Cinnamon Chocolate Mousse with Raspberries

Raw, Vegan, Gluten Free, naturally Sugar FreeImage

 I was so unprepared to go back to uni this year. For starters I didn’t realise we went back a week early until the Saturday before, so I turned up to my first class with a highlighter and a notebook from last year with half the pages ripped out. I sat down in the wrong room, finally arrived to my class 20 minutes late and had to sit by myself in the front row. I’m a smooth operator what can I say. 

For another class I have a presentation that I haven’t started due next week, where I’m pretty sure I have to do a standup poetry and video performance in front of the class…lord help. 

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As a result of my study stresses I’ve been making this chocolate mousse on a weekly basis. The only thing standing between me and chocolate mousse every day for breakfast is the price of avocados! I mean come on green grocers. 2 avocados for $10 is not a laughing matter. 

The other day as I was preparing to watch an entire season of Supernatural instead of reading my TORTS cases, I struck upon chocolate mousse gold. It was so amazing I had to instagram it before I’d even eaten it! Noooo way. 

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 I had decided to take it down the Mexican chocolate road and added a pinch of cinnamon, a teeny tiny bit of ginger and the TINIEST little wisp of chilli. It was a flavour explosion in my mouth, all I’m going to say. With a sprinkling of fresh raspberries on top you can’t really get any closer to chocolate heaven. 

I promised myself this week I would try and make something without chocolate for the blog. But then I realised it’s been two whole weeks since I posted a chocolate recipe! That’s not right and it sure isn’t normal, so chocolate mousse get in my belly. Also how cute is my new rose teacup! The family I babysit for gave it to me as a present and I got way overexcited…I might have scared the children a bit. You can play with the flavourings of the mousse to suit your preferences. Even leaving out the spices all together tastes great. My favourite at the moment is just with cinnamon and almond milk, but I can imagine a little vanilla wouldn’t go astray. 

One Year Ago: Fluffy Cinnamon Apple Pancakes

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Cinnamon Chocolate Mousse with Raspberries:

2 medium avocadoes, perfectly ripe

2 medium bananas, perfectly (not overly) ripe and frozen

1/4 cup coconut or almond milk

1 tsp cinnamon

1/4 tsp ginger, or chilli, or both

3 tbsp cocoa powder

2 tbsp agave nectar or runny honey

Fresh berries, to top. 

Blend everything together and pour into cups. Top with fresh raspberries or other mixed berries. Chill for at least an hour before eating. 

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Chocolate and Blueberry Mousse Tart

Vegan, Sugar Free, Gluten Free, optional Raw

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 Guess what day is right around the corner! It’s……VALENTINES DAY! To celebrate I made a chocolate mousse tart topped with fresh blueberries. It’s the perfect valentines day dessert because it’s rich, creamy and chocolatey, and will win you love from whoever you decide to give it to. It’s also super easy to make and very comforting. It can be eaten with a spoon, by yourself, in your pyjamas. I won’t judge you. 

Valentines Day is always such a weird day. Last year for the first time in my life I actually had a real valentines, so me and my boyfriend went out for dinner. He ordered four dishes all for himself while I got just one…and then could barely move after eating them all. And then the waiter dropped his dessert on his lap and looked like she (he? we never really found out) was going to cry so we had to comfort her (or him) while we waited for a new one. It was sooo romantic.

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 This year I think I’m just going to make him some kind of warm chocolate brownie pudding and homemade ice cream. Because that’s his favourite and eating warm brownies and ice cream is the best way to celebrate any occasion. If someone wanted to make me a chocolate dessert for the special day (hint hint…) it would be this chocolate tart. I’ve been wanting to experiment more with silken tofu ever since I made mango pudding with it. I saw some amazing looking chocolate tarts that used it as a base and got so excited to make a chocolate mousse tart! With fresh blueberries because you should always add fresh blueberries when they’re cheap and in season. Am I RIGHT???

I didn’t want to use all melted chocolate as the sweet component, but I didn’t want to just use cocoa powder and sweetener. So I ended up using a balance of 100g melted dark chocolate with some vanilla, agave and raw cacao powder. I was so so happy with how it came out! The flavour was intensely chocolatey and rich, but the texture was just perfect! Super creamy and light. You’d never guess how light and healthy this tart is.

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 I decided to make a raw walnut and sultana base because I wanted people to have the option of making it completely raw. If you want to, just replace the 600g of silken tofu with two perfectly ripe avocados. You may want to increase the agave as well. It won’t last as long in the fridge, but it will have a deliciously smooth texture and lots of healthy omega fats. Put your hands up for healthy fats! 

The blueberries tasted so good with this tart as they sunk into the chocolatey custard layer, but you could top it with anything you want. Orange slices, strawberries, coconut cream, banana slices, nuts, praline! The list goes on forever. If you’re allergic to nuts, you can also replace the walnuts with a combination of flax and sunflower seeds. I don’t have a powerful blender and I still managed to make this tart in about half an hour, not including freezing time.Just bash up your nuts in a mortar and pestle first and soak your dried fruit so it blends faster. Happy Valentines Day! 

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 Vegan and Gluten Free Chocolate Berry Mousse Tart: Inspired by Baking = Love

For the Base:

2 cups walnuts or sunflower and flax seeds, bashed into crumbs in a mortar and pestle

1 cup sultanas, soaked briefly in warm water (about 20 minutes)

3-4 tbsp cocoa powder

For the Filling:

600g (21 ounces) silken tofu, drained

100g (3.5 ounces) dark semi-sweet chocolate, or more or less depending how rich you like

3 tbsp raw cacao powder

1 tbsp agave nectar

1 tsp vanilla extract

500g (1 pound) blueberries

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Start recipe a day before. Line a 20cm tart or cake tin with plastic wrap of foil (not baking paper as this will disintegrate when you freeze it). Blend together the walnuts and sultanas, adding the cocoa powder as you go to reach a thick, cookie dough like consistency. You may need to add a teaspoon of water or milk if it’s too crumbly. Press with your fingers into the tart tin, pushing the dough out to make an even layer on the bottom and sides of the tin. Keep in the freezer for at least 4 hours, until ready to fill. 

To make the filling, blend the drained tofu with the melted chocolate until smooth. Sift the cocoa powder well, and blend in, tasting as you go to reach the desired chocolatey flavour. Blend in the agave syrup and vanilla to sweeten, adding more if it’s too bitter. Pour into the tart tin and keep in the fridge for at least an hour before serving. Top with the berries when ready to serve. Lasts well in the fridge for a day or two. 

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Chocolate and Peanut Butter Pudding (vegan + gluten and sugar free)

 Vegan, Gluten Free, and Refined Sugar Free

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It’s been a wild couple days in Sydney if you haven’t heard. Yesterday a cloud of thick red smoke settled over the entire city. At first some of the city kids at uni were saying it was just another dust storm, but it was clear to most of us who’d lived or spent time in the country what it must mean. Bush fire. The crazy winds and high temperatures sparked fires all over NSW and ran out of control through most of the day yesterday, and the cloud of smoke spread over thirty kilometres right across the harbour.  

Hearing of friends who have had to return home to absolutely nothing left, of families who had to leave their pets inside to escape in time, it’s just so sad. Thank goodness no lives have been lost so far, although the razed houses haven’t been searched until today. The smell of smoke in the air has only just seemed to fade in the last few hours. I always feel intensely the fire season of Australia because my aunt is a fire fighter, and my boyfriend and his family live in the Blue Mountains, which was one the places badly affected yesterday. This summer is predicted to be the hottest summer in over two decades, and it’s only the beginning of spring!Image

I made this pudding this morning while the air outside still smelled of smoke and charred wood. It’s very creamy and comforting, so it seemed like a good fit. You may think it sounds gross, but the creaminess comes from the avocado and blended up banana. Don’t hate before you try it though! I was very wary when I first made chocolate avocado mousse, but it actually tastes really good. And I don’t mean it tastes edible with the bonus of being slightly sweet and ‘naughty’ tasting. It really does have a creamy, mild and perfectly sweet flavour. 

So many puddings and mousses made of health ingredients like coconut and banana can taste kind of strange…sometimes a bit bitter from the raw cocoa, or watery from the fruit. This pudding doesn’t have any of that. It’s a decadent and creamy version of this strawberry chia pudding with a delicious addition of peanut butter. I rave about peanut butter too much. I know. I’ve already mentioned it this week in these cookies for goodness sake! But it’s so creamy and goooood I eat it every day, so talking about it twice a week is actually showing real restraint.  Image

You don’t have to follow this recipe exactly, you can mix and match it up depending on your tastes. There are some ground rules though. You have to use avocado! Don’t try and substitute more bananas or coconut cream or anything, unless you want a completely different mousse experience. Use a perfectly ripe and squishy avocado with not a hint of overripeness, but DEFINITELY not a hint of under-ripeness. If you don’t know if your avocado is ripe yet, leave it another day. Better to err on the side of squishy than watery and stiff. Believe me. I discovered this the hard way. 

The chia seeds make the pudding set thick and gooey like real mousse. If you want a softer, more spoonable mousse, leave them out. If you have a powerful blender, don’t let the lumpy photos scare you. Your mousse will turn out way smoother than mine. If you’re allergic to nuts, leave out the peanut butter completely. The pudding is still delicious without it. You could add almond butter, some coconut milk in place of the soy or almond milk, some chocolate chips, anything you feel like! 

Here are some other delicious looking healthy puddings I’ve been reading recently:

Foodie Fiasco’s Yogurt Chocolate Mousse looks amaaaze-baalls

Such an interesting looking Tofu Chocolate Mousse from Chocolate Covered Katie

Choosing Raw’s simple Vanilla Chia Pudding looks so delicious! 

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Chocolate Peanut Butter Pudding: Adapted from Treehugger’s recipe

1 large avocado

1-2 medium bananas depending on taste (if frozen, don’t defrost)

30ml (2 tbsp) maple syrup or agave nectar

2.5 tbsp cocoa powder

50ml (1/4 cup) soy, coconut, rice or almond milk

2 tbsp peanut butter

2 tbsp chia seeds

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Blend everything together in a powerful blender until smooth and completely combined. Spoon into serving bowls and chill for at least a few hours before serving, to give the chia a chance to thicken the mixture. 

Optional additions: you could stir in some chocolate chips, berries, desiccated coconut or nuts to the mix as well. You could add some vanilla extract or a pinch of cinnamon, or even some melted chocolate to be really fancy!

Makes 3-4 servings depending on how generous you are.

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