When I was in the final stages of getting the Raw Fusion book series finished I traveled to Arizona for the Raw Spirit Festival (2010) where I met a very talented chef, Karen Osborne. She made a spectacular dessert for one of the events and I asked her if she’d like to contribute to the recipes portion of the book.
Her Carob Crispy Candies are so simple and satisfying that I include them in the “Cravings Conquerors” category. It’s hard to believe that something that tastes this good can provide such health benefits!
Providing you have these items on hand, these candies take only minutes to prepare and a couple of hours to set in the fridge.
Sprouted/dehydrated buckwheat is definitely something you may not be accustomed to if you are not a raw food enthusiast, but the Raw Fusion Philosophy is to give you practical and manageable tips, tricks and techniques to amp up your nutrition and provide healthy alternatives for your favorite comfort foods. (Think Nestle’s Crunch on this recipe!) See the step-by-step instructions for preparing the buckwheat below along with a how-to video.
The great thing about having sprouted buckwheat in your freezer is that you can have Raw-nola instead of store-bought cereals that are loaded with sugar and additives. Even the more natural ones carry health risks because of the acrylamides and AGE’s (advanced glyco-oxidation end products) which are the innate by-products produced by heating and toasting grains and starchy vegetables. Just pour some in a bowl, add some fresh and/or dried fruits, pour in some nut (or dairy) milk and you’ve got the real breakfast of champions!
You can replace the carob powder with cacao (unsweeted chocolate/cocoa powder). Carob does not have the exact flavor of chocolate but it is also not a stimulant. Ground from St. John’s Bread, an edible pod that grows on a tree, carob is part of the legume family and is very low in saturated fat, cholesterol and sodium. It is also a good source of Riboflavin, Calcium, Potassium, Copper and Manganese, and a terrific source of Dietary Fiber. You can usually find it in a roasted form in most health food stores; Some are now carrying raw versions. Either will work for this recipe.
Coconut butter is made from the flesh of the mature coconut; there are videos on YouTube on how to make your own coconut butter as its pricey, but what a great pantry item! You can turn out an instant dessert and it’s also lovely for flavoring soups and drinks. Sometimes a tablespoon right out of the jar is enough to settle down a sweet craving. Loaded with antioxidants, just about all of the new genre of coconut-based products (like lower-glycemic coconut nectar) are pleasing to the palate. You can find the Artisana and Nutiva brands in most health food stores. My particular favorite comes from Living Tree Community in California.
Carob Crispy Candies
Makes 12 servings
- 4 TB. coconut butter
- ¼ ts. Vanilla powder or extract
- 2 TB. coconut nectar, agave, maple syrup or other liquid sweetener
- 2 tsp. carob powder
- 2 TB. raw almond butter
- 4. TB. sprouted dehydrated buckwheat (a gluten-free grain; see below)
- Pinch of salt
Directions: In a bowl, stir together the coconut butter, the coconut nectar and the almond butter until smooth. Add the salt and vanilla powder, and stir until incorporated. Add carob powder, and stir until smooth. Add buckwheat, and stir until evenly distributed. Line a mini-muffin pan with paper baking cups (you can also use smaller candy-sized paper cups and make more of these). Fill each one with 2 teaspoons of mixture. Chill for at least one hour. Store these in the refrigerator. Make extra sprouted dehydrated buckwheat and store in freezer to have on hand.
Thanks to Karen Osbourne for this amazing recipe!
How to Sprout Buckwheat Groats*
- Buy raw buckwheat groats (usually in bulk bin at health food store).
- Soak 1-2 cups overnight.
- Pour off soak water and rinse.
- Place a paper towel (preferably plain white) at the bottom of a colander.
- Pour the soaked groats in there and cover with a moist paper towel.
- Place colander on a dish to catch any water seepage. Now cover with a clean kitchen towel.
- Store in a corner of your kitchen. If you are home during the day, rinse once or twice.
- By the end of the day or next morning they should have a “little tail” – that’s all you need – not a long sprout.
Drying (2 options):
- For completely raw, place sprouted groats on parchment paper or on screen and dehydrate 8-10 hours. Make sure they are completely dry before storing.
- For Raw Fusion, line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and place sprouted groats. Use your oven’s lowest temperature setting and just roast until very dry to touch (maybe 2-3 hours; check after 1). Let cool and store in a jar or plastic bag.
THESE STORE VERY WELL IN FREEZER AND STAY FRESH FOR AT LEAST 90 DAYS.
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