Light and refreshing indulgences are perfect for spring and summer. Even times are now different, and all kinds of gatherings postponed, nothing prevents from celebrating just with your family or with a few loved ones. This Keto Sparkling Wine and Strawberry Jelly will make any celebration special — no matter if you are alone, in a virtual gathering, or with a crowd around you. Remember this light and festive gelatin dessert also on Mother’s Day that is around the corner.
At the end of the post, you’ll find a non-alcoholic version and tips for other exciting variations.
How to prepare the Keto Sparkling Wine and Strawberry Jelly
Did you know that gelatin is actually health food? Yes, it is! For example, your guts, skin, and joints benefit from gelatin. Traditional diets have been relatively high in gelatin. Modern Western diets are lacking gelatin — but luckily, it’s relatively easy to include it in your diet — and fun, too, when you prepare this delicious dessert!
Even hydrolyzed gelatin is easier to absorb for the body, it’s not a good fit with gelatin desserts because it doesn’t thicken. It’s the whole protein gelatin that is suitable for gelatin desserts, so be sure to choose that also for this dessert.
It’s a good idea to use cold strawberries since the gelatin sets quicker when the berries are chilled. Moreover, I strongly encourage to get organic strawberries, as conventionally grown strawberries are known to be high in residual pesticides.
When choosing the sparkling wine, take as dry wine as you can find, preferably extra dry. Like that, the carb count gets as low as it can get.
When you add the hot gelatin mixture to the wine and stevia mixture, be sure to whisk all the time vigorously — and add the hot gelatin mixture gradually, very slowly. If you add it too fast or if you don’t mix properly while adding, you’ll end up with a lumpy result that doesn’t set properly (read my experiments in the next chapter and how I learned this in a hard way!).
But let’s take a look at how to prepare this beautiful and festive keto dessert:
Pour 1/4 cup (60 ml) dry sparkling wine into a heat-proof cup or mug.
Sprinkle 2 teaspoons gelatin powder on top. Let bloom for 5-10 minutes.
While the gelatin is blooming, divide 4 sliced strawberries into 4 serving glasses (yes, correct, 1 strawberry per glass). Set aside.
Heat the sparkling wine and gelatin mixture in a microwave oven, until the gelatin is dissolved. In my 800-Watt oven, this takes 30 seconds. Be careful: the mixture spills out very quickly! Naturally, you can heat the mixture in a small saucepan on a stove all the time mixing, until dissolved.
Pour 1 1/4 cups (about 290 ml) dry sparkling wine into a bowl.
Add 10-15 drops (or to taste) vanilla stevia. Notice that there is less sweetness in the ready jelly than in the liquid, so the sweetness reduces while the jelly is setting. Well, it doesn’t really disappear, but for some reason, the ready jelly is less sweet than the liquid.
Add gradually the hot wine and gelatin mixture while vigorously mixing all the time.
Pour a little bit of the wine mixture in the serving glasses over the strawberries so that the strawberries are just covered with the wine mixture. Place in the fridge for 30 minutes, or until the jelly is set. Keep the leftover wine and gelatin mixture at room temperature so that it doesn’t set.
Preparing the dessert like this, i.e., in two stages, ensures that the strawberries stay at the bottom of the serving glasses rather than float on top. Naturally, if you don’t mind floating strawberries, by all means, prepare the dessert just by pouring all the wine and gelatin mixture on the strawberries and let set in the fridge. It’s naturally also easier and quicker that way.
Now, after approximately half an hour, the gelatin is set. The gelatin sets quicker in a shallow glass, like this one here.
Divide the rest of the wine and gelatin mixture into the serving glasses. Place for 4 hours in the fridge, or until completely set.
Decorate, for example, with whipped cream, crushed freeze-dried strawberries, and edible flowers.
How I came up with this festive keto dessert recipe
I have a long list of recipes to develop and post here on my blog. However, this recipe wasn’t on my list. Nope, this was sort of ad hoc idea I got during the week when thinking of easy and simple recipes to post here on my blog.
Since Mother’s Day is just around the corner and the May Day as well, I pondered over festive yet easy dessert recipes. I actually don’t remember how I came up with the idea of sparkling wine jelly — maybe because I had some leftover alcohol-free sparkling wine that had to be used. However, plain sparkling wine jelly didn’t sound very appetizing, but if I added some berries, it would both look and taste fabulous, too, I pondered.
Strawberries taste and look gorgeous, and they are a great addition to sparkling wine, so I decided to add strawberries to the dessert.
Since the wine wasn’t sweet, I decided to add some vanilla stevia to add both sweetness and an elegant hint of vanilla. For a second, I was also thinking of powdered erythritol, but I was afraid it leaves a sandy feeling to the mouth while eating. Or, it makes the transparent jelly opaque — which, in turn, didn’t sound very appealing, and you couldn’t see the beautiful strawberries properly either in a cloudy jelly.
Therefore, I thought stevia is the best sweetener for this dessert — especially vanilla stevia that lends both sweetness as well as a hint of vanilla that I thought would be a perfect match with the sparkling wine and strawberries.
I calculated the amounts of ingredients for my first experiment. I wanted to make just half a batch. If something goes wrong, I don’t have to waste that much food, I thought.
I took two serving glasses and sliced a strawberry into each glass. Then, I poured two tablespoons sparkling wine into a small cup and sprinkled 1/2 teaspoon gelatin powder on top. I let the gelatin bloom for some 5 minutes, after which I heated the mixture in the microwave oven until the gelatin had dissolved properly.
While the gelatin was blooming, I had mixed together some sparkling wine and vanilla stevia. Now, I poured the hot wine and gelatin mixture into the cold wine and stevia mixture.
I poured the wine and gelatin mixture on the strawberries into the serving glasses so that the berries were just covered with the mixture. Then, I placed the glasses in the fridge for the gelatin to set. I wanted the strawberries to stay at the bottom of the serving glasses and thought that letting them set first with a small amount of gelatin was a sure way to keep them at the bottom. If I had poured all the wine and gelatin mixture on the strawberries, they would have floated on top.
Initially, I had thought 15 minutes would be enough for the gelatin to set and keep the strawberries at the bottom of the serving glasses. However, when I checked the glasses in the fridge after 15 minutes, nothing had happened. The wine and gelatin mixture was still very fluid. I didn’t despair but thought I continue refrigerating the gelatin. Maybe after 30 minutes, they are finally set?
Well, an hour passed, and the mixture wasn’t set yet. I poured in the rest of the gelatin mixture that I had kept at room temperature to keep it liquid and prevent it from setting. As expected, the strawberries were floating on top — just what I didn’t want.
Anyway, I decided to place the desserts in the fridge overnight to let them set completely. Who knows if they really need that many hours to set completely?
The next day, I took one of my experiments. To my big surprise, it was still runny! And I could see the reason as well: the gelatin hadn’t distributed evenly to the wine but formed small lumps. These lumps were hard and well-set. But the wine around them was very liquid.
Now what? How can I get the consistency of the jelly homogeneous and not lumpy? I noticed I hadn’t mixed the wine and stevia mixture properly while adding the hot gelatin mixture to it. I was just stirring it with a spoon. And that was a cardinal mistake! Of course, always when using gelatin, you should add the hot gelatin mixture gradually, all the time vigorously whisking. That guarantees the even distribution, the homogeneous consistency — and eventually proper setting.
My next experiment was otherwise similar, except now I doubled the amount of gelatin powder and used 1 full teaspoon instead of 1/2 teaspoon. I also whisked the wine and stevia mixture vigorously while adding the hot gelatin very slowly.
This time, the gelatin set quickly and nicely over the strawberries in the first stage of preparation. The jelly took only 15 minutes to set in the fridge! I poured in the rest of the gelatin mixture and placed the serving glasses in the fridge to set for a few hours.
Now, the result was just perfect: the dessert was beautifully set, homogeneous, and the strawberries looked gorgeous at the bottom of the serving glasses. I got the idea to decorate the servings with whipped cream and edible flowers (that I just had to buy from the store as they looked so adorable!). As an icing on the cake (well, sort of…) I still sprinkled some crushed freeze-dried strawberries on top. The desserts looked gorgeous, and the taste was divine — what else can you wish for a perfect keto dessert?
Here’s the recipe for you to enjoy:
|Per serving if 4 servings in total
How to get some variation to the recipe
For a non-alcoholic version, you can use fresh lemon or lime juice diluted with water. Or, use simply non-alcoholic sparkling wine — like I did here in this recipe. Usually, I like regular, alcoholic sparkling wine, but lately, I’ve avoided alcohol completely just because I’ve wanted to maximize my well-being and good feeling. The thing is that even one glass of sparkling wine — or any alcoholic drink — makes me feel lethargic after a while. Alcohol is one of the best muscle relaxants, but I don’t want to compromise my good overall feeling just because of relaxed muscles!
Anyway, if you use non-alcoholic sparkling wine, make sure to check the carb amount and ensure there is no added sugar. Many alcohol-free wines — especially sparkling wines — are real sugar bombs!
A Bellini jelly is an exciting variation: swap the strawberries to peaches. Yep, I know, peaches are fruits, and people think fruits are not allowed on a keto diet. However, it’s good to notice that peaches have less net carbs than, for example, blueberries that are often used on a keto diet. Besides, you don’t need to use much peach: a couple of slices are enough to lend flavor and texture to the dessert. I recommend using peach slices rather than peach purée — that the traditional Bellini cocktail uses — because peach slices look and taste better in this dessert.
On the other hand, you can reduce carbs further if you use berries that are low in carbs, like raspberries or cranberries.
This recipe makes just 4 servings, so feel free to double or triple it for a bigger crowd. If you plan to serve other desserts at the same time — for example, at a party — you can reduce the serving size and prepare this jelly in schnapps glasses.
Instead of preparing the jelly in serving glasses, feel free to prepare it in a large bowl. You can remove the jelly from the bowl and serve it on a plate, decorated with whipped cream, edible flowers, and fresh berries. For easy removal, dip the bottom of the bowl briefly in hot water. Turn over onto the serving plate and knock gently on the bowl to release the jelly.
This week, I’ve been working with some nutrition therapy clients, analyzing food diaries, and solving issues why the weight doesn’t drop even the diet looks just right. Well, I think we found a solution: too much fat. Yes, even on a keto diet, you can eat too much fat – especially if your goal is to lose weight. Your body consumes much more eagerly the eaten fat than starts using the body fat for energy. The body always takes the easiest route in everything!
Moreover, I have had some language technology assignments again, mainly for the Swedish and Danish languages. For Swedish, I’m currently developing letter-to-sound rules, which means I program a script that produces the pronunciation from the Swedish text you’ll feed to the script. I’ve done this kind of work for numerous languages, and actually, I’ve done that since 2004 when I was working for Nokia (yep, the cell phone company), where we did voice recognition and speech synthesis to mobile phones. It’s challenging but sort of fun.
We also celebrated May Day (or International Workers’ Day) on Friday. Often, I make keto donuts based on this recipe, but this time I somehow wasn’t in the mood – or let’s face the fact: I had too much other work to do. However, we ate white asparagus with ham, eggs, and melted butter. I also made cream of asparagus soup. White asparagus is the favorite food of my German husband. The area where he comes from is well-known from superb-quality white asparagus, and people there consume a lot of this delicacy in the spring — during the short time when asparagus is on the season.
I also made some keto “Nutella” experiments. We are going to sell those under our Ketokamu brand, and now we should find the best tasting variations that we would bring to the market.
And here are some more experiments:
My son has totally fallen in love with some American keto cereal. The thing is that nobody delivers those to Finland, so I decided to develop my own keto cereal recipe. The first experiment you’ll see on the upper left, and the second experiment on the right, in the front. I used pea protein in the first experiment – that made them taste dull. For my second experiment, I used whey protein instead. You’ll see how different the result is just by changing the protein! Actually, the consistency of the first experiment is like cereal, but the consistency of the second experiment is like bun (or actually quite exactly like Finnish ‘pulla’). Whenever I need to make keto pulla, I’ll definitely use this recipe!
The other experiments are with cheese. In the upper right corner, there is a sweet experiment (it failed because I used too little almond flour, so it turned out too wet). But, the second, savory experiment on the left in the front in the photo is superb! I wanted to make crackers, but the consistency turned out like flatbread. The taste is just divine! Also, my family totally fell in love with that flatbread. Stay tuned, I will post the recipe here on my blog in the near future.
On Monday, we’ll have a small gathering (naturally with only a few people under these circumstances) related to our Ketokamu activities, a famous Finnish chef, and wild herbs. I hope to be able to post some fascinating pictures next week here on my blog.
Oh yes. Guess what? We got snow! Well, the snow stayed just a few hours, but boy did it feel Christmassy for a while! What a way to start May…