All about Keto Diet

SUGAR FREE CHERRY JAM WITH KUZU

It’s a great, healthy snack and a much better alternative to fat bombs and other calorie laden treats. Imagine a slice or two of my Amazing Protein Bread , or a High Fibre Bun, or other keto bread of your choice, slathered with organic butter from pasture cows, and a dollop of my cherry jam… (drooling allowed…)

Pure instant delight from a sweet fix that won’t make you feel guilty afterwards.

But what the heck is kuzu, and why did I choose it, when I could have opted for gelatine, agar agar, or chia seeds, and end up with fewer carbs? Aaah, well…

All About Kuzu Starch

I recently purchased some Umeboshi paste to experiment with my home-made vegan cheese (don’t ask…). Inside the Amazon delivery box was an unexpected – and free – pack of kuzu that the company thoughtfully decided to gift me. I didn’t have a clue what it was, and it almost went in the bin when I read the word starch on the packaging.

 

However. Curiosity got the better of me and I decided to look it up. Turns out that kuzu (also known as kudzu) is another super-food for the insanely health conscious like myself. Not a new super-food, mind, but one that’s been used in Japanese cuisine and medicine for centuries.

Kuzu starch comes from the ginormous root of Pueraria Lobata, a relentless, fast-growing and invasive weed that can be a costly nuissance if left uncontained. But the plant also has an amazing array of nutritional and medicinal properties. We all know about the importance of gastro-intestinal health and increased alkalinity for systemic well-being. So it’s no surpise that kuzu’s ability to reduce inflammation and acidity has made this Japanese healing wonder so palatable in the West.

After reading about this amazing starch, I just had to try it out. And with my Italian cherry tree in full fructiferous swing, what better way to test it than to make a sugar free cherry jam with kuzu!

So there you go, my dear friends. Kuzu may be very high in carbohydrates, but a little  goes a long way. It is flavourless and creates a clear gel once heated. So it doesn’t affect the look or flavour of your end-product. And it doesn’t impart an odd residual texture.

Would you rather stick to a more common gelling ingredient? You can certainly replace the kuzu with gelatine, agar-agar or chia seeds.

As for the Italian cherries, they contain 9g net carbs (per 100g), so they’re in fact a better keto option than blueberries (11.5g). But mulberries (8g), strawberries (6g), blackberries (5g) and raspberries (5g) contain fewer net carbs.

The bottom line is that one serving (10g/0.5 TBSP) of Sugar Free Cherry Jam with Kuzu contains just 1.3g net carbs. And you shouldn’t lose sleep over lower-carb alternatives just for the sake of a tiny little difference.

This jam is healthy. It tastes great. It’s easy to create. Keto life is sweet indeed!

  1. cut the flesh of the cherries away from the seeds and stalks and place them in a small, heavy-base saucepan with lemon juice and icing ‘sugar’.
  2. bring to the boil, then simmer on medium until mushy and reduced (about 20 mins – depending on ripeness of the fruit and size of cut pieces).
  3. crush and dilute kuzu in 1 TBSP water, add it to the cherry compote and simmer for another 5 minutes.
  4. leave to cool for 10 mins, then purée to your desired consistency using an immersion (stick) blender.
  5. add vanilla paste, check and adjust sweetness to taste.
  6. once completely cooled, transfer to a sealable jar and keep refrigerated for up to 2 weeks.