Chai Chocolate Rounds with Candied Ginger

I just really love chai flavors. It’s probably one of the reasons why Indian cuisine is one of my favorites. And you know what I love more than chai? Chocolate!!!! Combining the two was really a no brainer. So here you are friends, my latest chocolate creation, just in time for Valentines Day. Because if you love yourself or someone else, you surely want whats best, and what is better than home made refined sugar free chocolate? I rarely turn down chocolate, even the higher quality store bought one with sugar in it, but if given the choice, I will always go for a home made nutritionally beneficial option.

These little chocolates are so easy to make. I used silicone cupcake molds, but you could use actual chocolate molds, or even an ice cube tray. Just don’t fill that one up to the top unless you want a really thick chocolate!

If chai isn’t your thing, you can always play around with the flavors! Creativity is welcome here 🙂

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Ingredients:

  • 100 g. of cacao butter
  • 1/8 cup coconut butter
  • 1/2 cup cacao powder
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon powder
  • 1/4 tsp clove powder
  • 1/4 tsp cardamom powder
  • 1/4 tsp coriander powder
  • 1 tsp orange zest
  • dash of himalayan sea salt
  • 2 TBS agave
  • 2-3 TSBP thinly chopped candied ginger (optional, for a pure refined sugar free option) I have made these chocolates with freshly grated ginger and that was tasty also!

Steps:

  • put all ingredients except ginger in a double boiler, or a bowl over a hot pot of water
  • whisk together until all melted and well combined
  • pour in molds, add a few pieces of ginger per mold, and freeze until hard
  • depending on size of molds they can be done in a little as 30 minutes!!!
  • keep in fridge or freezer until ready to eat

 

For some of my other Valentines Inspired recipes click here:

Fudge Balls:

https://anaboreal.wordpress.com/2015/02/20/cherry-cacao-fudge-balls/

Raspberry Ice Cream:

https://anaboreal.wordpress.com/2015/02/14/vegan-raspberry-ice-cream-with-peanut-butter-chocolate/

Pistachio Delight and Nutella Divine:

https://anaboreal.wordpress.com/2015/02/07/pistachio-delight-and-nutella-divine/

Gianduja Chocolates:

https://anaboreal.wordpress.com/2014/12/24/gianduja-chocolate/

 

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Home made Chocolate Chunks (or chips)

I like to use chocolate in a lot of things. And although I do buy dark chocolate chips, sometimes grain sweetened chocolate chips, for baking, I prefer to use my own if I have some. I try to keep some of my home made stuff handy for ice creams, raw desserts, granola bars, smoothies, etc… I like doing this, not only because it is cheaper, but also because it is refined sugar free and I can choose how dark or fruity or nutty, i want the chocolate to be. Here is a very simple recipe that I tweak every now and then depending on what I am going for. IMG_2383

Ingredients:

  • 3 oz or 85 gr of raw cacao butter
  • 2 1/2 oz or 70 gr of raw cacao powder
  • 2 1/2 TBS agave nectar

Steps:

  • In a double boiler melt the cacao butter
  • turn off the heat and add the cacao powder and agave and whisk well
  • pour in a shallow dish with some parchment paper and set in the freezer for about20-30 minutes
  • pull out and cut into desired pieces
  • store in a container in the fridge until ready to use
  • easy right?!

Sneaky Blood Orange Cacao Muffins

Because blood orange cacao muffins wouldn’t be good enough as it is that I had to make them sneaky. How? By adding a large cup of fresh kale to the mix. Seriously, if you didn’t see me baking these, you would have no idea that there was a healthy serving of greens in there. The kids were with me, so they saw, but it didn’t stop them from chowing down once they were out of the oven!

A a kid I did not like fruit in my chocolate. It was a flavor/texture thing. And I did not like nuts in my chocolate either. It was a waste-of-space thing. A big almond in my chocolate bar meant less chocolate. Ummm no thanks. My how times have changed!! I love chocolate so much I will eat it with almost anything. That is why it is so fun for me to come up with all kids of creations. Wether or not I am original in my pairings, it is still a fun process 🙂

I think blood oranges have a natural raspberry flare to them. Somewhat sweet, somewhat tangy. So last minute, once the batter was all ready to go into the muffin tins, I decided to accentuate that flavor by adding whole raspberries to the mix. A total win.

I won’t even lie and tell you that when my son didn’t feel like eating his salad for dinner, I justified not asking him to by saying “He had 3 muffins today, that’s a decent amount of greens.” Ha! Ninja parenting makes my life easier!

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Ingredients:

  • 3 cups flour ( I mixed garbanzo and buckwheat)
  • 1/2 cup to 3/4 cup cacao powder, depending on how chocolatey you like things
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 cup ground flax seeds soaked in 1/2 cup water for 10-20 minutes
  • 1 cup blood orange juice
  • 1 TBS blood orange zest
  • 1/2 coconut oil
  • 1 1/2 TBS apple cider vinegar
  • 1 cup chopped fresh kale
  • 1 cup raspberries, fresh or frozen then thawed

Steps:

  • Preheat oven to 325*F
  • grind flax seeds in coffee grinder if needed and soak in water
  • combine first 4 ingredients in a large bowl
  • combine the rest of the ingredients minus the raspberries, in a blender
  • blend until the kale is well broken down
  • mix wet ingredients with dry ingredients
  • slowly fold in raspberries as to not have them break down too much
  • grease your muffin tins
  • bake for 10-12 minutes for mini muffins or probably around 18-20 minutes for regular size muffins

bRAWnie bites

Let’s face it, February is the month of love….of chocolate. If you are a chocolate lover, chances are you are a brownie fan. I know I am. So coming up with this super delicious, healthy and raw alternative to a classic, was such a fun and happy time for me.  Moist, fluffy, sweet and chocolatey, this little nugget of delight did not last very long in my house. While these are healthy, I still serve them to my family as a special treat. My daughter was delighted to find one in her lunch box 🙂 I always try and find new things to do with my leftover almond pulp as I make so much almond milk. This was a fun recipe to come up with. IMG_1794 Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cups almond meal (left over from making milk, but using ground raw almonds will work too)
  • 1/4 cup psyllium husk
  • 1/4 cup cacao
  • 3 TBS coconut sugar
  • 12 dates
  • 1/8 cup almond milk
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup dried fruit (I mixed goji and mulberries)
  • 1 TBS coconut shreds (for decorating)

Steps:

  • In a food processor combine all the ingredients, except for the dried fruit,until well combined
  • add dried fruit and pulse a few more times

If you do not have a dehydrator, you can make these in the oven: put on a baking tray at 200*F for about 1hour. Test the consistency to see if it’s to your liking, leave in longer if need be. I have never made them that way but since these are good even before going in the dehydrator, I think the only you could really screw these up is by burning them 🙂

  • scoop into balls on a dehydrator mesh screen
  • dehydrate at 105*F for about 6-8 hours or until desired consistency. I like mine firm on the outside and slightly moist on the inside.
  • Dip in some chocolate sauce and top with shredded coconut

Banana Cream Pie with Chocolate Meringue

Need I say more? Creamy, meringue-y, bananas and chocolate. My husband said this was his favorite of all my pies, which says a lot because I have made countless pies over the years!

It was my son’s 1st birthday on the 20th. I almost made another cake that I have been wanting to perfect the recipe, but when thinking about Jolan, and what he really loves, there was no doubt that it needed to involve bananas. So I put my creation hat on and came up with this delicious creamy goodness.

This pie is raw, vegan, refined sugar free, flour free, but definitely not flavor free!! To my knowledge, and under my supervision, my son hasn’t had sugar yet. And barely any dairy. And to celebrate his 1st year on this wonderful planet, I did not want to introduce him to the white addictive substance. I generally choose to celebrate life, with, well life. And that is what raw food is.

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Ingredients for crust:

  • 2 cups raw walnuts
  • 1 cup raw almonds
  • 1 cup dates
  • 1/8 cup coconut oil
  • dash of salt

Steps:

  • put all ingredients in food processor and blend until well combined, but not too much or it will get too sticky and oily. You want it to stick together when pressed down but have the look of clumpy soil when done processing.
  • press in the bottom of pie dish, or a 10inch springform pan.
  • set in the fridge while making the filling

This recipe makes a lot of filling. Too much for just one 9 inch pie. I made a pie AND 6 “cupcakes”.However,  it is perfect for a 10 inch springform pan.

Ingredients for banana filling:

  • 3 cups soaked cashews
  • 3/4 cup young coconut meat
  • 2 large ripe bananas
  • 2 cups almond milk
  • 2tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup irish moss paste
  • 3/4 cups raw agave
  • 1 TBS soy lecithin
  • 1/2 cup melted coconut oil

Steps:

  • blend 1st 7 ingredients in a high speed blender until smooth
  • add the lecithin and coconut oil and blend until well incorporated
  • pour into pan or pie dish.
  • Set in freezer for a couple hours. If you make it in advance, keep in freezer and pull it out at least an hour before serving. Top with Chocolate meringue before serving and any additional treats. I added caramelized bananas 🙂
  • NOTE: this is too much for just one 9 inch pie dish. I made 1 pie and 6 “cupcakes” with all this filling. It is perfect for a 10 inch springform pan.

Ingredients for chocolate meringue:

  • 1/4 cup young coconut meat
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 1/4 cup irish moss paste
  • 1/4 cup soaked cashews
  • 3 TBS agave
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1-2 TBS raw cacao powder
  • dash of salt
  • 1 tsp soy lecithin
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil

Steps:

  • blend first 9 ingredients until creamy
  • add last 2 and blend well
  • store in the fridge until ready to use. Typically let set in the fridge for several hours before using.

Cacao Delight

Smooth, Rich, Creamy, Decadent. Simple and delicious. This “hot coco” recipe hits the sweet spot for me. I was definitely delighted to have made it 🙂 The banana adds a nice thickness to this beverage, but could easily be left out for something more light.

We got our holiday tree today, and after we got done decorating it, I realized we needed a special treat to ring in the festive atmosphere that comes with tree decorating and december in general. Chocolate is so often my go to 😉

It was also snack time so I decided to make it extra decadent and rich in order to enhance flavors as well as nutrition content.

The kids loved it. It always makes me so happy to be able to satisfy their childlike appreciation for sweets while maintaining my own nutritional integrity.

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Ingredients:

  • 3 cups milk (I used almond)
  • 1 ripe banana
  • 2 soft dates( I used Medjool)
  • 2 TBS cacao powder
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 TBS coconut cream, or coconut oil (optional but I had some cream leftover that needed to be used and I am SO happy I added it last minute as it created a really luxurious beverage)

Steps:

  • put everything in blender and blend on high for at least 1 minute
  • by blending it for this long the milk will get warm without it cooking and it will get frothy (I love that word, that word alone makes me want to drink chocolate milk)
  • sprinkle it with cinnamon, or in my case cayenne pepper
  • serve and enjoy!

This made (barely) enough for 2 adults and 2 kids.

Chocolate Dip

I did it again. Chocolate. You sweet sweet temptress. I just cannot seem to escape you. I had leftover baked sweet potatoes. I knew I wanted to make something sweet with them. I put a bunch of stuff in my food processor and what came out was a dense, sweet, chocolatey mixture. This makes for such a fun snack! Delicious on it’s own, but even better when used as a dip. With anything really. I chose apples for todays snack. The kids loved it! Nutritious, delicious, filling. A winner in my book.

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Ingredients:

  • 2 cups baked sweet potato
  • 1/3 cup raw cacao powder
  • 1/4 cup melted coconut oil
  • 1/2 avocado
  • 1/4 cup milk (I used coconut)
  • dash of salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon (optional)
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup

Steps:

  • put everything in food processor and blend until smooth
  • serve with any dippable food (that is SO a word, spellcheck)

Power Cacao Granola

I call this Power Granola because of all the nutrient dense ingredients I used.

Chia seeds, one of the richest plant sources in omega 3’s (that healthy oil in fish that I don’t get because of being a vegetarian, contributes to good cholesterol health) is also very high in calcium. Apparently, by weight, chia seeds have more calcium than whole milk!

Flax seeds, which are apparently higher in antioxidants than blueberries are also very high in omega 3’s as well as lignans. Lignans are a phytonutrient that provide antioxidant benefits as well as fiber like benefits.

Sunflower seeds, very high in essential fatty acids which helps with regulating cholesterol levels are also high in protein (100g of seeds provide 21g of protein). They are incredibly rich sources of many essential minerals such as calcium, iron, magnesium amongst others. These minerals play an important role in bone health and red blood cell production. Who doesn’t want healthy blood and bones?

Raw cacao, which is high in antioxidants (contributes a great deal to our immune system) is also one of the highest whole food sources in magnesium (balances blood pressure, lowers high cholesterol). There are many more benefits to raw cacao that I won’t list here. Not only is it good for us, but is also delicious.

Add to that all the other delicious tasty ingredients and you got yourself a deliciously Powerful breakfast!

Starting your day off with a bowl of this can only allow you to feel energized and ready to take on the day!

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Ingredients:

  • 3 cups sprouted buckwheat (If you don’t have the time or desire to sprout, soaking these over night and giving them a really good rinse, will do)
  • 2 cups small oats
  • 1 cup sunflower seeds
  • 2 cups shredded coconut
  • 3/4 raw cacao powder
  • 1/2 cup chia seeds
  • 1/2 ground flax seeds ( I used a coffee grinder)
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp cinnamon (optional)
  • 3/4 cup maple syrup, or honey or coconut sugar
  • 3/4 cups coconut oil

Steps:

  • mix all ingredients in a large bowl minus the sweetener and coconut oil.
  • once everything is well combined, add the sweetener and stir well
  • add coconut oil and mix until it coats everything
  • spread on a teflex sheet
  • put in dehydrator at 105*F for about 8 hours
  • keep in sealed jars for months!

Note: This recipe makes over 13 cups. I feed a family of 5 and often friends so I usually make big batches of food. Adjust the recipe accordingly for your own needs.

Other note 😉 : If you do not have a dehydrator, you could possibly do this in the oven. I have never done it before because well, I have a dehydrator and I truly love using it, so I am not sure how this will come out. This is what I would do though if I were to try it out in the oven:

Put it on the lowest setting, crack the door open in order to have some air circulating, and put the granola on a baking sheet. Leave it in there for about 30 minutes, check it and if it is still moist, keep checking every 20 minutes or so until it is dry and crisp. I have no idea how long it will take in an oven. It takes close to 12 hours in the dehydrator. If I were to make raw crackers in the oven, therefore cooking them, they would be done in about 45 minutes. If you try the oven method, PLEASE let me know in the comments how it turned out! I would love some insight on this!

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Basic Chocolate Sauce

This is my basic raw chocolate sauce that I use for so many chocolate treats in my house. I build off of this to create all kinds of delightful satisfying temptations. I need to share it with you guys as I will be referring to it quite a bit in this blog. I have used a version of it in my banana ice cream as well as in my raw persimmon pie. So stay on the lookout for more yumminess to come here!!

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As the name indicates, this is a basic, simple healthy chocolate option. Three ingredients and just minutes away from mouth watering bliss (if you are a chocoholic like I am, this is key).

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Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/2 cup  cacao powder
  • dash of salt

Steps:

  • in a double boiler melt all the ingredients (you can do this in a pot on the stove top, just make sure to have it on very low heat and turn off the heat before all the oil is melted, and finish melting by whisking).
  • whisk together until well combined
  • either pour it in a jar with a tight fitting lid (this is my favorite option) or pour in in a bowl
  • if in a jar, shake it vigorously every 5 minutes until it has come to room temperature, the sauce will become thicker.
  • if in a bowl, just whisk it until it has come to room temperature.

This last step is very important as it will allow for all the ingredients to cool while blending together. If you do not do this the oil and honey will separate, creating a very sweet bottom layer and a very oily dark chocolate upper layer when it cools completely. This is especially important when making raw chocolate in the freezer. I have made raw chocolates without blending all the ingredients together and the honey layer was all gooey and stuck to the bottom of the mold while the top was super dark in chocolate flavor. It wasn’t bad at all mind you!! Just not a nice chocolate that I could easily pop out.

This sauce will keep for weeks on the shelf. It will become very thick because of the coconut oil. Just put the container you keep it in, in some hot water to soften it up before using. (Or just eat it out of the jar with a spoon!)

Cacao Rawcoroon

When it comes to my taste buds, I can never go wrong with chocolate, well… except for that one time…. but I learned 😉  

My husband is the same. If I present him with something chocolatey, I know he will devour it happily. So I created this rawcoroon after the lemon one. Because, well I love lemon too. And I was actually inspired to start making rawcoroons when I had an expensive store bought lemon one. So here is my chocolate indulgence for today. 

 

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Ingredients:

  • 2 cups almond flour (made from whole almonds blended down into a flour, not the store bought kind)
  • 1 cup shredded coconut
  • 1/4 raw cacao powder
  • salt
  • 1/8 cup maple syrup
  • 1/8 cup coconut sugar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 TBS coconut oil

Steps:

  • in a large bowl mix first 4 ingredients
  • in a small bowl or blender mix remaining ingredients
  • combine everything until well incorporated
  • don’t let husband come in and eat everything out of the bowl
  • scoop into little balls on the mesh screen of the dehydrator
  • dehydrate for about 8 to 10 hours, depending on what consistency you want and also what size balls you made. I like mine crispy on the outside and moist on the inside. 

Makes about 12 golf size balls.