Dark chocolate is one of those simple pleasures in life.
I love a simple bite of dark chocolate, but sometimes want something more. Something with different texture.
And most store-bought truffles are full of butter, sugar or other nasty things that spoil the fun of indulging. These truffles are VEGAN, but you wouldn't know it from the taste.
Inspired by a couple truffle in a new plant-based magazine called Thrive, I concocted this easy but delicious recipe. The secret and surprise ingredient is cardamom.
How These Truffles Boost Your Health
Everything we eat helps us or hurts us. So you can eat foods that boost your wellness or make you sicker.
In Ayurvedic medicine, cardamom is used to help the digestion, meaning it helps your body by increasing enzyme activity. It also dispels gas (carminative) -- always a plus when you're on a romantic evening. Cardamom adds a delicious flavor and enhances the depth of the chocolate and the sweetness from the dates.
Dates are sweet, but unrefined -- they are a whole food, not a processed sweetener. I don't recommend eating them everyday, but they're perfect to sweeten desserts.
Cocoa is also a superfood when it isn't mixed with lost of fat and sugar. Cocoa promotes a high level of antioxidant activity in your body. Antioxidants help to prevent disease and aging.
Were you scared to eat nuts for fear of gaining weight? In truth, nuts promote weight loss rather than weight gain. Studies show that people who added calories from nuts to their daily intake actually lost weight. Buy raw nuts or small amounts of roasted because they go rancid quickly.
Unless you live in a cave, you've probably heard outlandish claims about coconut oil: it will help with everything: weight loss, aging, bad skin, cancer, you name it:) Don't believe all the hype. But coconut oil is a healthy source of fat in moderation.
Dipping the truffles in melted chocolate puts their deliciousness over the top. Remember there's nothing wrong with a little bit of naughtiness sometimes. Too many rules makes life boring.
20 Medjool dates, pitted
1 1/2 cups hazelnuts, almonds would work well too
2-3 tablespoons cocoa powder (Penzey's spices has high-quality cocoa powder)
1-2 tablespoons coconut oil, start with 1 and if your mixture doesn't stick together add the second. I used very dry dates so I needed the extra oil.
pinch of salt
4 cardamom pods or 1/4 teaspoon of cardamom powder (a little goes a long way)
Optional: 100g Dark chocolate + 1 tsp coconut or olive oil for topping
- If using cardamom pods, remove the seeds from the pods and discard the green covering.
- Grind the hazelnuts and cardamom seeds in a food processor into a fine powder. Add the dates, coconut oil, cocoa powder, salt and coconut oil to the processor. Pulse until the mixture is completely combined. It should be a paste, not too crumbly. If the mixture doesn't stick together, add a bit more coconut oil and pulse again.
- Use a small ice cream scoop or your hands to form balls from the mixture. Place on a tray coated with parchment paper. Chill in the fridge for 30 minutes to set.
- Meanwhile, chop the chocolate, then melt over very low heat with the oil. Stir frequently and turn off heat as soon as the chocolate melts. Use toothpicks to dip the balls into the melted chocolate, then place on the parchment paper. Chill for one hour in the fridge to set completely.
Did you make these? If so let me know how they turned out.
Or if you have another truffle recipe, please share it in the comments.