Early last year I realised I needed to make a change to my eating habits. I've always had a "sweet tooth" and gradually my weight was going up as I kept having "just one more treat" each day.
I managed to cut out most refined sugar and instead went in search of 'clean eating' recipes that would satisfy my sweet tooth.
All went pear shaped this year when my arthritis flared up and left me stuck indoors for most of January and February. Gradually the weight started to creep up again. Being in so much pain and unable to do pretty much anything left me feeling low.
I turned to sugary foods for comfort and we relied on takeaways and convenience food a lot more as I found myself unable to cook at times due to the back pain. Before I knew it all of the weight I'd lost crept back on.
Now I find myself in a place of knowing that I can do it again because I did it before. I can cut out the sugary foods. So I'm starting to make some clean-eating sweet treats again. I can turn to these in times of craving.
Inspired by the Kamalive cashew creme egg I had at Easter I decided to make a sweet treat that contained homemade chocolate, cashew creme and a little bit of turmeric. I like them frozen as that helps the cashew cream set nicely and gives them a nicer texture than just chilled.
This recipe made 12 ice-cube size Chocolate and Cashew Cream bites as well as around 4 slightly bigger ones (not pictured) which I made in silicone cupcake cases for a different shape.
The white 'bloom' on the chocolate is actually frost. The chocolate actually turned out beautifully shiny.
Ingredients for chocolate:
125g cacao butter
63g cacao powder (I used Aduna cacao powder).
45g maple syrup
pinch of ndali vanilla powder
Ingredients for cashew cream:
150g raw cashew nuts (mine were from Nutspick)
100ml Almond milk (I used Rude Health Almond milk - it's my favourite!)
pinch of himalayan pink salt
Pinch of baobab powder (optional). I used Aduna Baobab powder.
Pinch turmeric (I used Steenbergs)
1. You need to be a little bit organised to soak the cashew first for 3-4 hours before you begin. Soak them in water that generously covers them with a pinch of himalayan salt.
2. When you are ready to make these, begin by making the chocolate. Melt the cacao butter either in a bain marie or gently in a microwave in short bursts - checking and stirring regularly.
3. Stir in the cacao powder, vanilla powder and maple syrup into the melted cacao butter.
4. Pour a small amount of the chocolate into each of your ice cube trays or silicone cupcake cases. You should have around half the chocolate still left.
5. Pop into the freezer whilst you prepare the cashew cream.
6. To make the cashew cream, thoroughly rinse the soaked cashews. Place them in a blender with the almond milk. Blend, blend and keep blending until it is really smooth. Add the baobab powder if using and blend again.
7. Take a small amount of the cashew cream and place in a small bowl, add a pinch or two of tumeric and mix. So you should now have one bowl of plain cashew cream and one small bowl of tumeric cashew cream.
8. By now your first layer of chocolate should have started to set in the freezer. Bring it out of the freezer and spoon a dollop of cashew cream on top. Then add a smaller dollop of the tumeric cashew cream to the centre of that.
9. Place in the freezer for just a few moments.
10. Using the remaining chocolate (you may need to gently re-heat in a bain marie or microwave if it has begun to set hard) pour over a little chocolate to cover the cashew cream in each of the ice-cubes or silicone moulds.
10. Pop back into the freezer to set.
I prefer to eat these straight from the freezer but if you want them slightly softer leave at room temperature for a few minutes before eating.