Spring! The world is blooming and life gallops on. We have so much going on right now that I have not had much time for blog posts or recipes.
In addition to the normal spring activities with school, soccer, baseball, piano, friends…we also added four backyard chickens to our brood! They are about 8 weeks old now and looking like little hens. In a few months we will have the freshest of the fresh eggs for keto meals.
In other big busy news–we are moving to a new house! I have been trolling for a house that will give us more space, including a bigger kitchen, and get us on the right side of the busy street we cross daily on our bikes. We also chose a neighborhood with an elementary school that offers full-day kindergarten with a dual-language Spanish immersion program. Nora adores language and will be in heaven there, in addition to the benefits of learning a language when young. We are excited about our move, but it’s adding to an already busy spring.
And in keto-news, Nora’s big news story was intended to get the word out about the keto-diet for other families in the area and it worked! A nearby family contacted us because their little guy was getting progressively worse while on 2 drugs and they had been thinking about diet therapy. After talking with them he really took a turn for the worse and they were able to get in to Doernbecher Pediatric Neurology (the best, where Nora goes) for treatment and started the diet. We feel their suffering while watching their little guy struggle and trying to get the help that they need, and we are thrilled to be able to help them get on the right path. We delivered some keto-treats and shared our support last weekend and he is doing better already. In June we will meet with the keto-team at Doernbecher to official start a support group for families. All good work to keep us busy.
On to Nora’s latest favorite recipe! We’ve had these for months now, and it’s finally time to share. These are also adapted from The Joy of Gluten-free, Sugar-free Baking cookbook, where they are called Chocolate Pecan Cookies. I left some pecans in the recipe, but substituted hazelnuts for most of it because Bob’s Red Mill makes a hazelnut flour but not a pecan flour, and hazelnuts have a little lower carbs per gram. Nora loves them and we hope other keto-kids love them too.
We started out serving them simply with enough cream cut with water to make “keto-milk.” They hold together well enough for dipping.
On the same note, we also served them as chocolate cereal for awhile, crunched up with “keto-milk” of cream and water. Last time I was down the cereal aisle, chocolate cereal in still in fashion, although I won’t buy it for Anders!
Next we started serving them as a large snack of 2 cookies with whipped cream in the middle. It’s either like a big Oreo, or an ice cream sandwich if you prep it then put it in the freezer for awhile. Very satisfying. This would make a great snack to send to school for a special treat when there is a class birthday or some other event.
Then one day Nora needed a smaller snack so I make a little food art with whipped cream and a tower of strawberries. That was a hit! Nora took this to a friend’s birthday party because I didn’t have the time to make cupcakes. The cookies keep in the refrigerator for a week or more, so making a batch will give you the base for several good snacks.
The cookies are also fairly fast and easy. It helps to have some pecans pre-ground, but it’s a small amount to put in the food processor or coffee grinder, which is my preferred way to grind small amounts of nut or seed flour when needed.
Only 0.8 g carb per cookie, and 2.56:1 ratio! Nora gets up to 3.5:1 ratio with 2 cookies, 12 g whipped cream for 178 calorie snack. For the strawberry stack, 1 cookie, 12 g whipped cream and 10 g fresh strawberries for a 114 calorie snack, 3.5:1 ratio.
Chocolate Hazelnut Cookies
(makes 24 cookies at 14 g each)
10 g Bob’s Red Mill Golden Flaxseed Meal
100 g Bob’s Red Mill Hazelnut Meal/Flour
50 g Bob’s Red Mill Almond Meal/Flour
20 g Rapunzel Organic Cocoa Powder
5 g Baking powder
3 g Salt
20 g Pecans, roughly ground
58 g Egg
50 g European-style Butter, melted
11 g Pure vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350° F (177° C).
Combine flaxmeal, hazelnut meal, almond meal, cocoa powder, baking powder, salt and pecans. Here, I added a packet of Nora’s Cytra-K for sweetness. Add a no-carb dry sweetener of your choice here.
In a large bowl, whisk egg, melted butter, vanilla, and a liquid no-carb sweetener of your choice if desired.
Add the dry mixture to the wet and stir well until a thick, sticky batter forms.
Weigh out 14 grams of dough per cookie. You can roll them in your hands to make a ball then flatten into rounds, as they will not spread when cooking. Place on a prepared silicone baking sheet or parchment paper lined baking sheet.
Bake for a total of 12-15 minutes, rotating halfway through cooking. Transfer to wire rack and cool at least 15 minutes.
Love you website. My daughter is on the keto diet also, we will be going on two yrs next month 🙂 seizure free for 16 month. I love seeing new foods to try for her. I would love to make her the hazelnut cookies, could you tell me how many they make so i could break it down into her rato? thanks so much
does nora like coconut. i have a great coconut bar snack two of them. one is with fruit and cottage cheese, cream cheese, and coconut, and the other is like a almond joy bar 🙂
Hi Jennifer–Congratulations on your daughter’s success! It’s so wonderful.
Thanks for pointing out that I forgot to mention how many cookies are in a batch! Sorry! The whole recipe makes 24 cookies at 14 g of dough each, so the nutritional information that I posted is for 1 cookie. Then I serve 1 or 2 at a time.
Do you use stevia at all? If not why ? I am just starting and need to make a birthday treat. I have planned to use stevia…but you do not seem to use it.
I do use a little stevia. We were wary when we started the diet because when breakthrough seizures happened, we were looking for a reason and stevia was on our suspect list. We reduced our use of it for a long time, but I do add some liquid stevia to some things.
From a taste perspective, I just don’t like stevia much. I think it has a bitter edge, especially if you use more than a tiny bit. My preference is to sweeten with foods as much as possible, like putting raspberries or coconut milk into a recipe. Nora also takes a supplement, Cytra-K, which is packaged with saccharine so I use that as a sweetener too. I would rather not give her saccharine, but I don’t have any choice over that pharmaceutical concoction so I might as well use it to our advantage when possible.
Thanks, since I don’t have all of these ingredients on hand I plan on making this with soy protein , almond meal, ground up macadamia, eggs to thicken…but since the stevia comment I may add coconut cream to thicken it . I have been thrilled with results of this diet. We are not seizure free ( she has constant activity in her brain, so no big ones just constant blinking out ) but we have lessened the amount after 2 weeks and my cooking for her is just getting better.
The sweeteners have been a tricky one though. Could you balance out with a teaspoon of maple suyrup od or honey….( I am thinking of a hot chocolate or choclate “cake ” type food for parties and ski trips.
Jen–I’m happy to hear that the diet is helping your daughter. It takes time to get into the groove and find out what works.
I would not use honey or syrup. Those are pure carbs (pure sugars) and are going to totally throw off the ratio. Keep in mind that your daughter’s sense of what is “sweet” will change with time on the diet and not tasting sweet things. You might taste them think they are not sweet enough, but try to adjust your expectations. Look for flavor, not sweetness. You will see that I use a lot of vanilla and cinnamon for flavor. I personally don’t love these cookies, but Nora does! And when you top them with whipped cream and a few raspberries, you have a combo of taste and natural sweetness. And you can certainly use stevia if you daughter tolerates it and likes it.
If you haven’t found it yet, look for the ketocook.com blog. They do great things–really got me started! One of the parents that contributes to that blog uses a lot of alternative sweeteners, including a no-carb imitation maple syrup (Walden Farms brand, I think, but you should double check).
Thanks for all of the great recipe ideas. My daughter is on the MAD until further notice, but it looks like she will have to go on the keto diet, as she is still having seizures, so I am trying out some of the recipes. I feel the same way you do about artificial sweeteners. I substituted “Amazing Grass chocolate” for the cocoa, and it worked pretty well – not sweet like we tend to think a cookie should be, but like you said, her idea of sweet has adjusted.
I didn’t know where to go so I will ask you… I have been amazing things in the kitchen with this keto diet, can make bread, pancakes, and now I found Paleo tortilla…which have one main ingredient which I suspect is out….arrowroot. Reading the label I know it it is out and I haven’t run the numbers to see how balance it is…what do you know about for this diet. I will run the numbers for this diet and see… I just thought maybe you have had experience with it.
Sorry, I don’t have any experience with arrowroot. We do not follow a paleo diet, but many paleo diet recipes tend to work well for the ketogenic diet to treat epilepsy, as do gluten-free and low sugar recipes (as this one).