Posts Tagged ‘oligofructose’

Red, White, and Blue Cobbler

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The tart or pie cherry is a pretty yard tree all season, and gorgeous in full fruit, with the glowing colors of a Russian enamel. This year my pie cherry tree bore heavily for the first time, and after making a new supply of tart cherry liqueur (no sugar this time,) I made a few cherry cobblers.
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First, catch your cherries. They need to be the bright lacquer-red pie type, not the darker sweet cherries, which will turn a rather dreadful color if you try to cook them.
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Next, pit enough of them to make 1 1/2 cups of pitted cherries. This will serve 2 gluttons or four normal people. I have a pitting device from OXO that pits four at a time, but it’s still tedious work. Be certain to run your clean fingers through the pitted cherries several times to find any pits that you missed, so that no teeth are cracked later.
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If you eat sugar, it’s very simple from here on. Add a handful of wild blueberries or (from my yard) fully ripe clove currants or serviceberries ¬†for the blue element, sweeten to taste, and make your favorite biscuit dough but sweeten it a little more than usual. Put the cherries and berries in a buttered 7 inch tart pan, top with artistic globs of the biscuit dough, and bake at 375 until the dough is done and browning attractively. If you eat low-carb it’s a little more complicated but not much. Sweeten the cherry mixture to taste with half erythritol and half Sweet Perfection oligofructose, working the sweeteners in with your fingers so that they don’t cake, and add a teaspoon of vanilla extract. Make the topping as follows:
1 1/2 cups almond flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 cup of Swerve sweetener confectioners type
1/3 cup Sweet Perfection oligofructose
1/4 cup butter, cold
2 egg yolks
Combine all the dry ingredients in a bowl and stir well with a fork. Work in the butter, cutting it in with the fork until the largest remaining butter pieces are the size of baby peas. Add the egg yolks, working them in with a fork until the mixture is fairly well amalgamated. Drop on top of the cherry mixture in the small buttered tart pan, pat it out just a bit with your fingertips (it will be sticky and messy,) and bake at 375 until the dough is cooked through and coloring. This dough doesn’t brown evenly as sugar-containing doughs do, and you have to watch carefully so that it doesn’t burn. Serve hot with low-carb
vanilla ice cream.
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Happy Independence Day!
The gorgeous image of a cherry branch second from the top was on a Google page and I can’t find an attribution for it. If anyone knows who the photographer is, please let me know so that I can give credit.

Veggies for One, or Two

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One of the joys of early summer is seeing gorgeous big heads of broccoli “crowning” above the leaves. After you’ve cut the central head, the fun is just beginning. Keep replenishing fertile mulch around the plants and keep them watered, and soon a ring of side shoots will appear above the foliage. Cut the shoots with their long stems, being careful not to harm the main stem of the plant. Rinse them off and peel the stems carefully with a vegetable peeler. Steam to taste. In my opinion, broccoli should be steamed for eight minutes, and raw broccoli is not a vegetable at all. Your mileage may vary.
My favorite way to eat these long elegant stalks is with a quasi-Korean dipping sauce. I was particularly hungry and added a fried egg (double-yolked, so I got a bonus) and drizzled it with the dipping sauce too. The sauce is flavored with gochujang, a lovely deep-flavored fermented sweet chile paste that is unlike any other form of chile. Currently the only brand of gochujang I use is from the quirky company Mother-in-Law’s Kimchee.it contains rice powder and sugar and has some carbs, but you don’t use that much and it doesn’t have any corn syrup. I make this sauce by the pint and keep it in the refrigerator. The recipe as given here makes just over one cup.
The sweeteners that I use are oligofructose, a chicory root derivative, and liquid stevia, because I’m a ketogenic eater. If you don’t worry about carbs, you can just add sugar to taste at the boiling stage. If you do use oligofructose, I recommend the Sweet Perfection brand. Other brands have a bitter taste to me.

Dipping sauce
3×1″ piece of ginger, peeled
8 cloves garlic
3 tablespoons coconut oil
2-3 tablespoons gochujang depending on your heat preference
1/4 cup rice vinegar
3/4 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup Sweet Perfection oligofructose
Drops of liquid stevia to taste

Chop the ginger and garlic while a small saucepan heats up over medium heat. When hot, add the coconut oil, let it heat a minute or two, and add the chopped ginger and garlic. Stir-fry until they are cooked and fragrant but haven’t colored at all. Add the rice vinegar and soy sauce, bring to a boil, and slowly pour in the oligofructose with your nondominant hand while whisking rapidly with your dominant hand. It will form awful clumps if not handled this way. When it is all incorporated, remove the pan from the heat, let stand at least ten minutes to cool, and add liquid stevia just 2-3 drops at a time, tasting to make sure you don’t go too far. Serve in neat small bowls with nearly any meat or vegetable that could use some quick perking up. It seems tailor-made for broccoli, but a big glug poured over rapidly stir-fried greens is also pretty damn good, especially with chopped hard-boiled egg on top to complete the meal, and a salad of leftover thinly sliced steak or chicken, fresh sliced romaine, and this sauce as a dressing makes a beautiful lunch.
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