Last weekend I taught a raw chocolate class with a fellow raw food chef/friend, Helen. This was the 4th of 5 classes in our raw food summer series. They're always fun but our chocolate class was especially special because... well you know how much I love chocolate! It's a huge part of my life and I really enjoy sharing it with people. Both making it for people and showing them how to turn raw cacao into delicious treats!
We started the class with a short segment on the power of chaga. Basically the King of medicinal mushrooms. If you've read my blog for a while, you have seen me post about chaga several times before. I'm fortunate to live in a part of the world where I have easy access to it... and a dad who "hunts" it for me in large quantities. So what does chaga have to do with chocolate?! Well they're two magical superfoods that work well together so I shared a recipe for a Chocolate Superfood Shake featuring both these ingredients among other "powerhouses". If you live in Canada and want some fresh chaga, send me a message to order it.
People were pleasantly surprised at how yummy it was... you really get a whole range of unique tastes happening in this drink. It's thick and frosty. Filling but light, and super energizing!!!
Raw Chocolate Superfood Shake
1/2 cup chilled chaga tea
3-4 tablespoons cashews
1 small frozen chopped banana
1 1/2 - 2 tablespoons cacao powder
1 tablespoon maca powder
1 tablespoon lucuma powder
1 tablespoon coconut sugar or yacon syrup
1 teaspoon mesquite
1 teaspoon chia seed
1/4 teaspoon ashwaganda root powder
1/4 teaspoon vanilla bean powder
4-6 large ice cubes
1-2 teaspoons cacao nibs, optional
Blend the chilled chaga tea and cashews until smooth, creating a milk.
Add remaining ingredients (starting with 4-5 ice cubes) except cacao nibs and blend until smooth, using the tamper of the vita mix to push down. The mixture is thick.
Taste. Add more ice if you like, or a few drops stevia if you want it sweeter. Depends how much cacao powder you add.
Add cacao nibs and blend for a few seconds to break them down.
Oh and I drizzled my favourite raw chocolate sauce from Just Desserts on the inside of the glass on on top for an extra special kick ;)
Here's a few great facts about each of the above superfoods:
Chaga - The great mushroom for immunity and used in cancer treatment in Russia. It's a highly concentrated form of nutrients and antioxidants from very old birch trees ain Canada, Northern US, and Russiand is especially high in minerals like iron, potassium, magnesium, zinc, copper, and calcium.
Maca - South American root used for libido, fertility, and strength. It's adaptogenic, meaning it has the ability to change the body's response to stress. It provides an energy boost without overstimulating the body (so awesome right?!)
Lucuma - South American fruit that tastes like caramel/maple and is packed with vitamins, minerals, and fiber. It's especially high in iron and beta carotene.
Mesquite - Dried, ground pods and seeds of the mesquite tree that is high in vitamins, minerals, and fiber. It's especially rich in calcium and magnesium. It's lightly sweet but has a very low glycemic index making it an excellent sweetener for diabetics and people with blood sugar issues.
Cacao - Best antioxidant food!! Cacao is highly medicinal and therefore must not be abused (aka eat too much of it - hard not to, I know ;)
Ashwaganda - This root has been used in India for ages to lessen the effects of stress on the body (read: excellent for adrenal balancing) and is used for relaxation, rejuvination, to relieve anxiety and depression and even aid in brain function.
Yacon syrup - a root that contains a natural type of sugar that can't be absorbed by the body and therefore passes through without having any effect on blood sugar (great for diabetics/people with blood sugar issues). It's also high in fiber.
Fresh harvested chaga off the tree near my house.
Shared at Allergy Free Wednesdays, Healthy vegan fridays, Slightly Indulgent Tuesdays