In 2018, sisters Leslie Lang and Molly Hutchinson found themselves simultaneously starting a keto lifestyle. Amazed at the coincidence, they wondered, was this the time to dust off their gourmet-to-go dreams?
Launched in 2018 by founder and lead culinarian Lang, Alter Eat-o: Foods for Keto began in a ghost kitchen in Milton, Ont., with Lang working on recipes and friend Joanne Jamieson and Hutchinson coming in one day a week.
What started with a signature gluten free keto hamburger bun, a knock out keto lasagna and spot on keto Nanaimo bars has since grown to a dedicated commercial kitchen of their own in Guelph, Ont., with over to 150 sweets, savouries, breads, chocolates, soups, calzone/hot pockets and a keto pizza available in Ontario on offer by order online for pick up or delivery in their dedicated van nicknamed Olaf, the sisters said in a news release.
From the start, both knew they wanted to perfect a keto pizza. “We grew up with a tradition where once a year our dad stepped into the kitchen on a wintry Sunday and made from-scratch pizza dough and sauce that simmered all day as we drooled!” Lang says. “He’d make amazing doughs like peppercorn lard, cornmeal and whole wheat. He was so creative!”
One of his signature pizzas is now Alter Eat-o’s signature Guelph pizza. “Our dad’s name is Gary and our shop is on Garibaldi Street so we knew we had to make this pizza and we’ve
called it The Garybaldi,” Hutchinson says. “It’s a killer combo of caramelized onion, house-made sausage, and a 3-cheese blend. And it’s a white pizza! No sauce.”
Alter-Eato has more than 15 pizza combos currently on the menu with more launching all the time. “We have a long list,” says Lang of their future pizza plans. “And with our keto calzones and keto stromboli we’ve used our keto pizza dough to the max! In fact, we have non-keto folks coming in for our pizzas – they’re that good.”
The dough recipe, years in development and tweaking, is dairy free (a rarity in the keto pizza category) but does include vital wheat gluten, the protein of wheat, to achieve the right rise and chew.
Available as blank shells for home chefs and other food-service businesses and restaurants to dress as desired or as par-baked frozen topped pizzas that bake up in minutes at home, Alter Eat-o’s pizza products are flying out the door as word spreads of how good keto can be thanks to their efforts at “ketofying” everything you’ve always loved to eat. And at two net carbs per slice, the keto macros on them are spot on.
On the bakery side, Lang has a full line of keto brioche breads in flavours like Caramelized Onion & Swiss, Jalapeño Cheddar, Pesto Mozzarella, and the original classic Brioche (available as buns and a sliced loaf) at a fraction of the carbohydrates.
Perhaps their proudest product in the sweet baked goods category is the triple makeover of now-decommissioned Tim Hortons classics Walnut Crunch, Cherry Crunch and Lang’s own creation, the Maple Walnut Crunch doughnuts. “These are my and Molly’s favourite Tims doughnuts from back in the day! We both adored the Walnut Crunch’s crispy top with sweet glaze but the Maple Walnut Crunch we created ourselves might be the best one yet,” she says.
They sell well in Guelph, ship across Ontario and are available at gourmet food retail locations and health food stores.
“It has to taste great,” Lang says. “Full stop. We love to eat and want to share great healthy keto tastes far and wide. This way of eating is beneficial to so many lifestyle needs. It originated as a support for children with epilepsy and is now embraced by folks with celiac disease, diabetes, may have benefits for cancer and overall makes your body feel strong and your mind clear.”
Alter Eat-o: Foods for Keto is open for pickup Wednesday through Saturday.
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