Sunday, 31 August 2014

Coconut rough clusters with pepitas seeds

Looking down into the small palm of my hand, opening the golden foil with the ruby red writing with coconut roughs written across the shinny disk, was such a treat as a young child. My earliest memory was that they cost about 15c. It was one of those things I choose as a child when I was given 20c or 50c to spend in a milk bar. Even as a kid I loved the taste of toasted coconut with chocolate, I think it's another one of those perfect food marriages. 

For something different and to entertain my adult palate, I invented these about 15 years ago. I was making chocolates for Christmas gifts, using a few chocolate moulds I had. Once all my moulds were full of chocolate, I thought, what can I do with the remaining melted chocolate? I didn't want to waste this precious food. As is my way, I began to experiment. I added the ingredients below in the recipe (and maybe some black pepper?).

 I think pepita's are wonderful with chocolate. They have a great crunch. They like sunflower seeds are very good source of anti-oxidant vitamin E; Vitamin E is a powerful lipid soluble antioxidant. It prevents tissue cells from the free radical mediated oxidant injury. Thus, it helps maintain the integrity of mucus membranes and skin by protecting from harmful oxygen free radicals. Also they are a great source of protein and help to reduce 'bad' cholesterol and increase 'good' cholesterol.

Pumpkin kernels are also excellent source of B-complex group of vitamins such as thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, pantothenic acid, vitamin B-6 (pyridoxine) and folates. 
Furthermore, its seeds contain very good levels of essential minerals like copper, manganese, potassium, calcium, iron, magnesium, zinc and selenium. They are one of the richest sources of manganese. Manganese is an all-important co-factor for antioxidant enzyme, superoxide dismutase. It is therefore, consumption of pumpkin kernels helps body develop resistance against infectious agents and scavenge harmful oxygen free radicals.

That all said eating them with a bit of chocolate can't be all that bad, can it?!

Makes =12 small

Chocolate Mix
100gm organic, fair-traded, dark chocolate, shaved
1 cup shredded coconut
¼ cup pepitas (pumpkin seeds)
¼ cup sunflower seeds
1 tbs fennel seeds
tiny pinch of salt

Melt the shaved chocolate in a stainless steel bowl, over a saucepan of water, on a medium heat. Turn heat off once almost melted. 

Gather the rest of the ingredients and add when chocolate has melted. Combine well. Allow to cool slightly if chocolate is too thin and runny.

Spoon cluster onto a plate covered with baking paper, so chocolates are easy to remove once set.

Place in the fridge for 1-2 hours then store in an airtight container for ages or share with friends!

Sunday, 17 August 2014

Rawsome chocolate crackles

 Divine, delightful, these sweet treats evoked memories of childhood birthday party but are totally good for you! Chocolate crackles were my favourite treat at a birthday party, I remember I would scan the birthday table for chocolate crackles and my eyes would light up if I spotted them!
These have the flavor and the crunchy rice bubble-like texture that ‘normal’ chocolate crackles have, so try them out on your kids. That is your ‘big’ kids or little ones both will love them!

So simple to make, just put all the dry ingredients in a bowl, combine the wet ingredients and mix together! Refrigerate for 30 minutes or until set. Yep, it's that simple!

Makes = 18 small

1 cup dehydrated buckwheat*
½ cup cacao powder
1 cup shredded coconut
1 cup desiccated coconut
1 tsp vanilla powder
¼ tsp good salt
½ cup cacao butter, shaved & melted
½ coconut oil, melted
½ cup agave syrup

Mix together all the dried ingredients.

Add the shaved cacao butter to a stainless steal bowl and place over a saucepan of boiling water. Reduce the heat to low (or turn off) to slowly melt the cacao butter but not destroy all the raw nutrients and goodness.

Once melted, add the coconut oil and allow the heat to melt it too. Then mix together the wet ingredients and add to the dry ingredients. Combine thoroughly and spoon into little patty pans and chill for 30 minutes or until set. Store in an airtight container for up to a week or more….if they last that long!

* You can buy dehydrated buckwheat through two fabulous companies either Loving Earth or 2Die4Nuts. So you don’t need a dehydrator to make this recipe!