Don's been complaining about the fact that we hardly have dessert anymore. Poor thing! See, for the last couple of months I've been in a phase where I don't really feel like eating anything heavy. Since most raw desserts are nut based I therefore have been staying away from those too. I've managed to find a compromise, however, in raw chocolate. Just the thing to satisfy a sweet tooth, yet not as dense as cake or other raw goodies. And so I've been slowly working my way through Matthew Kenney's new Raw Chocolate book. I tried a couple of fudge recipes that sadly didn't really turn out. While they tasted fabulous for some reason the consistency was closer to that of icing or spread. Duh! Ah well, can't win them all I suppose.
I also made a batch of his Coconut Haystacks. When I was growing up it was a bit of a tradition in my family - and a rather strange one come to think of it - to crack open a mature coconut at Easter. It was the only time of year that we'd eat them. Anyhoo, no wonder that the choccie - coconut combo made me think how perfect a treat this would be with Easter just around the corner!
At first texture wasn't quite right either and the balls didn't hold their shape. The recipe calls for cacao oil which I assumed was the same as butter, but I guess it isn't after all. Thankfully, I was able to salvage it with some minimal tweaking. To my delight, the result is totally decadent and even slightly addictive. ;-)
Chocolate Coconut Haystacks
Adapted from a recipe in Matthew Kenney's Raw Chocolate
3 c. unsweetened, shredded coconut
1 c. raw cacao powder (you can sub partly with raw carob powder)
1/4 c. + 2 tbs melted coconut oil
1/4 - 1/3 c. coconut sugar, finely ground in coffee grinder
1/4 c. raw honey or other healthy liquid sweetener
1/4 c. cacao nibs
2 tbs melted cacao butter
1 tbs pure vanilla extract or liquid vanilla
Mix shredded coconut, cacao powder, coconut sugar and cacao nibs in a large bowl.
Add liquid sweetener and melted cacao butter and coconut oil. Incorporate well.
Form into balls with your hands or with a cookie scoop.
Chill before serving.
Carmella's Note: Whenever using cacao butter or coconut oil in a recipe, pay close attention to whether the amounts are measured before or after these have been melted.
Oh, and for more yummy chocolatey ideas for Easter be sure to check out these previous posts:
Super Caramel Chocolate Tarts
Happy Easter everyone!
Happy Easter everyone!