No recipe today…but maybe a little bit of inspiration. :)
(Well…depending on whether you appreciate the taste of liquorice or not that is…personally, I love it!)
The rain poured down today, so we decided to go to a little cottage in the middle of the woods not too far from where we live, that mainly serve and sell tea.
After a very nice tea sitting I was looking around the shop for some Hojicha tea, which they unfortunately did not have, but instead found they also sold raw liquorice and liquorice roots.
Of course I had to get me some!
Raw liquorice is made by boiling the liquorice roots, and then most of the water is evaporated. What you got then is a syrup like substance that can be shaped into canes and dried.
The canes can be cut into drops prior to drying, crushed after drying, or even ground to a powder after drying and then used as a spice.
No additives, no sugar, no nothing(!)…
It’s naturally sweet due to the content of Glycyrrhizin, a substance 30-50 times sweeter than sugar, and is commonly used in medicine/alternative medicine all over the world because of it’s quite-a-few potential health benefits, such as:
• Strong anti-viral effects
• Aid for many stomach/bowel-related issues.
However, excessive consumption could have some negative effects too, such as increased blood pressure and edema.
(So…if you’ve already got high blood pressure, go easy on the liquorice!)
In Europe it’s recommended to not exceed 50 grams (about 1.7oz) of liquorice per day.
(…and I would say you don’t even need to go nowhere near that recommendation! For example, that cane on the picture above is 16 grams…three of those in a day is ridiculously much!, really. Each drop on the picture above is about 0.75 grams, and one drop melting in the mouth lasts a long time…six of those spread out over a day and you would feel like you’ve been eating liquorice all day.
50 grams a day is addictive behavior, seriously!)
Even though the very sweet taste, they’re quite low in carbs.
Looking at the percentage there’s about 26% carbs in raw liquorice.
Looking at grams that means the whole cane in the picture above contains a little over 4 gram carbs, all content together in the black/yellow box is a little less than 3.5 gram carbs, and the content of the black/blue box a little less than 8 grams (about 0.2 grams per drop) carbs!
(So as per my example of six drops during a day, that would give you a carb count of 1.2 gram…)
Compared to candy, raw liquorice is an awesome substitute for a low-carber if/when the sugar cravings grow to big to handle, or you just want a sweet treat.
That being said, I do consider it being LCHF.
Regarding the paleo compliance of raw liquorice I’m not quite sure…
You somewhat process the roots to get the “product” (note: you don’t need to process the roots to consume them, you can just chew away on a root and be happy (that’s what I plan to do with the ones I bought)), but on the other hand there’s nothing stranger to the processing method than to the methods of cooking many other foods really (i.e. just boiling and drying).
When it comes to the plant itself, roots are definitely paleo, but the plant is a legume, and that’s not paleo…
In this case I think I would say the root of the plant is paleo, but the beans/pods are not (given they are eatable at all, I have no idea…).
– I’ll consider both raw liquorice and liquorice root being paleo until it’s proven otherwise.
Please comment…what do you think?
All in all, if you do appreciate the liquorice flavor I really recommend you trying some raw liquorice or liquorice root (in moderation of course)!
Over and out.