low fodmap raspberry vodka recipe

Low fodmap raspberry vodka 

Alcohol on the low fodmap diet is a bit of a tricky one. The trusty Monash University app says 1 serving (30ml) of Gin, Vodka, Whiskey is fine, as is a small glass of wine or can of beer (yes, despite being made from wheat). But to be honest other than steering clear of rum and cider which Monash classes as no-no’s, I pretty much do as I please. And this raspberry vodka is very pleasing.

Over the years I’ve tried a few different fruit-enhanced spirits, the worst of which was a strawberry gin made by Ruthie and I which tasted like plastic despite being made from the most beautiful wild strawberries. This raspberry vodka is my ultimate favourite; deep red, sweet, heady and fresh.

Enjoy it straight as an aperitif, in a French Martini or added to sparkling wine. At New Years Eve I served it as part of desert, with a chocolate brownie and fresh raspberries.

Here’s how you make it:

Ingredients:

  • 500g raspberries, fresh or frozen
  • 350g white granulated sugar
  • 1.5 litres of medium quality vodka
  • 2 litre Kilner jar or 3 empty 70cl vodka bottles – sterilized (here’s how)

Method:

  • Wash the raspberries and discard any bruised or bad fruit.
  • Put the raspberries into the Kilner jar or divide between 3 vodka bottles. If you have to squeeze the fatter raspberries through the bottle neck, that’s fine.
  • Using a funnel, add the sugar and top up with vodka (divide equally if using 3 bottles)
  • Shake every day until the sugar is completely dissolved (should only take a few days). Store in a cool, dark place to ensure the vodka keeps its lovely rich red colour.
  • Leave for at least a month, up to three if you can, until the raspberries have lost their colour.
  • Pour the liquid through a muslin cloth to catch any bits and pour straight into bottles!

The boozy raspberries left over were the most wonderful addition to our family favourite trifle!

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the best low fodmap chocolate brownie

Becca’s Low Fodmap Birthday Brownies

Last month was my best friend Becca’s birthday. We celebrated with a three course food-fest, finished with the most delicious, gooey, rich low fodmap chocolate brownies. Becca adapted a recipe from the hallowed Hummingbird Bakery cookbook and created THE best low fodmap dessert brownies I’ve ever tasted.

Ingredients (for 12):

  • 200g dark chocolate, broken up
  • 175g unsalted butter
  • 325g caster sugar
  • 130g gluten free plain flour
  • 3 eggs
  • Icing sugar to decorate

Method:

  1. Line a 13 x 9 inch baking tray with greaseproof paper
  2. Preheat the oven to 170 degrees (150 degrees for fan oven)
  3. Gently melt the chocolate and butter in a glass bowl over a saucepan of simmering water. (Don’t let the base of the bowl touch the water and keep the heat gentle.)
  4. Remove the bowl from the heat then mix in the sugar
  5. Add the flour and stir well
  6. Stir in the eggs and make sure it’s all well mixed.
  7. Pour the mixture into the baking tray and put in the oven for 30-35mins. If in doubt undercooked is better than over, in my opinion!

Serve the brownies when they’re still ever so slightly warm; flakey on top and still soft in the center, with ice cream and fresh raspberries. Brownie heaven!

 

low fodmap chocolate brownie

 

 

low fodmap vegetarian spinach and ricotta canelloni

Low fodmap aubergine, spinach and ricotta cannelloni

This week I had a real craving for something creamy with aubergines. It didn’t take me long to remember this recipe. When I was a teenager I used to love cannelloni. This is a low fodmap, healthier, veggie-filled version. Even the traditional recipe doesn’t call for onions and garlic so we’re not missing out there either.

 

Serve up this easy dish with a peppery rocket and parmesan salad.

 

Ingredients

  • 2 aubergines, cut into thin slices lengthways
  • A slug of olive oil
  • 500g frozen spinach
  • 250g tub of ricotta
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 red pepper diced small
  • 2 tins of tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • Small handful of ripped basil leaves
  • 6 tablespoons of parmesan cheese

 

Method

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 220 degrees C (200 degrees C for a fan oven). Brush both sides of the aubergine slices with a little oil and lay them on a large baking sheet. Bake for 15-20 mins until tender, turning once.
  2. Meanwhile, warm the spinach in a large bowl in the microwave. Then thoroughly squeeze out all the excess water, so that it’s as dry as possible. Mix the spinach with the ricotta, nutmeg and lots of salt and pepper.
  3. In a saucepan create the tomato sauce by gently frying the red pepper for a few minutes then add the tinned tomatoes, tomato paste, basil, salt and pepper and simmer gently.
  4. When you’re ready to assemble, put a spoonful of the cheesy spinach mix in the centre of each aubergine slice and roll it over to make a cannelloni style parcel. Lay each parcel sealed-side down in an ovenproof dish.
  5. Pour the tomato sauce over the aubergine rolls, sprinkle with the parmesan and bake for 20-25 minutes until golden on top.

 

Recipe adapted from this wonderful BBC good food recipe.

What’s it like living with a fodmapper?

When I moved in with Natalie and Gemma I was apprehensive about how my fodmap requirements would go down. I was really keen for us to cook together as much as possible but I realised I was throwing a pretty monumental spanner in the works. A year later and I feel super lucky that we now have the most beautiful system where we share our food and cook together loads. I wander what it’s been like for them, so I asked them:

Hi Gem. Hi Nat. So come on then, what’s it like living with a fodmapper?

Nat: I’d say the biggest difference is that we don’t really make that quick, easy food like fish fingers and sausages that I used to. We never get takeaways anymore!  Now when I cook, there’s an additional step in the thought process; ‘can Ele eat it’.

Gem: Garlic and onion is the toughest thing to cut out rather than gluten. Asafoetida was a bit of a breakthrough.

Nat: Other than that it doesn’t feel like it’s an effort to plan round. Oh except stock cubes!   You’d think the food isn’t going to taste as good but it didn’t make as big a difference as I thought it would.

 

Any perks? (Any at all!)

Nat: It’s made me look at food in a different way. I’m much more aware of the relationship between what I eat and how I feel. My consumption of green vegetables have sky rocketed!

Gem: Agreed. Kale has gone from zero to hero. Though I’ve picked up a nasty cheese habit from you. Apart from that I’d say living with you has made me healthier.

 

What’s surprised you about the fodmap diet?

Nat: How much sugar you consume!

Gem: When we first moved in I’d not heard of the low fodmap diet before but now I’ve seen it in a lot of places. I still don’t completely understand it if I’m honest. I need an idiot’s guide or an infographic.

The low fodmap diet defies all logic of what I’ve come to think of as what’s good for you or not. It’s not low carb, it’s not low sugar or GI… Honey is a no where golden syrup is a yes – the opposite to what you’d expect. You’d think fruit and veg are fine but all categories are different!

Beyond onions, garlic and gluten it’s all a bit of a mystery which makes it intimidating as I don’t cook that much.

 

Does it piss you off when I cheat and eat all the things I shouldn’t, when I’ve made you cook for me on-diet?

Gem: When you wander off-diet. I treat it with humour and empathy. I do the same! I know I come in late and scoff bread too. Your Frosties, Nutella and bread binges are hilarious.

 

Finally, what advice would you give to folks living with a fodmapper?

Nat: Get them to print out and stick up a list of what they can and can’t eat so you can learn. The diet does sound really restrictive but as long as you cook things from scratch it’s fine. Where I might have bought jars of curry sauce before I now make it from scratch.

Gem: Make the most of onion and garlic when your fodmapper isn’t around. To be honest, I don’t notice when there’s not onion or garlic in something but oh wow garlic bread tastes amazing when you get it!

Great advice, thanks girls!

how to live with someone on the low fodmap diet

run low fodmap diet

Why running should be part of your Low Fodmap diet

I ran a half marathon recently. (I know, it surprised me too!). Now this isn’t something I ever dreamed of doing before I started my low fodmap diet but running has become such a brilliant way of helping me manage my IBS – it’s become part of my life!

So I wanted to share with you why I’ve added regular runs to my low fodmap diet. Not that I’m suggesting you should go out and run a half marathon but just a bit of exercise can make a massive difference. Continue reading

grab and go low fodmap convenience snacks

My top 10 low FODMAP grab & go snacks

Life is never how you plan it. However good I am at taking food with me I occasionally I get caught out and my tummy growls at me as I dash between meetings or when I decide to go out for drinks after work. My tummy does not react kindly to being kept waiting for food so I’m sharing my top 10 low fodmap convenience snacks. These you can just grab off the supermarket shelf and shove in your mouth. You know, like normal people do.

Continue reading

low fodmap rhubarb crumble muffins

Low Fodmap Rhubarb Crumble Muffins

 

Afternoon tea is without doubt the Gibson family’s favourite meal of the day. When we’re home together all other activities are planned around this most important daily event.

Going gluten free and, even more inconvenient, low fodmap has thrown rather an enormous spanner in the afternoon tea works. But my family have been brilliant.  It’s never mentioned as a difficultly, instead the added complexity and challenge of cutting out fodmaps whenever I’m around is just treated as an interesting new cake-based challenge. For this I am extremely grateful.

Two weekends ago I woke up in full-on grumpy teenager mode. I’ll say it was because I was overtired, but it could well be a regular event. I lay in for as long as possible with the duvet over my head, demanding to be brought cups of tea and when I did get up I stropped around the house whinging and asking everyone bring me things I wanted.

Instead of getting annoyed, my sister spent the morning creating a gluten free treat ready for afternoon tea.  These are they. Springy muffins hiding chunks of slightly tart, gooey rhubarb covered in a sweet crunchy crumble topping.  We couldn’t wait til afternoon tea to try them so we cheekily polished off half the batch for breakfast and the other half as afternoon tea.

You’re going to love them!


Makes 12 muffins

Ingredients

For the muffin mix

  • 175g caster sugar
  • 225g rhubarb, halved lengthways then diced
  • 2 tablespoon sunflower oil
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 30ml milk mixed with 90ml plain yoghurt
  • 270g gluten free plain flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda

For the crumble mix

  • 50g light muscovado sugar
  • 70g gluten free plain flour
  • 25g oats
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 50g butter

METHOD

  • Heat the oven to 220c (200c for a fan oven)
  • Put 12 muffin cases into a muffin tin
  • Mix together sugar and rhubarb and leave to one side

Make the crumble mix:

  • Mix the muscovado with the gf flour, oats and cinnamon.
  • Rub in the butter until the mixture forms little clumps. Don’t worry if its not thoroughly mixed together.

Make the muffin mix:

  • In a separate bowl mix together the oil, egg, vanilla, sugary rhubarb and yoghurt/milk mixture.
  • Add the flour, baking powder and bicarbonate of soda and mix well.
  • Spoon the mixture into the cases then scatter each with a thick layer of the crumble mixture
  • Bake for 15 minutes until golden and a skewer poked into the middle of a muffin comes out clean.
  • Cool them on a wire rack and eat as soon as they’re cool!