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! 😉

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.


Now for the recipe…

Low Carb Crunchies / Skurwe Jantjies




2 cups nut or seed flour of choice (I used ground sunflower seeds – it 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



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 – 5 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 – it 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.



Yields 40 squares @ just over 1g carbs each.


From my kitchen to yours…Enjoy!






Tiramisu – Decarbed, done and chocolate dusted!

Tiramisu is Italian for “pick me up”.  And with the amount of healthy fats I think this dessert will pick you up and propel you through a marathon! (Or a marathon of a day)

I would suggest it being served along with a light meal or a late afternoon “Pick me up” if you had a lazy brunch kinda morning.   It is super easy to make and though it involves some baking, it’s all pretty basic.

Tiramisu 3


6 free range eggs, separated

2 x 250g tubs of mascarpone cheese

1 cup strongly brewed coffee

5 Tbsp xylitol

4 Tbsp rum (optional)

2 – 3 blocks 80% dark chocolate

1 batch low carb cake, cut into fingers

For the cake fingers:

I use the batter (only) of this recipe that I make in a large rectangular brownie pan instead of cupcakes.  I bake it for 20 minutes at 180C and then cut it into 1.5 cm sponge fingers. (The cake fingers shown below are a bit bigger, you need halve the size of what is shown in the example.)  I then turn the oven to a very low temperature and dry my cake fingers for another 15 – 20 minutes with the oven fan on.

Watermark - Apple puds methodIMG_1155

For the cream filling:

Beat the egg yolks and 4 Tbsp xylitol for at least 15 minutes, or until thick and white. Add the mascarpone and beat until just combined but smooth.

Combine the coffee, rum and 1 Tbsp xylitol in a bowl. Quickly dip the slightly oven dried cake fingers into the liquid and set aside on a plate.

Beat half of the egg whites until thick and stiff peaks form, then gently fold into the mascarpone cream mixture.

Layer the soaked biscuits and mascarpone cream in a large glass bowl or individual glass bowls or ramekins.

Refrigerate overnight or for at least 2-3 hours.

Put your chocolate blocks in the freezer. Brake 2 – 3 of the frozen blocks into smaller chunks and grind into a lovely chocolate powder using your coffee grinder or simply grate the chocolate.

Before serving, top with a generous grating of chocolate.

Tiramisu 1

Yields 12 portioned blocks at about 6 – 7 grams of carbs or 8 ramekins or glass bowl portions @ about 9 grams of carbs each.