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This review is from: The Joy of Gluten-Free, Sugar-Free Baking: 80 Low-Carb Recipes that Offer Solutions for Celiac Disease, Diabetes, and Weight Loss (Hardcover)
Being on pretty much a non-grain, non-starch, non-sugar eating plan for over a year, I've been anxiously seeking out a book like this. I am not gluten intolerant, I just eat closer to a paleo-style, but want a bit more variety and was hoping for good cracker and bread recipes. I wasn't disappointed.
I made up the basic crackers, the "Any Nut" bread, and the "Hot Cross Buns" (which we've renamed the "Not Cross Buns"). The basic crackers were very simple to make and were delicious topped with a variety of salt-free seasonings I had sitting around. I made the "Any Nut" bread with walnuts and the minimal amount of sweetener called for. It was delicious and moist. The "Hot Cross Buns" were also quite delicious, but the group consensus was that these had no resemblance to the flavor of Hot Cross Buns, and therefore should not be called that (also, we decided to use a powdered-sugar glaze, powdered artificial sweetener just doesn't cut it as a glaze in my opinion).
This book uses primarily nut flours in almost every recipe. This book is not for people with nut allergies. The recipes also use eggs. This is great for me since I love eggs and nuts, but people should be aware.
Nut flours tend to be expensive (since nuts themselves are expensive) so I don't know if people will make these recipes as much as they would were nut flours the same price as wheat flour; however, that being said, recipes made with nut flours are very filling .. so your baked goods feed more people for the same size, or you will have them around longer.
For those people familiar with Peter Reinhart cookbooks, I can say that the recipes here are much less fiddly and simple to prepare. He does go into long explanations about ingredients and techniques early in the book (which I appreciate), but unlike his bread books, you can be eating crackers or nut bread within an hour or two of thinking about it which is really nice.
One more thing .. I haven't tried any of the "sweet" recipes. I just don't like the taste of "lots" of stevia, and I mostly stay away from Splenda. I just don't know how well the sweeter recipes would turn out, I have my reservations on that.
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Showing 1-10 of 25 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Aug 28, 2012 5:36:26 PM PDT
Wanted to add ... finished off the "Any Nut Bread" today, a full 11 days after baking it. It had been stored in the fridge, and feeding us all this time (thin slices). It was as delicious and moist on day 11 as it was the day it was baked. This never happens with grain-based breads. I am very pleased. It was terrific as a sandwich bread, toasted with butter, and even on its own!
Posted on Sep 13, 2012 4:19:36 PM PDT
Rachel Hart says:
I bought Stevia in the Raw for the first time to make a cookie recipe from this book and they were awful. Very strong aftertaste. Know your threshold for Stevia or Splenda before you waste a ton of expensive nuts and butter like I did. Feh.
In reply to an earlier post on Sep 13, 2012 4:58:02 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Sep 13, 2012 4:58:27 PM PDT
Yeah, definitely leaves a lot to be desired to try to achieve high sweetness with Stevia in the Raw. If I was going with a sweet recipe I would probably go half quantity of coconut palm sugar (low glycemic load) and then add some liquid stevia (always err on the side of too little rather than too much). Sweets are supposed to be an occasional treat anyway, so I think this mix would be a huge improvement over standard sweet treats ... and at least taste good in the process!
In reply to an earlier post on Sep 13, 2012 9:25:59 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Sep 13, 2012 9:27:41 PM PDT
Carb Counter says:
The recipes taste best if you use Splenda or if you don't want to use all Splenda, then do 1/2 of what the recipe calls for in Liquid Stevia ***(see conversion chart on their web site - www.thejoyofgluten-freesugar-freebaking.c
In reply to an earlier post on Sep 19, 2012 9:42:28 AM PDT
Hi...I've been low carb and sugar free for 2yrs now. I use erythritol powdered sugar alcoho. I order it from netrition.com, it's the Sensato brand. It's wonderful imo, It has a little bit of a cooling effect but not much. I've tried everything out there because the aftertaste was my biggest concern too! Stevia in the Raw was absolutely terrible and I would never resort to Splenda, it's artificial everyone and it raises your insulin! I use the erythrilol cup for cup as regular sugar. It's definitely not as sweet but if you want it sweeter, adding a drop or two of liquid stevia will help. There's a website called healthy indulgences.net that gave me a lot of help on sweeteners. Depending on whether you are sensitive to sugar alcohols, some people experience gas or a mild nausea, but really if you stick to a serving I don't think it will bother you. Good luck to you! Lisa
In reply to an earlier post on Oct 7, 2012 6:20:44 PM PDT
Alice Malice says:
Sometimes using a combination of sweeteners can mitigate the bad taste of Stevia. Maybe try half Stevia and half Splenda or some other sweetener. I like the taste of Splenda so I don't have any problems using it in my baking but the granulated version does add more carbs than I want to the final product so I usually end up using erythritol and a liquid version of Splenda.
Posted on Oct 9, 2012 9:49:36 PM PDT
I had only tried Stevia as a powder to sweeten lemonade or tea before buying this book. I tried making the brownies using Stevia in the Raw and OMG they tasted so incredibly bad. I tried some of the non-sweet bread recipes, though, and liked them very much. I am going to try the brownies with Splenda and see if that turns out any better.
In reply to an earlier post on Nov 14, 2012 5:03:47 PM PST
I picked up some erythritol and will give it a try. Thanks for the tip!
In reply to an earlier post on Jan 3, 2013 10:59:13 AM PST
Rachel, everyone's taste buds are different but I hated stevia the moment I tasted it. Glad of your confirmation.
In reply to an earlier post on Jan 3, 2013 11:07:31 AM PST
Karen, I don't care for Splenda, but I do use it sometimes. When I made a low-carb chocolate cake from Judy Barnes Baker's book CARB WARS, I used Splenda but also used one or two teaspoons of graulated sugar so that I get the up-front sweet impact that sugar delivers, tasting after stirring in the first teaspoon. Two teaspoons of sugar plus an extra 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla did for the whole recipe, which makes a one-layer 6-inch cake. It worked well for me; try it and see what you think.