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RAW VEGAN CHOCOLATE HAZELNUT FUDGE BITES

RAW VEGAN CHOCOLATE HAZELNUT FUDGE BITES

These fudgey brownie ball bite things may not look glamorous or fancy but WHOA they might be one of the best tasting desserts I've ever EVER made.  If chocolate is your thing, and you're looking for something healthy and quick, then you've gotta try this recipe!  I've been on a chocolate kick lately, and when I spotted hazelnuts in the bulk bin at the store, I thought I'd try my hand at making a chocolate spread like Nutella or Rawtella- both of which I've actually never bought before!  Nutella contains soy, preservatives and processed sugar, all no-no's for me.  Rawtella, a much better option, still contains processed sugar, albeit low glycemic coconut sugar, but also let's face it- it's expensive.  I threw a few ingredients into the food processor to try making a spread using only dates as the sweetener.  I like dates in desserts because they're full of fiber and minerals, and they're a whole food!  Before attempting this hazelnut spread, I made raw almond butter countless times, and because the nuts are so hard, they take a long time to process in order for their natural oils to seep out and create a creamy consistency.  I braced myself to be patient since hazelnuts too are a very hard nut.  I processed for a bit, stopped the machine to let it cool and I scraped down the sides with a spatula, then processed again.  Repeat.  My daughter insisted on tasting the powdery consistency before it could ever become creamy, and in seeing her delight, I knew the flavor was perfect.  But this experiment ended up taking an unexpected and very exciting turn...

my daughter and Curious George helped

my daughter and Curious George helped

After about 20 minutes of processing my patience grew thin- I still hadn't achieved a creamy consistency.  I added some oil and water to try to help matters.  Instead of becoming more creamy, the whole concoction transformed into a lovely, buttery, rich dark chocolate dough!  Pleasantly surprised, I scrapped the whole Nutella spread idea and simply rolled the dough into balls, which tasted so amazing hot out of the processor that it took all will power not to eat it all!  I stuck the balls in the freezer, and just an hour later, voila!  FUDGE!!!  FUDGE I TELL YOU!!! This dough could just as easily be pressed into a square glass container, frozen, then cut into brownies if you prefer.  I imagine you could also flatten the dough balls into cookie shapes, throw them into the oven for 15 minutes and you'd have a lovely cookie.  So many possibilities here because the basic flavor combo is just that good.  For this post, I wanted to keep it simple, and share that not all experiments in the kitchen always work out as planned- at least not for me.  Embrace life's accidents, eat more chocolate, and enjoy, enjoy enjoy! XOXO

PS. If it helps to know, dates provide folate, Vitamins A and K, potassium, calcium and iron, while hazelnuts offer potassium, calcium, magnesium, plus Vitamin E for skin and hair health. And last but not least, chocolate provides not only happiness ;) but an abundance of antioxidants <3

Raw Vegan Chocolate Hazelnut Fudge

2 cups raw unsalted hazelnuts

4 pitted medjool dates

2 Tbsp raw cacao powder or organic cocoa powder

2 Tbsp virgin unrefined coconut oil

2 Tbsp filtered water

pinch sea salt

Process all of the ingredients in a food processor for roughly 15-20 minutes until you've achieved a buttery dough consistency that sticks together when pinched between two fingers.  You will need to stop the processor every couple of minutes to let it cool for 30 seconds or so, and scrape down the sides with a spatula.  Once you've created the dough, use clean hands to form small balls.  Store the ones that you didn't scarf down immediately in the freezer for up to 3 weeks.  Eat cold, straight from the freezer.  YUM

 

 

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