photo provided courtesy of affairsofliving.com
Ah, Valentine’s Day is just around the bend. I generally tend to be a bit of a cynic when it comes to Valentine’s Day, but I do like the opportunity to indulge my desires for tasty chocolate treats. This homemade chocolate is dark, rich, and wonderfully creamy, sweetened with just a touch of raw honey. It isn’t too sweet, just the way I like it.
This recipe takes only minutes to make, and then you can use it to make shaped candies, chocolate bars, fruit/nut chocolate clusters, or even to dip strawberries. My favorite iteration of this recipe used darling little heart-shaped silicone muffin cups. I filled each cup with about 1 Tbsp of the melted chocolate mixture, let them cool, and then had darling little hearts.
Make it for a Valentine’s Day treat for you and your honey, or, if you’re anything like me, you’ll make it to nibble on while watching Law & Order SVU alone on the couch.
I like the combination of butter and coconut oil – the flavor is less “coconutty” and the mouth feel is creamier than when only coconut oil is used. However, if you are vegan or do not tolerate dairy, you can substitute the ghee/butter with another 1/4 cup of coconut oil. The rest of the recipe is also quite flexible. If you can’t eat cashews, try using an equal amount of another tolerated nut or seed butter. While the flavor will change, it will still be delicious and creamy (Sunbutter tastes great). The honey could be substituted with another natural liquid sweetener like maple syrup or brown rice syrup if you do not eat honey.
1/4 cup ghee or butter (if possible, use pastured dairy)
1/4 cup virgin coconut oil
1/4 cup raw cashew butter
2-3 Tbsp raw honey
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (Dagoba brand is certified GF)
1/2 tsp gluten-free pure vanilla extract (Simply Organic brand is certified GF)
Place ghee/butter, coconut oil, cashew butter, and honey in a small saucepan and heat on low, whisking constantly. Whisk until smooth, thickened, and well combined, but do not let it bubble. Remove from heat and add cocoa powder and vanilla, and whisk again until smooth. Adjust sweetness to taste.
Then, you have some options…
- If forming chocolate in candy molds/silicone muffin cups/etc., pour desired amount of melted chocolate into molds (I used heart-shaped silicone muffin cups). Allow to cool for 2-3 hours in the refrigerator. Remove chocolate from molds. Store in the refrigerator.
- If making chocolate bars or chunks, pour melted chocolate into a pan or dish lined with parchment or plastic wrap. Allow to cool for 2-3 hours in the refrigerator. Cut or break into chunks of desired size using a sharp knife. Store in the refrigerator.
- If using to make dried fruit/nut clusters or bark, mix the ingredients into the chocolate until well combined, then pour into a pan or dish lined with parchment or plastic wrap, or drop in small clusters on a lined baking sheet. Allow to cool for 2-3 hours in the refrigerator. If making as bars/bark, cut or break into chunks of desired size using a sharp knife. Store in the refrigerator.
- To dip strawberries, dunk your strawberries into the melty chocolate, place on a lined baking sheet or tray, and let chill for a couple hours until the chocolate is firm. Serve!
makes approximately 3/4 cup melted chocolate – what you do with it depends on you!
recipe courtesy affairsofliving.com