If you haven’t heard of Pana Chocolate, they’re the raw vegan blocks of chocolate that have taken off in health world. With a range of flavours using organic ingredients, they’ve been satisfying the sweet tooth of the health conscious and vegan the past few years. Check out my post on the Pana Chocolate store here.
For both the 2016 & 2017 Melbourne Good Food And Wine Month, Pana Chocolate hosted raw dessert demonstration classes and a behind the scenes tour of their kitchens. I’ve been fortunate enough to attend both of them. Just prior to the release of the 2016 tickets I was talking about wanting to do a raw foods class so jumped online right away after hearing about the Pana class. In last years class we got to witness the speed at which they hand wrap the blocks of chocolate (yes they hand wrap every single block ), make our own caramel lava Easter eggs and decorate raw Pana cakes.
This year, in celebration of the release of Pana’s first dessert recipe book, we learnt how to make individual, filled, raw chocolates and put together our own raw tart desserts. Having my own copy of the Pana Chocolate recipe book, I’ve given one of the simplier filled raw chocolate recipes a go. At least I thought it would be simple. My chocolates sure didn’t look pretty as the picture in the book but most importantly, the process and end result was very yummy.
The recipe requires a bain-marie for melting the chocolate in but as I don’t have one I made my own. Easy. A metal bowl over a pot of low simmering water. As the book suggested, I had to add a tsp of coconut oil to the melting Pana block to get a smooth and runny, but stick thick, consistency.
The tricky part came next. Lining the chocolate mould (or ice cube tray in my case) with the melted chocolate. This was messy and definitely requires practice. Maybe I made a mess, but it was a tasty mess.
Because I was only making about a third of the recipe, I struggled to blend the filling to be nice and smooth, because the small amount of ingredients kept getting caught under the blades. I think the trick is to make this recipe in bulk. It didn’t stop me from eating the filling mixture straight from my blender, it tasted that amazing! My mum said the flavour would be perfect at christmas time.
Definitely a good recipe to start with from the Pana Chocolate Recipe Book, when first venturing into the world of home made filled chocolates. I’m sure once I master the basics I’ll be able to create anything I dream of.
Cardamom Dreams Raw Chocolates
Makes 30 small chocolates
- High speed blender
- Piping bag
- Chocolate moulds
- 10 medjool dates, pitted
- 120ml coconut cream
- 5 cardamom pops, seeds only
- 2.5 tbsp cacao powder
- 2-3 blocks of Pana Chocolate Raw Cacao (I’d recommend 3)
- Melt the Pana blocks in a Bain Marie or in a metal bowl over simmering water. Stirring to make sure it doesn’t burn. If you find its not melting to a smooth consistency add a tsp of coconut oil.
- Holding the chocolate mould at a slight angle, spoon the melted chocolate over it with a ladle to fill. Tap the edge of the mould with the ladle handle to release any air bubbles.
- Tip the mould upside down over the bowl of chocolate and let the excess drip out (this is where things got messy for me), tapping gently with the spatula.
- Run the spatula over the top and sides of the mould to remove all excess chocolate. Set in the fridge for 30 minutes.
- Blend all the other ingredients in a high speed blender until very smooth.
- Transfer the mixture into a piping bag and pipe a small amount into each lined chocolate mould.
- To close the chocolates, ladle more of the melted chocolate over the mould to completely cover.
- Using the spatula, scrape off the excess chocolate.
- Set in the fridge for 2 hours.
- Once set, twist the mould slightly like an ice cube tray, then turn the mould upside down and tip the chocolates out.
*Recipe tested from Pana Chocolate The Recipes*