Saturday, November 3, 2012

chocolate is love

Mini pans of homemade chocolate. Three varieties.
Right most: plain dark choco topped with toasted sesame seeds
and desiccated coconut.

I was just about to go home but still had my some ingredients from the Philippines: virgin coconut oil, cacao butter and raw cacao nips. Three and a half months I had put off my special project. Much inspired by the homemade chocolates given to me by my friend Clara, I had intended to spend some of my time visiting with friends exploring the union of two loves: cooking and chocolate (which mostly comprises of eating it).

So in my final days, I decided to make use of the perfect cool temperature for solidifying chocolate, do a bit of research and just get on with it--plus, I wanted to make sure I felt I'd made the best of my long-distance schlep.

Dark chocolate with hazelnuts, almonds and dried figs.
And the truth is I was feeling a lot of love. I felt so much gratitude for this amazingly peculiar journey. Making chocolate seemed to be the best way to express it!

In the end, I was amazed at how easy it all was and shocked at the quality of the chocolate. Why had I waited? Or had I simply left the best for last?

Real chocolate. No refined sugars. No preservatives.

I've a new appreciation for chocolate. Divine but so simply accessible. I wonder why we bother to buy super-market line chocolates at all!

Dark chocolate with pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, flax seeds,
desiccated coconut,  cacao nibs,  goji berries. Topped with
pumpkin seeds and desiccated coconut.
Melting the cocoa butter. Virgin coconut oil added.
Homemade Chocolate:

- 1/3 fair-trade cocoa
- 1/3 virgin coconut oil
- 1/3 cocoa butter
- sweetened with coconut nectar to taste

all melted together in a glass bowl surrounded by hot water (you can use agave nectar alternatively)

set in cool temperature. In the UK, that was room temp. in the Philippines, I think you'll have to put it in ref or freezer...

And now the cocoa powder...Nice dark chocolate.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Healthy Chocolate Snowballs

Up close: my second foray into making homemade chocolate meets energy balls.

As one of my final "projects" in England, I decided to make chocolate goodies. One of the treats I experimented with earlier this summer was making energy balls. This version uses homemade chocolate to bring all the energetic goodness together. Tried my best to use mostly raw ingredients. Rolled it by hand and then rolled the balls in desiccated coconut before it set into its chocolatey goodness! So easy to make, and turns out so tasty and healthy at the same time!

Practically anything that was on hand in terms of nuts, seeds, and dried goodies...
* desiccated coconut
* flax seeds
* sunflower seeds
* pumpkin seeds
* goji berries
* 70% dark chocolate 
* raw cacao nibs

Binding it all together:
* homemade chocolate
- 1/3 fair-trade cocoa
- 1/3 virgin coconut oil
- 1/3 cocoa butter
all melted together in a glass bowl surrounded by hot water
- sweetened with coconut nectar to taste
(you can use agave nectar alternatively)