The Low Carb Luxury Online Magazine 



JANUARY 10, 2003     PAGE FIVE      
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                                Questions & Answers

In this issue, we'll be covering several food and cooking questions since the bulk of our latest queries have been food-related. Remember, you can send your questions to us at questions@lowcarbluxury.com. Due to the bulk of mail we receive, not all questions will be answered here.


                We are living in a world today where lemonade is made from artificial flavors
                                                          and furniture polish is made from real lemons.


I have recently downloaded a few recipes that mention a step called "emulsify". What the heck does that mean? I've never been a cook, and doing low carb is making a cook out of me whether I like it or not. Help!

Thanks,
Jon Turner
       


To emulsify means to combine two liquids that normally do not combine easily, such as oil and vinegar or oil and water. This is done by slowly adding one ingredient to another (sometimes drop-by-drop) while whisking rapidly. This will disperse and suspend one liquid throughout the other. Emulsified mixtures are usually thick and satiny in texture. Two great examples are mayonnaise and hollandaise sauce.

Mayonnaise is a mixture of oil and vinegar or lemon juice that is emulsified by the addition of egg yolk, which contains the emulsifier lecithin. emulsify ingredients

The two liquids will soon separate unless a third ingredient is added — this is called a liaison or emulsifier, which stabilizes the mixture.

Foods that contain emulsifiers include both egg white and yolk, gelatin, and mustard.

Here are some helpful tips:
  • Room temperature ingredients emulsify better.
  • Fresh eggs are better for a stable emulsion; old eggs lose their ability to emulsify
  • 1 large egg can emulsify 175 mL (3/4 cup) of oil
Now, go forth and emulsify.




Can you tell me what 5-spice powder is and if it contains sugar? A restaurant I love tells me one of my favorite dishes is spiced with that only, and I don't know if that means I'm getting sugar and carbs from it.

Best Wishes,
Marlene
       


Five Spice Powder Five Spice Powder is a seasoning which has traditionally been used in oriental dishes, but is now becoming a little more "mainstream" and is working its way into many American and Indian dishes. It is usually a mixture of fennel (or ginger), cinnamon, cloves, star anise, and szechwan peppercorns (also called anise pepper.)

While a lot of groceries carry it (and please check the label for the ingredients in your brand), it can almost always be found in specialty and oriental stores.




I saw some ingredient called "ghee" in several recipes (including some of yours.) It usually says "or butter" so I am assuming it's a fat of some sort? Can you tell me what it is, and if I can make it myself?

Thank you,
Dot
       


Ghee is used in Eastern cooking, especially Indian cooking, on a daily basis. The Western counterpart is clarified butter — but true ghee is cooked more slowly and has a stronger flavor. Ghee gives food a wonderful buttery taste and, better than butter, it doesn't burn as easily and doesn't turn rancid as quickly as whole butter.

Ghee The smoking point of ghee tends to be higher than most vegetable oils. A little ghee can often take the place of a larger amount of oil for frying food and it works well in wok cooking where a high heat is necessary for stir-frying. A teaspoon of ghee in a small pan easily cooks a couple of cloves of minced garlic without turning acrid.

To make your own ghee (the authentic way):
Use 2 lbs of real butter. Place the butter blocks whole into a medium non-stick pan. Melt at a very low heat. When completely melted, raise heat very slightly. Ensure it does not smoke or burn, but don't stir. Leave to cook about one hour. (When I try this on my stove I need to turn it to the absolute minimum setting, or it will turn brown. Watch it carefully.) The impurities will sink to the bottom and float on the top. Carefully skim any off the top with a slotted spoon, but don't touch the bottom.

Turn off the heat and allow the ghee to cool a little. Then strain it through paper towels or muslin into an airtight jar. When it cools, it solidifies, although it is quite soft. It should be a bright pale lemon color and smell a bit like toffee. If it has burned, it will be darker and smell different — if it isn't too burned, it can still be used, but the key is: don't let it burn!

For a quick (but not as perfect or delicious) way to make ghee, do it in the microwave:
Take an amount of butter according to your needs (usually no more than 1/4 pound or 1 stick) and put it into a microwaveable cup. Microwave on high until liquified and a white foamy froth has formed on top. Microwaves vary greatly in strength — this could take two to five minutes, but check frequently. Then, as carefully as possible, skim the white froth (milk solids) off the top with a spoon. The resulting hopefully clear yellow liquid is ghee. You can also strain this through a paper towel and coffee filter, but that can get messy.






Aunt Paula's Hot Flax Cereal Aunt Paula's Hot Flax Cereal:
Imagine starting the day with a full, hot, healthy breakfast to warm you from the inside out - with only 3g of effective carbohydrates! From The Low Carb Chef's Aunt Paula's line of products, we are happy to offer this great new product - Aunt Paula's Hot Flax Cereal. The first in a series of four cereals to be introduced, Golden Cinnamon Apple flavor is simply too good to miss! This great new addition is located in either the Breakfast Area or in The Low Carb Chef Section.

Belgian Waffles:
Start your mornings off right with one of the newest products introduced for the New Year from The Low Carb Chef — Belgian Waffles! Available in both Original Vanilla and covered in Sugar Free Chocolate, you will not find a better tasting True Belgian Waffle anywhere! These fantastic waffles are imported from Belgium and are created without sugar so that they are perfect for Low Carb Dieters! Whether you eat these as a stand-alone treat with coffee, or as a breakfast item with Walden Farms Pancake Syrup, you are in for a true treat!

Perlege Belgian Chocolates
Perlege Belgian Chocolates:
For those of you who are already familiar with the fantastic quality of Perlege Belgian Chocolates, here is a new treat that just arrived from Belgium. Imagine the excellent quality of Perlege Belgium Chocolates, filled with some of your favorite "creamy mousse" type fillings! There is no better filled chocolate bar on the low carb market in my opinion! These bars have ZERO EFFECTIVE CARBS and are sweetened with Maltitol making them suitable for diabetics and the carb conscious!

Available in Vanilla, Pistachio, Praline-Croquant (Hazelnut), Raspberries, Praline-Coffee, and Orange, these bars are priced like many of the "plain chocolate" bars but the quality is far superior!

Sugar Free Pizelle Coffee Waffles:
If you have ever sat in one of those fancy coffee shops enjoying your morning coffee and watched silently as those around you enjoyed dipping the crisp Pizelle coffee waffles into their coffee, now you can dip with the best of them!

The Low Carb Chef now has Sugar Free Pizelle Coffee Waffles available in a package of 18 coffee waffles! These crisp coffee/cookie waffles are indistinguishable from their high carb counterparts ? with one major exception ? THEY ARE LOW CARB AND WON?T THROW YOU OFF OF YOUR DIET! Each Pizelle has a NET IMPACT CARB COUNT OF ONLY 2g!

Sign up as a registered user at www.LowCarbDieters.com and with your first order, immediately begin earning points redeemable for $ off of your purchases!

Only at The Low Carb Dieter’s Page:
Designed with the PRACTICAL low carb dieter in mind!

       

 
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