Below you can find Recipes from when Linda Crawford comes in to cook with the children on our Youth Groups!

Chocolate Bean Cake – Gluten and Dairy free

  • 75ml sunflower oil or melted coconut oil
  • 400gm red kidney beans drained and rinsed
  • 100gm rice flour
  • 50gm cocoa powder
  • 11/2 tsp baking powder
  • 125gm light brown soft sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Preheat the oven to 180 or gas mark 4. Lightly grease a 20cm spring form cake tin lined with greaseproof paper.
Put all the ingredients in a food processor with a pinch salt and blitz to a smooth paste
Spoon the mixture into the tin and spread out evenly.  Bake for 20 – 25 mins or until a skewer comes out clean

Leave to cool for 10 mins and transfer to a wire rack to cool

Serve warm or cold with fruit and ice cream or cream.

Sugar Free Pineapple and Carrot Cake – Can be made gluten free and dairy free

  • 250 gm Plain flour or use gluten free flour or buckwheat flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp bicarb soda
  • 50 gm walnuts
  • 200gm pineapple slices chopped (fresh or canned in their own juice)
  • 1 tbsp. sultanas
  • 2 ripe bananas – mashed
  • 1 passion fruit pulp
  • 150gm carrots grated
  • 150ml rapeseed oil
  • 3 eggs

Preheat the oven to gas 2 or 160 c

Sift the flour, baking powder, salt, bicarb of soda, into a bowl and mix well

Add all the remaining  ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix well so the mixture is completely combined.

Pour the mix into the lined cake tin and bake for 1 to 1 1/4 hours or until cooked through and the skewer comes out clean.

Honey, Soy Sausages


soy sausages


1 kilogram cocktail sausages – you can use gluten free sausages and gluten free soy sauce

2 tablespoons sesame oil

125 ml honey

2 tablespoons soy sauce


Preheat the oven to 220°C/gas mark 7/425ºF.

Separate the sausages, if they are linked, and arrange in a large, shallow-sided roasting tin.

Whisk together the oil, honey and soy sauce and pour over the sausages, then use your hands – or a couple of spatulas – to move everything about in the pan so that all the sausages are slicked.

Roast for 25-30 minutes; give them a shuffle about halfway through cooking if you happen to be near the oven.


Chocolate Gluten and Dairy Free Cake

Chocolate Cake


150 ml regular olive oil (plus more for greasing)

50 grams good-quality cocoa powder (sifted)

125 ml boiling water

2 teaspoons best vanilla extract

150 grams ground almonds (or 125g plain flour / 3/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour)

½ teaspoon bicarbonate of soda

1 pinch of salt

200 grams caster sugar

3 large eggs


Preheat your oven to 170°C/gas mark 3/325ºF. Grease a 22 or 23 cm/ 9inch springform tin with a little oil and line the base with baking parchment.

Measure and sift the cocoa powder into a bowl or jug and whisk in the boiling water until you have a smooth, chocolatey, still runny (but only just) paste. Whisk in the vanilla extract, then set aside to cool a little.

In another smallish bowl, combine the ground almonds (or flour) with the bicarbonate of soda and pinch of salt.

Put the sugar, olive oil and eggs into the bowl of a freestanding mixer with the paddle attachment (or other bowl and whisk arrangement of your choice) and beat together vigorously for about 3 minutes until you have a pale-primrose, aerated and thickened cream.

Turn the speed down a little and pour in the cocoa mixture, beating as you go, and when all is scraped in you can slowly tip in the ground almond (or flour) mixture.

Scrape down, and stir a little with a spatula, then pour this dark, liquid batter into the prepared tin. Bake for 40-45 minutes or until the sides are set and the very centre, on top, still looks slightly damp. A cake tester should come up mainly clean but with a few sticky chocolate crumbs clinging to it.
Let it cool for 10 minutes on a wire rack, still in its tin, and then ease the sides of the cake with a small metal spatula and spring it out of the tin. Leave to cool completely and decorate with fruit and quark or natural Greek yogurt or eat while still warm with some ice cream, as a pudding.

Apricot and Raisin Oat Bars

Apricot and Oats Bar                        


230g ready soaked dried apricots

5tbsp orange juice ( substitute for pineapple juice or coconut milk if allergic to citrus)

100g seedless raisins

100g mixed chopped nut

85g rolled oats – I used gluten free

85g self-raising flour – I used gluten free

50g desiccated coconut

3tbs golden syrup plus extra for drizzling


Preheat oven to 180 c / gas 4 / 350 f

Grease and line base of 11 x 7 in ( 28 x 18cm ) baking tray

Place apricots and juice in a pan. Cover and simmer for 5 mins and then add the raisins and simmer for a further 5 mins, transfer to a processor.

Add remaining ingredients, whizz for a few seconds.

Put in a tin and cook for 30-40 mins.

Remove from the oven, mark into 12 bars and cool in tin.

Drizzle with syrup

Fruit bars

The other cake was made the same but I substituted most of the apricots and used a mix

of figs and dates. I also used sultanas instead of raisins.

Dates wrapped in Bacon


Pack of dates – make sure they are pitted ( no stones)

Stilton cheese – optional

Rashers of smoked/ unsmoked streaky bacon


Preheat the oven to 190 C/gas mark 5 /375 f
If using the Stilton, carefully open the dates across the seam ensuring the dates are still intact

Push small pieces of crumbled Stilton into the dates

Cut the streaky bacon into 2 or 3 pieces and wrap 1 piece around the date

Repeat with as many dates as you need.

If you are not using Stilton, wrap the bacon around the whole date

Place the wrapped dates onto a wire wrack over a lined baking tray and cook for approx

30 – 40 mins

Cucumber cups

1 cucumber
75g/21⁄2oz feta cheese, drained
1 tbsp chopped fresh dill – options
1⁄4 tsp freshly ground black pepper 

3 tbsp pomegranate seeds

Top, tail and then peel the cucumber. Cut into 1.5-2cm/3⁄4in thick slices to give about 16-18 in total. Using a melon baller, small teaspoon or a 1⁄4 teaspoon measuring spoon, scoop out enough of the seeds from the middle to give a cup that has a border about 5mm thick, making sure you don’t go right down to the bottom. Arrange them on a large platter and set aside.

Break the feta cheese into a small bowl and mash it with a fork until as smooth as possible. Add the dill and season with the pepper (but no salt as feta is already salty), stirring everything together well. Divide the feta cheese mixture between the cucumber cups. Arrange a little pile of pomegranate seeds on top of each one

Tandoor Chicken


6 chicken thighs or drumsticks
125 gm low fat Natural Greek  Yogurt
1 heaped tbsp Tandoori powder – you can use more or less depending on how spicy you like it


Remove the skin from the chicken thighs

Using a sharp knife,  make 2 -3  diagonal cuts across the top of the thighs, cutting through near to the bone

In a large bowl, mix the yogurt and tandoori powder together, adding salt and pepper

Put the prepared thighs into the marinade, coating each thigh well

If time allows, put in the fridge and leave to marinade for up to 24 hours

Remove the thighs from the marinade and place onto an ovenproof dish or roasting tin

Any excess marinade can be used during cooking to baste the thighs

Bake for 25-30 minutes at fan 180 or gas 5 making sure the chicken is cooked all the way through and piping hot.

Asian Chicken


6 chicken drumsticks
2 tsp honey
2 tbsp. soy sauce – Using gluten free if necessary
2 tbsp. tomato puree
1 tbsp fresh orange juice – this can be omitted if allergic to citrus seasoning


Make several slashes across both sides the chicken, using a sharp knife

Mix all the ingredients for the marinade in a food bag or shallow dish

Leave to marinate for up to six hours

Bake for 20-25 minutes at fan 180 or gas 5, turning the chicken over half way through. Ensure the chicken is cooked all the way through and piping hot.


Crispy Fruit Crumble


  • 125g Butter  – can substitute dairy free
  • 60g Jumbo Oats
  • 40g Flaked Almonds
  • 30g Sunflower Seeds
  • 70g Flour – Can use gluten free
  • 1 Teaspoon Ground Cinnamon (or Ginger)
  • 75g Soft Light Brown Sugar
  • 500g Blackberries or any fruit of your choice.- If using pears or fruit that is sweet, there is no need to add the extra 50gms sugar, Add a little water or fruit juice to moisten the fruit.
  • 50g Caster Sugar or Vanilla sugar – Depending on fruit used
  • 2 tsp conrnflour


  1. Preheat oven to 200C/Gas Mark 6
  2. Melt butter in a pan and set aside
  3. Combine the Oats, Almonds, Sunflower Seeds, Flour, Cinnamon and Brown Sugar in a bowl.
  4. Tip the Berries into a wide, shallow baking dish (750ml capacity) and sprinkle the Caster Sugar over them, tumbling them (gently – don’t let the juice out) about to mix. If using other combinations like apple and raspberry, slice the apples.
  5. Sprinkle over the sieved cornflour to thicken the juices
  6. Add water if using
  7. Stir the Melted Butter into the dry Oat mixture and spoon it on top of the berries – you don’t have to completely cover them, just dot the topping about!
  8. Bake in the oven for 25 minutes and serve with ice-cream, custard or cream  (it can be very hot so it might be worth leaving it to stand for a few minutes!)


Beef & Chorizo Burgers

Serves 4-6 depending on the size of the burgers. I used chorizo and broke it down in a food processor.

200gm chorizo or use chorizo sausages

400gm low fat beef mince

1 small red onion – finely chopped

2 tbsp. coriander or flat leaf parsley- finely chopped

1 garlic clove – crushed

1 tbsp. tomato puree or ketchup seasoning

If using a food processor, place the onion, garlic, chorizo and herbs in the processor and whizz for a couple of minutes until the ingredients are finely chopped, then follow as below.

If using the chorizo sausages, squeeze the meat from the casings and discard the skin.

Place in a bowl with the beef mince,onion, herbs, seasoning, garlic and tomato puree or ketchup.

Combine using your hands and shape into burgers.

Preheat the grill and cook for 10 – 15 mins or place in a hot frying pan and fry in own juices for about 10 minutes, turning occasionally

Serve with slices of cheddar, lettuce, tomatoes,  pickles of your choice.



Serves: 16

  • 1 (400g) tin chickpeas – drained, liquid reserved
  • 1  tsp tahini paste  (if you don’t have tahini paste you could use 1 tsp sesame oil instead)
  • 2 tablespoons Greek Yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2  cloves garlic
  • Bunch coriander

If dairy free, omit the yogurt and add olive oil or use lactose free yogurt.

Preparation method
Prep: 5 mins

  1. In a blender or food processor, combine chickpeas, coriander, tahini paste, yogurt, lemon juice, garlic and 1 tablespoon of the reserved chickpea liquid. Blend until smooth or less if you prefer it chunkier.

Beetroot Houmous