Last night dinner was a bit of a blowout, so I decided to make up for it immediately afterwards by whipping up something scrumptious for dessert. After a quick survey of our fixings, I toasted some hazelnuts and chopped them up, put a few on the bottom of each of 4 champagne flutes (they hold 175 ml), put a dollop of our homemade strained yogurt (apparently it is lower carb if you strain it – i.e. apparently healthier Greek style), some leftover raspberry sauce from last weekend’s attempt #1 at low-carb pancakes. (More on pancakes another day. My husband is working on them and I’ll post a recipe once they’ve been perfected.) Next more yogurt, then more sauce, more hazelnuts, a couple of squares (4-5 g) of chopped dark chocolate (each), topped with heavy cream I whipped up, and some more toasted hazelnuts. It was about 11 g of carbs per serving, but I’d had a particularly low-carb day (I was keeping track on my phone in Carb Manager) so I didn’t stress about it. And the kids loved it (as did the adults).
According to the app and the USDA Nutrient Database, here’s how the carbs break down:
2 tablespoons hazelnuts = 1 g net (effective) carbs
1/4 cup frozen raspberries, unsweetened = 3 g net carbs
1/4 cup heavy cream = 2 g net carbs
5 g dark chocolate = 2 g net carbs
1/3 cup yogurt, Greek style (strained) = 3 g net carbs
The sauce was made with frozen raspberries and water. I made a similar sauce today (I added 1/2 teaspoon of maple syrup for my eldest’s sweet tooth after taking half out for the rest of us) for attempt #2 of low-carb pancakes and remembered to measure it out. As ever, keep in mind that we are curbing our sweet tooth, and have been for some time, so you may want to add some of your favourite sweetener if you make it.
It was 150 g of frozen organic blackberries (13 g carbs & 7 g fibre per 140 g/1 cup) and 60 ml of water in a small saucepan, heated over medium low, mashed a bit, reduced a little, and served warm. It is not strained, like a traditional coulis, because we want the fibre in there. There was a little left over for tonight’s homemade cookies & cream ice cream, which was just the thing it needed. The sauce breaks down to 1 g effective carb per 30 g serving (about 2 tablespoons).
On curbing my sweet tooth: Like any addiction, it’s not easy kicking the habit. For a month I walked around with a bar of Camino 80% extra dark chocolate (or 85% – 90% doesn’t taste like chocolate anymore to someone with a sweet tooth – it’s just bitter) in my bag and when I felt the urge, I’d have a little square. And after dinner, I’d have a little square. A few weekends ago I was at my brother’s place and while they had a sugary dessert, I had a square or two. It is a 100 g bar, and there are 25 g of net carbs in there, but each square is 1/24 of the bar, so it’s just over 1 g per square. I haven’t been able to find a bulk supplier of extra dark fair trade chocolate in this city, so when we make things like chocolate sauce, we cut the dark stuff with unsweetened.
So for us it’s about cutting the sweet tooth, cutting the portion sizes (of the homemade ice cream and the parfait above, for instance), and finding good alternatives.