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Low Carb Holiday Marzipan

Reader Birgit Niedermeier wrote a wonderful piece for us about making low carb marzipan! Marzipan has been used for centuries by pastry chefs all over the world. It can be used in baking and for covering and filling cakes. Marzipan looks fabulous for colorful cake decorations and figurines. Marzipan has to have at least 25% almonds otherwise it is considered almond paste. A thin layer of Marzipan can be used to cover a cake. When colored, it can replace the need for frosting.

Many of the traditional German holiday treats involve marzipan. The possibilities of what you can create with it are endless. Here are some recipes and suggestions to make a wonderful low carb marzipan that will make your holiday special!

  Basic Low Carb Marzipan
  • 2 handfuls of red fragrant rose petals
  • 1 cup of water

Simmer or nuke in the microwave until the rose petals have lost all their color and the water is really red. The water should have reduced to about 1/2 to 3/4 cup. Strain off the leaves and pour into a clean bottle. (Rose water is also a really good facial tonic, by the way!)

  • 2 1/2 to 3 cups fine almond flour
  • 2/3 cup powdered sweetener *
  • 1 tbsp Rose water (optional - see below)**
  • 1/2 tsp almond extract (optional)
  • 1 large egg white (or equivalent of pasteurized liquid egg whites)
  • 2 tbsp soy protein isolate (whey isolate may work here too)

In a bowl or your food processor mix 2 1/2 cups of the almond flour with the sweetener. Add egg white, rose water and almond extract and mix well. You should have a kneadable type of paste/dough. If it's too wet, add additional almond flour. The dough should be soft and pliable, but shouldn't be sticking to your fingers anymore.

Roll into a big sausage-shape and wrap in foil or Saran wrap. Chill for about 2 hours.

When you remove it from the refrigerator, check consistency again. If it is still somewhat sticky, sprinkle 1 tbsp of soy protein isolate on the surface and knead through thoroughly. Don't worry... the isolate doesn't change the taste at all but gives it that extra bit of improvement in consistency. (With regular marzipan you would add powdered sugar until you achieve the required consistency but I didn't want to spend any more carbs on it.)

Now you have marzipan! At his stage you could be making all manner of things already. Roll it into marble sized balls and let it air dry over night and you have "marzipan kugeln" ... marzipan balls that are a really nice treat.

Or you could cut out stars or other shapes you desire and dip them in sugarfree chocolate. (I would let the shapes dry out overnight also to make them easier to handle.) Use a little more soy protein isolate for rolling out, but use very sparingly as your dough shouldn't be very sticky at all at this stage to start with and you don't want to have blobs of isolate on your cut out shapes!

*Use powdered Maltitol, or put granulated Splenda in your coffee grinder to make powdered "sugar" and enough to end up with about 2/3 cup of the powdered stuff. You can use all Splenda but it does make it a bit carby. I used a mix of Splenda, Xylitol and powdered Maltitol.

** Rose water is somewhat optional. It does, however enhance the flavor. You can buy it in herbal stores or make it yourself if you have roses in your garden.

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