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Brilliant suggestions needed for shippable, low carb food gifts

amyzan Sep 24, 2011 03:19 PM

My friend eats low or controlled carbohydrate due to a health concern. Before I was aware of this, I promised to send her goodies. I have limited familiarity with this way of eating, so would appreciate guidance and recipe links, info, etc. I'm of the impression that anything edible and shippable will work. In other words, it doesn't have to be a dessert goodie, just something special. Anyone?

  1. amyzan Sep 25, 2011 10:00 PM

    Okay, found out she uses splenda (sucralose) but every time I've tried to bake with it, the results were inedible to my taste. To me, it was a textural aversion. The sugar cookies were crumbly as sand, dry, even made with butter. I've heard that it's best mixed half and half with sugar, but don't really want to be the test kitchen. So, if I attempt say, flourless chocolate cake, has anyone made these with half sugar, half splenda, and had good results?

    4 Replies
    1. re: amyzan
      t
      Transplant_DK Sep 26, 2011 12:30 AM

      I only use splenda and have never had any problems with it. My guess is that the issue is what you are using for flour--almond meal is not as easy to bake with as regular or whole wheat flour.

      There are tons of recipes out there for LC desserts using only splenda (or other sweeteners). I don't think I'd send something with even half sugar to someone trying to watch carbs. Try searching for online recipes from Karen Barnaby's Gourmet Lo-carb book. I've made several of her desserts (coconut macaroons, cheesecakes, zucchini cake, etc) and they've all been great!

      1. re: amyzan
        mcf Sep 26, 2011 06:34 AM

        I get an awful taste and mouth feel from Splenda, and the bulking agents actually add a lot of carbs per cup that you don't see in the serving size listed... high GI maltodextrin. I mix liquid sucralose (zero carb sweetener that's in Splenda) 50/50 with granular xylitol. This not only does away with the extra carbs, it gets rid of the off taste some of us get, and the xylitol bulks and moisturizes like sugar. I've made very successful truffles, cheesecake, boule de neige (to die for!) and pumpkin pies with this combination.

        1. re: mcf
          amyzan Sep 26, 2011 09:23 AM

          Where do you purchase liquid sucralose, mcf? Would greatly appreciate the recipe for the truffles, if you think they are shippable after first frost.

          1. re: amyzan
            mcf Sep 26, 2011 09:44 AM

            sweetzfree.com... it's VERY concentrated, the small bottle lasted me years, I tend to avoid sweets and sweeteners. xylitol is 40% lower carb than sucrose, so 50/50 is a good deal taste, texture and carb wise. HTH. I think netrition.com and maybe amazon.com have versions of it, too, but I've only ever used sweetzfree.

            Bulk Splenda is 24 gms of carbs per cup, BTW. Another sugar alcohol, erythritol, is zero metabolized carb, supposedly (some people metabolize sugar alchohols, some don't. The don't folks will get a strong laxative effect with too much per serving) but has a strong cooling effect, and gets gritty in creamy things like cheesecake or frostings.

            In other stuff, I will often mix it with sweetzfree and xylitol. Most low carbers find that mixing a couple or few sweeteners tends to do a better job of getting the maximum good from each and diminishing less desireable effects.

      2. Emme Sep 25, 2011 06:54 PM

        how about some lacey parmesan crisps?
        or as suggested above with nuts, a variety of sweet and savory spiced nuts
        flourless chocolate mini tortes (for ease of shipping) if you feel comfortable using a sugar sub

        4 Replies
        1. re: Emme
          amyzan Sep 25, 2011 09:57 PM

          Parm crisps sound good, but my recipe includes flour. Do you know if they can be made without any flour, or maybe could I sub almond flour? I've written her husband about spiced nuts, and am hoping she likes them, because David Lebovitz' recipe is easy, good, and not too sweet, if it meets her carb limits.

          1. re: amyzan
            lilgi Sep 25, 2011 11:49 PM

            You don't need flour, and you can use different cheese:
            http://www.joyfulabode.com/2010/04/25...

            1. re: lilgi
              amyzan Sep 26, 2011 09:24 AM

              Thanks, that looks great!

            2. re: amyzan
              Emme Sep 26, 2011 08:53 PM

              ditto lilgi. i never use flour. different cheeses, sometimes herbs, all good.

          2. Quine Sep 24, 2011 09:46 PM

            Maybe this: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/808380

            1. ipsedixit Sep 24, 2011 09:35 PM

              Beef jerky?

              10 Replies
              1. re: ipsedixit
                amyzan Sep 25, 2011 06:04 PM

                Helpful! Any good recipes? I have a dehydrator, and have access to great pastured bison and beef, though am not sure what cuts might be desirable for jerky. I don't want to send her shoe leather...

                1. re: amyzan
                  ipsedixit Sep 25, 2011 08:10 PM

                  Try this one.

                  It's a Taiwanese beef jerky recipe. I find Taiwanese versions eons better than their American counterparts.

                  __________________________________________________________________

                  1 ½ to 2 lbs boneless rump roast beef

                  Group 1 ingredients
                  3 cups water
                  5 slices ginger root
                  3 stalks of green onion
                  3-4 star anise
                  Some dried orange peel (optional)

                  Group 2 ingredients
                  1.5 tbsp dark soy sauce
                  2.5 tsp salt
                  4 large chunks of rock sugar (or about 6 tbsp of sugar)

                  Mix Group 1 with beef and cook 1 ½ hours over medium heat on stove, until meat is tender. Let cool and drain. Keep the liquid for later use.

                  Cut beef along grain into paper thin slice. Place beef in frying pan together with sauce with ingredients in Group 2 and the reserved liquid used to cook the beef. Stir and cook over low heat until liquid has dried out. (About 2-3 hours, but times will vary)

                  Then place beef on a cookie sheet. Preheat oven to 350F. Bake for 20 min. Remove, cool on rack and serve.

                  1. re: ipsedixit
                    s
                    sueatmo Sep 25, 2011 08:58 PM

                    I'm getting 72 g of carbs in the sugar. How many servings does this intriguing recipe make?

                    1. re: sueatmo
                      ipsedixit Sep 25, 2011 09:10 PM

                      One. For me.

                    2. re: ipsedixit
                      amyzan Sep 25, 2011 09:55 PM

                      Hmmm, rump, huh? Have you made this recipe, by chance? I'm wondering if I could alter it for a dehydrator, so I don't have to hang out in the kitchen for 2-3 hours for the group 2 step. This looks remarkably like recipes for chinese style short ribs...flavorful, but a bit sweet, too.

                      1. re: amyzan
                        ipsedixit Sep 26, 2011 08:27 PM

                        I've done this recipe all the time.

                        I'm sure it would work with a dehydrator, except I wouldn't know the conversion ratios because I don't have a dehydrator. Sorry.

                      2. re: ipsedixit
                        biondanonima Sep 26, 2011 07:16 AM

                        Just replace the sugar in the recipe with splenda or stevia and it will be perfect. Sugar-free beef jerky (which can be surprisingly difficult to find) and spiced nuts are snack foods of champions when you're on a low carb diet!

                        1. re: biondanonima
                          mcf Sep 26, 2011 08:37 AM

                          Splenda and stevia would be way down on the bottom of my list, especially bulk Splenda, for taste, texture and carb content.

                          1. re: mcf
                            biondanonima Aug 20, 2012 01:29 PM

                            I prefer the flavor of Splenda to most other sweeteners but that may just be because it's what I'm used to. Liquid sucralose (Sweetzfree) is super-concentrated and has no bulking agents (and therefore no carbs).

                            1. re: biondanonima
                              mcf Aug 20, 2012 01:31 PM

                              sweetzfree is what I use, but I get a bad taste and mouthfeel from sucralose unless I blend it half and half with xylitol or something else.

                  2. s
                    sueatmo Sep 24, 2011 07:32 PM

                    This place does good nuts, which are candy to low carbers:

                    http://www.sunnylandfarms.com/

                    You can buy cheese plates through many mail order places, and cheese is another low carb goodie. Also, semi sweet chocolate works for many low carbers. The chocolate should be at least 60% cacao, and you should check the carb count on the back of the bar to make sure that a reasonable amount of this goodie will fit in with her diet plan, or carb allowance.

                    In terms of homemeade goodies, you can do low carb baking using almond flour, golden flaxseed meal or a combination of both. I have done this and you can get a fairly good product. I use Splenda as sweetener, but some people swear by stevia for sweetening, If you google low carb baking you should find recipes for similar baked products. Frankly, if someone sent me several expensive bars of semi sweet chocolate, I'd be thrilled. If it were me doing the sending, I'd find out what chocolate she can have or likes, and then send same.

                    I've just remembered that you can bake a flourless peanut butter cookie that might work for her. I don't have a recipe, however. I'd google same to find a recipe. The cookie will be sweetened with Splenda or stevia. Good luck.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: sueatmo
                      amyzan Sep 25, 2011 06:05 PM

                      Ah, brilliant! I will have to ask her hubbie what sweeteners she uses, if dark chocolate is okay, etc.

                    2. lilgi Sep 24, 2011 03:30 PM

                      How about something along these lines?
                      http://www.murrayscheese.com/products...

                      You could probably skip getting any crackers and such if needed. If you speak to someone there they might be able to work something out according to budget. I'll check to see what else I can offer as a suggestion.

                      3 Replies
                      1. re: lilgi
                        amyzan Sep 24, 2011 07:27 PM

                        I'm sorry, I failed to mention this is something homemade. I want to make it myself...

                        1. re: amyzan
                          lilgi Sep 24, 2011 07:31 PM

                          Definitely changes things ;) Drawing a blank atm, if I think of anything shippable will post back.

                          1. re: amyzan
                            lilgi Sep 26, 2011 06:08 AM

                            If your friend likes coconut you have a choice here of chewy/fluffy sugar free macaroons. There's also a recipe here for sugar free almond syrup to use in one of the recipes:

                            http://www.paleodigest.com/pd/?u=http...

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