Easy All Natural Chocolate Dipped Vanilla Butter Creams

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Hand Dipped Vanilla Butter Creams, Plain and with Sea Salt

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Cutting right to the chase, I LOVE chocolate. 

I don’t know if it’s every woman, or just me, but I crave it – and eat it – every day. Mostly, I am content with a few squares of my beloved Chocolove Premium Bars, or natural chocolate covered dried cherries we get from the Organic bulk bin section at our market.

But some days, I really want ooey, gooey, hand-dipped ‘Candy Shoppe’ Chocolate

But alas, the “good” Candy Shoppe is 20 minutes drive away, and a box of delicious Chocolate Dipped Vanilla Butter Creams costs nearly $20! 😦 What’s a girl to DO??

Last spring,, it came up in conversation with my Mom that I love butter creams so much, I had broken my no-artificial-chemicals-in-food rule to eat a few Zitner’s Butter Cream Easter Eggs (a Philly Area Tradition). I don’t usually get food guilt, but I had it with these. Because I wanted more.

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Mom said, “My friend So and So told me that she makes Butter Creams from scratch. She is no Betty Crocker, so I bet you can make them too.” Um, thanks, Mom? Lol. So I googled a few recipes, and gleaned together one that isn’t exactly Candy Shoppe perfect, but is EASY to make and TASTES terrific.

So, without further adieu, Let’s make Chocolates!

 All Natural Chocolate Dipped Vanilla Butter Creams

(Makes 20 Chocolates – Recipe Can be Doubled)

*  Filling Ingredients: (I used all organic versions)

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Organic Ingredients

2 Cups Powdered Sugar, Sifted

4 Tbsp Butter, Softened

1 tsp Good Quality Real Vanilla Extract

1 + 1/2 Tbsp Heavy Cream

Dash of salt

1 sheet pan lined with waxed paper, lightly greased with butter

Method:

1. Combine all ingredients. Mix well until creamy in appearance, yet firm enough to hold it’s shape. If it is too loose, add more sugar.

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Firm but Smooth

If it is too tight, add a drop or two more cream or vanilla. Taste and adjust to your liking, if needed.

Place in fridge for 5 minutes to make it a little more firm and easier to handle.

2.Spoon a small amount of chilled mix into your hand.

Working quickly so it does not melt, form into ¾ inch balls and place on the wax paper lined sheet pan.

3 . Pop into the Fridge while you make the chocolate coating

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Vanilla Filling, Ready for Fridge

* Chocolate Ingredients:

1 Cup All Natural or Organic Chocolate Chips

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4. Over a double boiler, just barely melt  about 80% of the chocolate. Pull off heat and stir with spatula or wire whisk until completely melted. Work with spatula until it is almost cooled to the touch. Add in the remaining 20% of the chocolate, Stirring until again completely melted and smooth in appearance.

5. Remove Cream Balls from Fridge. Carefully push all to one side of the greased tray.

6. Working quickly enough so the chocolate does not harden, dip each cream ball into the chocolate, turning or spooning to coat completely.

Place back onto greased sheet pan. To make fancier, spoon small amounts of leftover chocolate on the tops of each, using tip of spoon to create a swirled design.

7. When all are dipped, pop back in fridge 15 – 30 minutes, or until ready to serve.

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Chilled Chocolate Butter Cream Candies, Ready to Serve!

8 . ENJOY!!  🙂

* Variations: Get Creative! Try replacing half of the vanilla extract with orange, raspberry, cherry, mint or almond extract or essence. Try them with mixing ins, or toppings, such as toasted coconut,mini chips, sea salt or finely chopped nuts. You are only limited by your own imagination!

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Try Different flavors!

Poached Pears w/ Condensed Milk & Chocolate Ganache ~ Yum!

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This easy, elegant looking dessert recipe is another example of how to create something delicious to eat with whatever ingredients you already have on hand.

We both wanted dessert. There were three local pears in a bowl that had to be used, like, now. Bruce said “I can poach them in simple syrup.” That sounded good. I said, “I have an open can of sweetened condensed milk, a new bag of chocolate chips, and a little heavy cream left. I have an idea!” ***

Poached Pears with Condensed Milk

& Chocolate Ganache

METHOD:

He peeled the pears, then poached them in boiling sugar and water. Then we cooled the poached pears in the freezer for 10 minutes. Just before serving, Bruce heated the heavy cream over a double boiler, and folded an equal amount of chocolate chips into it. He drizzled the cooled pears with sweetened condensed milk, and then the ganache. I sprinkled a small amount of raw sugar over it, just to make it glisten.

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That’s It! It couldn’t be easier!

We just threw this together with what we had, and it was FABULOUS!

I mean, lick the bowl fabulous. :p

Remember – You CAN go into the kitchen with no ideas, and still come up with something great. You will never know how good you are at it until you try!

All it takes is to Be Creative!

Please feel free to share your photos, recipes or ideas with us.

If it worked and looks good – we’ll post it here

giving YOU full Photo or Recipe Credit! 🙂

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*** For our CHOCOLATE GANACHE RECIPE, click here!

Dark Chocolate Avocado Pudding ~ A Delicious “No Cook” Recipe!

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Dark Chocolate Avocado Pudding

This dessert always starts the same way:

“I had one avocado sitting on the counter, that had to go.”

When I first saw a recipe for chocolate pudding using avocado, it sounded pretty weird. But all the comments and reviews were glowing. Everyone loved it. THAT intrigued me. I filed it away in the back of my head, and life went on. The next time I found myself with that “avocado that had to go”, I looked it up on the web, and decided to give it a try it.

It is super easy, and tastes FANTASTIC!

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Mmm! Creamy & Decadent!

I’ve now made this creamy, rich pudding a few times, and it was delicious each go around. I made it again last week (yep, still delicious!) , so I thought I’d post the recipe again, but with all new photos. 🙂 Are you ready? Let’s Get Cooking!

~~ Dark Chocolate Avocado Pudding ~~

Healthy Ingredients

Healthy Ingredients

 * Ingredients
1 Avocado, peeled & cut
1/4 cup quality Cocoa Powder (unsweetened)
1/4 cup Honey or Agave Syrup (I like Honey)
1/4 cup Almond Milk (Soy or Dairy Milk is fine)
1/4 tsp Almond or Vanilla Extract
* Method:
Mix all ingredients in processor until smooth.
Garnish.
 THAT’S IT!
It is dairy free, gluten free, sugar free, raw,
contains essential amino acids, and is full of vitamins & antioxidants.
But don’t make it for those reasons. Make it because…
It is totally delicious and decadent!
Your friends & family will never know it has avocado!!
Score skin & peel the Avocado

Score skin & peel the Avocado

This recipe could not be easier ~ You have no excuse not to try it!
If you do, please check back and let us know what you think!
CHEERS, and HAPPY EATING!
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“Buh-Bye, Delicious Chocolate Avocado Pudding!”
  • Recipe Adapted from Fearlesshomemaker.com: Click Here
  • For  Our Original Creamy Chocolate Avocado Pudding RecipeCLICK HERE

 

Home Made Peanut Butter Cups ~ Making Chocolates Using Coconut Oil, Part Two!

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Mini Peanut Butter Cups made with Coconut Oil. Mmm! SO Yummy! Dairy & Gluten Free! Recipe Here: http://wp.me/p3Otk2-Lu

Frozen Mini Peanut Butter Cups

**   Making Chocolates with Coconut Oil, Part Two**

In my last post, I told you how good making my butter creams recipe turned out using coconut oil instead of butter.

Well, this weekend I gave it a go making Peanut Butter Cups (or Bites) using coconut oil.

They came out DELICIOUS! So I am here today to tell you to try it!

It took me about an hour to make 30 mini candies.

Making approx 24 bites instead (see photo below) would take less time.

First, Make The Chocolate Recipe, as Posted in part one. (  or Click HERE)

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Hand Rolling the Peanut Butter Bites

 Next, make HALF the PB Mixture in the PB BITES RECIPE BELOW ** NOTE! I made just HALF of the posted PB recipe. – using only 1/2 cup each of PB & sugar, and 1 TBSP coconut oil.

To make poured candy in molds or ice cube trays, like I did above, spoon a tiny bit of chocolate mix in the molds, and fridge for 5 minutes. ( if hand rolling PB Bites, omit this step )

Make the PB mix a bit loose, so you can spoon it in the mold over top of the chocolate. leave a little room at the top.

 If either the pb mix or the chocolate mix is too loose, add a little more sugar. If it is too firm, add a touch more coconut oil.

Not too much – a little coconut oil goes a long way!.

Cover the PB mix with a bit more chocolate mix.

Fridge or freeze 30 minutes to overnight That’s it! You have amazingly delectable home made chocolates!

Cheers, and Happy Eating!

Our Chocolates Recipes:

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Frozen Peanut Butter Love Bites

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Chocolate Covered Butter Creams

Making Chocolates with Coconut Oil – Dairy Free, Gluten Free, & Guilt Free!

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Butter-less Vanilla “Butter” Creams

A Chef friend recently asked me if I ever tried to make my home made

Vanilla Butter Cream or Peanut Butter Love Bites Candies

using Coconut Oil instead of Butter. I hadn’t, but I admit I have thought about it.

As my Loving Mom says “There is no time like the present”, so today I gave it a go.

(Also providing me a chance to test out my new silicone chocolates mold! 🙂 )

Organic Chocolate Coating Ingredients

I had never made the Chocolate Coating from scratch, but it was easy to do. I added a few drops of vanilla to it, and a pinch of cinnamon to boost the flavor.

How To Make Coconut Oil Chocolates

* Ingredients: 

5 TBSP Coconut Oil, in liquid state (melt slightly if needed)

5 TBSP Unsweetened Cocoa Power

3-4 TBSP Powdered Sugar ( or more, to taste)

Pinch Cinnamon  (optional)

1/2 tsp Vanilla Extract (optional)

* An ice cube tray or mold for individual chocolates, or a flat dish to make bars

* Method: Mix oil & cocoa till combined. Add remaining Ingredients. Taste, and add more sugar if needed. Pour into  candy mold (either as a solid chocolate, or a filled one, like I made), or make a “candy bar” small flat dish. Score before it hardens to break in to pieces easier. To fill, I poured a small amount in the mold, put in fridge, then put some vanilla cream in, and filled more chocolate to top.Pop in the fridge 15 min to overnight, and voila! Makes 20 – 30 treats, depending on size. I used all organic ingredients, choosing to create a 100% Organic Treat, but, you can use whatever brands you prefer.

THAT’S IT!  It is SUUUUPER EASY!

The creamy center is exactly the same as in our regular Vanilla Butter Cream Candy Recipe, only substituting Coconut Oil for the Butter.

For my first try, even with a few technical boo-boo’s, they came out super-delicious!

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I had a lot of leftover chocolate AND leftover filling from my one mold of 24, so i made 1/2 tsp sized dollops  on a silicone lined baking sheet with the remaining cream filling, and drizzled the remaining chocolate coating over them, and popped them in the fridge too. They came out hideously ugly, yet extraordinarily delicious!  Nom, Nom, I ate 6! 😀

Next time, I want to make the chocolate coating using honey instead of sugar, as in This Recipe from Beyond the Peel.

These are awesome, and I can’t wait to try these again!

Cheers, and Happy Eating!

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Chocolate Ganache ~ So Easy You’ll Wish You’d Made It Sooner!

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It is no secret to anyone that I loooove Chocolate, in almost any form! But there is just something about smooth, creamy Ganache. Years ago, I would buy almost anything, if it was covered in Ganache. When I met Bruce, and told him of my addiction  adoration, he said “Ganache is easy to make. Didn’t you know?” Truth was, I didn’t, Ever since, it is a regular visitor around our house. 🙂 So, enough about that –  Let’s Get Cookin’!

* Chocolate Ganache Glaze*

Ingredients:

1 cup dark chocolate (semi sweet chips work fine)

1 cup half & half

Pinch cinnamon

* Method:

Place the chocolate and the half & half in a metal mixing bowl. Place the bowl over a sauce pot of simmering water. Mix the chocolate, cinnamon and cream with a clean wooden spoon until the chocolate just starts to melt. Turn off heat.

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That’s It! Luscious, Decadent Chocolate Ganache, ready to spread on cupcakes, eclairs, donuts, or to dip strawberries in!

Sometimes, when no one is looking I just eat it plain, right out of the bowl! 😀

You can add a little powdered sugar  or more chocolate to this to make a frosting, truffles, to pipe it, or use as a dip!

This is so easy and versatile, once you try it the first time, you will wonder why you didn’t start making it sooner! It may just become a regular visitor at your house too!

Cheers, and Happy Eating!

Frozen Chocolate Peanut Butter ‘Love Bites’ ~ A Sinfully Scrumptious All Natural Treat!

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Scrumptious Chocolate Peanut Butter Bites

Last night, I was craving a decadent sugary treat. Specifically, I wanted peanut butter cups. For the past two years, we no longer buy processed candies or junk foods.  Time to get creative. I know I have [organic] Peanut Butter in the cupboard, and a bag of [all natural] chocolate chips, and I’m pretty sure I have some [organic] powdered sugar left. A little creative thinking, an idea that led to a better idea, and two or three Google searches later…I decided to make all-natural Frozen Chocolate Covered Peanut Butter Bites! That should fit my craving bill!

I looked at a few recipes on Google. One had WAY too much butter! Two called for wax for the coating. Several called for hydrogenated candy melts. No, no and no! I wanted Natural Ingredients. So again getting creative, I took the best parts of the recipes I read, and made my own. And you know what? They came out pretty good!  As usual, it was not hard. They are similar to our Chocolate Butter Creams Recipe. If I can make these, so can you. It just takes desire and a little time – or what i call “Putting Love Into It”. Well, enough about that…Let’s Get Cooking!

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Mmmm, Love Bites!

Frozen Chocolate Covered Peanut Butter ‘Love Bites’

Total Prep Time, Start to Eating: 1 hour

2 TBSP Butter, Softened

1 Cup Peanut Butter

1 Cup Powdered Sugar

1 tsp Real Vanilla Extract

1 1/4 Cups Chocolate Chips

Baking sheet, lined with lightly buttered waxed paper

Cream 2 tbsp softened butter with the peanut butter & powdered sugar. I used a small processor, but it can also be done by hand. Taste mixture, and if desired, add a little more sugar, vanilla or pb to your personal liking. The mixture should not be too loose to handle.

Roll mixture into 3/4″ balls, or drop by half spoons, onto buttered waxed paper lined sheet. Place PB Balls in freezer for 10 min.

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Heat 1 cup of choc chips on double boiler (or in microwave) till not quite melted.  

Remove from heat & stir until fully melted. Add 1/4 cup more chips, and stir till melted again.

Remove pb bites from freezer, and dip in – or spoon chocolate over – till all are covered.

 Freeze again for 15 more minutes… and they are READY!

They melt quickly so eat them immediately. Store any remaining Bites in the freezer. They are even better the next day. 🙂

I made this recipe by combining others to making my own liking. Everyone’s taste is different, and you can feel free to adjust yours to your own tastes. Try topping with chopped nuts or toasted coconut. I find that making my own treats feels rewarding, rather than cheating.

Smooth Creaminess Enveloped in Decadent Chocolate

These are Really delicious, and would be a fun recipe to do with kids. Hope you decide to give this recipe a try!

Cheers, and Happy Eating!