March 02, 2013

Dietary Needs.

We had some friends over last night to play games and hang out. I'm sure you can relate with me when I say that I like to have something for my guests to gnaw on while they're over. You know, something to show them how much of a super working woman/housewife I can be, something other than water.

Well, the couple we had over last night have some pretty intense dietary needs. She is allergic to, essentially, everything, and he is on a similar diet to hers and has lost 50 lbs as a result since the fall (I only add that part in because it's freaking inspiring). When I texted him yesterday to get some snack ideas he told me that gluten and sugar were no-noes but that everything else was fine. I knew he was lying so I asked about dairy. Okay, no dairy, either. What about Stevia as a sweetener? You know, since some people hate it. Apparently Stevia is evil poison and the only sweeteners they can handle are pure maple syrup and coconut sugar. Totally simple, right?

I'd been thinking that chocolate covered strawberries would be a nice treat since (thankfully) straight-up, no additive chocolate is permissible. Chocolate covered strawberries are always a nice dessert to make because they look so fancy and they're super easy.

Enter this:

I blew their minds. Six bricks of that goodness, a cup or so of coconut sugar, almond milk to get the consistency where I needed it, and a couple lbs of strawberries later we were happy, happy campers.

I don't want to brag, but they loved them.

The only thing about them is that I didn't have time to stick them in the fridge to cool before we ate them, so they were a little soft. She actually said she appreciated that they were soft instead of hard, so that was nice. While I do like the harder chocolate myself, it is nice when it's not falling everywhere. I'm a messy eater so I usually find leftovers in my scarf later. Like a two year old.

So, my recipe.

You need:

1 cup approx. Almond milk
6 squares Unsweetened Bakers Chocolate
1 cup appprox. Coconut Sugar
2lbs Strawberries
A double boiler

(I actually just got my first double boiler from my in-laws' junk pile at Christmas time. I used to just use a Pyrex bowl over a boiling pot and it works just as well. I guess you could microwave it, too, but I feel like you're more likely to burn the chocolate that way. You should also never microwave a pot.)

Set the burner to around half, and melt the chocolate. Stir it constantly, making sure to scrape the bottom of the pot, to ensure it doesn't burn.

Add the coconut sugar as the chocolate is melting and stir it in.

Add almond milk as needed to smooth out the consistency.

Once chocolate is smooth, dip strawberries and place on wax paper to cool. If there is leftover chocolate, dip the strawberries again.

Eat them all.

I had a bit of leftover chocolate so six squares might be a little excessive, but I figure it's better to have a bit too much than not enough. Since I'm not sure if it solidified eventually, you might even be able to melt it again. I sent it home with our friends because she's pregnant and can get away with eating it with a spoon.

I really like dark chocolate, so this was right up my alley and any potential bitterness was cancelled out by the strawberries.

I had also never tried coconut sugar and didn't know what to expect. It wasn't bad, a bit like brown sugar, but I didn't find it as sweet. I only tried a couple crystals, though.

All in all, I call it a smashing success and I dare you to try it.

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