Low Carb Crunchies / Skurwe Jantjies…

My Mom recently baked a batch of conventional crunchies, but she swopped the sugar with xylitol and the flour with almond flour…

“Well done Mom!”

She is getting the hang of being really carb smart!

The oats however… “Well how do make these little treats without oats?”

The question was raised and soon followed the next question;”Well, is oats really that bad?”

I mean, you need to be one brave individual to take on the OATS TIGER!

In short: If you are following a lower carb lifestyle and want to keep your blood sugar stable, oats might not be a wise staple at 66g carbs per 100g. Also, it is technically a gluten free grain but most oats are processed with and cross contaminated by other grains such as wheat, barley and rye, which I avoid all together.

So to “decarb” this little recipe I really had to think of clever swop outs to keep carbs on the lower end and crunch on the very high end.

Enter sliced almonds, gelatine and erythritol… e What? Eish… EE- Rye – thri – toll. A sugar alcohol and a natural sweetener. It’s finding it’s way into stores now. And off course you all know that gelatine is a super food when it comes to gut health. It also helps harden baked goods. Well I never!!

I have found that this combination yields a HARD cookie. ¬†You know, hard to the point where you can throw a cookie at your arch nemesis and induce injury! ūüėČ

Ok, let’s be real… we do not waste our precious ingredients on villains – we simply enjoy them, but you get the idea.

If you only have xylitol to use as a sweetener, your cookie will be a bit more chewy and not as hard as with the erythritol. ¬†Now erythritol is a zero calorie, natural sweetener and is safe for dogs and other animals to consume,unlike xylitol. ¬†And because we have toddlers and a puppy in the house, I have switched to erythritol until I can teach the girls not to feed Sherman our Bully, their cookies. You can buy erythritol from Dischem or other health stores. Like I said, don’t panic if you only have xylitol at your immediate disposal, simply dry your crunchies a bit in a low temperature oven, like you would do with rusks. My older kids love the chewy version too.

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Now for the recipe…

Low Carb Crunchies / Skurwe Jantjies

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Ingredients:

2 cups nut or seed flour of choice (I used ground sunflower seeds Рit is budget friendly and super high in vitamin E.  But almond, pecan or macadamia flour will work too)

1/4 cup chia seeds (optional or swop with poppy seeds – it adds to the crunch, fibre and healthy omega 3 fats!)

1 1/2 cup almonds, sliced

1 cup desiccated coconut

1/4 cup coconut flour

3/4 cup xylitol or erythritol

1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda

1 tsp baking powder

1 tsp ground cinnamon

2 tbsp gelatine (I use Sally Anne Creed’s brand – but store bought is ok)

4 tbsp cold water

200g butter

 

Method:

Preheat the oven to 180C and line a rectangular brownie pan or pyrax pan  with baking paper.

  1. Mix the gelatine and water in a small bowl and allow to bloom.
  2. Melt the butter on medium heat and add the sweetener of choice.  Stir frequently until the mixture boils with and makes frothy bubbles. (3 Р5 minutes.)
  3. Mix all the rest of the dry ingredients together.
  4. Remove the butter mix from the heat and gently stir in the gelatine mix. It might bubble a bit at first.
  5. Mix the Low carb butter syrup mixture into the dry ingredients, mix till well combined and press into your prepared pan.  (I bake mine in 2 square brownie pans Рit gives me the perfect thickness.)
  6. Bake for 20 – 25 minutes until golden brown.
  7. Allow to cool for a minute or two and then lift out and cut into 40 blocks. The cookies will harden upon cooling. Store in an airtight container.

 

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Yields 40 squares @ just over 1g carbs each.

 

From my kitchen to yours…Enjoy!

Inè

 

 

 

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Bulk Ice Tea and Better than Banana Protein Smoothie

Ice Tea

This is our go to beverage as a family.

We make different Ice tea flavours in bulk 10 liter containers, especially in Wellington’s hot summer months. (Not called HELLington for no reason) This iced tea has saved my life as far as keeping up a good milk supply for our twin girls too. I drink it as is or use it as a base for some protein smoothies. It makes a lot of carb smart sense to replace the bulk of the smoothie liquid with this carb free tea.

My newest favourite tea blends are the LAAGER vanilla custard and caramel fudge flavoured teas. I mix these with regular rooibos teabags for a budget friendly beautiful tea blend that costs a fraction of any store bought beverage per liter. Also commercial iced teas are FILLED with carbs and will cause a weight loss stall like you won’t believe. ¬†It is never a good idea to drink your daily allowance of carbs.

I use stevia to sweeten this tea. It really works with the rooibos blend.

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INGREDIENTS:

20 Flavoured rooibos teabags

10 Regular Rooibos teabags

2 level teaspoons stevia powder

8 plus liters of water

In a medium sized saucepan, infuse all the teabags in about 2 liters of boiling water. Gently simmer on medium heat for about 5 – 8 minutes. Add the stevia and allow to cool. Remove all the teabags, making sure to squeeze all excess water back into the pot.

Mix the tea concentrate and 6 or 7 liters of water into your bulk container.  I use one with a convenient tap that fits right into my refrigerator. Just handy dandy and ready to quench a thirst with a huge  anti- oxidant filled boost at the same time.

Yields 8-9 liters of  healthy carb free tea at less than the price of a 2 liter diet soda. Carb smart and body Рkind indeed!

Pumpkin Smoothie

Pumpkin has been the underdog since Cinderella times. Now stop frowning and listen up. THIS IS AN AWESOME SMOOTHIE! As long as you can get past the shock of putting a vegetable into a smoothie, you are in for such a treat.

Pumpkin has more potassium than bananas. “Banana people” however always makes it sound like a banana is the only way to obtain a much needed dose of potassium. SIMPLY NOT TRUE. We really like bananas for their sweetness, and sweetness measures into carbs. A regular sized banana will give you a sugar content of about six teaspoons of sugar, Crazy I know! ¬†Pumpkin on the other side is filled with beta carotenes, potassium and b- vitamins at only 5 grams of carbs per 100g. ¬†Really a carb smart option.

I add a bit of pea protein isolate to my pumpkin smoothie, which helps me to consume a bit more protein for the purpose of keeping a good milk supply going.  I use pea protein instead of whey, mainly because whey protein can cause a sugar spike or lead to serious weight stalls.

This smoothie offers a great balance between lower carbs and higher fats in the right ratio.

INGREDIENTS:

2 heaped Tbsp cooked pumpkin

1/4 tsp ground cinnamon

1 tsp xylitol

1 Tbsp butter (soft or melted)

1 cup Iced Tea (As above)

1/2 cup Coconut cream

(or 1/4 cup coconut cream and 1/4 cup cream)

1 Tbsp Protein Powder.

In a blender, add all the ingredients and blend for a minute or so. Serve over crushed ice or drink as is.

This smoothie is a great low carb meal in a glass. Yields 1 serving at about 6 grams of carbs.