Post by Jo @ including Cake
These were my big success of the weekend!
I've had to be particularly creative in the kitchen his last week since I gave myself the challenge of a sugar-free lent! These little gems are sweetened only with natural fruits and a touch of stevia, though you may wish to add another form of sweetener such as agave if the dark chocolate coating is too bitter for your taste.
This recipe is versatile and virtually foolproof with no real cooking needed- just a litle blending and melting. You can use any dried fruits you fancy, though I went for dates and cranberries as that's what I had to hand. You will need to pre-blend the fruits into a coarse paste before mixing in the coconut as other wise the coconut pieces will be blended finely also, the resulting mixture should still be nice and chunky as it is spooned into the cases. I used dark chia but in hindsight white chia would have provided more of a contrast.
You can use mini muffins pans if you wish- opt for silicone so that they pop out easily. I used mini petit-four cases and they gave a pretty fluted edges as the chocolate set at the bottom of the cup. This recipe can be easily doubled (or triples), be sure to keep the crackles in the fridge as they will be prone to melting if kept at room temperature.
Recipe: Chocolate coconut crackles
Makes approx. 8 crackles
¼ cup dried fruit ‘paste’ (fruits coarsely blended in processor) I used dates and cranberries
1/3 cup toasted coconut flakes
2 tbs chia seeds
¼ cocoa liquor
1 tbs coconut oil
pinch of vanilla
few drops of pure stevia (you could add extra agave if you would like)
Mix the dried fruit paste with the coconut flakes and chia seeds, don’t over process to ensure that some chunky flakes of coconut remain. Spoon teaspoon size dollops into mini cake cases.
Melt the cacao liquor with the coconut oil on the stove or in the microwave for 90-120 seconds on a medium power until melted, stir in the vanilla and stevia. Drizzle over the fruit mixture in the cake cases. Chill in the fridge for an hour until fully set.