“None of this would have been possible without…

So I’ve been very lax in the awards department and have now racked up three nominations!  Thank you so much to Poppy over at Poppy’s Patisserie | Bunny Kitchen for nominating me for the Super Sweet Blogging Award, to Cakey Kate for nominating me for the Best Moment Award and finally to Nell at I Need a Feed! who nominated me for A Very Inspiring Blogger Award.  Here is my acceptance of all three, and my following of the specific rules for each.  My reticence in dealing with them immediately is perhaps because it makes me talk about myself instead of the infinitely more interesting topic of food!  No excuse for my tardiness though really.

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What we did last week

A small handful of pictures of recipes in progress, life, and the troublesome feline…

I’ve been very neglectful of the blog – summer fun has got in the way!  We’ve been off camping with C’s grandparents so there’s not been much work done on recipes.  I will fit in a few this week before we’re off again – to the Isle of Wight – but normal service will resume I’m sure when term starts mid-September.

All photos are the copyright and property of sensitive flour and are not to be reproduced in any format or in any medium without permission.

What we did last week

A small handful of pictures of recipes in progress, life, and the troublesome feline…

French edition!  And some food back in England.

All photos are the copyright and property of sensitive flour and are not to be reproduced in any format or in any medium without permission.

What we did last week

As C’s birthday approaches we’ve been busy entertaining family, having a party, seeing friends and next week we’ll be on our holidays in France!  So, apologies for the lack of posts, that will continue to appear sporadically for a couple of weeks now.  It’s a blog vacation too!  That said, here is a picture of C’s robot cake and a ‘recipe’ for how I made it.  The cake frosting is naturally coloured so, apart from the sugar, there was nothing to send the kids into a meltdown and obviously all is gluten-free.  C had a lovely party, all her little friends dressed up as robots, as did one of my adult friends (C thought this was BRILLIANT) and a good time was had by all.  I have to say I have the best mates. 🙂

Robot cake instructions

I followed the basic format of the Betty Crocker Robot Cake using a 12″ by 9″ traybake tin.  Double the recipe of the Chocolate Beetroot Cakes with Cherry Frosting, with this amount of batter also making 12 small mini muffins, which I used as the ‘ears’ and the ‘foot’ decorations.  I made a single batch of the cherry frosting BUT instead of cherry jam I doubled the vanilla essence and used a couple of tablespoons of soya milk to slacken the mixture.  I used Waitrose Essential natural food colourings in blue and black to make the pale blue and grey frostings.  The sweets are variously, Goody Good Stuff sour fruit salad, special edition Percy Pigs from M&S, Rowntrees Jelly Tots and Bear for kids 100% fruit yo yos.

All photos are the copyright and property of sensitive flour and are not to be reproduced in any format or in any medium without permission.

What we did last week

A small handful of pictures of recipes in progress, life, and the troublesome feline…

As I haven’t done one of these for a while, this is more like ‘what we did the last few weeks!’

All photos are the copyright and property of sensitive flour and are not to be reproduced in any format or in any medium without permission.

There will be a short pause…

while I glutenate myself.

I’d be more cross but it’s too ridiculous and I’m too tired from being unwell to jump and down too much.  But here it is, a cautionary tale.  I buy a lot of flours from my ‘local’ Asian supermarket (actually online from Bristol, but there you are) and I’ve not had a problem yet with gluten.  I expect to a have a problem with contamination at some point, but as previously mentioned (in a post long ago) superfine rice flour is just not available in the UK any other way.  Neither is sweet rice flour (well Bob’s Red Mill is from one place at four times the price) so I’m prepared to wing it a bit, see if I get sick, take note and move on.  This isn’t ideal but I guess the alternative is not to make certain things, and that’s just not for me.  Part of my coping mechanism is to try and have normal things.  Anyway, I’ve had a whole month of wellness, eating out, travelling around, by being as careful as I can without bringing my own food.  I was therefore ready for a fall I guess, but it is rather galling that I’ve done it to myself.  From British flour, sold in a packet written in my language, from a British website I’ve been using a lot and who I thought wouldn’t do me wrong.  But it turns out it was me that was wrong.  I am the trusting fool.

So here’s how it happened.  I went to said online store and bought a kilo of brown rice flour, from a webpage that says it is gluten-free.  Well yes, brown rice flour is naturally gluten-free but this flour wasn’t actually gluten-free.  A bit like how orange juice is naturally non-alcoholic until you add vodka to it, and then it’s actually not that non-alcoholic after all.  Apparently this subtlety is lost on the store selling the flour.  They confirmed that the flour I had bought was milled and packed in a place that also does gluten grains.  They said if I’d wanted an actual gluten-free flour I should have looked at the photos of the packets, as one of their offerings from a different supplier says gluten-free on the packet.  The fact that the webpages of both products say the same thing, ‘gluten-free’, and are in a section of the website titled ‘gluten-free flours’ is seemingly irrelevant.

So I suggested that to prevent someone else making the same mistake, and also getting sick, they might want to add a note to their product description, along the lines of ‘this product is milled and packed in facility that also handles wheat, barley or rye’ and they refused.  Apparently they are devising a “gluten scale” which they will apply to all their product descriptions.  So customers will one day, when they implement it, really know what they are buying.  I guess until they label which things are zero gluten on their scale we will just have to scrutinise their photos of the packets to see whether the manufacturer is making a claim to gluten-free status.  Their website, however, will continue to say that all their brown rice flour is ‘gluten-free’ because naturally it is.  Even if in actuality it is not.  Please insert your own expletive here.  As for their gluten scale, well I’d really like to know what shape it is, because I’ve got some ideas I’d love to share with them on where they can stick it.

That is all for now.  I expect normal service to be resumed shortly.

What we did last week

A small handful of pictures of recipes in progress, life, and the troublesome feline…

All photos are the copyright and property of sensitive flour and are not to be reproduced in any format or in any medium without permission.