I’m a maple syrup and honey kind of girl. So I need to be convinced when something “new” and trendy hits the market. I also need to be 100% sure that it is 100% natural in order for me to even consider it.
Since Xylitol comes from a wood fiber, I thought I would give it a chance!
Xylitol is… a natural sweetener found in fibrous vegetables and fruits, as well as in several hardwood trees. It’s extracted and purified into a crystalline form to create a substance that looks, bakes, and tastes like regular white sugar. But the similarities end there – xylitol has antimicrobial properties that don’t promote or feed dangerous bacteria and fungi. Plus, it is all natural!
Where it can be used:
Anywhere you use sugar. Replace it cup-for-cup in baking or sweetening.
- Alkalizing and anti-aging
- Slows a steady release of energy
- Inhibits yeast growth
- Increases absorption of B-vitamins and calcium
- Inhibits plaque and dental cavities by up to 80%, it also remineralizes tooth enamel, increases saliva production and protects saliva proteins, and reduces infections in the mouth and nasopharynx
- Natural insulin stabilizer, diabetic-friendly, and has a lower glycemic index than honey (and even lentils!)
- Diminishes sugar and carb cravings
- Prevents osteoporosis, middle ear infections, and maintains hormonal balance
This was news to me!
I had no idea I could use Xyla in anything and everything to replace sugar. I was told it has no after taste like stevia, so I had to put this to the test. I thought I would mix it in to one of my brownie recipes and see how it matched up. To be honest, I have to say that they turned out pretty good. I could definitely tell that they weren’t as sweet. And it’s not that they had an aftertaste, but more that I couldn’t taste the normal sweetness of what I usually use (namely maple syrup). It was definitely interesting pouring something WHITE into my recipe that looks just like sugar, but I can assure you that it’s not even close.
So will I continue to use it?
I think I will experiment with it in other recipes, but I am not ready to make any kind of switch over in my kitchen. I know it is extremely beneficial for those with diabetes and other blood sugar disorders and I would surely recommend it to such an individual. But for me and my regular crowd – I think I am going to stick with my tried, tested and true maple syrup, coconut nectar, coconut sugar and honey!
Chewy Chocolate Banana Brownies
What’s In It?
1 cup oat or spelt flour
½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 ½ tsp baking powder
¼ tsp salt
1 cup xylitol
1 mashed ripe banana
1/3 cup organic coconut oil
½ cup vanilla rice milk
1 ½ tsp vanilla extract
1/3 cup dark chocolate chips
How It’s Made
- Oil an 8×8 baking pan and set aside.
- Measure oat flour into a large bowl, add the cocoa, baking powder, salt and whisk together.
- In a separate bowl, mix together xylitol, banana and oil. Add the rice milk and vanilla extract and blend well.
- Add the wet ingredients to the dry, using a rubber spatula to mix the ingredients until just blended. Stir in the chips.
- Pour the batter into the pan and smooth the top.
- Bake for 35 minutes, or until tester in the center comes out clean. Let cool completely before cutting.
You want to know the secret…it’s coconut. A modern day Pad Thai with pure wholesome ingredients and natural condiments. I would have to say it’s been at at least 6 + years since I have eaten a traditional Pad Thai, loaded with low grade oil, fish/oyster sauce and sugar – those ingredients are long gone from my diet. So the time has come to re-create my own version.
Let’s talk about how Coconut plays a role in my version of a Pad Thai. A new line of favourites have made their way to the organic, raw, veggie market place. That is Coconut Secret’s Amino Acids, Vinegar and Nectar. (You can order them in Toronto HERE!) They are raw low glycemic, gluten free and highly nutritious, oh… and make your meals and recipes thrive with unique flavour. Each one has it’s own versatility and use. Coconut Aminos, can replace traditional soy sauce and even natural soy sauce like tamari. I do love tamari, but it is nice to replace it once in a while. Coconut vinegar can be used for salad dressings and sauces basically anywhere that balsamic, brown rice, apple cider vinegar or any acid would be used. Now the Nectar which has truly become one of my new favourite ingredients is amazing to naturally sweeten desserts, pancakes, sauces, dressings, stirred into yogurt or a smoothie. It is light and has a gooey texture that is slightly addicting. They can all be used individually, but I decided to use them all together in a tangy sweet and savoruy Pad Thai sauce, that is truly like no other! As you may or may not know Coconut it’s recognition as a super ingredient, as it it is loaded with essential nutrients, vitamins and minerals to find out more benefits look here.
So that takes care of the sauce…but the base of my pad was none other than one of my other favourite ingredients, kelp noodles. These can be found at several health food stores or restaurants in your local area. They come in a package and need to be soaked to be enjoyed. I took them one step further and threw them into my wok to soak up flavour and soften even more into my delicious Thai sauce. I had only ever eaten them raw before this, and now, I might just reconsider when and where I use rice noodles over kelp noodles! They are extremely light and easy to digest, they have no calories (not that I care), very little flavour and will adapt to any recipe you choose to use them with. So your options are really limitless.
Then I loaded this dish with a combination of veggies that just seemed to work. Sweet potatoes taste good in anything so those went into the pan. There always has to be some green veggies with my meal – so broccoli and kale it was for this one. I am not big on tofu and use it probably once a month if that, but when I do, it’s got to be sprouted and organic – I take no risks when it comes to Soy and GMO’s. Wildwood has a great brand that I actually enjoy. To be honest, Ryan is the one who loves tofu – so the addition was really for him. I am more of a tempeh fan Then I topped everything off with some home sprouted mung beans, loaded with fiber, enzymes, protein and just bursting with crunch -to liven up each bite!
So there you have it. The secret is out. Now I encourage you to make this and report back to me!
Veggie Pad Thai
2 tbsp coconut vinegar
5 tbsp coconut aminos
4 tbsp coconut nectar
2 tbsp almond butter
3 tbsp grapeseed oil
2 cloves of garlic, minced
2 tbsp ginger, grated
2 cups of yams, cut into thin chunks
1 head of broccoli, cut into florets
1 bunch of kale, chopped
3 scallions, chopped
1/2 block of sprouted tofu, cut into cubes (can also use tempeh)
1/2 cup sprouted mung beans
1 package of kelp noodles, rinsed and soaked in water with 1 tbsp lemon juice or 1 package of brown rice noodles
1. In a small bowl, combine the coconut vinegar, aminos and nectar, almond butter and 1 tablespoon of grapeseed oil. Set aside.
2. In a wok, satuey the tofu, garlic, ginger, scallions and yams in 2 tablespoon grapeseed oil for several minutes, stirring to prevent them from sticking.
3. When yams are soft, stir in the broccoli and allow to soften.
4. Pour the sauce and the kelp noodles into the wok, stir to combine and cover for a few minutes to meld together.
5. Add in the chopped kale and allow to wilt for a few minutes, while still remaining green.
6. Gently stir the noodles into the vegetables and sauce to combine. Remove from heat and serve.
Garnish with mung bean sprouts and chopped scallions.
You can get more delicious knowledge by checking out Marni’s Veggin’ Comfortably e-book, available here: http://www.marniwasserman.com/ebooks/