Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Sugar-free Vanilla "Sugar"

You probably already know or have heard about Vanilla Sugar. Gourmets use it in their dessert dishes to add a boost of vanilla (and elegance) to their special recipes. It's extremely easy to make in a sugar-free version. I keep it in my cupboard and use it often in my recipes. This is all you do:

Sugar-free Vanilla "Sugar"

1 cup of Splenda granular (not the baking blend)
1 vanilla bean

1. Measure Splenda into a food processor. Cut vanilla bean in half lengthwise and, using your knife, scrape the seeds from the pod and place in food processor.

2. Pulse until vanilla seeds are blended and well distributed throughout the Splenda. Store in an airtight container. For more intense vanilla flavor, place scraped out pod into the mixture during storage. Will keep for 6 months or more at room temperature.

Nutritional Information per teaspoon: 2 calories, 0.5 g carbohydrate

Some ideas for using Vanilla Sugar:
  • Instead of cinnamon toast, make vanilla toast. Spread room temperature butter on whole wheat bread, sprinkle with vanilla sugar and toast until bubbly and bread begins to brown. (Do not place in an upright toaster! Toast bread while flat, such as in a toaster oven or on a baking sheet in oven.)
  • Stir into coffee or tea.
  • Mix with ricotta or cottage cheese and spread on pancakes and top with fresh berries, instead of using syrup. This is a nice brunch item or afternoon snack.
  • Sprinkle on fresh berries, banana or apple slices.
  • Use in sweet recipes to replace some or all of the sugar.
  • Sprinkle on oatmeal, muesli or unsweetened cereal for breakfast.

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