Thursday, 17 December 2015

Sugar Free

The best way to lower sugar intake is to prepare your own food from scratch. Here are some toothsome treats to get you started

Raw raspberry and nut tarts (pictured above)

Calories per serving: 418
Makes: 6
Preparation time: 20 minutes, plus soaking and chilling

175g blanched almonds
175g cashew nuts
juice and grated rind of 1 large lemon
5 tbsp water
4 tsp maple syrup
125g pitted dates
150g raspberries
mint leaves, to decorate

Place the almonds in a bowl, pour over enough water to cover and leave to soak for at least 2 hours, or preferably overnight.

Put the cashews, lemon rind and juice, measured water and 2 teaspoons of maple syrup in a food processor or blender and blend together. Transfer to a small bowl, cover and chill.

Drain the almonds, then put in a clean food processor with the dates and blend to a stiff paste, adding a little water if necessary.

Take a generous tablespoon of the mixture and roll into a ball, then push the ball into a mini tart pan, pressing to line the edges. Repeat with the remaining mixture to line 6 mini tart tins. Chill for 20 minutes.

Remove the tart cases from the tins by running a knife around the edges. Spoon some of the cashew filling into each tart, then top with the raspberries. Drizzle over the remaining maple syrup and serve decorated with mint leaves.

Banana rice pudding

Calories per serving: 162
Serves: 4
Preparation time: 5 minutes
Cooking time: about 2 hours


Butter, for greasing
50g dried banana, broken into small pieces
50g pudding rice
750ml milk
Large pinch of freshly grated nutmeg

Grease a 900ml ovenproof dish lightly with butter and place the banana pieces and pudding rice in the dish.

Heat the milk in a small saucepan until it reaches boiling point, then pour over the bananas and rice and stir to mix. Sprinkle with the grated nutmeg.

Bake in a preheated oven, 150C/300F/ gas mark 2, for 1¾–2 hours until the rice is tender and most of the milk has been absorbed, stirring once halfway through cooking.

Fruit and nut slices

Calories per slice: 99
Makes: 16
Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 20 minutes



Butter, for greasing
1 large carrot, peeled and chopped
1 dessert apple, quartered and cored 
½ tsp ground cinnamon
½ tsp ground nutmeg
225g cooked brown rice
2 eggs
90ml water
115g rice flour 
55g raisins
55g hazelnuts, chopped
1 tbsp sesame seeds

Grease a 30 x 20 cm baking tin and line with nonstick baking paper.

Place the carrot, apple, spices, rice, eggs and water in a food processor or blender and blend until quite smooth. Add the rice flour and blend again, then add the raisins and nuts and process for 10 seconds until just chopped. Transfer the mixture to the prepared tin, sprinkle with the sesame seeds and mark into 16 slices.

Bake in a preheated oven, 200C/400F/gas mark 6, for 20 minutes until lightly golden.

Leave to cool in the tin, then remove the lining paper and break into slices.

Store in an airtight container and eat within 3 to 4 days.

200 Light Sugar-Free Recipes by Joy Skipper is published by Hamlyn, priced £4.99

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