while I have a double whammy for you all. Two recipes! Both quick and easy and nut free. A few people have asked for recipes free from nuts so hopefully these will go down well. The first recipe I want to share with you is some delicious carrot and Apple juice. My son loves this, it’s bright orange which is really appealing and it has a nice subtle taste. Not too sweet but delicious enough to temp little tastebuds. Then in the spirit of not wasting good fresh food we made some super healthy cookies using the left over pulp from making the juice. I mean what could be better? Two bakes in one and you tick veg off the daily to do list. 

Apple and carrot juice

Ingredients 

  • 1 Apple (peeled and chopped)
  • 1 carrot (peeled and chopped)
  • 250ml water 

Method

Place all the ingredients into a blender and blitz till smooth. 

Pour through a sieve into a jug. Let it drip through a while to make sure all the liquid comes through 

Set aside the pulp if you are making the juice pulp cookies 

Drink your juice with a few ice cubes so it’s nice and chilled. 


Juice pulp cookies 

Ingredients 

  • 150g oats
  • 1/2 cup carrot and Apple juice pulp
  • 1/4 cup sultanas
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil (melted)
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup 
  • 2 tbsp desiccated coconut 

Method

Preheat the oven to 180/gas 4 and line a baking tray with grease proof paper.

Simple combine all the ingredients in a large mixing bowl and stir thoroughly. 

Take tablespoons of mixture and form into balls. Poo them on the baking tray then flatten into cookies.

Bake for 20 minutes then cool on a wire rack.

Healthy chocolate & peanut butter biscuits

In an ideal world I would have a biscuit tin full of home made biscuits at all times. In reality I make some biscuits and we scoff them all and then there’s a biscuit drought for a few days until I make some more. Andy (husband) is a big biscuit fan, he says its me with the sweet tooth but if there’s chocolate biscuits on the go he’s always the finisher. He also loves peanut butter so these are just for him…ok I ate a few as well. Arthur was over the moon as they are spread with a chocolate topping which couldn’t be more exciting to a two year old. That and the addition of peanut butter made these biscuits a big hit. Thank god for peanut butter, both my children love it and eat it daily. It’s so convenient and great for you. It’s full of protein and vitamin E. I always buy the organic stuff with nothing added just pure peanuts. We stir it through porridge, eat it on toast and of course bake with it loads too. 

Healthy chocolate & peanut butter biscuits 

Ingredients 

  • 130g plain flour 
  • 3 tbsp. Cacao powder 
  • 75g coconut oil
  • 3 tbsp. honey 
  • 2 tbsp. Smooth peanut butter 

Chocolate topping 

  • 1 tbsp. coconut oil
  • 1 tbsp. maple syrup 
  • 2 tbsp. cacao powder 

Method 

Preheat oven to 180/gas 4.

Line a baking tray with grease proof paper. 

Combine the flour and cacao powder in a mixing bowl. 

Melt the coconut oil and honey in a pan. Once melted take off the heat and stir through the peanut butter. 

Add mixture to the dry ingredients and combine into a ball of dough, adding a little more flour if it’s too sticky. You don’t want to over work the dough just combine until it’s all come together. 

Chill for 10 minutes in the fridge.

Roll out the dough on a floured surface and use a cookie cutter of your choice to make about 8-10 biscuits. 

Place biscuits on the tray and bake for about 12 minutes. 

While the biscuits cool on a wire rack make the chocolate topping. 

Melt the coconut oil in a pan then take off the heat and add the maple syrup and cacao powder. Whisk into a smooth chocolate sauce. 

Once the biscuits are totally cool spread each one with chocolate. 

Store in an airtight container. 

  

Sugar free shortbread birds

We’ve been playing farms a lot recently. Arthur is fascinated by tractors and loves the whole set up of hens in their little house and lambs in their field…hours of entertainment. Sadie also has a growing love of wheels and machines…likely because she is surrounded by Arthur’s vast collection and wants desperately to join in his fun and chew his tractors. We have a bit of a creation versus destruction battle at the moment. However one thing both my little monkeys can definitely enjoy together is sampling my baking. Today we made little birdy biscuits in honour of Spring and farms and all things joyful. They are naturally sweetened with honey and coconut and as our bird cookie cutter is pretty big they kept my little helpers quiet for a good while munching through them.

Sugar free shortbread birds  

 

Ingredients 

  • 130g plain white flour
  • 75g coconut oil
  • 3 tbsp honey
  • 3 tbsp desiccated coconut 
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla extract

Method

Preheat the oven to 180/gas 4 and line a baking tray with grease proof paper. 

Sift the flour into a mixing bowl and stir through the desiccated coconut. 

Melt the coconut oil and honey in a pan over a low heat then pour into the dry ingredients. Add the vanilla and mix into a ball. 

Chill in the fridge for 10-15 minutes. 

Roll out on a floured surface and use a cookie cutter to make 5 or 6 birds. (You might get more or less depending how big your cutter is)

Place on the baking tray and cook for 12 minutes. Take them out and cool on a wire rack. 

Enjoy with a handful of raspberries and a side of tractor.