1/18/18

Sugar Free, Low Carb White Layer Cake









This photo is a cake I made in September of 2012 for my parents anniversary as they were visiting us during that time, and I wanted to celebrate, but our family was in the middle of a no sugar, low carb way of eating.   I first made it in April 2012 for my own birthday (was also doing no sugar at the time) and again in September for them.  I play around with the recipe based on what I have on hand and what I think will work.


Since I first made this back in April of 2012, there weren't not a lot of sweetener options on the market.  In 2017 there are SO MANY NOW, it's awesome!  

Please feel free to play with the recipe a bit if you don't like certain brands or do better with different brands;  as there are some ingredients I don't like or no longer use due to better options, 5 years later.

I don't care for the strong taste of coconut flour so I don't use much of it, but if you don't mind, then you can absolutely use a mixture of just Carbquick and Coconut Flour.  Or try using Almond Flour for a portion of it.  Any mixture of Carbquick, Almond Flour, Coconut Flour, Whey Protein Powder can be 'played with'.   Although I used a mixture of Splenda and Xylitol, back then, you could probably mix Xylitol and Erythritol if that is what you usually use (and what is in the popular Just Like Sugar, Ideal, Truvia, etc.)  *You can use all one kind of sweetener!  It's just that baked good tend to taste better if you use a mixture of 2-3. But it's absolutely not necessary.

Although I used 4 t vanilla when I made it in April;  I used a mixture of 2 t vanilla, 1 t lemon extract and 1 t almond extract this time.  I loved it, but again, this something you can play with. The end result was a yummy white cake and frosting my parents loved and my Dad said he could eat every day.  And neither of them are low carb or sugar free.

Note:  The frosting in the above photo wasn't supposed to be that way.  I was trying to HURRY and decorate it while I was literally expecting my parents to drive up the driveway any second - and my buttercream frosting was too warm and starting to melt!  Thus;  the frosting is not a 'ruffle' like I hoped, but still turned out ok.  I then ran out of frosting and knowing my guests were arriving at any second I got creative, ran outside, grabbed some flower blossoms off my landscape bushes!  I knew they were 'safe' and had never been treated with pesticides as I grow them myself.  I submerged them in ice water for 15 minutes to clean them while I chilled the melty frosting and then topped the cake.

I pulled it off.  The cake was grand.   


White Cake - Low Carb and Sugar Free

1/2 c butter, soft
8 eggs
1 c  white sugar-like sweetener of your choice
2 T Xylitol
14 drops liquid sweetener (I used Superose Liquid Sweetener which is no longer available, but you can use Stevia, EZ-sweet, etc.)
1/2 t salt
4 t vanilla extract
2 T Torani Sugar Free Vanilla flavor
1/2 c sour cream
1/3 c (not quite heaping) Carbquick
1/3 coconut flour
2/3 c Isopure Vanilla Whey Protein Powder (0 carb, 0 sugar)
1 t baking powder
Whisk or mix eggs and vanilla flavorings in a bowl until yellow and frothy.  In another bowl place the Carbquick, coconut flour, protein powder and baking powder.  In a large mixing bowl beat the butter and the sweeteners; Splenda, Xylitol and liquid sweetener.  Beat until fluffy.  Add the eggs by pouring them in as the mixer is running.  Add half the dry ingredients, half the sour cream, then the rest of the dry and the rest of the sour cream.  
Place in 2 round 8" or 9" pan sprayed or oiled and dusted with either a light dusting of Carbquick or almond meal, etc.  Bake at 350F for approximately 25-35 minutes until the center is set.  Let cool about 10 minutes so you can remove it easily from the pan.  Invert it onto a platter and let cool completely before frosting and serving.
You can use any icing or frosting you wish but here is the one I used;  sugar free and low carb as well:  Sugar Free and Low Carb Frosting

You might be interested in these related products available to order through Amazon;












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Low Carb, Flour-Free Pie Crust


This is a recipe I've posted before but worth posting again for anyone looking for a low carb, sugar free, healthier pie crust that is similar to the ones they are 'used to'. I've used this for a number of pies over the past few years and although I always think maybe I'll improve on it a bit 'next time', we eat pies so rarely that I never really mess with it much. It's really good and feels and looks like a 'regular' full wheat and sugar pie crust.

I have some links in the recipe from one of the previous times I posted it.  I checked them this morning and they are still live; but the Honeyville almond flour is so expensive that I want to mention you don't have to use Honeyville. Lately the quality of the fine ground almond flours on the market have vastly improved from what was available even two or three years ago.  They are more finely ground and you can find other brands that work just as well as Honeville now (they were the ultimate grand champions there for many years).  I've been using the fine ground Bob's Red Mill lately from Sam's Club and it's been fabulous.  If you click on the Amazon affiliate links you can always just use that as a starting point and search for other, similar products.   I do want to note I do NOT use any other whey protein than Isopure.  I love it, all my baked goods and cooking work well with it, other brands may give you different results and it's zero carb and zero sugar; something many whey protein powders are not.

In the spring I always get in the mood for lemon everything... from lemon tea to candles to lemon pie, lemon bars and more. So this crust will come in handy in about a month when I make a sugar free lemon supreme pie...


Low Carb, Flour-Free Pie Crust

1 c Honeyville Blanched Almond Flour
4 T Hodgson Mill Vital Wheat Gluten
2 t xanthan gum
2 T Nature's Best Isopure Unflavored Whey Protein Powder
1 t baking powder
dash of salt
4 T cold butter, cut into small pieces
2 egg yolks
2 T cold water

Combine the dry ingredients in a bowl with a whisk.  Cut in the butter with your fingers and work it in until it's coarse.  Beat the egg yolks with cold water and blend it into the dry ingredients.  When it forms a ball, remove, place on plastic wrap, form a disk, wrap and chill.  Roll out the pie crust (between two pieces of parchment because it's sticky) and place in a large, deep dish pan pan.  Mine wouldn't transfer easily so I pieced it together in the pan and pressed it all into place.  Bake at 350 until golden brown and firm in the center.  Use as you would any pie crust.





Dry ingredients in a bowl




Starting to mix it after the butter is added



Wrap in plastic wrap to chill



Pressed into a deep dish pie pan


Baked to perfection!


 You might be interested in these related products;
Ideal No Calorie Sweetener 10.6 Ounce Baking Bag (Pack of 2)
Nestle Media Crema Table Cream - 2 7.6 Oz. Cans
Dixie Carb Counters 1 Net Carb Home Made Press n' Bake Pie Crust Mix
Isopure Whey Protein Isolate, Unflavored, 3 Pounds


           
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1/11/18

Homemade Low Carb, Sugar Free, Wheat Free Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins





About a year ago my husband spied a little Charlie Brown Christmas tree looking lemon tree at Lowe's at the end of the season.  It was on clearance for a dollar and was calling our name.  So he bought it for a buck, brought it home and it lived in our garage over the winter.  It was a little twig but soon greened up after living on our deck all spring and summer.  This Fall we brought it into the kitchen for the winter and it has rewarded us for buying it by giving us 4 lemons!  Now... what to make with this beautiful lemons?

Low carb lemon poppyseed muffins!

Using my regular almond poppyseed recipe I simply subtracted the almond extract and juiced 2 of the lemons; one was medium sized and the other small.  I peeled off the rind and grated it up using my micro-blade herb mill (link below) and added a pinch to the batter as well.  The results were delicious and even better since I grew my own lemons!



Lemon Poppyseed Muffins
Wheat free, low carb, sugar free!

2 c almond flour
1/4 c flax meal
3/4 c unflavored or vanilla whey protein powder
1 t baking powder
1 t baking soda
1/2 t salt
1/3 c thin sliced almonds (optional)
3/4 c sweetener granules - brand of your choice (Ideal & Just Like Sugar are my top choices)
3/4 c pure pumpkin puree  (not pumpkin pie filling)
1/2 stick real butter, melted
3 eggs
Juice from 2 small lemons plus about 1/2 teaspoon of the grated rind - just the yellow part
1/2 c half and half or cream

In a bowl, mix the dry ingredients;  almond flour, flax, protein powder, baking powder, soda, salt, sliced almonds and sweeteners.    In another bowl mix the pumpkin, butter, eggs and lemon juice.   Add the pumpkin mixture to the dry mixture and stir with a wooden spoon while adding the cream or half and half.  Add a little bit more cream if you have to but remember your batter should be thicker than a cake mix yet still able to be scooped or poured into muffin tins.    Pour batter into greased or lined cupcake tins filled  3/4 full.  Bake at 325 for approximately 25 minutes.   This will make roughly 14-15 muffins and depending on the brands of ingredients used, will be 4-7 carbs per muffin. 




Our little twig of a tree grew 4 lemons this year!













You might also be interested in these related products available through Amazon;


Culina Micro Herb Mill with Blade Rotator
Isopure Zero Carb Protein Powder, 100% Whey Protein Isolate, Keto Friendly, Flavor: Creamy Vanilla, 1 Pound (Packaging May Vary)
Bob's Red Mill Super-Fine Almond Flour, 16-ounce (Pack of 4)
 






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White bread today looks like a slice of white cake!






While trying to organize my food files, I came across this one from last Thanksgiving.  I took a picture and posted it to my snapchat account for my family and friends.  I had been cooking the holiday meal and was going to make stuffing.  Because I was in the middle of my crazy schedule of flying back and forth to Missouri every week, I was trying to throw together Thanksgiving after just arriving back home.  I bought some cheap store bought white bread to supplement the whole wheat and homemade breads I had been saving (ends and those random 'one slice' left that no one finishes go into the freezer and are used for cooking, stuffings, breaded foods, etc.).

WOW.  This is white bread today?  That is wheat that has been processed and over process so much it  doesn't even resemble wheat anymore. Milling wheat into white flour removes the outer bran coat and wheatgerm, losing most of the thiamin, niacin and iron in the process and it's literally 'bleached' to make it white. And to make it affordable, the factories speed up the natural bread making process by using fast acting yeast, adding conditioners to make the gluten since it doesn't have 'time' to develop them naturally, then add sugar to give a kick.

No wonder people are having gluten issues, digestive issues, weight issues... this isn't even 'bread' any longer.


 _______________________________

 

Cooked: A Natural History of Transformation


Healthier Without Wheat: A New Understanding of Wheat Allergies, Celiac Disease, and Non-Celiac Gluten Intolerance.









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1/10/18

Product Review Time: Whiskware! All-in-One Pancake Solution Batter Mixer and GoStak Stackable Storage Snack Containers


I'm often contacted by marketing companies and product brands to review their products.  I've honestly become a die-hard fan of many foods, brands or products through the years solely because I reviewed them on one of my websites first; items I probably would have not tried or maybe even heard of had I not been offered a chance to review it.  I tell you this because I'm in LOVE with a new product I just spent the last week reviewing with our family.  The funny thing about this one, is it isn't one I thought I'd embrace as tightly (held to my chest and not allowing any of my 3 young adult kids to pilfer them from me!) as I am.

I was contacted to see if I would be interested in reviewing any of the products by Whiskware (Whiskware).  I researched their company and found they market 5 products:

Batter Mixer
Dressing Shaker
Egg Mixer
Pancake Art Kit
Snacking Containers

I instantly fell in love with the snacking containers!  Small containers that have tight screw-on lids that interlock with each other to stack.  This allows yummies like fruit, yogurt, granola, veggies and dip, etc. to be packed and toted in about the same amount of space a water bottle would take!  Brilliant!




The GoStak comes in a few different colors; pictured is their teal product line.   You can use one container alone, two, three; or all of them together.  You can also unscrew and stack them in any configuration you wish. Very versatile!


This is the product I was SO excited about and sure enough it came in handy almost immediately for an impromptu road trip.  Cherries, cubed cheese, cut up beef sticks and grapes - road ready in minutes.  Safetly stored away in a stack that literally was the size of a water bottle.

And I wasn't the only one that fell in love with it.  I received two of them and one of them has now found a new home with my college-aged daughter.  She snatched it up as she went back to school after the holidays.  She determined it was the perfect way to pack a breakfast, a light lunch or snacks for her busy days on campus and took up much less room than even her smallest lunch bag.



Although my initial excitement was to review the GoStak, the company also sent me two batter mixer bottles.  I was already familiar with the metal ball mixers that are so popular today as I've been using a similar style for our family's protein drinks and even a pudding mixer.  I had a passing interest in these, but wasn't nearly as excited as I should have been.  Because once I used this, I fell in LOVE with it.  It's earned a special spot in the kitchen not only for our pancakes and waffles but for cupcakes.  I HATE filling cupcake liners!  Spoons, ladles, measure cups, mixing bowls... I've tried them all and nothing has beat the awesomeness of this batter mixer.

Let me gush for a minute.....



The size holds a full sized recipe of my healthy low-carb waffle and pancake mix batter.
The ball inside mixes everything up for you simply by shaking.  (Kids love this part - even the 3 year old and 1 year old in our household this week got to take a go at it.)

You simply squeeze to dispense the amount you need and when you let go, the flow ebbs so you can pull away without a mess.


When I finished making enough waffles for everyone I was left with just enough batter for 1 more....


NO PROBLEM.


The screw on lid made it easy to pop it in to the refrigerator to save for the next day.
I simply added a little bit of water, gave it a few good shakes and made a waffle the next day.



Clean up is easy; the parts of the GoStak and the Batter Mixer all screw apart for easy clean up!


If you are like me, you always have a few basic questions about products before purchasing - I copied some of the questions I had to my website to make it easy for you to read them too.  More questions, warranty information and ability to order their products are available on their site:  Whiskware.com - and they offer free shipping with orders over $25. 

Care and Use

How do I properly store the Whiskware™ brand product?

Whiskware products can be stored in a cupboard, as you would any other cup. We recommend keeping the lid loose rather than tightly closed.

How do I clean my Whiskware brand product?

You may wash your Whiskware brand products by hand with soap and warm water or in the dishwasher.

Manufacturing

What type of plastic are Whiskware products made from?

The batter mixer and egg mixer are made of #2 HDPE and #5 PP plastic, which is the same kind of plastic used for most food containers (e.g., ketchup bottles and margarine containers). The dressing shaker is made out of BPA free Eastman Tritan™ plastic and bullet-resistant Plexiglass.

Are Whiskware products BPA free?

Yes. All Whiskware products are - and always have been - BPA free.

Are Whiskware products patented?

Yes. Whiskware products are protected under multiple U.S. and international patents – both issued and pending. The BlenderBottle Company aggressively protects its intellectual property rights. Whiskware™ and BlenderBall® are registered trademarks.

Are Whiskware products lead-free?

Yes.

Do Whiskware products meet European government standards?

Yes.

What is the BlenderBall® made of?

Polished 316 (surgical-grade) stainless steel.

Where are Whiskware products made?

Our corporate offices are located in Lehi, Utah. Our products are designed in the USA and responsibly manufactured in China.



_____________________________________

You might be interested in these related products available through Amazon!


Whiskware Stackable Snack Pack Container, White
BlenderBottle GoStak Twist n' Lock Storage Jars, 4-Piece Starter Pak, Pink
Whiskware C02384 Stackable Snack Pack Container, Teal
Whiskware Pancake Batter Mixer with BlenderBall Wire Whisk
Whiskware Pancake Art Kit with Batter Mixer, Art Bottle, BlenderBall Wire Whisk and 2 Pancake Shapers
Whiskware Egg Mixer with BlenderBall Wire Whisk
Whiskware Salad Dressing Shaker with BlenderBall Wire Whisk, Tritan

             

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