It’s common knowledge that cakes, puddings and so on are loaded with saturated fats, sugar and salt, all of which can wreak havoc on blood sugar levels and contribute to weight gain. But there are many ways to make satisfying sweet treats that are wholesome too. The secret to making delicious and healthy desserts comes down to two key factors: the ingredients you choose and how you cook them. I like to reduce saturated fats by substituting butter for anti-inflammatory oils such as macadamia or light olive oil. You can easily reduce refined sugars by halving the amount called for, or using natural sweeteners from fruit. Spices such as cinnamon, nutmeg, orange zest and vanilla bean enhance other flavours in much the same way as salt does.
When baking, be adventurous and get out of the habit of using plain or self-raising white flour. Highly refined products such as this can contribute to high insulin levels. Swap white flour for a delicious wholegrain flour such as spelt, quinoa, oats, linseed or buckwheat. My favourite flour for baking is almond meal (ground almonds) – because it so sweet and moist, you don’t need to add much sugar or fat, plus it has the added benefit of being high in protein and gluten-free. I also increase the nutrient profile by adding fruit for extra fibre, vitamins and sweetness.
Today’s class we had a chance to make some Non-bake Chocolate Brownies.
What’s great about it:
Almonds are high in vitamin E, an antioxidant that can help fight off free radicals for a healthy immune system. They are also a great source of potassium, a mineral necessary for nerve transmission and the contraction of all muscles including the heart. Cacao is a super bean! It is loaded with antioxidants and essential micronutrients for health and vitality. It’s a great source of magnesium, which aids calcium absorption, metabolism and protein synthesis.
Next Class: Tuesday 25th November at 2pm: Curry Cooking Class- Creating a delicious healthy curry from scratch!