The natural power of whole food sweeteners

The Natural Power of whole food sweeteners

How to make a Zero added Sugar Dessert

There are many ways in which you can avoid adding sugar to your Dessert.

Depending on the Dessert you are creating try:

  1. Fresh fruit
  2. Dates

We love using dates in many of your Dessert to replace sugar. here we are going to explore how to use dates and Apple instead of sugar to create a no added sugar Dessert.

Sugar gives many property as ingredient in a Dessert, so when you cut it from your recipe you need to adjust it, simply replacing sugar with dates or fruit won’t work.

To understand how to better replace sugar in a recipe you need to know what are the properties sugar brings in your Dessert:

  • Swetness: any kind of sugar bring sweetness to your creation.
  • Color: when baking a dessert containing sugar browning occur after reacing certain temperatures as result of caramelisation.
  • Flavor: for the Maillard reaction, chemical reaction between amino acids and reducing sugars,  browned food has its distinctive flavor.
  • texture: sugar gives consistency and viscosity to the dessert. Sugar is able to absorb water ( hygroscopic), this keep moisture in your baked good.
  • Gluten Formation: Sugar molecules encourage tenderness. Sugar hinders gluten.
  • Shelf life: sugars are natural preservatives. Sugar ,binding water into solution, is reducing the microorganism grow (as water is essential for their grow) 
  • Leavening: in some baked goods fermentation of sugar cause the dough to rise (example the Italian Panettone) and is essential to have a light and airy result.

It is essential then to consider in your own recipe which function is the sugar sustaining and find how to adjust the other ingredients to make it work. Remember like always in Baking practice makes perfect. 

Let’s start talking about fruit as a sugar replacer in a recipe. You need to consider the following when using fruit instead of sugar. Every fruit has different properties, but broadly speaking common characteristics:

  1. Water content or moisture
  2. Level of sweetness: every fruit has a different level of sweetness. You need to choose the right combination to your other ingredients.
  3. Taste once cooked or baked fruit may have a different taste that you want to consider to balance your creation.
  4. Acidity: you need to consider the acidity of the fruit you are using as it will interreact in the leavening process (in both cases chemical leavening used or not). If a fruit is acid it will activate your Baking powder or baking soda as soon as you add it to your batter or your mixture, tiny air bubble will start to form.
In the following video we show you how we made this dessert with no added sugar using Apple and Dates as Whole food sweeteners.  have a look to inspire your next creation or keep reading to know more

Preparing zero added sugar walnut cream and apple cake considering the tips above

Our walnut cream has only 6 natural ingredients and you can adjust the proportion of each base on the use you need it for. We went for a filling and decorating cream so our is creamy but dense to hold the cake layers.

  1. Vegan butter 100gr
  2. Vegan milk 150ml
  3. Walnuts 100gr
  4. Dates 100gr
  5. pinch of salt
  6. Teaspoon of lemon juice
In this recipe any varieties of dates will work, but we find really interesting the flavor combination given by the Medjool dates when using in a cream as in this case.
If you are creating instead a base , for a cheesecake or a tart, you may better use a drier variety of dates to give sweetness and stability at the same time.
To create the cream, using a food processor, blend all the ingredient until they become as smooth as desired. Start adding the milk in the suggested quantity and ,only once the other ingredients are completely blended, add more if needed to avoid having a runny cream.
You can substitute the walnuts with any dry fruit making the right adjustment and have as many sugar free whole food cream as you can think of.

Apple as a Whole food sweetener

In the example shown in the video we created an Apple cake using apple as replacement for sugar. To be able to do this we;

  • Blend the apple and measure their weight
  • Consider that approximately 84% of their weight is given by water, so you need to cut this weight from your wet ingredients amount (water or milk in your recipe)
  • Apple are quite acidic with a Ph range between 3.0 and 4.5 (depending of the variety you choose from), so we cut on other acidic elements in the recipe. for example if vinegar is one of them you need to consider reducing it or eliminating it from your recipe to keep it balance in flavor and make your batter raising while baking.
  • If your dessert is going in the oven to bake, consider that the sweetness you taste before baking will be slightly reduced after baking.
  • You want to have everything else ready (oven at temperature, dry ingredients sifted and mixed, baking pan greased) before mixing in the wet ingredients, or you will loose some of the leavening power and your cake will not rise as much.

We hope we have inspired your Baking creativity and you will now feel more confident trying to substitute sugar with apple or dates in your recipes. As always in Baking practice makes perfect and now you are more equipped for success.

Let’s change the world today one dessert at the time.

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