Thursday, July 3, 2008

Sweetie Treaties!

It's sweeeet in my kitchen these days.... We've had a lot of rain around here lately, and guess where I am on rainy days?! Yup, I'm sure you've figured out that I'm whipping up goodies in the kitchen. I think I could live on salads, green drinks and dessert for the rest of my life!

So here's what has been on the menu:

A few weeks ago I made Carmella's Ferrero Rawcher. I've never actually had one before, but I'm up for anything chocolate and raw. These were a dream in my mouth, I tell ya! I omitted the bamboo, and used pecans in place of the hazelnuts since I couldn't get my hands on any. Coconut oil worked just fine for the nut oil.

Ferrero Rawcher

Nutella Filling

1 cup raw hazelnuts
3 tablespoons raw cacao or carob powder
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon almond extract
1/4 teaspoon Bamboo coffee substitute (optional)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon raw honey or agave nectar
1 tablespoon melted coconut butter
1 tablespoon flax or nut oil

Water until desired consistency is reachedFood process raw hazelnuts for several minutes until clumpy and oily. Add the rest of the ingredients. Then add water until you reach desired consistency. Place in freezer to set.

Hazelnut Chocolate Coating

1/2 cup melted coconut butter
1/2 cup cacao or carob powder (I used 3 part cacao/1 part carob)
1 tbs maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla extract---
Handful hazelnuts, finely chopped in food processor (I omitted this)

Blend until smooth in high speed blender or food processor. Transfer to a bowl and fold ground hazelnuts in.

Assembly: Take a spoonful of raw nutella (once firmed up) and tuck a hazelnut in.With your hands, roll into a ball. (Wet fingers/palm help!)Return balls in freezer to set.When firm, dip each ball into Hazelnut Chocolate Coating. Allow a few seconds for excess chocolate to drip, then transfer to parchment paper. Put in fridge or freezer to set.If the Ferrero Rawcher candies are stored in the freezer, make sure to transfer them ahead of time in the fridge to allow the hazelnut filling to soften up.

In keeping with the chocolate theme...last week Carmi told me about a new chocolate pecan truffle recipe that she's working on for the ebook. She tried to re-create the truffles after having them at a restaurant, but couldn't quite get the texture right. I was thrilled when she asked me for any suggestions and a wee bit of help as a "tester". I happily got to work making the chocolates and then had extra fun rolling the balls in different toppings. After exchanging notes, playing in our kitchens and discussing it, looks like the recipe is a real winner!

I chose to roll mine in: cacao powder, shredded coconut, lucuma powder, and xylitol (natural low glycemic sweetener from the birch tree) mixed with cinnamon. I brought these to a little dinner party that evening and got rave reviews.

Talking berries now, here is a cake that I recently made for a raw luncheon. Even the skeptics were impressed with the meal of Russell James' raw lasagna, lemon gingerade, and this cake which was drizzled with raspberry sauce.

Chocolate Vanilla Raspberry Cheesecake

A macadamia nut/agave crust forms the base, topped with a chocolate layer of: cashews, water, cacao powder, walnuts, agave, carob, coconut oil, vanilla, and sea salt. A layer of raspberries top the chocolate, followed by a vanilla cream: macadamia nuts, agave, vanilla, water, coconut oil, and sea salt.


Vanilla Berry Tarts

Using the same crust and vanilla topping from above, I added a berry filling in between the two: mixed berries, cashews, agave, bit of lemon juice, and water.

Quickly moving back to the chocolate side of things again, I'm in love with my chocolate smoothies...like the chocolate decadance from my previous post. Here's a similar one - Choco-Vanilla Swirly Smoothie:

Blend: Half of the water and pulp from 1 young coconut, pure vanilla, agave, and a handful of macadamia nuts. Transer to a pourable measuring cup.

Now, without bothering to wash the blender (as-if, right?! it's still full of goodness!), blend: the other half of the coconut water/pulp, cacao powder, carob, mesquite, handful walnuts, agave, maca...

Alternate, pouring each mixture into a glass a bit at a time. Now take a knife and swirl from the bottom of the glass to make it look beautiful!

And last but not least, here's a most delicious super dense superfood candy recipe by GlimR, that was posted on RFT by Pansy, who found it on another forum. I halved the recipe and it still made a lot. I would definately make this again! Yum Yum!

Ca~Raw~Mello Bars

Nut layers:
3 cups walnuts
1 cup pitted medjool dates
1 T. vanilla
good pinch celtic sea salt

Caramel layer:
¼ cup maca powder
1/8 cup mesquite powder
1/8 cup lucuma
1 cup agave or honey
2 heaping T. almond butter
1 tsp. vanilla
pinch celtic sea salt

Chocolate/Nut Butter layer:
1 cup raw cacao powder
½ cup mesquite powder
½ cup almond butter
¾ cup agave or honey (I used a mix of both)
2 T. fo-ti
1 tsp. vanilla
pinch celtic sea salt

Process all nut crust ingredients in food processor till mixed well, nuts a medium chop.Press half the mixture firmly into a square baking dish (8x8). Set the other half aside.In a bowl mix all ingredients for the caramel layer till very smooth, add a touch more honey or agave if needed to make a thick but smooth mixture.Spread over nut layer and put in freezer till very firm, about 40 minutes.In food processor blend all ingredients for the chocolate layer till mixed and fudgy. This will be very thick, don’t overwork your processor. Take it out of the processor bowl and work it with your hands for a second. The consistency is like a fondant dough. Place it over the caramel layer and press to cover.Sprinkle the rest of the nut mixture over the chocolate, pressing in into the chocolate layer firmly. This will pretty much fill the pan to the top.Place in freezer for several hours to firm up. Remove and slice as desired.This makes a huge batch of candy and should be stored in the freezer.
Heathy's Notes:
- I used walnut butter instead of almond
- I used agave instead of honey but the recipe still had a distinct honey-ish taste - prob from the combo of powders?
-I didn't care for the crumbly nut layer on the top and bottom, which kept crumbling off, so next time I would omit all together or blend it into a smoother nut layer.