Marianne Stewart, professional pastry chef and the author of pastry cookbook Nourish Cakes has fond memories of the beginning of her career as a pastry chef in London, where she made orange and poppy seed loaves at Baker & Spice, in Chelsea. “[There was] no skimping on ingredients,” she says. “We used organic eggs and plenty of French butter.”
Fast-forward a bit and Stewart has poured her years of experience as a pastry chef into developing yummy dessert recipes for people with food allergies and intolerances. “Although I am a professional pastry chef, I have always baked for love, and baked to share. One of the reasons why I work so much with alternative, free-from ingredients is because I want my cakes and recipes to be for everyone, ” She says.
Stewart’s experience working with alternative ingredients has given her the chance to be seriously innovative in creating her recipes. She credits her understanding of how recipes work and her willingness to think outside the box for allowing her to get the same flavor and function out of the better ingredients she uses.
“You don’t need to compromise on nutritional value to get a luxurious, indulgent treat.”
Exhibit A: her orange, butternut squash poppy seed loaf cake, inspired by the loaves she once made in London. Instead of relying on heaps of French butter, Stewart’s healthier take on the recipe uses a combination of grated butternut squash and ground almonds to impart the same chewy texture.
“One of my top tips is to use organic root vegetables in recipes like this,” she says. “Not only are these naturally better for you, they also taste sweeter, meaning you can add less sugar to your bake. Nut butters, avocado flesh, and healthier oils are a great way to pack a little more richness into certain recipes, meaning you don’t need to compromise on nutritional value to get a luxurious, indulgent treat.”
In keeping with this philosophy, Stewart also forgoes refined, bleached…