Cacao

Hot Cacao.late Banana + Buckwheat Oats

Don’t you love random inexpensive discoveries?

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After work last week I went into woolworths (or safeaway) looking for psyllium husk so I could make a huge batch of flaxseed and nut crackers and couldn’t find them, so I checked out their new-to-store basket of organic macro foods and found a packet of Raw Buckwheat.

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Sweet Potato Caramel Chocolate Brownies

OH. MY. GOD….. these brownies! WOW!

They are the yummiest, fudgiest, melt-in-your-mouth, rich chocolate brownies I have ever tasted and they are 100% CLEAN and HEALTHY! Oh, and they are also completely vegan, gluten-free, dairy-free, refined-sugar free and incredibly addictive! Perfect for everybody!

Traditional Chocolate Brownies are made with egg, flour, cocoa and butter but NOT these ones! Sweet Potato acts a natural sweetener combined with medjool dates, and is an excellent Low GI substitute for eggs and butter to create a fudge appearance and texture.

By using healthier alternatives like cacao instead of cocoa and almond meal instead of white self-raising flour, you automatically decrease the amount of calories and increase the nutritional values per serve, which allows you to STILL ENJOY the good things in life like chocolate, sweets and ice-cream! HOLLA to that, seriously, Why should you have to miss out when theres a healthier version? 

Chocolate brownies

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Makes 16  (4cmx4cm) | 1 serve = 1 brownie | Total time: 1 hour

 Ingredients 

  • 2 sweet potatoes, cut into 5cm circles, skin on for extra fibre 
  • 1 Cup (20) medjool dates, pitted 
  • 1 Cup almond (or hazelnut) meal
  • ½ cup raw cacao
  • ½ cup arrowroot flour (gluten free)
  • ¼ cup maple syrup
  • ½ cup desiccated coconut
  • Method 
  1. Line a baking 30x20cm baking tray (standard) with baking paper and pre-heat oven to 180 degrees
  2. Cut sweet potato into 5cm circles and place into a steamer until very soft (20 mins). You want the potato to look a dark orange and be soft enough to mash. 
  3. Add sweet potato, medjool dates, cacao into a high-powered food processor and blend until combined enough to resemble a smooth appearance.
  4. Add almond meal, arrowroot flour and coconut and blend until all ingredients are completely mixed through. At this stage the mixture should be smooth and thick. If its a little sticky, add a tablespoon of almond meal until you you’re happy with the consistency. 
  5. Scoop mixture into baking tray and using the back of a spoon or pressing firmly with your palms, smooth and even out . Its important to make sure the brownie mixture is even otherwise you will end up with different thickness.
  6. Place in oven for 15- 20 minutes and when soft and spongy, remove from oven and cool for 10 minutes before slicing into squares.

Enjoy!

* excuse the change in text fonts, for some reason it changed once I begun putting bullets in :/

Make sure to join the BON family on Instagram and Facebook for more recipes like these! 

Kayleigh, x

VALENTINES DAY Tasting: Dairy Free Raw Chocolate

Oh my goodness! You’ll be in Chocolate heaven once you’ve tried these!

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Before I get to that, I have some good news!.. I have officially written 20 posts and reached 20 subscribers! YAY! It doesn’t sound like a lot but every subscriber is another ‘naturer’ I can share my passion and love with! So THANKYOU to those who have subscribed- I feel humbled and honoured to have your support and kindness! I appreciate you all!

Back to Chocolate heaven… You may have noticed I’m a bit of a REAL and RAW chocolate lover- the good stuff with cacao, not cocoa, of course! However, IN SAYING THAT… you MAY or MAY NOT find me indulging in a row of crunchy cadbury once in a while  🙈🙊

Cacao vs Cocoa- whats the difference? 

The best thing about this recipe?…  Its chocolate, duh! Haha but seriously,  its very simple and you can personalise it by including your own superfood additions (see below for ideas)  to make all sorts of delicious combinations and flavours. (Yes, you can add a little popping candy and totally not feel guilty about it!)

Just a QUICK NOTE before you get adventurous: Make sure your equipment is super dooper dry before you begin because water and chocolate are not friends!

Enjoy!

DAIRY FREE RAW CHOCOLATE

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Ingredients:

  • ½ cup cacao butter, melted
  • ¼ cup cacao powder
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup/honey or agave nectar (sweeteners)
  • Himalayan salt, to taste

How to:

  1. In a bowl, use a wooden spoon to mix cacao butter, cacao and coconut oil until smooth.
  2. Add sweetener of choice and stir vigorously until all ingredients are combined.
  3. Pour mixture into a lined baking tray,  roughly 2 cm thick. Place into freezer for 10 minutes or until chocolate is solid. LOVERS NOTE: you can use a heart chocolate mould if you prefer to have cute portion-sized heart bites to romantically share with your other half 
  4. Crack chocolate into pieces and serve cold.
  5. Store in a seal-tight container in the freezer. Chocolate lasts up to 2 months.
If you like extra crunch, crush activated nuts (below) and sprinkle them on the baking paper and pour the chocolate over the top. You can also mix them through. 

 Other Additions:

  • activated nuts: hazelnuts, almonds, cashews, macadamias, brazil nuts, pepitas
  • raw cacao nibs
  • quinoa puffs
  • dried fruit: goji berries, mulberries, sultanas, cherries, blueberries, dried ginger, cranberries, coconut
  • edible rose petals

Love this recipe? Perhaps you’d also love my Chocolate Bliss Balls,  Choc Mint Bites or Quinoa Pancakes  . For exclusive recipes and more, FOLLOW BON on Instagram: bodyofnature and Facebook: BodyOfNatureNutrition and SUBSCRIBE at the top right-hand corner of this page.

 

Kayleigh, x

CACAO vs COCOA: Whats the difference?

In Superfood feature #1 we talked about the benefits of Apple Cider Vinegar. Now its time for #2 – a superfood more commonly known and popularly used in many recipes, especially Paleo inspired.

C A C A O (pronounced ka-kow) comes from a Amazonian fruiting tree, found in tropical places, including Mexico and South America. It is the unfermented bean from the very first stage of chocolate making, which makes Cacao the purest form of chocolate you can eat because its raw with enzymes and no antioxidants have been removed.

cacao beans

Cacao Beans

 

So, what are the benefits of this so-good stuff?

  • Cacao is considered a ‘super-antioxidant’ because it is has a high ORAC rating (measurement of antioxidant values)
  • The unprocessed bean lowers insulin resistance 
  • A great source of magnesium which helps with calcium absorption, metabolism and protein synthesis making it a great source  for muscle relaxation and stress relief (hence that girly monthly craving!)
  • Cacao contains iron, potassium, calcium, copper, omega-3 EFA, and zinc. Also, amino acid tryptophan which leads to the production of serotonin, a neurotransmitter that promotes joy and happy feelings!
  • As a high antioxidant, it helps protect the heart, cellular damage and keeps us looking and  younger and healthier

How do I consume Cacao? Here are some of my popular recipes: 

People often get confused with CACAO & COCOA although they sound the same, their nutritional values and processing are quite different.

Cacao vs Cocoa

Cacao vs Cocoa

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Whats the difference between Cacao and Cocoa?

Cacao is cold-pressed unroasted cacao beans from a tree, without any additions of preservatives and flavours. The cold-pressing removes any  fat (cacao butter) while keeping its living enzymes. Its high in magnesium, iron and  antioxidants, vitamins and minerals, but can be quite costly at approx. $7.99 per 100g.

Cocoa is the end result of highly roasted cacao beans processed with added preservatives and flavours, including sugars. Roasting removes any living enzymes, and as a result, lowers the overall nutritional value to almost nothing  😦

Now you know the benefits, how can you incorporate Cacao into your diet? 

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  • Cacao Beans: as whole for a quick energy snack
  • Cacao Nibs: add for extra crunch to your morning breakfast, desserts, granola, snacks, salads, as a sprinkle garnish
  • Cacao Powder: smoothies, bliss balls, desserts, hot chocolate
  • Cacao Butter: icing, on toast instead of butter

TIP: In a chocolate smoothie, try to use a diary free milk alternative like coconut or almond milk so you can reel in ALL the antioxidant benefits

Cacao is one of my favourite superfoods with acai berry- yum O! I like to use it in almost everything but BE CAREFUL, only use what is said in the recipe or ½ tsp – 1 teaspoon if your making a smoothie, as the taste is extremely strong! The last thing you want to do is spit out a glass of chocolate smoothie into someones face because you’ve put too much Cacao in!.. Although, that would be quite hilarious and worth a million bucks caught on camera!

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Kayleigh, x