Tuesday, January 02, 2018

**RECIPE** Heavenly Cloud Bread

In the past 5 weeks, I have lost just a little over 9 pounds. I wasn't really trying. I just didn't feel good, but when I went to see the fam in Arizona, I got more exercise than normal. I'm paying for that now, but I want to keep up the weight loss. My plan? Lots of water and a lot less carbs.

Bread is probably the hardest thing to give up - or even slow down on! Also, snacks. I remembered hearing about cloud bread when I first learned about the Keto diet. What I didn't know is how easy it is to make and how freaking delicious it can be. I say can be because you have to play with the recipe a bit.

Here's the basic recipe I gathered from several different sources (including this one):

2 Eggs - yolks and whites separated
2 Tbl (or 1oz) Cream cheese - softened (and cooled) so it's blendable
1/4 tsp Baking powder

I made my first batch and it was good. Instead of individual clouds, I did a cake-style batch and sliced it afterward. I used it to sandwich my burger patty. This is it turned out:

Like I said, it was just okay. That's because it was before I had a better batch. The bread came out a little eggy tasting and soft. I should have baked it longer than the 12 minutes. I was too worried I would burn it.

So. Time to give it another try, right?

This is how I have modified the recipe (and tripled it) so that it is slap-yo-mama delicious:

Cream cheese
Baking powder
Vanilla Extract (just a 1/4 tsp)
Sweetener (I used a full Tbls of table sugar this time)

The extract and sweetener made all the difference between "This is good and I can use it every now and then" to "This is amazing and I can give up bread and cookies ".

Beautiful. Notice how clean the pan is. That's because the batter didn't stick to it. I use a Wilton Perfect Results pan because it's cheap and sturdy. This bread was firmer and had a much better taste. I'm sure that the sugar helped with the browning and texture.

Now, there are a couple of things I learned that I'll pass on:

  • If you don't have parchment paper, use a metal baking sheet (lightly oiled)
  • Make sure to whip the egg whites to very stiff peaks (use metal or glass bowl for this)
  • For bread, bake about 15 minutes on 300. For cookie/snack, bake an additional 10 minutes on 200. Check often so the batter doesn't burn. 
  • You may need to rotate the pan once during baking so that batter cooks evenly. 
  • Let the bread cool completely before removing from the pan. I waited 20 minutes.
This is why I said to use a metal pan if you don't have parchment paper:

Yeah. Look at that. Just a  hot funky mess. ~sigh~

Notice how the batter didn't even cook the same. The bread came out so thin and fragile that all I could use it for was snacking. Also, you can see that it didn't brown as well as the bread that was done in the metal pan.

Left = Metal pan perfection
Right = Whatever the hell...

The biggest thing I love about the modified recipe is that I can make smaller pieces, brown the bread darker, then broil for a moment to get something that will make substitutes for cookies. If I need to, I can always check out these other recipes for cookies and treats:

Obviously, you can get creative and do a lot with the basic cloud bread recipe. For now, I am happy enough with the batch I made.