Christmas Shortbreads

Almost 11 years ago I met my wonderful husband. So for Christmas that year I baked him shortbreads – one of his favourite biscuits and a must at Christmas time. At the time I was boarding with a wonderful family and they had a great recipe that made really smooth velvety shortbreads. Darling Husband just loved them and for the next few years he asked for me to make them again. Only problem we couldn't find the recipe. It got lost in amongst the 100  or more cookbooks this family had.

Over the years I have tried many different recipes but none of them compared to this one. They were all nice but none had the smooth velvety texture these shortbreads had.

But the other day I found a recipe that was very similar. With a little bit of adjusting I found the biscuit recipe I have been looking for all the years. This recipe will make about 35 biscuits


2 cups of plain flour

1/2 cup of rice flour

1/2 cup of icing sugar

250g of softened butter cut into cubes (must be room temperature)


1. preheat oven to 170 deg celcius (180deg C.  if not fan forced).

2. line 2 baking trays with baking paper and get all ingredients ready.


3. sift the flour, rice flour and sugar into a large mixing bowl


4. add the butter and then using your hands rub the butter into the dry ingredients until it forms a dough.

5. tip dough onto a lightly floured  surface (or silicon baking mat) and knead for about 2 mins until the dough comes together  and is smooth


6. lightly flour a rolling pin and roll dough out to about 5mm thick.


7. use your biscuit cutters to cut biscuits out and place on baking trays. Continue until all dough is used


8. lightly sprinkle castor sugar over all biscuits


9. place in the oven on the middle shelves and baking for 12mins or until goldern brown. (sometimes the bottom tray may need a little longer)

10. remove bisuits from oven and allow to cool on tray for 5mins before transfering to wire racks (very important otherwise biscuits may crumble)


11. Enjoy (or decorate and then enjoy)!!!


Helpful Hints:

1. These are soy free and egg free but not dairy free. I am yet to find a substitution to replace the butter that tastes any good.

2. make sure your butter is at room tempreture before starting.

3. these biscuits can burn very easily so keep a close eye on the. If the biscuits are not ready at twelve minutes put back infor 2 minutes and if needed 2 more minutes. 



Honey Mustard Chicken Parcels

Here is a recipe my daughters love!!!!

It came about as my husband really likes Chicken Vol au vents, but like most commercial products, the vol-au-vent pastry casings have soy in them (what doesn't these days). So I had to be creative to make something that Miss Minnie could also have. I have made the vol-au-vent casings in the past but I had to make the puff pastry from scratch as I am yet tot find one that is soy free….. way too time consuming to do on a regular basis.

Whilst visiting my in-laws, my mother-in-law told me about a filo pastry that was soy free. And it just so happened that that night she was cooking vol-au-vents…. excellent let's see if it will work. And it did. My girls just love them and so does Brett!!!!

What is even better they are so easy to make….

I do have to say this is the recipe my mother-in-law taught me. I have made a few modifications along the way. But she was the one who taught me – I had never had vol-au-vents until she made them for me!


(just soy free – see below for a dairy free alternative)

1 packet of filo pastry (check the ingredients if you have allergies) – I used about 16 sheets

2 x chicken breast (or 500g) diced

1 x medium brown onion diced

300ml of thickened cream

2 tbls of corn flour

2 x cloves of garlic crushed (I use 2 tsp of already crushed garlic)

2 tbls of whole grain mustard

3/4 cup of broccoli florets (cut quite small)

spray sunflower oil (or vegetable/canola oil)  OR melted butter for the filo pastry



1. remove filo pastry from the fridge and bring to room temperature as per directions on the packet. this will ensure it doesn't crack (well too much!) Preheat oven to 180 deg cel (or 350 deg F)

2. spray a medium saucepan with cooking oil (we use sunflower oil)

3. place saucepan over a medium heat on the stove and let it heat for a few minutes

4. add crush garlic and onions – sautee until transparent (reduce the heat if you need to)

5. add diced chicken breast and cook until brown

6. add broccoli, whole grain mustard and thickened cream.

7. bring to the boil and them simmer for 5 minutes letting it reduce slightly

8. mix cornflour with a light water to form a smooth paste and add to the saucepan stirring constantly until thickened (add a little water if it thickens really quickly).

9. remove from heat and let sit for a few minutes to cool whilst you prepare the filo pastry.

10. line a large baking tray with baking paper

11. remove filo pastry from wrap but make sure you keep it covered to prevent drying out.

12. lay one sheet of filo pastry down on a clean flat surface (i usually use my cookie sheet for this) and spray with oil (or brush with melted butter)

13. lay another sheet of filo pastry on top and smooth out.

14. repeat steps 12 and 13 with two more sheets of pastry (4 in total)

15. cut pastry into quarters.

16. spoon 2 tbls of chicken mixture into the middle of the pastry and then fold each corner of the pastry into the centre pressing together to make a parcel.

17. place parcel on a baking tray.

18. repeat with other squares.

19. repeat steps 12-18 with remaining pastry and mixture. I usually get 12-16 parcels.

20. lightly spray parcels with oil and then place trays in oven for for 10mintues and cook until golden brown. Keep a close eye on them as they can burn easily.

21. remove and serve with either salad or mashed potato.




Dairy Free alternative:

– replace the 300ml of thickened cream with either

        – 300ml of rice milk and use 2.5-3tbls of cornflour


        – 300ml of chicken stock and 2/5-3tbls of cornflour



you can add all sorts of ingredients to the mix…. mushrooms, carrot, corn…. the list is endless.



Multigrain Bread

A few weeks back I posted our recipe for raisin bread and everybody loved it. So I thought I would give you our recipe for our everyday bread recipe…. multigrain bread. Just like the raisin bread, it is almost impossible to buy commercially made bread that is both soy and dairy free so we had to make our own. This is absolutely delicious and a nice healthy option for sandwiches. And you wouldn't even know that it was soy and dairy free!



375ml of water

2 teaspoons of oil ( we use sunflower but canola or vegetable oil work fine)

2 teaspoons of salt

2 teaspoons of sugar

500g of plain flour (or bakers flour)

150g of wholemeal flour (if you don't want to use this just add another 150g of plain flour)

1/3 cup of mixed grains

2 teaspoons of bread improver (be careful many have soy flour in them)

2 teaspoons of yeast.

spray oil



1. place ingredients in the bread pan as per manufactures directions adding the mixed grains just after the flour(s)

             – for our Breville the order is

  1. water
  2. oil
  3. salt
  4. sugar
  5. flour
  6. mixed grains
  7. bread improver
  8. yeast

2. set it for a dough cycle

3. lightly spray bread tin sunflower oil

4. when dough cycle is completed, remove dough and place directly into bread tin punching down slightly.

5. preheat oven to 200 deg cel, and let dough rise once more (for about 15mins). If you have a lid for your bread tin place on the tin leaving it open about 1/4 of the way

6. close lid and place in oven for 30mins

7. remove from oven and turn onto wire cake rack to cool…… or serve immediately for some lovely warm bread



Helpful hints:

– – Mixed grain mix:

our includes any combination of

  • Kibbled Wheat,
  • Kibbled Rye,
  • sunflower seeds,
  • pumpkin seeds, 
  • Linseed,
  • sesame seeds,
  • poppy seeds,
  • oats.

I usually have to purchase the grains individually (500g lots) and combine them in a container ready to just scoop out and add to the bread. Most prepackage grain mixes include soy products. So depending on what is available and what we feel like will determine what we add to our bread. You can also add any other grains you wish.

– if you don't like wholemeal flour, just replace it for total of 650g pf plain flour

– if you don't have a bread tin you can just finish the baking in the bread machine



Raisin Bread

Little Miss Rapunzel just loves raisin bread. Especially for morning tea on the weekend. However, Little MIss Minnie couldn't have any of the store bought breads because they had soy flour in them. Now being two she has begun to realise she is missing out on foods, challenging me to come up with more soy and dairy free recipes. So here it is – Raisin Bread that is soy and dairy free. And it is delicious!

NB: This recipe is for use in a Bread Machine


  • 1 cup of water
  • 2 tablespoons of margarine or butter, softened (we use Nuttelex)
  • 3 cups of plain flour (you can use bread flour but I can't always get it so we just use plain flour and it turns out fine)
  • 2 tablespoons of sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons of salt
  • 1 teaspoons salt ground cinnamon
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons of dried instant yeast
  • 3/4 cup of raisins ( i often put in more!)


1. Place all the ingredients (except the raisins) into the bread pan in the order recommended by the manufacturer.

2. select the white or sweet bread option and crust colour you to medium or light (the extra sugar from the raisin can cause the crust to burn)

3. At the beep (or approximately 10mins into the kneading cycle) add the raisins.



  • I prefer to bake our bread in the oven so only use the bread machine to mix the dough. This is purely becuase I don't like the size and shape of the bread that comes out of the bread machine. I purchased a bread tin with lid from simply no knead. Once the dough has completed I transfer it into the lightly oiled tin (sprayed with sunflower oil) and let it rise again whilst waiting for the oven to preheat to 200 deg cel. I then bake it for 30mins.
  • If I am making the dough overnight so I can bake it when I get up in the morning, I actually just place the raisins on the very top of the ingredients making sure that the flour was spread out forming a barrier on top of the water. I have never has any issues with it.