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Sunday, March 15, 2015

Toasted Tidbits Chocolate Chip Cookies

Toasting makes a huge difference in the flavor of nuts and coconut. These cookies are wonderful! A step above the standard chocolate chip cookie--wonderful with the addition of toasted coconut and toasted slivered almonds. That little extra browning adds so much to the flavor. If you have a sweet tooth, you really gotta try these tidbits. The recipe makes 4 dozen, so make a batch and freeze extras for special treats over the next month or so. You really must do this or you will find yourself munching on the whole batch the day you bake. So easy to overdo! Just ask my sneaky husband who keeps stealing them.

To make these precious morsels, today I made my own chocolate chips. Yes, it is spring break and I have time for that this week. You can buy sugarfree chips if you want. I am cheap and never want to pay for the good ones. I am fearful of maltitol in the more readily available sugar free chips. That stuff does a number on my tummy (and lower parts). I stay away. These chips-- it is hard to stay away--but because they are so delicious. I suggest for the best flavor to use a sweetener blend. I like erythritol/stevia blends the most. This one is made with Natvia. Serve is also a good choice. But use what appeals to you.

I came up with this recipe for dark chocolate chips a few years ago. The original recipe is in Low Carbing Among Friends Volume 2 (pg 260) back when my sensitive tummy son still lived at home. Sad that he is now grown and gone. I have to admit, I don't make chips often just for us. The squeeze model technique from that recipe works great, but this time I have a new way to make them that is even easier.

 A few months back I saw a great idea about making chocolate chips in a silicone potholder. The small honeycomb shaped holes make great small chips. All uniform size and shape. In between a mini chip and a standard chip. I couldn't find any of that shape locally. Amazon carried a set, but cheapo me wouldn't buy a whole set with two I don't need. Then, the other day, my nearby Walmart had a similar potholder/trivet. Just 5 bucks. Woohoo!

I would love to credit the right person who first arrived at this genius idea, but I can't seem to track it down. Found a similar idea at Pure and Simple Recipes, but the idea is not original to her either. If you are out there, please let me know!

Many recipes for home made chocolate chips call for cocoa butter. I don't keep that around too much. It is pricey and time consuming to make. I wanted something simpler. My old recipe needed to be kept cold. Not a bad idea with these either, but they hold together well enough in baked goods. To make the chips a little firmer, I left out one tablespoon of heavy cream. The chocolate is not exactly liquidThe recipe worked well. So if you want to make your own sugarfree chocolate chips, let's get started!

Sugarfree Chocolate Chips

2 oz unsweetened chocolate
2 tbsp coconut oil
1/4 tsp vanilla
1/4 cup powdered erythritol/stevia blend (I used Natvia)
1 tbsp heavy cream

Melt chocolate and coconut oil in the microwave or on the stovetop over low heat. When liquified, stir in vanilla and powdered sweetener. (If your sweetener blend is granulated, powder it in a blender before adding to chocolate) Stir in cream. Mixture will thicken with this step. Return to heat if needed, but be careful not to scorch.

Spoon approximately half the chocolate onto the silicon potholder. Use a soft spatula to press the chocolate into each cavity. When filled, place into the freezer for 15 minutes or longer. To remove the chips, flex the silicon all directions. I needed to fold row by row and use my finger to pop the chips from the mold.

Makes about 1 cup chips. 
 2 tbsp serving is  72 calories 1 net g carb

This cookie recipe does not need the full batch of chips. So what else will these wonderful little chips be delightful in? Stay tuned, and I will post more ideas. I have a couple in mind already. Now to the cookies! The toasting really ups the flavors of the coconut and almonds. That is also why I went with a caramel flavoring rather than vanilla--browned flavor there too. We Marshalls are known for liking the edges of the brownies and crisper rather than softer cookies. The toasting takes us there without needing to actually burn the cookies.

Toasted Tidbits Chocolate Chip Cookies

3/4 cup finely shredded unsweetened coconut
1/4 cup almond slivers, chopped
1 1/4 cup almond flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup erythritol/stevia blend sweetener (Natvia)
1/4 cup butter, softened
1/4 cup nonfat Greek yogurt
1/2 tsp caramel flavoring
1 egg
3/4 cup sugarfree chocolate chips

In a dry skillet, toast the coconut until just golden. Watch carefully. Place coconut in a large bowl. Add almond slivers to the skillet. Toast over low heat until golden. Remove and let cool.

In the bowl with the coconut, add almond flour, baking powder and salt. Stir to combine. In a smaller bowl, cream the sweetener and butter. (by hand or with a mixer) When blended, stir in yogurt, caramel flavoring and egg. Add the wet ingredients to the dry bowl. Stir to combine.

Chop the cooled almonds into smaller pieces. Add almonds and chilled chocolate chips to the cookie dough. Stir until evenly distributed. Chill dough while oven preheats to 325 degrees. Using a cookie scoop or tablespoon, place cookies on a parchment lined cookie sheet. They should not spread. Bake for 13-14 minutes. Let cool 2 minutes before removing from sheet, as they will be fragile when hot.

Makes 48 cookies. 2 cookies per serving
1 serving:   73 calories  1 net g carb

The husband loves these. They taste a bit like macaroons. Just a couple of hints: Make sure your coconut is very finely shredded and dry. My label from Sprouts calls them coconut threads. If you don't like almonds, feel free to add pecans or walnuts.

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Ginny said...

These look wonderful Lisa! What a great way to make the chips! I'll have to get me one of those for sure and do this. Thanks for a great recipe!

pliccb said...

Oh wow! Such a cool idea for making chocolate chips! Had no idea this was even possible, thanks so much for sharing.

Anonymous said...

Just made the Toasted Tidbits Chocolate Chip cookies. My daughter and I just tried them still slightly warm and they are delicious! She just asked if she could have another one! Thank you for sharing your recipes!