So I’ve been tasked with creating healthy recipes for a new product line at a local bake shop. I started out wanting them to be low fat and low sugar. Easy peesy, right? HAHAHAHAHA.
My friend Amber has been a huge help since she’s been researching and cooking diabetic friendly for the past year. She recommended applesauce as a sugar substitute. Well it worked in the carrot cake, but not so much in my fudge brownies.
The other day I tried to make my grandma’s chocolate crinkle cookies, but with no fat, little sugar and beans instead of flour. Oh and so people would know they’re healthy I added oats. I decided to call them Chocolate oat cookies. Here’s a picture… let’s just say it was an epic fail! Beans may work in brownies, but do NOT use them in cookies. They were rubbery and tasted horrible!
I really want a chocolate dessert and I really want it to be low sugar. Next ingredient to try – Beets. Very sweet, but low GL.
Unfortunately, my husband came home with beets in sweet vinegar instead of just canned beets. I’m a bit impatient and impulsive so I decided to give them a whirl, instead of going back to the store (I hate grocery shopping). Since vinegar added acid to my recipe, I replaced the baking powder with baking soda and thought that might work. The reasoning here was that baking powder is baking soda plus an acid ingredient. I thought using just the baking soda might help cut the acidity of the recipe. I mean really, I’m replacing sugar with mushed up beets, how much worse could I make it!
So originally I was going with my normal subs. Greek yogurt for fat (in this case oil), egg whites instead of eggs (thinking yogurt replaces yolk too), 1/2 whole wheat flour (wholemeal in UK language), etc. Well that left me with replacing most of the sugar with beets, but since the beets would be a crushed tomato consistency, I decided to not use the yogurt. Logical thinking, I know.
So apparently in winter my kitchen is cold. As soon as I poured the melted chocolate into the beet mixture, it started hardening again. I didn’t want to heat the mixture so
I used a hand blender to minimize the chuckiness. As you can see, I didn’t quite succeed. Part of the chunkiness was from the beets, so I decided to ignore it and carry on (b/c I never stop something once I start ;)). You can also tell from the picture, that using my handmixture might have whipped the egg yolks and added fluff to the dough – oh well! Looks like the baking soda started bubbling too. Maybe I should stick with baking powder. Perhaps, I shouldn’t have done a 1:1 substitution with the baking soda and baking powder – oh well!
After adding all the flours, I tasted the dough. Definitely not sweet enough, but I’d like to bake it first before adding more sugar. More sugar means more calories and NOT diabetic friendly. I put one cookie in a 180 C oven for 8 minutes.
Let’s see what happens…
First one out of the oven doesn’t look all that bad. Didn’t go flat like the bean cookies. It definitely looked like it had whipped egg whites in it. Smells like chocolate. Oh and its color is pretty cool. I think these will be my Red Velvet Chocolate Cookies 🙂
Taste: spongy, slightly bitter chocolate. Husband: it’s good. wierd aftertaste
How to improve: would be great with chocolate chips, but the amount I’d want to add would increase the sugar too much. To help offset the bitter chocolate I added 15 g additional sugar.
Final product for today: Approx size = bottom of cooking spray container.
The added sugar helped and improved the product. Husband still says they’re not right (that was until I told him to think of them as little cakes, then he agreed it they were fine). They are more fluffy and like cake instead of cookies. So – if you want a healthy version of red velvet cake, perhaps this is it. I still want a cookie, so I will continue my experimenting.
Ideas for the next batch – use baking powder, chill the dough, use greek yogurt instead of egg whites, find good sugar substitute, use a starch to make crunchier/drier. I know technically you’re only supposed to change one ingredient at a time – but who has time for that. I suppose I could split the dough in fourths before adding different ingredients and monitor the outcome.
Did I ever mention how much I hated college chemistry – dropping liquid in different test tubes, documenting every result – so painstakingly boring!