June 2, 2013
What’s high in healthy monounsaturated fats, fiber, potassium, and vitamins C and E?
Chocolate mousse pie, duh!
Unlike traditional mousses, this one is made with…you guessed it…AVOCADO. That’s right: A-V-O-C-A-D-O AVOCADO. And trust me…you’d never know it was there.
The first time I encountered this magical combination was in Practical Paleo by Diane Sanfilippo. I immediately thought, “COOL!”, then realized, “Wait…what?!” Avocados and chocolate seemed pretty out there. But, after seeing that even Giada de Laurentiis attempted such a dessert, I decided I had to give it a try.
To ZipList this recipe, click here.
I actually think I like it better than traditional chocolate mousse…especially with this delicious crust.
A few hours before you want to bake the crust, soak 5 or 6 small dates in about 1/2 cup of water to soften them.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and lightly grease a spring-form pan with coconut oil.
In the bowl of a food processor, pulse together 1 cup of almond flour (blanched or unblanched, it doesn’t matter), 1/2 cup of almond slivers, 2 heaping tablespoons of cocoa powder, 1/4 cup of melted refined coconut oil, the dates, and a pinch of salt until no clumps remain, about 2 minutes. Scoop everything out, form it into a ball, and press it to the bottom of the spring-form pan, using your hands to flatten it and spread it to the corners.
Bake until fragrant and beginning to darken in color, about 17 minutes.
Let the crust chill in the freezer while you make the chocolate mousse. It shouldn’t take very long; but don’t exceed more than 30 minutes in the freezer. DO NOT TAKE THE CRUST OUT OF THE PAN.
In a small saucepan or in the microwave with 30 second intervals, melt 4 ounces of dark chocolate. (I used Alter Eco’s Dark Blackout, which is 85% cacao.)
In the bowl of a food processor or blender, process 4 VERY ripe avocados until smooth, about 2 to 3 minutes. If you use unripe fruit, you’ll get a chunky, tough mess. Bleh.
By the way, avocados are one of the few types of produce that you can buy organic OR conventional. The tough outer peel protects the inner flesh from pesticides and sprays, so feel free to get whatever’s ripest.
To the blended avocados, add 1/2 cup of good-quality cocoa powder, 1/3 cup of raw coconut nectar, honey, OR maple syrup, a few drops of stevia (if you want it sweeter), 1 tablespoon of vanilla extract, and the melted chocolate. Blend until no green remains in the bowl, about 4 minutes. Add a tablespoon or two of coconut milk if it’s too thick for your taste.
Now, aside from the residue around the edges, could you tell there were avocados in here? Nope.
Take the crust out of the freezer and pour the mousse on top of it. Smooth it evenly on top of the crust with a spatula, and let sit in the fridge until set, at least 2 hours and preferably 4 or 5.
When you’re ready to eat, take the mousse pie out of the fridge and carefully separate the pan’s bottom from the sides. Transfer to a cutting board, slice, and serve.
Any dessert you’d like me to re-create? Leave me a comment on Facebook and let me know!
Tags: avocados, chocolate, chocolate mousse, dairy-free, delicious, dessert, gluten-free, healthy, nut-free, paleo, pie, vegan
May 28, 2013
To ZipList this recipe, click here.
It’s Memorial Day, which to me means the start of summer. School is ALMOST over, the weather
is should be getting nicer, it’s light out later…what’s not to love?
If you’ve got a barbecue to attend in the upcoming weeks, try these cupcakes. They’re light, summery, and very friendly to gluten-free, dairy-free, Paleo, and nut-free diets!
A special thanks to Tammy Credicott from The Healthy Gluten-Free Life for recipe inspiration!
To bake the cupcakes, preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line a muffin tin with 10 parchment muffin liners. (I know, 10 is an awkward number in baking, but I’m not perfect.)
First, separate 4 egg yolks and whites. This is best done when the eggs are cold. Put the whites in the bowl of a stand mixer and the yolks in the bowl of a food processor.
Beat the egg whites on medium-high (for me, about setting 8) until smooth but NOT stuff peaks form, about 3 minutes. Set aside.
In the food processor, blend the egg yolks, 1/3 cup of raw coconut nectar OR raw honey, 1/2 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar, 1 tablespoon of vanilla extract, and 1/4 cup of whole milk, nut milk, or coconut milk until well-combined, about 2 minutes. (If using coconut milk, increase the vanilla extract to 1 1/2 tablespoons.)
Slowly drizzle in 1/3 cup of refined coconut oil and keep going for about a minute more.
To the wet ingredients, add 10 ounces of defrosted mango chunks. Blend until completely smooth, about 2 to 3 minutes. Your finished product should be golden yellow and the consistency of a thin pancake batter.
Fold the mixture in the food processor into the egg whites with a spatula. Make sure there are no clumps!
Once the wet ingredients are well-folded, sift in 1/3 cup + 1 tablespoon of coconut flour, 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda, and a good pinch of salt. Gently stir with the spatula until homogeneous.
Evenly divide the batter among the muffin cups, smoothing the tops with the back of a spatula if necessary.
Bake until a toothpick comes out clean in the center and the cupcakes are firm to the touch, about 25 to 30 minutes. Let cool in the pan for 15 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to come to room temperature.
While the cupcakes cool, make the frosting. In the bowl of a stand mixer on low (for me, about 2), beat together 1/2 cup of organic, non-hydrogenated palm shortening, 1/3 cup of raw coconut nectar, 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract, 2 teaspoons of coconut flour, 2 tablespoons of arrowroot powder, and a pinch of salt. Slowly drizzle in 1 heaping tablespoon of melted refined coconut oil and mix until smooth, about 2 minutes.
Here comes the cool part: with a spatula, gently fold in 2 ounces of freeze-dried mango, pulverized. This technique is awesome for creating fruit frostings: try it with strawberries, raspberries, or even pineapples!
Scoop the frosting into a large plastic bag and push to one corner. Twist up the end of the bag you’re not using to create a pastry-like bag.
Let the frosting chill in the fridge until ready to use. Before piping, let it sit out on the counter for 15 minutes.
Top each cupcake with about 2 tablespoons of frosting and a slice of kiwi, then serve!
What are you cooking up these days? Leave me a comment on Facebook and let me know!
Tags: cupcakes, dairy-free, delicious, dessert, frosting, gluten-free, healthy, kiwi, mango, nut-free, paleo, tropical
May 24, 2013
A year ago, I probably would have said ew at holding a 30 pound pig leg. I would have never imagined that I would look the way I do…or spend every possible moment cooking up a storm.
Well, here I am. You really never know.
When I started my journey, I really didn’t think I could do it. I was clueless. I was frustrated. I was plain and outright SCARED. But I did do it, and I’m so glad I tried and didn’t give up.
So, whether you’re 15 or 50, just know that if I can do it, so can YOU. You have power over your body. You don’t need chips and candy to make your life complete. All you need is a little determination, and you can accomplish it.
Now, onto the real reason why you’re here: the chocolate mini muffins.
If you’re one of those people that will eat an entire pan of brownies as soon as they exit the oven, these are for you. With your chocolaty dessert pre-portioned beforehand, you’ll be much less likely to go overboard while still enjoying yourself. Yum.
And—bonus—these little guys are very allergy-friendly: they’re both gluten-free and nut-free, and can easily be made dairy-free. How awesome is that?
A special thanks to Tammy Credicott of The Healthy Gluten-Free Life for recipe inspiration!
First, preheat the oven to…you guessed it…350 degrees. Line a mini muffin pan with liners and grease a bit if necessary.
In a small bowl, sift together 1/3 cup of raw cacao powder, 1/4 cup of coconut flour, 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda, and a good pinch of salt. Whisk to combine and set aside.
On medium speed, beat together 4 eggs, 1/3 cup of raw honey OR maple syrup, 1/4 cup of melted refined coconut oil, and 1/4 cup of full-fat or low-fat yogurt. (I used Green Valley Organics Lactose-Free yogurt, which both my mom and I adore.) Don’t do dairy? Substitute 1/4 cup of coconut milk and 1 tablespoon of vanilla extract instead.
Meanwhile, melt about 3 ounces of chocolate in a saucepan or in the microwave in 30-second intervals. (I used Alter Eco Blackout, my favorite dark chocolate bar.) Pour gently into the rest of the wet ingredients and mix for 1 to 2 minutes more.
Next, add the dry ingredients in two batches to the wet ingredients. Mix on medium until well-incorporated, about 2 minutes longer. With a spatula, fold in 1/4-1/3 cup of mini chocolate chips.
Using two large spoons, fill up each mini muffin liner with a generous glob of batter.
Bake until a toothpick comes out clean in the center and the tops are beginning to brown, about 15 minutes.
Let cool in the pan for at least five minutes (restrain yourself!), then eat alone or with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.
What’s your favorite birthday treat? Leave me a comment on Facebook and let me know!
Tags: Allergy friendly, brownies, chocolate, delicious, dessert, gluten-free, grain-free, healthy, muffins, nut-free, paleo