Correct use of natural sugar “stevia” in the kitchen
Stevia is the healthiest natural sweetener in the world (which has been definitively confirmed by scientific research). Stevia (scientific name Stevia rebaudiana Bertoni, family Asteraceae) originates from South America (Brazil and Paraguay).
Stevia is a perennial bushy plant with a height of 30 to 80 cm. The leaves are oval and spear-shaped, pointed at the top and with a serrated edge. Small white flowers with a purple accent appear from May to July. The flowers are usually removed if the plant is grown for leaf extract production.
Stevia can be grown as a garden plant in warmer regions. It can be grown in pots (in sheltered areas during the winter) in continental climate conditions. In the spring, stevia is brought out into the open where it remains until autumn. The plant prefers warm, humid and sunny conditions. Stevia is suitable for sandy soil.
The use of stevia in cooking
- Every household can grow stevia because of its exceptional sweetening power with few calories and other healthy properties
- Harvested leaves should be placed in a thin layer during the summer to dry on a sieve in a shady and windy place, the leaves should be turned every other day.
- Dried leaves can be stored in tightly closed glass jars. They are stored in the dark in a cool place. Use to sweeten tea and other beverages
- The dried leaves can alternatively be ground into a powder (or coffee grinder). Do not allow the leaves to heat up while they are being chopped. This is how you get a natural powdered sweetener (suitable for cakes, jams, marmalade, sweet drinks, tea, etc.).
- The powder should be stored in glass jars in a dark and cool place.