Kahlua Mud Cake Trifle – Gluten free

I may have mentioned this before, but I am not a huge fan of the trifle, however sometimes accidents happen, and really lovely cakes do not come neatly out of the tin, so what to do with a cake that you know will be beautiful, but is not very presentable?  The answer is, make a trifle, and pretend that was your plan all along…

I had planned to make a cake to share on Christmas Eve at work, but couldn’t take it in because it stubbornly clung to the tin, so instead when I got home that night I made up some custard and jelly and we got a very rich, but very yummy dessert out of my failure.

Kahlua Mud Cake trifle

1 Kahlua Mud Cake (or use any cake you prefer, but if it is already rich you won’t need to pour any alcohol over the cake like people usually do)

1 packet of your favourite jelly, made up according to packet directions, and allowed to set in fridge

2 cups of gluten free custard made from custard powder, according to packet directions, and allowed to completely cool


Break up cake and place in bowl, chop up jelly and drop chunks in bowl, pour cold custard over the lot.

Pretend you intended the dessert to be like this all along, and enjoy.


Our Christmas table before we messed it up...

Christmas Leftover Time!

I am having the day off to rest and recover from all the cooking and eating yesterday, but I have cooked a few things in the past that are great for using leftovers, either just as they are, or with a bit of adapting (some of the recipes use minced raw meat, but if you chop your cooked meat and reduce the cooking time, you should be able to make them work for you.  So if you find yourself with huge piles of leftover meats and seasonal goodies, have a look at these recipes:



Gluten free Caesar Salad

Gluten free potato, ham and cheese pizza

Gluten free crustless quiche

Susan’s Cheat’s Carbonara


Gluten free Turkey Sausage Rolls

Turkey Risotto

Turkey meatballs


Gluten free pork sausage rolls

Roast Pork Pastie

Cranberries/cranberry sauce

White chocolate, cranberry & pistachio bark

Cranberry and pistachio cupcakes

Sausages in cranberry sauce

Picnic chicken

Cointreau custard tartlets

These are definitely not gluten free as they are made with bought tartlet cases.  I just made these one night as a quick and easy way to dress up some strawberries.  The addition of Cointreau to a standard custard mixture will make them a little bit special.

Cointreau custard tartlets

Cointreau custard tartlets

6 bought tartlet cases

12 large strawberries

1/2 cup milk

1 egg yolk

1/2 tbsp sugar

1 tsp Cointreau

1 tbsp cornflour


Heat the milk in a small pan over a medium heat.  While it is heating (watch it, it won’t take long) beat together the yolk, cornflour and sugar until the sugar is well blended, then add the Cointreau.  Once the milk has just come to the boil, pour over the egg mixture and stir vigorously.  Return to pan, stir until thickened, leave aside to cool.  When completely cool, fill tartlet cases, decorate with strawberries.

To decorate you can dust with icing sugar, or add a little Irish Cream Cream (hey it’s Christmas, a little bit of alcohol is to be expected).

Irish Cream cream

This cream is smooth and silky and goes with just about any cake or pudding as the flavour of the Irish cream goes well with most fruit cakes and Christmassy flavours.  It is hardly a recipe, just a different treatment for whipping cream (and I slightly more grown up flavour).

Irish cream cream

Irish cream cream

200 ml thickened cream

1 tsp Irish Cream (liqueur)


Combine ingredients and beat until thickened.  However, as the alcohol is not cooked it remains active, so if you need to have a zero alcohol reading before driving or operating machinery, best give this a miss. (Leaves more for me anyway!)

Apple & Irish Cream Cake – Gluten free

Traditionally you pair cinnamon with apple, but the irish cream has a slightly spiced taste when it is baked, so you don’t need to add anything more.  (Try licking the spoon with this one!)

Apple & Irish Cream Cake - Gluten free

Apple & Irish Cream Cake – Gluten free

Preheat a fan forced oven to 170 celcius, 190 if not fan forced.  You can use whatever shaped tin you like, if you use something shaped like a star, make sure you push the batter right into the points.  You won’t need a huge tin for this mixture as it is more of a tea cake than a butter cake.


60g butter

1/2 cup caster sugar

1 egg, slightly beaten

1/2 cup Irish Cream (liqueur)

1 cup gluten free SR flour

1/4 cup coconut flour

1 tsp xanthan gum

I apple, peeled, cut into quarters and cored, then sliced finely


Cream the butter and sugar, add the egg and beat well.  Add the dry ingredients and liqueur alternately.  Spoon batter into tin.  Push slices of apple into mixture and bake for 25-30 minutes.


Can be served warm as a pudding, or cold as a cake.

Serve with Irish Cream cream.

White chocolate crackles – gluten free

I thought for Christmas I would rework an old childhood favourite – and as I bought a big bag of those red, green and white buttons, I have to keep coming up with ideas to use them, before I just dig my hand in the jar and make a pig of myself.  My recipe made 15.  If you want to use the whole block of copha, you will get 30 (I wanted to keep some for some other ideas I have rolling around).

Yesterday was an extreme weather event in Melbourne, and we lost power for several hours.  I thought I was very clever making something that didn’t use electricity but of course we didn’t have power to run the router, so no internet and I couldn’t post the results, D’OH!

White chocolate crackles

White chocolate crackles

2 cups gluten free rice bubbles

1 cup gluten free chocolate buttons

125g copha (hard white vegetable shortening)

1 cup white chocolate buttons, or chopped up white chocolate

1/4 cup coconut

1/4 cup gluten free icing sugar


Put 15 little patty case papers (smaller than cup cake papers) on a tray and set aside.

Put the rice bubbles, buttons, coconut and icing sugar in a large bowl.  In a small saucepan, melt together the copha and white chocolate, pour into the rice bubble mix and stir until well combined.  Spoon mixture into the cases, place the tray in your fridge to set.


Done.  If you want to make the traditional chocolate crackles, the recipe is on the copha wrapper.

White chocolate rocky road for Christmas – gluten free

This is very similar to my regular gluten free rocky road recipe, but I don’t know why, the white chocolate seems to have a different consistency to the milk and dark chocolates, so the quantities of filling items are different.  I went with the “red and green” theme for Christmas.

White chocolate Christmas Rocky Road - Gluten free

White chocolate Christmas Rocky Road – Gluten free

60g gluten free plain biscuits (I used arrowroot ones here), roughly chopped

200g miniature white gluten free marshmallows

100g red and green glace cherries, cut in half

1/2 cup pistachios, roughly chopped

750g white chocolate

Place all ingredients except the chocolate into a large bowl.

Put 500g of the chocolate into a microwave safe bowl and in 30 second bursts, melt it.  I usually find that after each burst, I shake the bowl, it should only take about three to three and a half bursts until the chocolate is starting to melt.  When you can see it is soft, take it out and mix vigorously to finish off the melting process and make sure the chocolate is smooth.  (When melting the chocolate in the microwave you have to be careful because if you heat it too much it will sieze and you will have to throw it out and start again).

When the chocolate is melted and smooth, mix through the ingredients in the bowl.  Spoon mixture into the loaf pan.

Put the rest of the chocolate into the microwave safe bowl, melt it using the same method.  When melted and smooth, spread over the top of the mixture in the loaf pan, trying to fill in the gaps.

Chill for an hour, then cut using a heavy knife.

Christmas biscuits (cookies) – gluten free

Recently on one of my forays into various lolly shops looking for inspiration, I found these gluten free buttons.  I only used a few in the biscuit mix, so have heaps left over for something else (or let’s be honest, maybe just eating).  I am a big fan of the melt and mix method for quick and easy baking.

I got about 24 from the mixture.

Christmas biscuits (cookies) - gluten free

Christmas biscuits (cookies) – gluten free


125g butter

1/2 cup sugar

1 egg, beaten

1 tsp vanilla

1 & 1/2 cups gluten free SR flour

1/2 cup red, green and white buttons


Preheat a fan forced oven to 160 celcius, 180 if not fan forced.

Melt butter in the microwave in a microwave safe mixing bowl, then add the sugar and beat well.  When cooled a little, add the egg and vanilla, followed by the flour and buttons.  Roll into small balls, and place on trays, leaving room for each ball to spread.  Bake for 10-12 minutes until lightly browned.  Cool on cake cooler.

Strawberry flan – gluten free

This is so easy, and you can also use berries that are past their best, as you are going to cook them.  The cooking makes the flavour of the berries pop and is great.  Because you don’t have to first make a crust, this is a big time saving.   This serves four.

Strawberry flan - gluten free

Strawberry flan – gluten free

2 punnets strawberries

2 eggs

3/4 cup sugar

1 tsp vanilla essence

300g sour cream

2 tbsp gluten free plain flour

Ground nutmeg or cinnamon


Preheat a fan forced oven to 160 celcius, 180 if not fan forced.  You will need a pie dish for this, lightly sprayed with cooking oil.

Wash and hull the berries, cutting them flat across the top.  Arrange points up in the pie dish, reserving a few for decoration after baking.  Whisk eggs, sugar, vanilla in a bowl, add the sour cream and flour, whisk to a smooth batter.  Pour over the berries, taking care not to knock them over.  Sprinkle lightly with nutmeg or cinnamon, whichever you prefer, and bake for approximately 25-30 minutes until lightly browned and just firm in centre.


Decorate with reserved berries and serve.

Cherry and chocolate slab cake – gluten free

I like to make this in a slab pan, as it is so rich it is easy to slice into small ‘fingers’ for serving.  You don’t want to do this in a traditional cake tin, then try to eat a big wedge of it.  You should be able to serve at least twelve people.

Chocolate cherry cake

Chocolate cherry cake


1 & 2/3 cup gluten free SR flour

1/2 cup cocoa

1 tsp each of bi-carb soda and baking powder

200g each of brown sugar and caster sugar

2 eggs

1/2 cup buttermilk (you can make this yourself by adding a little vinegar to regular milk)

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 tbsp brandy

125g unsalted butter, chopped and melted when required

1 tsp salt

350g jar pitten morello cherries, drained


1 cup thickened cream

1/4 cup golden syrup

250g dark chocolate, chopped – or use buttons

1 tsp vanilla extract


Preheat a fan forced oven to 170 celcius (190 if not fan forced).  Grease and line a 20 X 30 cm slab pan.

Sift flour, cocoa, baking powder and bi-carb.  Stir in sugars.  In a separate bowl, whisk eggs, buttermilk,k banilla and brandy.  Melt butter, salt and 1 cup of water over boiling water.  Pour onto dry mixture and mix, fold in egg mixture.

Scatter cherries over bottom of prepared slab pan.  Pour batter over and smooth.  Bake for approximately 25-30 minutes – cake is cooked when it springs back when you poke it with your finger.  Leave to sit in pan for five minutes when you take it out of the oven, then let it cool on a rack (be careful, when the cake is still warm, it is a little fragile because of all the moist cherries).

To make ganache – heat cream and golden syrup in a small pot over medium heat until almost boiling.  Remove from heat, add vanilla and chocolate, and stir until chocolate is melted and the ganache is smooth.  Chill for 30 minutes, then spread over the cake.


I either serve the whole cake on a large flat glass cutting board or pre-cut it into fingers.  This recipe is one of my most asked for by friends and work colleagues, so enjoy.