Sunday, October 13, 2013

Just Desserts

Although it seems like a few YEARS have passed, it has only been a week since Audrey and I went sugar and gluten-free. I decided we needed a little "sugar"-free treat today. I chose a tasty fall recipe from Sugar-Free Mom: Low-Carb Pumpkin Cheesecake Mousse. Here is the original recipe:

8 oz. Neufchatel cream cheese
1 c. pumpkin puree
1 c. heavy cream
1 t. pumpkin pie spice
2-4 full droppers vanilla liquid Stevia

I followed the recipe. Sort of.

Here is what I did:

*1 c. of homemade cream cheese - It is so easy to make cream cheese! Place about 2 cups homemade yogurt in a bowl with cheesecloth or a tightly woven dishtowel suspended above it. (You can use clips or place the cloth inside a wire strainer that hangs over a bowl.) Let yogurt drain for 1 1/2-2 days. Voila! Cream cheese!

*1 c. homemade pumpkin puree. This is fairly simple as well. First, purchase sugar pumpkins at your local grocery store, farm, or pumpkin patch. The sugar pumpkins are the small ones - not the minis your kids like to paint and not the ones you carve, but the in between ones. A sugar pumpkin will have more meat than your typical jack-o-lantern. Preheat oven to 350. Cut stems off of pumpkins and cut in half so that you have two symmetrical halves. Clean out the guts, saving the seeds to roast. Place both halves cut side down in a baking pan. Roast in oven for 60-90 minutes. Allow to cool enough to handle but don't forget about it and let it sit until it's completely cold. Scoop out all of the wonderful pumpkin "meat". Run quickly through a food processor to smooth it all. I usually make a bunch and freeze it. If I was really ambitious, I would can it. Since I'm more in survival mode at this point than ambition mode, freezer it is.

--Using a hand mixer, thoroughly blend cream cheese and pumpkin together.

*1 c. coconut cream "whipped" cream. This is the first time I tried this. Not sure I did it right, but it turned out OK. Take a can of organic, full fat coconut milk. Place in the fridge overnight. (I have read a couple of different methods; some say to open the lid first, others don't mention it. I left the lid on, and the milk did not solidify, so perhaps you should leave the lid off.) In the morning, the milk should be separated with the coconut water on the bottom of the can and a thick, waxy layer of solid milk on the top. It is a little less than a cup, but that's OK. Take out only the thickened part of the coconut milk. Save the coconut water on the bottom for a smoothie. Using a hand mixer, whip the cream. It doesn't whip into peaks like regular heavy cream (at least mine didn't), but it did thicken a bit.

*2 t. vanilla

*3-4 T. powdered sugar. I actually have vanilla Stevia drops, but I have not mastered the Great Art of Stevia Using yet, and the one thing I tried with Stevia tasted terrible, so I'm just going to let it sit lonely in my cupboard for awhile longer. Audrey is allowed to have erythritol/xylitol. I have some Swerve, which is the texture of finely granulated sugar. To make my own powdered sugar, I placed 3/4 c. Swerve in my Nutribullet along with 1/2 T. arrowroot powder (you can use cornstarch) and blended it. It is my understanding you can do this with any granulated type of sugar. Because my Nutribullet has a smaller container than a blender, I only used 3/4 cup of Swerve. If you use a blender, you would probably need to use 1 1/2 c. sugar and 1 T. arrowroot powder or cornstarch.

--Add vanilla and powdered sugar to coconut cream and blend with handmixer.

--Now add coconut cream to pumpkin mixture and lightly blend.

--Chill and serve!

Though I won't win any contests with this photo and certainly won't be hired as a food photographer, here it is:

And, yes, I realize that doesn't really look all that much like pumpkin. My pumpkin for some reason was very light colored. Still tastes like pumpkin, just not very orange.

And, yes, those are chocolate chips on top. MINI ones (that's a mini bowl next to a mini pumpkin...just to offer some perspective). 11 of them. Count them. I know. I may have upset the whole thing with the .001 grams of sugar. I don't know.


I asked Audrey if she gave it a thumbs-up.

She did not.

She gave it TWO thumbs-up!


dclouser said...

My hat's off to you for going through this arduous process for a treat! Sounds like me when I lived in the bush and couldn't buy anything so had to make it all from scratch. I would never want to go back to those days to be honest. You have such a great attitude and are turning it into an adventure. I'm sure it was all worth it to have Audrey give it a two-thumbs-up!

mountain mama said...

sugar and gluten free? wow, good for y'all!!!! :)