Baking with Dextrose

So I went very enthusiastically into this low fructose diet, bought all the cookbooks and everything. Of course all the cookbooks are basically dessert cookbooks, as those are the main foods that would use a lot of sugar. Of course, I looked through them and was very eager to try out all the recipes, but I didn’t get a chance right away. I mean, especially I’m going on a low sugar diet, I’m not going to use it as an excuse to suddenly start eating more cakes and sweets!

So the first recipe I tried was the cinnamon tea cake. It was really lovely, one of those cakes that has sour cream in it, and the dominant flavor was the sour cream. The dextrose tastes just like regular sugar to me, so I might in the future even reduce the amount. In fact I think Gillespie is a little heavy on the dextrose. They claim it isn’t as sweet as regular sugar, so they use more.

It seems to me that if table sugar is 50% glucose and 50% fructose, that if you are using something that is all glucose, you should actually (from a health perspective) half the amount. I know they say the fructose is the bad stuff, but it still doesn’t seem like it would be a good idea to swamp your body with extraordinary amounts of pure glucose on a regular basis.

Actually, my body doesn’t seem to react well to it. I was a bit hungry, and I didn’t find these desserts so exceptionally filling as Gillespie claims either. I ate two slices. Not two exceptionally large slices, but still two slices.  Very shortly, perhaps within 15 minutes, I started feeling extremely sleepy and then rather crappy. I looked it up online. The best answer I could find is: orexin. Orexin is apparently a hormone that controls wakefulness, and it is shut off by high amounts of glucose in the blood, which suggests that perhaps that I am a bit insulin resistant. My sister thought it suggested more that I was giving my body more pure glucose than it was expecting.

Anyway, I was reluctant at first to eat more cake even though it tasted good because I didn’t want to feel bad, but after that I stuck to eating small slivers, and I was just fine.

The next recipes I tried were the rhubarb apple pie, and the rhubarb crumble ice cream. These were an absolutely perfect dessert. I usually choose chocolate chocolate chocolate everything, but give me more pies like that and I might change my mind. I didn’t follow the recipe exactly. I halved the dextrose. I read the recipe and it told me to use 10 Granny Smith apples. I thought Granny Smith is very tart and you are pairing it with rhubarb? Then definitely you will have to use more dextrose. I chose to make a mixed apple rhubarb pie, which means that I just went down the bins at the local orchard and took one of each apple. In fact there were more varieties available, but I didn’t make it to all the bins. I was also skeptical about the 10 apples. That seemed like a lot for just one pie, so I only used 8, but I still had a lot of filling left. Apples must be really small in Australia. My reasoning with halving all the sugar in everything is that my family happens to like tart things like rhubarb and lemons to still taste tart. There are so many people who put so much sugar in their lemonade that it no longer tastes tart at all.

The desserts still tasted perfectly sweet to my guests and family, and I’m the only one doing this low sugar thing, so that tells you these recipes used way too much dextrose to begin with. I halved the amount of dextrose and no one could tell it wasn’t regular pie and ice cream (mind you of course you can make perfectly good sugar-free apple pie anyway).



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