So I am back to my raw chocolate making ways after a hectic few weeks of setting up Primal Eye Magazine, editing articles, and I really do not know what else!
I thought nothing could be better than a raw ‘Mars’ bar! I crave that gorgeous nougat like texture and the smooth caramel from time to time but I have to say that I do not miss that super sugary taste one bit. These don’t taste like Mars bars, I’m sorry, but they do taste deliciously creamy and if you eat straight out of the freezer they keep a nougat like bite. You will probably notice that in my pictures it looks like my chocolate has suffered from some seriously icky bloom but it hasn’t, these bars were straight out of the freezer and covered in frost. The first image you see is once the bar had ‘defrosted’ somewhat and as you can see the filling has begun to soften up and takes more of the texture of a marzipan I guess. Another thing that you may notice is the fact that I accidentally made my nougat before my caramel and well ummm… yeah there are gaps! This won’t happen with yours as long as you have more common sense than myself!
You really have to use medjool dates for your caramel otherwise it will not take on that smooth and caramel like taste and texture in the slightest. I used coconut milk powder in this recipe but you can sub for coconut flour in the nougat and coconut cream in the caramel if you wish. If you can’t get hold of raw chocolate ingredients either melt 250g of your favourite raw chocolate or even regular chocolate if you aren’t able to get hold of that either, although stick to 85% or over. You must also soak your cashew nuts for around 8 hours or overnight in just enough water to cover them along with 1 tsp of Himlayan pink salt to take out all of those horrible nasties!
I was going to call these Venus bars but then I thought nobody would even come across them on the old Google… Anyways these would make the most perfect Father’s Day gift and you don’t need a chocolate mould to make these but if you do want to make them like I have then you want to pick up one of these moulds. Although I have noted an overall time of 2 hours I don’t think it would actually take more than 1 hour to make if you’re an experienced cook. They’re not at all complicated but maybe a little fiddly!
This recipe will require you to use a food processor and either a chocolate mould or shallow dish/brownie pan.
Yields: 6 large bars or 36 bite sized cubes
Preparation Time: 1 hour
Setting Time: 1 hour
For the ‘nougat’:
1 cup soaked raw cashews (must be soaked for at least 8 hours or overnight)
1/2 cup ground almonds
3 tbsp/45ml raw coconut milk powder (or 1/2-1 tbsp coconut flour)
3 medjool dates (pitted)
2 tbsp/30ml raw coconut sugar
1.5 tbsp/22.5ml cacao butter (melted)
1.5 tbsp/22.5ml coconut oil (melted)
Pinch of Himalayan pink salt
For the ‘caramel’:
1/2 cup pitted medjool dates (packed)
1 tbsp/15ml raw almond butter
1 tbsp/15ml raw coconut milk powder (or sub 1/2 tbsp coconut cream)
1 tbsp/15 ml raw coconut sugar
1 tsp/5ml cashew/almond milk
Pinch of Himalayan pink salt
For the raw chocolate:
125g cacao liquor/solids/paste
125g cacao butter
2-3 tbsp/30-45ml maple syrup
- Drain and rinse your soaked cashews under a warm tap until the water runs clean. Be sure to shake off as much moisture as possible.
- Place all of the ingredients for your caramel into the bowl of your food processor and blend into a smooth paste. Scrape the sides down frequently to ensure equal distribution of the ingredients. Scrape out your caramel and set aside.
- Place all of your nougat ingredients into a food processor and blend into a nice smooth paste. Be sure to scrape down the sides frequently in order to catch every last bit!
- If using a chocolate mould divide your caramel mixture into 6 equal parts and distribute into each indentation of the mould. Press down until you have a nice even layer of your caramel. Repeat the process with the nougat mixture on top of the caramel. If you do not have a chocolate mould line and grease a shallow rectangular dish or brownie pan with cling film, press in your nougat layer first, flattening with your hands into a nice even layer. Place your caramel mixture on top and repeat the process. Place your mould/dish into the freezer for 30 minutes until firm.
- Place your raw chocolate ingredients over a bain-marie/double boiler on a low heat and melt the ingredients until fully combined. Be sure to give a good stir and set to one side.
- Remove your nougat and caramel from the freezer. If using a mould carefully pull apart the edges first before pushing the underside and turning out the caramel. If you are using a dish then get a blunt knife and lever around the sides of the dish (underneath the cling film). Pull up the side of the excess cling film to lift out your block of caramel and nougat. Cut into whatever sized or shape bar that you’d like or even bite sized pieces.
- If using a mould pour enough chocolate into your empty mould to fill just around 1/3 of the indentations. Pop your caramel and nougat bars caramel side down into each of the chocolate filled moulds and gently press until the chocolate begins to seep out from the sides. When this happens be sure to have a knife or spatula to push the leaking chocolate over the bar itself. Repeat and return to the freezer for 15 minutes. If you have pre-cut your bars the simply dip in chocolate and leave to drip dry on a wire wrack or place on some greaseproof paper within the freezer until set. If you have used your moulds then follow the next step.
- Remove your moulds from the freezer. Take about 1.5 tbsp of your remaining melted chocolate and spoon over the back of each chocolate bar. You will have to do each one individually and use a little silicone spatula or a knife to coat the back of each bar. Return to the freezer for another 15 minutes until fully set. When removing from the moulds be sure to pull away the sides gently before pushing the underside. Work slowly as if you are not careful the chocolate could separate from the bar.
- Store in an airtight container within the fridge or freezer and consume within 1-2 weeks. Although this is not likely to happen as they are far too yummy!!!