This wheat-free cheese and parsnip scones recipe has a few ingredient swaps that make it a bit healthier and a completely different flavour to that of normal savoury scone recipes. One of these swaps is wheat flour to spelt flour to give the scones a nutty taste and transform them to wheat free delights.
There has been lots of confusion in the gluten-free community as to whether spelt is gluten free. Spelt is an ancient form of wheat that has a different molecular structure to the traditional wheat we know that makes it more brittle and soluble, therefore more digestible, making it suitable for most people with a wheat intolerance. However spelt is one of the gluten-containing grains and therefore is not suitable for those with a gluten intolerance (Coeliac’s disease).
Studies have shown that replacing wheat with spelt can reduce some of the effects (such as bloating and fatigue) in people with self-diagnosed wheat intolerance. If you’re suffering from what you think is a wheat allergy then I suggest seeing a doctor but there is no harm in swapping your regular wheat-based breads for spelt loaves to see if you too can see a difference.
The addition of cooked parsnips to these scones adds to the earthy flavour but also adds a slight sweetness that goes really well with the cheese – delicious and something a bit different with the leftover Christmas cheese and parsnips too! If you leave out the cheese, these can be made 100% vegan too.
Wheat-Free Cheese and Parsnip Scones Recipe (Makes 10)
50g coconut oil (cold, not melted)
225g spelt flour
Pinch good quality sea salt
½ tsp ground black pepper
250g steamed and mashed parsnip (approx. large 1 parsnip)
Milk of choice to mix into a dough (~3 tbsp)
2 ½ tsp baking powder
50g extra mature cheddar cheese, grated
1. Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees centigrade (fan).
2. Rub together the coconut oil and spelt flour along with the baking powder, nutmeg, salt and pepper until it resembles fine breadcrumbs and no lumps of coconut oil remain.
3. Add in the cooked, mashed parsnip and mix until it starts forming a dough.
4. Add the milk to help bind and bring into a smooth dough.
5. Knead together then roll out to a 3cm thick sheet on a floured work surface.
6. Use a 5cm cookie cutter (or wine glass – a thin rim cuts better) to cut out your scones.
7. Place the scones onto a floured baking sheet (or line with baking paper), brush the top with a little extra milk (make sure it doesn’t go down the sides) before popping in the oven.
8. Cook for 25 minutes or until risen and golden brown.
9. Remove from the oven and leave to cool slightly before eating. I pile mine with butter, thinly sliced mature cheddar and a dollop of good quality chutney as a treat. Alternatively you could pop the raw scones (rolled out a little thinner) on the top of a casserole and bake to make a delicious cobbler.
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