Tag Archives: almond flour

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, Done 2 Ways, and a Product Review

 

A 48 ounce tub of Breyers CarbSmart Vanilla front of packLast week, I wrote about my quest to find some low carb ice creams other than CarbSmart, which our local grocery stores carry only in vanilla, even through three other flavors are available (chocolate, peanut butter, and smooth mint). When I asked one of our local stores to please carry other flavors, not just of CarbSmart but of other brands, I was told I could order a case, but they don’t have room on their shelves for many choices.

But I digress. I found other lower carb options at three of our local stores and sampled a couple of more.

Halo Top frozen dessert is probably the lowest carb ice cream ProductImage_WEB-MintChip-190620asubstitute on the market with most of their flavors coming in around 1 net carb. I tried their mint chocolate chip, which was very good although being sugar-free means it is harder than ice cream and needs to thaw for about 5 to 10 minutes before you can scoop it out. I’ve opened two of their cartons and both had a frozen lump of the product with lots of space around it within the container. They are supposed to hold two cups but I don’t think they do. Two of my ice cream scoops equal 1/2 cup and the mint had three servings in it. Halo Top comes in 26 different flavors sold in pint cartons. Of course, my  trio of grocery stores had about six different flavors between them. I would give this a rating of 4 stars. It tastes good, no after taste, but it isn’t as creamy as CarbSmart, and it seems a little shy on the stated quantity.

The other one I tried is Enlightened Frozen Desserts. This is a really good diary-free ice cream substitute, but it also contains more sugar than the others, so it comes in around 8 to 10 net carbs per serving. If you have enough carbs to spare, then this is a terrific option. I tried their Salted Caramel bars and their Chocolate Mint Swirl bars, and they are delicious. You don’t miss the cream in these at all, and there is no aftertaste. They make an amazing 32 different flavors and are available at a reasonable price in pint cartoons. Again, our local stores stock a few of their flavors. I give this one a 5-star rating, right up there with CarbSmart, except for the higher carb count.

So, if you are on a quest for ice cream substitutes, you might try one of these options. If you can get CarbSmart, it is made with cream, and delicious with only 4 net carbs per half cup.

How About a Recipe?

Now, since I haven’t posted a recipe in the past two weeks, here’s one that comes from a keto site for Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Fat Bombs. This is an almond flour dough that is eaten uncooked, so it is like eating cookie dough, sort of. The almond flour leaves it a little grainy, and it doesn’t taste totally like cookie dough to me. On the plus side, the flavor is pretty good, and one fat bomb makes a satisfying quick treat that boosts your carb burner with the fat content.

 

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Fat Bombs

Photo: Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Fat Bombs

The recipe is simple and is pretty much exactly as it is on the keto site I borrowed it from, except I rephrased it a bit. For one thing, the ingredients don’t have to be termed keto-friendly. Most of the sugar-free are. I used Hershey’s Sugar Free Chocolate Chips. I also used Splenda granulated which is almost fine enough to be confectioner’s sugar, but if you want to take it to a powder, you can do it in your blender.

1 stick Butter, softened
1/3 cup Confectioners Sugar Substitute
1/2 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
Pinch of Salt
2 cups Almond Flour
2/3 cup Sugar-Free Chocolate chips

In a large bowl, add softened butter and beat until it is light and fluffy. Add in the sugar, salt, and vanilla and beat until mixed into the butter.

Add the almond flour, a little at a time, and mix until it is completely moistened. You may have to finish it off by hand. My mixer balked before the flour was completely mixed in. Stir in the chocolate chips. Place plastic wrap over the bowl and refrigerate for about twenty minutes.

Line a baking pan with parchment paper or waxed paper. Use a 1/2 tablespoon measure or a cookie scoop to form the dough into half-balls, flat on the bottom, and place on the paper. Put them in the refrigerator for another twenty minutes to firm the balls up, then put in a plastic bag and store in the ‘fridge until you are ready to snack on one. They will keep for about a week or you can freeze them for up to a month.

Makes about 36 balls.

Nutrition Info: ChocChip Fat Bombs

Make Those Bombs Cookies

Image: Chocolate Chip Cookies

Now, as I mentioned, I wasn’t too enthused with these as a raw dough ball, so I decided to turn them into cookies. It’s an easy change, and I even added the egg after the rest was mixed. Ideally, if you’ve decided to make cookies, you’ll mix the egg in with the sugar and vanilla. These cookies are about the best chocolate chip cookies I’ve made. They are firm, yet soft in the middle and have a wonderful flavor. I had expected them to spread on the pan, so I only patted them down a little, but they held up through the cooking. If you want yours a little flatter, then press them down to the size you want.

1 stick Butter, softened
1/3 cup Confectioners sugar substitute
1/2 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
1 Egg
Pinch of Salt
2 cup Almond Flour
2/3 cup Sugar-Free Chocolate chips
1/4 cup Chopped Pecans or Walnuts (optional)

Prepare two baking sheets by lining with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, add softened butter and beat until it is light and fluffy. Add in the sugar, salt, egg, and vanilla and beat until mixed into the butter.

Add the almond flour, a little at a time, and mix until it is completely moistened.  Stir in the chocolate chips. Place plastic wrap over the bowl and refrigerate for about twenty minutes.

Use a one-tablespoon measure or cookie scoop to form the dough into half-balls, flatten on the bottom, and place on the paper, allowing 2 inches between cookies. Press down slightly to spread the dough. Place in the refrigerator for another twenty minutes to firm up.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees (F.) Bake the cookies for 12 to 15 minutes until lightly browned on top. Remove and let cool for 15 minutes or more. Almond flour is delicate and will break if you try to move the cookies while they are still hot.

Once they cool, enjoy or you can store in a plastic bag for a few days. Makes 18 delectable cookies.

Nutrition Info: ChocChip Cookies

If you try these products or these recipes, please leave me a message. I’d like to know how you like them or if you disagree with my opinion. Everybody’s taste buds are different.

Perfect Cake to combine with fruit

Photo: Almond Cake

A sign of spring in the Truckee Meadows is a farmer’s fruit stand on a street or parking lot near your house as some of the California growers begin bringing their spring harvest to the Reno area. We have one who sets up on the corner of the road to our house, and for the last three weeks, he’s been offering oranges, mangoes, cherries, and strawberries fresh from the farms. Nothing beats fresh, plant-ripened berries with their wonderful sweet taste. The first batch we bought could have been a little riper before picking, but the boxes from last weekend — perfection!

When you have sweet, flavorful strawberries, they just call out for cake and whipped cream. It’s a bit of an indulgence when you’re counting your carbs, but they are within limits when you mix the berries with a granulated sugar substitute, and you make a low carb cake. While not a shortcake, this recipe for an almond-flavored cake is moist and delicious complimenting the berries so well. You can use it for any kind of fruit you’d like for the topping or put a sugar glaze (with a sugar substitute, of course) over the top to serve with only a trio of raspberries and a mint leaf for garnish.

I made mine using Dixie Carb Counters Bakesquick, but the original recipe from Bob’s Red Mill called for almond flour. You can also use a combination of a low carb flour with almond flour. I changed the recipe to add in ricotta cheese, which adds to the moistness and flavor of the cake. Since it calls for coconut flour, I altered the egg option to 1 whole egg and 2 egg whites to give it more lift. You can use liquid egg whites for this.  I changed the proportions to a small cake recipe. If you want a large cake, double the amounts of all ingredients and use a 9″x13″ cake pan.

Photo: Cake with fruit
Cake with freshly cut peaches and whipped cream on top. So refreshing.

Moist Almond Cake

Based on a recipe from Bob’s Red Mill as made by Rene Averett

6 tablespoons Butter
1/2 cup Sugar
1 Egg
2 Egg Whites
2 tablespoons Cream or Buttermilk
2 tablespoons Water
2 tablespoons Whole Milk Ricotta Cheese
1/2 tsp Almond Extract
3/4 cup Low Carb Flour
1/4 cup Coconut Flour
Pinch Salt
1 tsp. Baking Powder

Preheat oven to 350 degrees (F.). Prepare a 6-inch square baking pan by putting parchment paper on the bottom, then spraying the bottom and sides with baking spray.

In a medium-sized bowl, add the butter and sugar substitute and use a mixer to cream together until it is smooth. Add in the egg and egg whites and beat until they are fully mixed in. Add cream, ricotta cheese, and almond extract and mix until blended.

In a separate small bowl, mix flour and coconut flour with the salt and baking powder. Add the flour to the egg mixture in three batches and beat each addition until all the flour is mixed in. You will have a thick batter. Let it sit a few minutes. Coconut flour expands as it gets wet, so you may need to add a little water to have an easily spreadable batter.

Spread into your cake pan and bake for 25 to 30 minutes until the cake is done. Test with a toothpick in the middle that should out clean.

Remove to a rack to cool about 10 minutes, then remove from the pan. If the cake has not pulled away from the sides of the pan, run a plastic knife around the edges, then put a plate over the pan and flip it. Remove the parchment paper if it flipped out with the cake.

Let cool, cut into slices and serve with berries and whipped cream or make an icing to top it.

Makes 6 to 8 servings. I cut it in 6 servings initially, but with the berries and cream, a smaller slice works great.

To my shame, I didn’t take a photo of the cake with the strawberries and whipped cream on top.  I will be doing this recipe again in a couple of weeks and will add a photo then.

 

A Norse Viking Apple Cake for Your Sweetie

Photo: Viking apple mini-cake.

Back in 2014, I copied down a recipe for a Viking apple cake that was called Mandel Eplekake, which is apparently Norse for it. I filed it away and hadn’t tried it. Last night, I had half an apple left over that needed to be used, so I adjusted the recipe down to make two mini-cakes and made it low carb. The recipe called for almond flour so I used that although mine is the coarse raw almond flour with the skins ground into it, so it has a darker, more whole wheat type appearance, but tastes very good. I also added sugar-free honey, cinnamon, and cloves to the recipe.

Now, the Vikings probably didn’t have cinnamon and clove, but I am pretty sure they used honey. No matter, I put them in to enhance the flavor of the apples. The result is a delicious little cake with slices of apple and a light seasoning that is not too sweet. I added a heaping tablespoon of whipped topping and served it warm. You could top it with more of the sugar-free honey or just a little heavy cream. It’s simple to make and makes a satisfying quick dessert. I suspect it would work equally well with pears and peaches.

Give it a try and let me know how you like it. It would be a nice capper after dinner for your sweetie.  I would love to get the feedback on it.

Viking Apple Cake

Two mini-cake low carb version

1/2 medium Apple, cored and sliced thinly
2 tablespoons Sugar Substitute
1 Egg
3 tablespoons Almond Flour
2 tablespoons granulated Sugar Substitute
1 tablespoon Sugar-free Honey (optional)
1/4 teaspoon ground Cinnamon
2 dashes ground Cloves
1 tablespoon Butter, softened

Preheat oven to 350 degrees (F.) prepare two 1/2-cup ramekins or custard dishes by greasing them with butter. Alternately, and to remove from the cup easier, put a piece of parchment paper cut to fit the bottom in each of the cups, then butter or spray with cooking spray.

Put apple slices and 2 tablespoons of sugar substitute (liquid or granulated) in a small pan with enough water to cover them. Bring to a boil and cook about 5 minutes. Drain. You can also do this step in the microwave by covering the slices with water in a microwavable bowl and cooking for 3 minutes.

In a small bowl, add the egg and the remaining two tablespoons of granulated sugar substitute. Whisk until they are well mixed and frothy. Add the honey and whisk again. Add the almond flour and stir it into the egg mix.

Put the apple slices on the bottoms of the cups, dividing them evenly. Sprinkle half the cinnamon and cloves over each one of the ramekins. Stir the batter again and use a tablespoon to scoop the mixture into each cup so that they are even.

Put the ramekins on a baking tray and bake for 25 minutes or until the edges are lightly browned.

Let sit about ten minutes, then serve with whipped cream or just heavy cream.

Makes two servings.

Photo: Nutrition Info Viking Apple Cake

Cream Cheese Bread checks out

Photo: Cream Cheese Bread from Coconut Flour

Recently, a photo with the ingredients for a cream cheese bread loaf was posted, but it lacked mixing instructions, and the carbohydrate information on it was way off since it claimed it had only 6 carbs in the whole loaf. Nonetheless, the recipe is valid, and the slices are pretty low in carbs. So, I decided to give it a try and let everyone know how it works.

First, I cut the recipe in half and made about three-quarters of a small loaf pan. From that, I can deduce that the full recipe below won’t make a large loaf of bread. The one I made is about 2 to 2-1/2 inch tall and about three inches across. It looks great in the photos. I also made it two ways– once with coconut flour and once with almond flour. I added 1 tablespoon of granulated sugar substitute to the recipe.

Both of them work pretty well although the almond flour needs to be adjusted to replace the coconut flour since the latter expands by two to three times in the liquid ingredients. Both of them taste pretty good. The coconut one is a little sweeter, but the coarseness of the flour comes through. The almond flour one is less sweet and lends itself to a more conventional bread. For my own use, I would pair the coconut flour version with fruit or make it into a fruit bread. The almond flour could stand up to adding herbs in it and pairing it with meat and cheese. I will be experimenting more with this recipe and will let you know if I come up with something wonderful.

Both are close to the same carb count per slice and both are fairly sturdy bread that can be thinly sliced if needed. A full loaf would make about 10 slices of 3/8″ thick slices The carb count is based on 10 slices.

Photo: Almond Flour Cream Cheese Bread
A 3/4 loaf of almond flour cream cheese bread.

Cream Cheese Bread Loaf

8 ounces Cream Cheese
1/4 cup Butter
1 tablespoon granulated Sugar Substitute
1/2 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
1 teaspoon Baking Powder
1/2 teaspoon Cinnamon
8 large Eggs
6 tablespoons Coconut Flour

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cut a piece of parchment paper to cover the bottom and long sides of a small loaf pan.

In a medium bowl, add the cream cheese, butter, and sugar and cream together using a mixer until smooth.

Add the cinnamon, vanilla, and eggs and mix until combined.

Add the flour and baking powder and mix together thoroughly. Wipe the sides with a spatula to get all the mix blended together.

Spray the parchment-lined baking pan with cooking spray. Pour the batter mix into the pan and smooth.

Bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour until a toothpick or knife inserted in the middle comes out clean.

Let cool 5 to 10 minutes, then run a knife around any edge touching the pan and lift the loaf out using the overlapped parchment paper, then slide it onto a serving plate.

Makes about ten slices.

For the almond flour version, add 1-1/4 cup Almond Flour to replace the 6 tablespoons of Coconut Flour. I used a less processed almond flour, but the higher quality ones will yield a finer grained bread.

Taste test with both the coconut flour (left) and almond flour (right) slices smeared with butter. The almond flour is a little taller.

Nutrition Coconut flour

Comfort Food Equals Baked Fried Pork Chops

Photo: Oven-fried Porkchops

When you think of comfort food, you think of those down-home dishes that Mom or Grandma made because they make you feel like you’re wrapped in love. Am I right? Foods like fried chicken and fried pork chops were often the highlight of the week in my childhood home.

Alas, breaded food is pretty high in carbs, and some people want to avoid all the fat of frying in oil. So what’s the solution? A pork chop made with a nut flour that brings a substantial amount of the seasoning and taste of breading without the higher carbohydrates. Then, bake it instead of frying and you still get the flavor of the dish.

This recipe, from All Recipes, is delicious, but it was made with flour. I swapped that out for low carb almond flour, and it makes a crunchy, delicious crust.

Photo: Close up of pork chops.
How about a close-up of those juicy chops? I used a pork loin chop and cut it in half to bread it easier. Incidentally, the rice-looking vegetable on the plate is riced kohlrabi, a new frozen option from Green Giant. Great flavor and I’m thrilled to see it at Wal-Mart.

Oven-Fried Pork Chops

2 large, thick pork chops, trimmed & cut in half
1 tablespoons butter
1 egg, beaten
1 tablespoon Cream
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 cup Almond Meal
1/2 teaspoon Seasoning Salt
1/2 teaspoon Dried Parsley, crushed
1/2 teaspoon Oregano

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

Use a cast iron or another skillet that can go in the oven or use a baking pan. Put the skillet into the oven to get hot for about 10 minutes, then take it out and add the butter. Lift and turn the pan to distribute the butter.

While the pan is heating, add the almond flour, seasoning salt, pepper, dried parsley and oregano to a shallow bowl big enough to hold a pork chop piece and mix together.

In another shallow bowl about the same size, mix egg and cream together. Dip a pork chop piece into the egg mixture, then roll it in the almond mixture, pressing it into the meat so that it sticks, and place in pan. Repeat with each chop.

Bake for 10 minutes, then turn chops over and bake for another 10 minutes. Pierce the meat with a fork to see that any liquid that runs out is clear to ensure the pork is done. If not, then cook a few minutes longer.

Let the chop rest for about 5 minutes then serve.

Makes 2 servings.

Nutrition Information per serving:
Calories: 573  Fat: 39.3 g  Net Carbs: 3.4 g  Protein: 49 g