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When you say Valentine I say chocolate!
But the question is: do you know why chocolate or to be precise cacao is associated with Valentine’s day?
The reason is the presence of 3 different substances in its molecular composition:
Phenylethelamine is a monoamine alkaloid also called the peptide of love! A molecule that we release when we experience the state of being of love…
Theobromine ( from the greek root “God”) which is a chemical relative of caffeine but without the effect on the nervous system.
Anandamine ( from the sanskrit root “Bliss”) which a natural endorphine, only found in cacao.
So you see cacao can make us feel gooooooood!
My valentine is a chocolate monster, so I have decided to make one of his favourite desserts for our Thursday night candle light dinner… Needless to say that the sample tarts have been devoured with great enthusiasm!
Decadent Raw chocolate and caramel tart
I use a variety of raw nuts depending on my mood and what I have in my pantry.
- 1/4 c of hazelnuts
- 1/4 c of peeled almonds
- 2 T od melted coconut oil
- 1 T of date paste
- 1 pinch of salt (Pink Himalayan or Celtic salt)
In a blender or a food processor, mix the nuts until you obtain a shortbread texture. Transfer into a mixing bowl and add the salt and the wet ingredients.
Press the shortbread into the mould using either a tablespoon or you fingers.
Cover and refrigerate.
- 1/4 c of raw cacao powder
- 3/4 c of agave syrup
- 2 T of extra virgin olive oil ( mild in flavour)
- 1 t of mesquite powder
- 1 pinch of salt
Using a personal blender or a highspeed blender, mix the ingredients. Of course you can also whisk by hand in a mixing bowl… Pour the agave and olive oil first, then the cacao and mesquite powder.
Meanwhile prepare the caramel.
There are 2 options here, either you can use Lucuma powder or Mesquite powder.
Mesquite will give you a darker malty caramel, whereas the lucuma will be lighter and more like toffee.
The ingredients are the same:
- 2 t of either mesquite or lucuma powder
- 2 T of maple syrup
- 1 pinch of salt
“Where there is love, there is life” Mahatma Gandhi
A lovely indulgence either for breakfast or breakfast. Being French, crepes mean a big deal to me. This recipe is so simple it’s ridiculous and the result is delicious.
Everybody loves it, that’s a simple fact!
The cool thing is that you can play with the base, that is to say that you can use such different fruits as Kiwi, strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, mango, pineapple… But also with the filling : mashed fruits, fresh fruits, lemon/strawberry cashew cream…
1 cup of mashed fruit ( here Banana)
1/2 c of ground flax seeds
1/2 c of puried or spring water
1-2 of honey/maple or agave ( depending on how sweet are the fruits)
For the banana crepes I have added a pinch of cinnamon.
In a blender, mix all the ingredients until smooth.
On a lined Paraflexx sheet ( or parchenim paper), using a spatula spread the mixture evenly. You can spread the mixture onto a square or a circle or even make individual crepes…
Dehydrate for 3-4 hours at 104° until the crepes are dry, you can flip them at 30 minutes the end if you want, but it is not necessary.
Once they are dry, peel the crepes off, slice in four or roll cepending on how you spread them. You can keep them rolled in the fridge and wrapped in film for a week!
The filling was a mashed banana with maple syrup ( 1/2 T) and cinnamon (1/4 t) and fresh blueberries.
It is so yummy that my mouth is salivating writing this post
A bit of advice: let the crepe sets with the filling for 5 to 10 minutes it will even better…
It will definetely be on our week end menu!
It is with excitement that I welcome this New Year, with lots of projects and expectations…
I am thrilled to be able to share my knowledge with new people this year and to help them change their health/food/lifestyle habits.
My resolution for this New Year:
Be kind to myself and others
Manifest my dreams
Step out of my comfort zone
Be more grateful
Be more in the present moment
Be honest with my inner Self
Smile and laugh more
Be in charge of my words
On a material level, I have also decided to step away from my computer more often! An email can wait to be sent , an article can wait to be read or posted…
I have also decided to be more organized, to compartmentalized my weekly schedule, by alloting each task a certain amount of time and to schedule my tasks more effienciently during my work day. My wish, is by doing so I will be free to meditate more, to be more creative. I started painting over the holidays and I found it very soothing and meditating, so I wish to continue.
Some Healthy tips
Drink plenty of water/herbal tea
- Plan your weekly menu ahead
- Try to be Raw one day a week
- Try to be liquid until dinner i.e having juices or smoothies
- Fast once a week or when you feel tired or getting sick and when the seasons are changing, new moon…
- Breathe more, air your home
- Move for at least 30 minutes a day
- Eat more natural food
- Throw away all your chemical loaded cosmetics or beauty products.
- Be happy, you and only you control your thoughts
My projects: Raw workshops, Detox retreats, next retreat is on the 22nd of January (check my website Biarritz Ocean Detox Yoga) an (e)book…
Well, I have to tell you, these little things can be pretty addictive and I know one or two people who are truffles monsters…
The festive season is the time of the year when truffles are in the spotlight. So here is a raw version that will satisfy your sweet tooth without damaging your health, only if you don’t eat too many
The main ingredient is of course: the food of the gods aka Raw cacao! ( see my previous post about the amazing benefits of Raw cacao: http://www.liloucooks.com/raw-cacao/)
It’s beautiful isn’t it? I love Cacao, the pods are beautiful, the colors are so vibrant and I like that they grow right in the jungle among coffee tree and vanilla trees. If you want to learn more about the cacao I love visit the website : www.bigtreefarms.com
So to make these little piece of heaven, you will need the following:
50g of melted cacao butter, shredded
50g of melted coconut oil ( extra virgin and organic of course!!!!)
60 g of nut butter ( almond, cashew or hazelnut)
60g of raw cacao powder
30 g of raw cacao nibs
3T of agave syrup
1 vanilla bean, scraped or 1 t of natural extract
1 T of coffee extract (the best one is medecine flower extract, if you using that one two drops are enough, according to your taste)
First, you need to melt the cacao butter and coconut oil. In a bowl pour some water that has boiled, put the cacao butter in an another bowl and place it on top of the water, allow to melt. Do the exact same for the coconut oil.
Mix the two liquids with the nut butter, the vanilla, the coffee extract and the agave in a blender at medium speed. Add the cacao nibs and blend at medium speed.
Finally add the cacao and blend more.
Pour in a bowl, and allow to harden. At this time of the year, I leave outside for a few minutes (it depends of course on where you live.)
The idea is for the cacao butter and coconut oil to solidify but not to be rock hard, otherwise you will not be able to roll them.
My technic consists of, scooping a little amount, preform it as a ball and then roll it in the palms of my hands. Then I coat them in raw cacao powder (coco powder works well too but without the coffee extract then).
You may have to wash your hands quite a few times during the process. My tip is to finish rinsing your hands with cold water.
You can keep your truffles up to one month in a dry, dark and not too warm place.