Tag Archives: gluten

Zucchini fritters, vegetable fritters or just plain fritters

30 Jun

I am now involved in doing the translation work for a lovely food and music blog – Bouillon de Notes – which combines the passions of two bloggers, a very talented husband and wife team from France. The last recipe I did for them was on Zucchini Blossom Fritters. At the time of writing, it hasn’t been posted yet.

Last night, I took stock of what was left in my refrigerator, and what did I find – a zucchini at the point of going soft and the skin beginning to get wrinkled. Time for action!  The zucchini blossom fritters recipe I translated gave me an idea and blossoms or no blossoms, I decided to try making my own low carb fritters.

Surprise, surprise – this turned out simple and quick and would definitely make a delicious appetizer. Serve them plain, sprinkled with chilli flakes or with a dip!


Low Carb Zucchini Fritters

Obviously this recipe can be used for any quick-cooking vegetables or even a mix of them. Just make sure that the vegetable pieces are big enough so that it is easier to work with the batter. I can imagine that strips would be difficult to fry.

You could also just drop spoonfuls of batter into the oil and fry till golden. Use them as decoration for other dishes.

Before going further, I have to point out that I am not on a low carb diet because I am trying to loose weight. I am on a low carb diet because I need to cut down on carbohydrates. So this may be low carb but it is high oil. I very rarely do anything deep fried but I must admit, there are some things which taste nice deep fried. If one is sensible about portions, I see no harm in enjoying deep fried stuff once in a while . Also, if you make sure your oil is hot enough, your food will brown quickly meaning you can take them out quickly and they won’t be swimming and soaking in cooking oil for longer than necessary.

Low Carb Zucchini Fritters
(quantity makes enough to coat 1 large zucchini)

1 large zucchini sliced into rounds or other vegetables cut into pieces
1 egg
300 ml cold water
100 gr gluten
salt

Mix everything together till smooth. Coat your vegetables and fry till golden.

Tips for success:

Since this is not a normal batter, there are some things you will need to take note of to ensure success. The batter does not adhere to the zucchini slices. If you pick up the slices from the batter with tongs, the batter will slide off leaving you with an uncoated zucchini slice! So use a tablespoon to scoop out the slices one-by-one with some batter and put them gently into the hot oil, ensuring that the slices are well-spaced.  Depending on how much batter was on your spoon, the batter under the zucchini will start to sizzle and spread. You could leave it as is and cook further, resulting in bigger fritters or you could use a spoon to flip the spread out bits over on top of the zucchini to cover it up. Don’t put too much batter on, otherwise, the fritters won’t be crispy. Experiment!

And don’t let your batter stand too long. The gluten will bloat up and become gluey.

Print this recipe – Low Carb Zucchini Fritters


Make your schnitzel low carb!

17 Jan

Busy, busy, busy – that’s what I’ve been since 2012 started. January is already half over and only now am I able to wish my blog visitors a Happy New Year! So, HAPPY NEW YEAR and may you have a successful 2012 low-carbing!

Since I’ve been so occupied with other things, I haven’t had time to do any experimenting. After trying to get my Black Forest cake base perfect before Christmas and having had to eat so much bad cake, I’ve kind of had it with heavy duty experimenting for a while. 🙂 I’ll pick up on that sometime later during the year to get it right. The last cake actually wasn’t bad but I think it can still be made better.

Aside from that, I did find a little time to have another take on perfecting my low-carb schnitzel coating and I must say, I am now very satisfied! So I’m happy to have something to share with you this January. Doubt if I’ll have time to do much more.

If you’re thinking, schnitzel is meat and it’s low carb and if you pair it with a big salad, all should be ok – then think again. Schnitzel meat is first coated in flour, then egg, then breadcrumbs. For someone very sensitive to carbs, like me, this had a big effect on my readings. Ok, if I had known and taken more insulin, I wouldn’t have been surprised but I calculated my insulin for the meal on the basis of salad and protein and not salad, protein and some carbs.

I once bought a cooked schnitzel – can’t remember if it was pork or chicken, but that’s irrelevant – from the neighborhood deli to go with my salad and couldn’t believe my blood glucose reading after the meal. The same happened with frozen ready-made schnitzel you just pop into the oven. You would think that the little bit of breadcrumbs around the schnitzel won’t make much difference but it did to my body. When you buy a ready-made schnitzel or cordon bleu schnitzel, there’s no telling what kind of seasoning they add to the breadcrumbs, meat or filling – probably a load of stuff you don’t need including sugar as well!

After these experiences, I tried to make my schnitzels low carb by using almond meal and even flaxseed but the coating did not stick as well to the meat. Last week, I tried it with gluten and flaxseed and it turned out really, really nice. When you cut the schnitzel, the coating does not fall off.

So here’s how to make it. You can use pork, chicken or veal. My guess is the coating will also stick well to tofu and seitan but I have yet to test it. Please do leave a comment, if you do try it and let me know how successful you were. My schnitzel below is made with chicken. If you wish to make a cordon bleu schnitzel, simply buy a thicker piece of meat, slice a pocket in the meat and fill with cheese and/or ham.

Sorry for the unclear photos but the schnitzels have already been devoured so I can’t retake them!

Schnitzel Low Carb Style

Continue reading

Low Carb Wheaten Scones/Bread

25 Nov

Low Carb Wheaten Scones

Looking through my bread recipe collection, I came across a recipe for Irish Wheaten Bread given to me by an Irish lady I met a long time ago and to whom I have since lost contact. I’ve made this bread a few times and although it has always turned out perfect, just like the lady demonstrated to a group of us, it wasn’t favourably received at home because it was a bit sweet and had more of a cake-like rather than a spongy texture like regular bread (yeast is not used). I, on the other hand, enjoyed it very much but having to consume the whole loaf by myself was a bit much. This type of bread doesn’t keep moist for long and is best eaten fresh out of the oven.

Since there was a possibility of making these into Wheaten Scones ie. smaller portions, I chose this recipe to redevelop into a low carb version.

The end result is a scone which comes close to the original and which I can finally enjoy with butter. I don’t quite like butter with my Low Carb Sunflower Seed Loaf which is now a breakfast staple in our home. With these scones you need to slather butter or cream cheese on them! Low carb sinning! Continue reading

Low Carb Tortilla Wraps

13 Apr

Many low-carbers are lucky enough to be able to buy ready-made low-carb tortilla wraps but alas, they are expensive for me to order from overseas. For quite some time now, I’ve been searching for recipes. The first one I tried was with whey protein and it yielded less than satisfactory results. Yesterday, I had half a roast chicken left and thought I would have another go at making a wrap. Got to try out these recipes some time or other or else I’ll never know.

I found the recipe for these tortillas on the Low Carb Luxury website. The recipe says: “Makes 16 tortillas”. Since there were only 2 of us, I thought I would make a half recipe since it was difficult to divide the recipe even more,  and freeze the rest.  These must be really mini-tortillas because in the end, I only got TWO 20cm wraps! I guess the author must have been referring to corn tortillas. I’ve never seen small flour tortillas. The finished tortilla looked more like a flour tortilla than a corn tortilla. What could one possibly do with such a small thing other than eat more than one as an accompaniment?

I somehow forgot to read the recipe instructions and just dumped everything into a bowl and mixed them together. Later I realised that I was supposed to rub in the larb and only add enough water to form a pliable dough. Well, too late. So I had to add about 4 Tbsp of ground flaxseed to firm up the dough a bit. Given the fact that I only got 2 tortillas out of a half recipe and not 8, and that I had to add the flaxseed meal, the carb count did go up to about 7.1 gr carbs per tortilla. Without the flaxseed meal, the carb count goes down to 5.1 gr (net 3.6 gr). I’ll be making this again and will report on it. One tortilla filled chockful of  low carb filling is more than enough to satisfy your hunger pangs.

In the meantime, if you’d like to try out the low carb tortilla recipe before I get around to making it again, the recipe can be found here. I would reduce the salt to about 1/2 tsp.

Here are my tortillas:

I rolled out the dough between two sheets of plastic wrap, peeled off one layer of plastic wrap, flipped the tortilla into my crêpe pan and peeled off the other layer of wrap. You do have to be careful though, that the plastic wrap doesn’t touch the hot pan and melt. I rolled out the dough quite thin so it would have been difficult to handle had I peeled off both layers of plastic wrap and then tried to put the tortilla into the pan.

These make really good tortilla wraps.

To make the low carb chicken wraps above, simply mix some shredded roast chicken with cream cheese and grated Swiss cheese, add some seasonings, pile the filling onto the wrap lined with lettuce (or veggies of your choice) and then roll up tightly. Cut in half and enjoy!

The carb count for the recipe made without the extra flaxseed meal, with coconut oil (instead of lard) and 1/2 tsp salt, and yielding 4 tortillas is:

Nutritional Facts

Total Calories- 297.9 kcal; Fat – 22 gr (saturated fat – 10.6 gr); Carbohydrates – 5.1 gr (Fibre 1.5 gr); Protein – 21.8 gr

Owing to the different brands of ingredients I used and probably, the calorie counter the original author used, I have ended up with less carbs.

Spaetzle

16 Mar

Spaetzle means little sparrow in German but no, these are not little sparrows to be eaten, thank goodness! Spaetzle is the name given to a kind of homemade noodle which the southern Germans serve as an accompaniment to their meat dishes and with gravy. The noodle can also be served as a main course. In this case, it is topped with melted cheese and roasted onions and is called Käsespätzle (cheese spaetzle) or when there is leftover spaetzle from a previous meal, the leftovers are stir-fried with some meat, veggies and egg or whatever is left in the pantry. This little noodle has crossed borders and is also served as an accompaniment in Austria, Switzerland, Hungary, in the Alsace region of France which borders Germany and in the northern part of Italy which borders Austria.

When I came to Germany, I fell in love with spaetzle, bought myself a spaetzle press and re-created these at home. There is absolutely no comparison between homemade spaetzle and the dried packaged version. Just doesn’t taste the same. If I had a choice between having spaetzle or potatoes with my meal, I would invariably choose Spaetzle.

Spaetzle can look quite different depending on the spaetzle press you use. It could come out in strips about 4 cm (about 1 1/2 inches) long …

…or in little knobs or buttons.

In the latter case, they are called Knoepfle which means little buttons. I have both types of presses but have had more success using the ‘button’ press.

Like all pasta and other types of noodles, the main ingredient is some kind of flour, whether it be wheat, spelt, buckwheat, rice or durum wheat, all of which spell out loud – CARBS! If you’ve been following my blog, you’ll know that I discovered Shirataki noodles some time ago. I  ordered a huge box containing 30 packets and am by now a bit Shirataki-ed out. So when I found this recipe which said Low Carb Spaetzle here in German and found I possessed all the ingredients to make it, I immediately printed out the recipe and whipped  this up. There was no nutritional information given. Only after I made the spaetzle did I realize that it couldn’t be so low-carb when the recipe called for 200gr of chickpea flour. I put the ingredient list through the nutritional calculator on Spark Nutrition which I use frequently and to my dismay, saw that one portion contained 19.9gr carbs! So really, this recipe has no place here on my blog.  I then checked out the nutritional information for my normal spaetzle recipe and one portion has 49.2gr carbs.

But … I am still going to post this recipe because it turned out really well, tasted good and well, once in a while you’ve got to give yourself a treat,so why not a treat which already has less than half the carbs in a normal spaetzle portion? Besides, I tried a spaetzle recipe using soy flour and it was a flop – so it’s back to this spaetzle recipe for me.

This recipe is a translation taken from the forum linked above. The author says the recipe makes enough for 3-4 persons when served as an accompaniment but for my family, it looked like it could serve 5-6. I’ve calculated nutritional information based on 6 servings. I’ve also just noticed that the liquid used is milk but I didn’t see that and used water instead, so you can try both.

For this recipe you will need a spaetzle press. It is also possible to make spaetzle without a press but it seems a laborious job to me and is probably for those who know how. I used a spaeztle press which looks like this. I think I read somewhere on the German forum that it didn’t work so well with the other type of press.

Chickpea Flour Spaetzle (serves 6)

2 Eggs, beaten and topped up with milk to 250 ml

1 Tsp salt

50gr gluten

200gr chickpea flour (also called gram or besan flour)

2 Tbsp olive oil

Bring a large pot of water to boil. Add some olive oil and salt to the water.

Now start preparing your batter. Mix everything in a mixing bowl with a wooden spoon.

You should get a relatively thick, sticky, gluey dough which adheres to your wooden spoon.

When your water is boiling, put the spaetzle maker over the pot and working quickly, put in as much of the dough as you can into the container.

Start pushing the container back and forth over the sieve and the batter will drop into the water in little drops. They will rise to the surface when cooked. This happens really quickly. If your pot is not big enough or if you can’t work quickly enough, stop and scoop out the cooked spaetzle before proceeding with the rest of the batter. I find this batter much easier to work with than the normal spaetzle batter containing flour.

And voila, one part of dinner is ready.

Enjoy!

Nutritional Facts – per serving if recipe serves 6

Total cal – 229.8 kcal; Fat – 9.1 gr; Carbohydrates – 19.9 gr; Protein – 16.3 gr.

As a comparison, my normal spaetzle recipe which uses 400gr flour, 4 eggs, salt and water and also serves 6, has per serving:

Total cal – 279.3 kcal; Fat – 4.3 gr; Carbohydrates – 49.2 gr; Protein – 11 gr.

Update 25/09/2011 – I just made Spaetzle today and instead of using 200 gr chickpea flour, I used 150gr chickpea flour and 50gr soy flour. It worked and tasted so good with my Hungarian Gulasch. If the whole recipe serves 6, then it works out to 13.9gr net carbs and if it serves 4, then its 20.8 gr net carbs. Next time, I’ll try 100 gr chickpea flour and 100 gr soy flour. 

Note: the alteration above does not appear on the link below so make the adjustment if you wish to use soy flour.

Print this recipe – Chickpea Flour Spaetzle

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