I am experimenting with some sugar substitutes and using less all purpose flour in my baking. Splenda has some recipes to use a a basis for making your own alterations. Instead of using Splenda, I used a blue agave sweetener, available at Costco in San Francisco.
There are a few tricks with blue agave sweetener:
1. Use less (because it is 25% sweeter than sugar)
2. It’s additional liquid (reduce other liquids by 30%)
3. Bake longer and at lower temperature (reduce temperature by about 25 degrees F)
Here is the recipe from Splenda and how I changed it in italics:
¼ cup SPLENDA® No Calorie Sweetener, Granulated (I used only 1/8 cup blue agave since I like things less sweet)
1¼ cups graham cracker or vanilla wafer crumbs
⅓ cup light butter, melted
¼ cup toasted sliced almonds, finely ground (I used about 1/3 cup almond meal, available at Trader Joe’s)
12 ounces reduced fat cream cheese (I used one 8-ounce package)
½ cup SPLENDA® No Calorie Sweetener, Granulated (I used 1/4 cup blue agave)
2 large eggs
¼ cup reduced fat sour cream (I used FAGE Greek yogurt since I didn’t have sour cream)
2½ teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon almond extract (excluded)
¼ cup toasted, sliced almonds (I used slivered almonds)
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2. Mix crust ingredients together in a mixing bowl. Mix well. Press into prepared 8×8 pan. Bake 10-12 minutes or until firm. (It took about 20 minutes to brown.)Mix cream cheese and SPLENDA® Granulated Sweetener (substitute blue agave here) together until smooth. Add eggs, one at a time, scraping the sides of the bowl, and mixing well after each addition. Add sour cream (substitute Greek yogurt here), vanilla and almond extracts; mix well. Pour over prepared crust.
4. Bake in preheated oven for 40 to 47 minutes, or until firm.
5. Top with toasted almonds.
Since graham crackers are actually very high in sugar, if I was to make the crust again, I would just use almond meal for the entire recipe. I think it does need the extra cream cheese so would use the entire 12 ounces (but I only had one 8 ounce package on hand…). The taste was pretty good though, I don’t think you can tell that I didn’t use cane sugar and the toasted almonds on top were quite a nice addition even though I didn’t use almond extract in the cream cheese portion.