Gluten-free fruit scones
I love these and just baked a load after a lovely walk in our woods close-by. Once my supplies of unusual ingredients like healthier-than-sugar xylitol and erythritol run out I will be going online to shop in www.evergreen.ie , www.nourish.ie or nipping into my local shop Get Fresh in Ballyroan for supplies. This recipe is from Darina Allen. The only change I made was dropping sugar and substituting xylitol.
I like to eat these with some fresh raspberry/strawberry coulis sweetened with xylitol/erythritol/stevia and a big dollop of whipped cream. To make a coulis pour some frozen/fresh berries into a pan, cook until thawed and soft, mash a bit and add your (healthier) sweetener. It is a really good idea to avoid chemical sweeteners like sucralose, saccharin & aspartame because ironically these sabotage good gut bugs and contribute to weight gain!! These scones are not a health-booster but are less health-sabotaging than sugar-laden scones.
Tomorrow back to normality after my binge on high carbohydrate foods like breads, cakes and potatoes since lockdown. But for today, these yummy scones.
To make 6-7 decent size scones
138g white or blend of white and brown rice flour (I like Dove’s Farm mix of white and brown)
25g tapioca flour
2 tsp gluten-free baking powder
1 rounded tsp xanthan gum
1/2 teaspoon salt (sea salt/Himalayan salt)
2 rounded tablespoons erythritol/xylitol
55g butter, chilled
55g sultanas (optional)
1 egg, organic if possible
125-175ml natural yoghurt or (better for dairy-sensitive folk) natural, home-made kefir
Egg wash (optional, if you like a shiny top on your scones) – this is just a beaten egg
1. Preheat oven to 250C (235C fan)
2. Sift all the dry ingredients into a large bowl and mix well.
3. Rub in the butter, then add sultanas and gently mix together.
4. Lightly whisk the yoghurt/kefir and egg together.
5. Make a well in the centre of the dry ingredients, add the egg yoghurt/kefir and mix to a soft dough. Add a little more yoghurt/kefir if needed.
6. Turn onto a rice-floured board and knead lightly, just enough to shape into a round (knead too much and the result will be tough)
7. Roll to around 2.5cm thick, stamp into scones with a 5.5cm round cutter. Place on a rice-floured baking sheet and if using, brush with the egg wash.
8. Bake for approximately 10 minutes until golden brown on top. Leave to cool for a while on a wire rack.
9. Serve split in half with butter, or my fruit coulis (above), some no-added sugar jam like Follain or St Dalfour and whipped/clotted cream.
Why these are better for you:
OK, so a snack made from grains, cream and sweet stuff is never going to be a net health-promoter but by avoiding added sugar you are really helping reduce inflammation and helping your immune system fight off bad bugs. Did you know that gluten, in “normal” baking, opens up the normally tight barrier in your small intestine. These “tight junctions” are there to prevent toxins, bacterial by-products and undigested food spilling from your gut into your bloodstream. Gluten produces this reaction in normal, healthy volunteers and has been videoed live by researchers using capsule video cameras. Who knew!! This loss of barrier function lasts for 3-5 hours after gluten hits your small intestine. Remember, this is not only in people with gluten sensitivity. Why this is relevant to your health is that a damaged gut barrier opens the door to ALL chronic health conditions and stresses your immune system, leaving you more open to infection. A damaged gut barrier also increases sepsis in hospital patients.
Switching to a home-made fruit coulis (with healthy sweeteners) or a no-added sugar jam like St Dalfour/Follain brands means less of an assault on your immune system. Stay well.