What a day it has been. After the school run I decided to have some “me time”. This involved my exercise programme followed by housework. I used the housework as a cool down and managed to finish the whole of the house in 90 minutes.

After that I decided I wanted cake so I made a génoise sponge filled with whipped cream and black cherry jam. This is a treat for the family for their tea but I decided I needed a slice with a cuppa for my treat. I think black cherry jam is now my favourite jam.

Blackforest Gateau
Blackforest Gateau

I had some cream cheese frosting in the fridge from the other day when I made carrot muffins so instead of throwing it away I used it in a gluten free bread which I added chocolate chips too in the hope of making a brioche. I left the dough to rise and later in the morning I baked it. The resultant bake produced a quite dense heavy bread which as definitely not as well risen as normal flour made breads which I have made in the past. I am sure the children will eat it though. I don’t know if this is a result of the flour or the cream cheese frosting but only time will tell. The bread tastes okay though. Not too sweet as I didn’t add too much sugar due to the presence of icing sugar in the frosting.

In the recipe I added an egg as well as the cream cheese to increase the protein content as some gluten free flours do not have as much protein as standard flours. The gluten in the flour is a protein and it is there to help form the structure of the bread. The bread did not hold its shape in the loaf pan and certainly did not rise as well as standard bread dough because of the lack of gluten in the flour. Also, I think the cream cheese may have softened the dough too much for it to hold its shape whilst baking.

My only worry when using gluten free flour is that there is always a risk of cross contamination with other flours so today whilst I was working with the gluten free flour I was very careful not to mix anything up. Not that it really mattered as none of my family are gluten intolerant but it was good practice for if I ever have to make gluten free products at all. When I was at the market stall I never made gluten free products because I always worried about the risk of cross contamination.

Whilst searching through the baking cupboards I found some diabetic jams which I am going to have to use up so I am busy searching for recipes to use them up in. In order to do this correctly I am researching the recipe ingredients on line and working out the nutritional information i.e., how much of the different sugars, carbohydrates and so on are present to assess if the recipe is okay for a diabetic diet. The ideal amount of sugars in the average diet should be 25g per day and this can be present in many products such as ketchup, fruit, juices, yoghurts etc. These all contain lots of hidden sugars which must be taken into account. I will let you know when I have worked this out and found a suitable recipe, something along the line of a jam and coconut slice.

As for the brioche bread which I had left on the counter top to cool. When I returned from pick up time at school my husband was home and between the lot of them they have devoured it all. I didn’t even tell them what was in it (as some of them turn their nose up at cream cheese).

My husband decided to eat the brioche bread toasted and it seems quite nice with a cup of tea. It seems to have been a hit and I will have to make it again as I didn’t manage to take a photo of the brioche bread.

On a final note I am loving that you are loving my recipe books and I am having lots of emails and interest from around the world. I will catch up with all emails  by the weekend. My recipe books are called Baking at it’s Best.  The links are below and they are available as e-books and paperbacks from Amazon.