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SWEETEN WITHOUT SUGAR

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

This is the season of lights, yes, but also of a lot of sweets. However, if you have been advised by your doctor to stay off the sugary treats, there’s still hope and you can enjoy the festivities. The Mumbai Mix Team brings you sugar-free sweet recipes to make your celebrations a little sweeter

Almost everyone looks forward to Diwali. It is the festival of lights and of joyous celebration. You get to spend time with your family, you buy new clothes, and of course, we love it because of the sweets. However, if you have diabetes or have been put off sugary treats by your physician, this may not be such a happy season. But you can still enjoy the festivities if you make small changes to your diet. Here are recipes for sugar-free sweets that you can try.


TIL LADOO

This recipe will allow you to savour the traditional til ladoo on Diwali while adding a sugar-free twist to the sugary dish.

Ingredients
1 cup sesame seeds (til), ¼ cup almonds, ¼ cup walnuts, 1½ cup chopped dates, 1 cup dry grated coconut and cardamom powder

Method

  • Chop the dates into fine pieces.
  • Dry-roast the sesame for a minute or two and keep it aside to cool.
  • Dry-roast the nuts for a very short time, not letting them turn black. Set them aside to cool.
  • Once cooled, coarsely grind the nuts and sesame seeds.
  • Add grated coconut to a pan on low to medium heat and stir well.
  • Mix the nuts and sesame seeds with the coconut and add the finely chopped dates.
  • Roll this mixture into small balls and sprinkle some coconut powder on top before serving.


CARROT CAKE

While cakes are not usually associated with Diwali, here’s a simple recipe that you can whip up for a quick bite.

Ingredients
2 cups flour, 2 tsp cinnamon, 2 tsp baking soda, ¼ tsp salt and 1 tsp baking powder
For carrot mixture: 2 cups grated carrots, 1 cup crushed pineapple (drained), ½ cup crushed nuts, ½ cup sesame seeds and 1½ cup grated coconut
For egg mixture: 3 eggs, ½ cup oil and ½ can frozen apple juice concentrate

Method

  • Separately, mix all the ingredients for the egg mixture and the carrot mixture well.
  • Mix the two, and add all other ingredients. Mix well.
  • Put this in a baking tin and bake at 350°C for an hour and 15 minutes.
  • Remove and allow to cool before serving.


DATE AND NUT KHEER

Kheer is typically made with rice, milk and sugar, with a healthy helping of pistas, almonds and cashew nuts.

Ingredients
10 seedless red dates, 3½ cups full fat milk, ¼ cup walnuts, ¼ cup almonds (peeled and split), a handful of raisins, ½ tsp cardamom powder, 1 tbsp ghee and a few strands of saffron

Method

  • Soak the dates, almonds and walnuts in a half cup of warm milk for 15 minutes. Keep a few almonds aside.
  • Put this mixture in a blender and grind it to form a paste.
  • In a saucepan, add a tablespoon of ghee and set it on medium heat. Add few raisins and almonds and fry it for few seconds. Remove and keep it aside.
  • In the saucepan, boil 3 cups of milk on high heat. When it comes to a boil, lower the heat and add a few saffron strands. Mix and leave it to simmer for 5 minutes.
  • Take it off the heat, add the fried nuts and raisins, as well as the paste. Add cardamom powder. Mix well and serve.

FROM EXPERT CHEFS
So that you can take your Diwali desserts a step further, here are two recipes from chefs in the city.


SUGAR AND FAT-FREE MANGO CHEESECAKE

By Sundeep Mehrolia, corporate executive chef at Old Wild West

Ingredients
60ml fresh mango puree, 45g low-fat Philadelphia cheese, 30g low-fat yoghurt, 4 Graham cracker biscuits, 3 tbsp melted butter, 2 tbsp fresh whipped cream, 60ml mango coulee, ½ tsp mint leaves chiffonade and 1 tbsp fresh diced mangoes

Method

  • In a stand mixer with a paddle, add soft Philadelphia cheese and low-fat yoghurt and mix slowly till both are combined.
  • Slowly add fresh mango puree to the mixture and let it come together. Set it aside.
  • In a grinder, grind the Graham crackers to a fine powder. Then slowly add warm melted butter to make the biscuit base.
  • Spread the biscuit mix evenly into a cake mould. Pour in the cheesecake mix and let it set for two to three hours.
  • Garnish the cake by covering it in mango coulis, whipped cream and parmesan toasties, and garnish with mint sprigs.


SUGAR-FREE STRAWBERRY AND BALSAMIC ICE CREAM

By Nilesh Mandadkar, pastry chef at The Chocolate Spoon Company

Ingredients
500ml milk, 150ml cream, 8 packets sugar substitute, 20g corn flour, 2 gelatine sheets, 500g strawberries and 100ml Balsamic reduction

Method

  • Wash the fresh strawberries, cut the tops off, put them in a food processor and blitz to create a purée.
  • Combine milk and cream in a heavy pan and bring the temperature up to 60°C.
  • Add the sugar substitute, corn flour and gelatine sheets and cook. Bring the temperature to 80°C.
  • Take the mixture off the heat and let it cool. Once cool, add the strawberry puree to the mixture and stir.
  • Put the mixture into an ice-cream machine and churn it well for approximately 30 to 40 minutes. (You can also use other methods to make an ice cream out of the mixture.)
  • Add Balsamic reduction to the mixture while churning.
  • Place it in the freezer for at least 40 minutes before serving.
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