Well it’s Valentine’s Day tomorrow so I thought I would give you guys some deliciously healthy raw chocolate recipes to enjoy with your loved one. And hey, if Valentine’s Day makes you want to vomit, either because you (mini-rant alert!) see through the veil of romanticism to reveal a social culture steeped in consumerism or because you are single (and wish you weren’t) then even more reason to get a chocolate hit and get those lovely endorphins circulating around your system (you can read more about the awesome health benefits of chocolate here). Personally I don’t require an excuse to eat chocolate – I do so with perhaps worrying regularity and excitement – but if ever there were one then I guess its good old V Day.
Today I present you with raw chocolate brownies, chocolate avocado mousse and chocolate peanut butter balls. I have tried a few vegan chocolate brownie recipes and I love this one by the amazing Minimalist Baker. However I wanted to create one that didn’t require baking and that was still ‘cakey’ and not too gooey and I think I did a pretty good job! The avocado mousse is an old time favourite of mine but that I was recently reminded of again by Nadia Lim. My peanut butter balls owe their inception to my lovely Canadian friend and naturopath Ryan as well as the gorgeous Angela Liddon of Oh She Glows.
Please excuse me while I get a little gushy and esoteric but in the spirit of love I wanted to share some of my thoughts about love as well as some of my all time favourite quotes about love.
Some thoughts on love
- Love is an energy – it is something that cannot be seen, heard or touched, it can only be felt with the heart.
- Love is what life is really all about. Love is what connects us all, and give us a sense of meaning in our lives. And we have to start by loving ourselves.
- ‘Romantic’ love is a particular kind of love – a love of attachment – but the kind of love that truly gives us meaning is a universal kind of love. It’s the love that is open and light and radiates from our hearts towards the totality of life.
- Love is something that can be cultivated. I have done this through meditation and it has given me some of the most beautifully connected moments in my life.
- Love is the best beautifier there is. Forget anti-wrinkle cream, just practice being a loving and kind person and seeing the good in others – it might sound strange but it literally makes you glow.
Some of my favourite love quotes
- Being loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage – Lao Tzu
- There is no remedy for love but to love more – Henry David Thoreau
- Spread love everywhere you go. Let no one ever come to you without leaving happier – Mother Theresa
- We can only learn to love by loving – Iris Murdoch
- All my life my heart has yearned for a thing I cannot name – Andre Bretton (excuse the pun but this one breaks my heart, it’s so beautiful and also so sad).
From love to raw chocolate; raw chocolate brownies, raw chocolate mousse, and raw chocolate peanut butter balls. I’d say that’s a pretty easy and delicious way to tell someone how you feel. Add a red rose for extra effect perhaps? This one’s for you.
For the raw chocolate brownies
– 1 cup almonds
– 1/2 cup almond nut butter
– 1 cup dates – chopped and soaked in warm water for 10 minutes if quite hard
– 1/2 cup desiccated coconut
– 4 tbsp raw cocoa powder
– 2-3 tbsp rice malt syrup
– 4 tbsp coconut oil – melted
– 1 tbsp olive oil
For the raw chocolate peanut butter balls
– 1/2 cup peanut butter
– 1/2 cup ground almonds/walnuts/cashews
– 1/4 tsp natural vanilla powder/essence
– 2 tbsp maple syrup
– 2 tbsp cocoa powder
For the raw chocolate and avocado mousse
– 2 ripe avoacdos
– 1 banana
– 2 tbsp almond butter
– 3 tbsp raw cocoa powder
– 3 tbsp maple syrup/honey
– 1 tbsp coconut oil
Raw chocolate brownies
Place the almonds into your food processor/blender and process until roughly ground. You can use pre-ground almonds for ease but it’s nice to do it yourself and leave some chunkier bits in for some extra crunch.
Next add the remaining ingredients and process together. The mix should be moist but also a little crumbly. Press the raw chocolate brownies into a lined and greased 14cm square baking tin. You will want to press it down quite firmly to make sure that it all sticks together really well. Place the brownies in the fridge for a few hours before enjoying.
Raw Chocolate Avocado Mousse
Place all ingredients into a food processor until a smooth mousse forms. Divide the chocolate avocado mousse equally between two tumblers.
Raw chocolate peanut butter balls
Place all ingredients in a mixing bowl and combine well with a spoon. Divide the chocolate peanut butter balls into about 12-15 and roll into balls. You can dust with cocoa powder for effect, dip in chocolate or roll in desiccated coconut – experiment and try some different versions!