Chocolate Chocolate Chip Cherry Stevia Ice Cream

Yes! It was wild, delicious, ridiculous, and tasty!

My Valentine's Delight. Here's the recipe.

2 eggs
2 cups cream
3/4 cup milk
3 squares baking chocolate
1/3 cup cocoa powder (non sweet)
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp Stevia (I prefer Kal)
1 cup chopped cherries
3 more squares of chocolate
1/4 tsp Stevia for that
*Melt the chocolate on the stove or in the microwave.
*Add the cocoa powder to it- it seems awkward, just trust me.
*Add the milk SLOWLY to this mix.
*Then beat the eggs in another bowl.
*Add the cream to the eggs, whip that...
*Add the chocolate to the egg and cream mix
*Mix in the Stevia and vanilla...

Put in the ice cream maker and wait.

While you are waiting:
Chop up the cherries into small pieces.
When the ice cream is getting firm and rising to the lip of the maker (I use the Cuisinart maker with the gel cylindar, you can get it at Linen's) begin to make your 'chocolate chips'.
Basically, melt the chocolate and add stevia; do this far enough in advance that it cools a bit but is still liquid when you add it. It takes finesse and is an art, sorry- that's the best I can do to describe it.
So when the ice cream rises to the lip, add in the cherries and the chocolate; I had help and it made it go better- one person was sprinkling in cherries while I spooned in the chocolate, allowing the maker to swirl it away. It breaks up into flakes and chunks when it cools. I love the texture.

Voila! Valentine's Delight!

Stevia Chocolate Covered Cherries

It was snowing like mad out, on Valentine's Day, preventing my lover from driving out to visit me. Rather than pine we laughed about it and postponed the date, and I set about to make it a fine evening all snowed in.

There was a bag of cherries in the freezer, slated for the ice cream we were to make. I had a divine inspiration...

I took them out of the freezer and thawed about 10 of them on a plate in the microwave. Not till they were hot, but just juicy.
In my muffin tin, I put little mini muffin liners (I found some with snowflakes at Michael's... soooo cute!).
Then I melted three or so squares of baking chocolate, and added Stevia until it tasted right- about 1/4 tsp. Each liner got a little puddle of chocolate, and I let it firm up a bit; then each puddle got a cherry set down gently on top. I heated the chocolate a bit again to get it flowing and slowly and carefully covered each cherry with chocolate.

I put them on the porch to chill (a giant freezer! Use your freezer if it isn't arctic where you are) and then fed them to my poor housemate who was also stuck inside with no date...


Sugar Holiday #1: Vanquished

Having successfully glided past Valentine's Day, I sit to write the tale. The year according to Hallmark, the grocery store and the drug store is broken up into holidays. Each of which has its own special color scheme and style of gifts and candies to ply the loved ones with.

It begins with Valentine's Day. A farce of a holiday with a good idea at heart- expressing love- which originally marked the death of Saint Valentine. In college, I would wear black to demonstrate my feelings about the holiday. These days I like red and wear it if I feel like it; but still abhor the sugar-laden free for all that it engenders. Not to mention the incredible amount of stress on lovers to do the most romantic thing possible... but this blog isn't for that rant. That is found in other venues.

No, the rant lies in the drug store trap. Chocolate, my inherent weakness, bandied about like foliage- wrapped in luscious shiny red packages... cordial cherries, chocolate cremes... Yes, it makes me feel a little like the Mayor in Chocolat- I want to roll in it until I pass out.

Anyway. I got through Valentine's day without the merest desire to glance down the red sparkly aisle. Whew!

My lover A was also respectful of this and came over so we could make ice cream together. I made chocolate cherry chocolate chip... all with stevia... and my very own chocolate covered cherries. Yes! They were wonderful! I did not feel the least bit disappointed; truth be told, I have come to prefer my own brand of sweets. I like the dark rich mouthfeel of my chocolate, and the lightness of my ice cream. I will post the cherry recipe here after this blog. It was decadent.

I noticed the easter eggs are already out... that will mark one year to my return to the sugar free life. I will celebrate, I hope you will too.


Victory for Protein Shakes!

I have just made the MOST exquisite discovery...
Spirutein has finally jumped on board and made an unsweetened protein powder mix!

Also- there is a whey version for us non vegans, by Jay Robb, which is made with....
drum roll please...
Stevia! yes!!!!

My life keeps getting better and better.

Now I know that there is some argument as to the absorption of these kinds of proteins, in terms of soy vs whey vs animal meat protein. Since I am vegetarian, my choices are a bit limited. Most of the time I do ok, but lately I've been working out more at the gym and I believe part of my problem may be a lack of good quality protein. Eggs, cottage cheese, any cheese for that matter, and a little milk in my tea aren't enough; I eat tofu, but I am wary of relying on it too much because no one is absolutely certain (in terms of studies done) if it is a useable protein. I like tempeh sometimes, and eat a lot of nut butters.
But protein shakes! That is a beatiful and easy way to get protein if you are rushing, as I will be, and unable to eat properly. It doesn't replace a well prepared meal, of course, but it is at least something.

And usually a something off limits to me.

Spirutein usually has a formula that while it is high in protein and vitamins, and even some minerals, they use fructose to sweeten the mix. Fructose, you may know, is fruit sugar concentrate. In the end it amounts to being sucrose (table sugar) anyway, because it too is refined and processed and has no nutritional value. Of course, the shake itself has fiber (psyllium and so on) so one could argue that it is along the lines of eating a fruit... but I feel, if I am going to be a purist, I am going to be a purist.
There is a container of chocolate Spirutein still sitting in my cabinet, resting where it has for over a year and a half now. Probably no good. I'll drink it because it was expensive... but it's still fructose.

The new one I bought though, the Jay Robb one, has 24 g protein and not as many vitamins- but excitingly to me is made with Stevia, yay! So I bought the vanilla one, and so far have reconstituted it with milk- plain is fine, I added cocoa and that was even better. Then this morning I added it to my breakfast grains to see what would happen, and it was rather tasty! So that ups my protein intake in the morning without burdening me with crashy sugars.

Now... I will have to investigate perhaps an unflavored/unsweetened protein powder to just add to other things that have flavor. I know a body doesn't need too much protein, but one that is working out needs to be taken care of somewhat.

This is very exciting news for us non sugar folks, though! The fact that the world is beginning to catch on (we don't want this stuff!) is very encouraging to me. Years ago you would have had no options. Hooray!