quinta-feira, 3 de setembro de 2015

Peanut Butter and Coconut Chocolate Bomboms



Chocolate is a winner, an unanimity if I may say. Nearly everybody loves it. Exceptions exist as they say, to make stronger the rule. Chocolate is the best.

The problem is, when you are looking forward to adopt a "low fructose" or "fructose free diet", the perspective of living completely without chocolate is quite sad. However, there are alternatives out there to try.

When I am faced with strong chocolate cravings, instead of a sugar loaded bombom, my chocolate substitute of choice is a delicious hot cocoa drink, which I make with extra high quality cacao powder, good milk and totally sugar/sweetener free. All I add, besides milk and cacao, is a pinch of vanilla powder. Vanilla or cinnamon can add not only flavor, but sweetness too. If I am really in the mood, I might add some (no sugar or sweetener added) whipped cream to make it really naughty. I usually add some drops of vanilla extract or a dash of vanilla powder before I whip the cream. It is a favorite around here, zero sugar or sweetener added. High fat and extra low carb.




Recently I have found an alternative to help me through the days when all I want is to lay my teeth on a bar of chocolate, or on a little "bombom". It was not an easy task, trying to master the art of natural chocolate making. After trying for a while to limit myself to extra dark chocolate bars, I gave up and decided to find myself something less bitter, creamier and tastier... Not that dark chocolates are not tasty. I don´t mean that. Tasty they surely are. But I am a chocolate-with-nuts kind of person. Besides, I love some plain milk chocolate too. Just like my strong cup of cacao drink with a big dollop of cream on top. After sorting out some alternatives, I manage to find my favorite made from scratch homemade chocolate bombons. Here they are.

These homemade chocolates are delicious, they make my taste buds happy, but they are not as sensational as advertised. They lake the consistence and the texture of commercial and store bought chocolates. Free from conservantes and additives of all sorts, including lecithin, these bars can not resist room temperature for very long and in warmer areas of the world must be kept in the fridge at all times.



They are free from fructose because I decided to use barley malt syrup in their making. Barley malt syrup is a dark syrup that contain only glucose and is totally free from fructose. The type of sweetener is pretty much your own choice, you can go for the one you prefer. As a fructose free chocolate bombom, these little beauties have a feel good side for me because I have fructose intolerance, even if they are not what I would call healthy. Can chocolate ever really be healthy?

My opinion is: Even if chocolates are made from cacao (cocoa), a very healthy and rich fruit, our ways with the products made out of the mass, paste and fat of the toasted cacao beans are far from healthy. We have allowed ourselves to over indulge and get addicted to the sugar that coats the world of chocolate. Our sugar craving is what guide our search (in vain, I believe) for healthy chocolate alternatives. I can see it clear that I am addicted to chocolate/sugar and to feed my cravings is bad for me. I hope to leave it all behind me some day, meanwhile enjoy moderately...





Peanut Butter and Coconut Chocolate


100g organic cacao butter (I like this one)
50g organic cacao mass ( I like this one )
30g organic cacao powder (this time I used this one )
50g organic extra virgin coconut oil
50g organic pure peanut butter (without added oils, sugar or salt)
50g organic barley malt syrup (you can use the sweetener you prefer: rice malt syrup, honey, maples syrup, agave, coconut palm sugar, stevia, erythritol or even plain sugar...)
1/2 teaspoon vanilla powder
Sea salt (optional)

How:

In a glass bowl over a pot of simmering water melt the cacao butter, the cacao mass, the coconut oil and the peanut butter. You don´t want the mixture to be very warm, just to melt, therefore I recommend the double boiler. Remove from heart, add the barley malt syrup, take it back to heat and whisk well until completely smooth and homogeneous. Remove from heat and sift in cacao powder and vanilla powder or seeds. Add sea salt if using. Taste for sweetness and saltiness, and adjust accordingly.
In silicon or paper cups spoon the chocolate batter. Don't spoon too much because you will prefer a rather thin chocolate cup.

Place in the fridge or freezer for 30 minutes or until its solid enough to be removed from the cups and served.

Keep in refrigerated.

Makes 15 to 40 chocolate pieces. It all depends on the size of the molds/silicone cups you are using.



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