This Gluten-Free Espresso Brownies recipe makes 24 brownies.

Made with rich dark chocolate, a punch of espresso and rice flour, guests won’t believe these thick and rich brownies are gluten-free.

Ingredients:

  • 500 ml (2 cups) good-quality dark chocolate, chopped
  • 125 ml (1/2 cup) butter
  • 30 ml (2 tbsp) instant espresso powder
  • 2 eggs
  • 250 ml (1 cup) packed brown sugar
  • 250 ml (1 cup) cooked brown rice
  • 50 ml (1/4 cup) brown rice flour
  • 2 ml (1/2 tsp) salt
  • 1 ml (1/4 tsp) baking soda
  • 10 ml (2 tsp) vanilla
  • 125 ml (1/2 cup) chopped pecans or walnuts (optional)

Preparation:
1. Line 23-cm (9-inch) square baking pan with parchment and lightly oil bottom. In large microwave-safe measuring cup, melt chocolate, butter and 15 ml (1 tbsp) of espresso powder in microwave. Stir to combine; set aside.

2. In bowl, using a hand mixer, beat eggs on medium-high until frothy. Add brown sugar and beat until mix is smooth. Stir melted chocolate mix into egg-sugar mix a little at a time. Add gradually and beat well about 1 min. Chocolate will look smooth and glossy.

3. In food processor, combine brown rice, rice flour, remaining espresso powder, salt and baking soda until well combined. Add rice mix into chocolate mix and beat well 1 min. Add vanilla and beat 1 min.

4. Fold in half of nuts, if using, and spread batter into prepared baking pan, smoothing top to even it out. Shake the pan a little to help even out the batter.

5. Bake in centre of 180 C (350 F) oven for 30 to 35 minutes or until brownies are set. Don’t overcook (brownies should be fudgy rather than dry and crumbly). Let cool completely on a wire rack. Cover and refrigerate to chill for at least 2 hours or up to 1 day before cutting into squares (they are easier to cut when cold).  

Red Velvet Cupcakes’ diet

Ingredients:

  • 2 eggs
  • 5 packets natural Stevia sweetener (powder)
  • 10 ml (2 tsp) vanilla
  • 5 ml (1 tsp) red food colouring
  • 30 ml (2 tbsp) buttermilk
  • 15 ml (1 tbsp) agave nectar
  • 50 ml (1/4 cup) whole-

Wheat pastry flour

  • 30 ml (2 tbsp) flaxseed meal
  • 10 ml (2 tsp) unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 0.5 ml (1/8 tsp) salt
  • 30 ml (2 tbsp) prepared vanilla sugar-free, fat-free pudding
  • 30 ml (2 tbsp) fat-free cream cheese, softened

Preparation:
1. Heat oven to 180 C (350 F). Line 4 large muffin cups with paper liners. Coat with cooking spray.

2. Separate egg yolks and whites, discarding 1 yolk. Place remaining yolk in bowl. Place 2 egg whites in another bowl. To whites, add 2 packets of the Stevia, 5 ml (1 tsp) of the vanilla and 2 ml (1/2 tsp) of the food colouring. Mix and set aside.

3. Add remaining 3 packets Stevia, 5 ml (1 tsp) vanilla and 2 ml (1/2 tsp) food colouring to egg yolk. Whisk mixture for 3 minutes. Add buttermilk and agave. Whisk until combined.

4. In bowl, whisk flour, flaxseed meal, cocoa powder, salt. Add to yolk-buttermilk mix, beat on low to combine.

5. Using electric mixer, beat egg white mix on medium to high until stiff peaks form. Working in 3 batches, fold egg whites into buttermilk mix, being careful not to deflate whites.

6. Spoon mix into muffin cups. Bake 12 to 15 mins. or until tops spring back when lightly touched. Transfer cupcakes to a wire rack and let cool.

7. Frosting: In bowl, combine pudding, cream cheese. Mix until smooth. Pipe evenly over cupcakes.

• Emily Richards is a professional home economist, cookbook author and a tv celebrity chef. For more, visit emilyrichardscooks.ca.

– With files from The Associated Press/ The Canadian Press/ riceinfo.com/ Rocco DiSpirito, author of the Now Eat This! Diet cookbooks

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