Product Feature: barkTHINS Snacking Chocolate
Quite often, food products are sent to me at cavegrrl.com headquarters to get my opinion on them and to share them with you here if I like them. The latest product I tried and happened to LOVE is barkTHINS snacking chocolate.
barkTHINS are made with Fair Trade and non–GMO certified ingredients and are a delectable treat that fit into a healthy/active lifestyle.
The team at barkTHINS sent me four varieties of their snacking chocolate including: Blueberry with Quinoa Crunch, Almond with Sea Salt, Pumpkin with Sea Salt and Coconut with Almonds. All four of these flavors are gluten-friendly (not made in a gluten free facility, but do not have gluten as an ingredient. My fingers are crossed that they will develop a gluten friendly pretzel/dark chocolate barkTHINS.
My favorite barkTHINS is the Pumpkin Seed with Sea Salt! I really enjoy pumpkin seeds and they have a high nutritional value. My favorite dessert (not every night, but a few times a week if we have a lighter dinner) is a few barkTHINS, some nuts or seeds, a few pieces of dried fruit (like pears or figs), and a small piece of hard cheese.
Andy also tried some of the flavors and noted that his favorite thing about the chocolate was that it really was like bark, each piece was a different shape and size. The only bad thing about barkTHINS is that they are so GOOD that you might accidentally eat the entire bag. 😉
You can find barkTHINS on Facebook here, on Twitter here and on Instagram here. Join the community of #barkFANS to share the joy of snacking chocolate with others.
Ready to try the chocolatey goodness that is barkTHINS? You can order online here.
Trick or Treat? Treat!! Four-Ingredient Hazelnut Butter Cups (sponsored by Nugget Markets)
Hey you! Yes, I’m talking to you. You’re the one who bought the institution-sized bag of Halloween candy “for the neighborhood kids”… Like, back sometime near Labor Day. Yes, and I know you put it away in the pantry for safe keeping. Hmmm, but somehow it seems to have all disappeared.
I’m not going to judge you. I like treats myself. The only difference is that I would never buy name brand candy. When I reward myself with a treat, I prefer to know what’s actually in it, and I prefer it to be non-poisonous. I used to really dig Reese ‘s Peanut Butter Cups until I found out how much sugar and other crap are in them…and that they are GMO–Ingredients: Milk chocolate (sugar, cocoa butter, chocolate, nonfat milk, milk fat, corn syrup solids, soy lecithin, PGPR) peanuts, sugar, dextrose, salt, TBHQ. Thus, making them COMPLETELY un-Paleo friendly.
So now I compromise with hazelnut butter cups. You’ve heard of Nutella, right? Well this is about the same thing with way less sugar and all the flavor.
Thanks to Nugget Market for supplying the ingredients.
2 cups toasted organic hazelnuts (skins removed)
2 Tbs raw honey
2 Tbs organic coconut oil
Place all ingredients in a food processor and grind until the mixture becomes a paste. Set aside.
16 oz box E. Guittard Bittersweet Chocolate 72% Cacao Disc Wafers (Melted)
You’ll also need mini cupcake liners, a mini cupcake pan, and some non-stick cooking spray.
1. Place the liners in the pan and spray them with some non-stick cooking spray.
2. Then pour the melted chocolate in the liners until filled 1/3 full.
3. Take a small spoonful of the hazelnut butter mixture and form in into a small ball.
4. Drop it into the 1/3 full liner of chocolate. Repeat for each candy.
5. Set the pan in the freezer for 5 minutes to set the chocolate and filling.
6. When filling is set, cover the rest of each candy with more melted chocolate. Repeat for each candy.
7. Return the pan to the freezer to set all the hazelnut butter cups.
Here’s what they look like when you cut them open! 🙂 Happy Halloween, friends!! 🙂
You can find all the ingredients in this recipe at Nugget Market.
You can find Nugget Market on Facebook here and follow them on twitter here!
Meatless Monday: Cauliflower Sweet Potato Tots
Last Saturday was the annual Komen Race for the Cure at Cal Expo, and Andy won his division! (Race photo by Morinico Photography)
To celebrate the win, I made one of his favorite foods (pizza!) these Cauliflower and Sweet Potato Tots (the pizza was a primal-ized BBQ Chicken Pizza, which I will share with you later this week). I had made an earlier version of the tots last week for myself, but was not satisfied with the texture or really, the flavor. This time, I used a combination of cauliflower and sweet potatoes, and it was a success! I also coated the tots in almond meal for extra crunch. Here’s the recipe!
1/2 head caulflower
2 medium sweet potatoes
3 large eggs
1/4 cup So Delicious unsweetened coconut milk
1/4 cup parmesan cheese
1/8 cup coconut flour or gluten free flour (to use as a binder)
cracked pepper (to taste)
1/4 cup olive oil or a can of olive oil spray
1 cup raw almonds
1 Tbs coconut flour
1-2 tsp your favorite spice mixture (you can be creative here: chili powder, curry, rosemary, cumin)
Peel and cut potatoes into cubes and microwave until soft. While the potatoes are microwaving, pulse the (raw) cauliflower in a food processor until it’s texture is finely “crummed”, do not purée. Set aside in a large mixing bowl. When the potatoes are tender, set aside and allow them to cool.
Rinse out and dry the food processor, then pulse the almonds until they are almost breadcrumb consistency, then pulse in the coconut flour. Then if you wish, add in your favorite spices or extra parmesan cheese to finish off the breading. Set mixture aside on a plate and rinse and dry the food processor again.
Preheat oven to 385°F
Then place the sweet potatoes in the food processor and pulse to mash them up. Then add the cheese, the coconut milk, the eggs and the coconut flour, and pulse until smooth. Then remove the potato mixture and add it to the cauliflower crumbs. Stir until well combined.
Coat a baking sheet with olive oil or olive oil spray. Form the cauliflower and sweet potato mixture into little cylinder shapes and then roll in the almond/coconut flour/spice mixture. Set each shape on the baking sheet. This recipe will probably yield about 24 tots. Lightly drizzle the tots with olive oil, or pulse them lightly with the spray. This will help them get extra crisp.
Bake in oven until golden brown. (30-40 mins) Salt to taste. 🙂
German Chocolate Avocado Ice Cream for the Caveman…
This weekend is mah caveman’s special day. His birthday is August 5th, and we are throwing a party for him on August 4th (don’t worry, it’s not a surprise!!). Well, he just loves ice cream. But, ice cream is decidedly NOT Paleo, as it is made with dairy and loads of sugar.
Well, OK then. An ice cream-like substance ye shall have.
I modified this recipe from all recipes.com to make it Paleo friendly. Of course I used a totally Paleolithic blender, food processor, and ice cream maker to make the ice cream happen. Well, ya know. At least it’s all natural. 😉
1 1/2 cups So Delicious (unsweetened) coconut milk
1 cup coconut cream (skim the cream off the top when you open the can of coconut milk, and purchase the full-fat, not “light” variety)
1/3 cup xylitol
2 (1/2 pound) avocados, peeled and pitted
3/4 teaspoon lemon juice
1 cup flaked unsweetened coconut
1 cup toasted and chopped pecans
3/4 cup dark chocolate discs
1/4 cup coconut oil
Puree milk, coconut cream, xylitol, avocados, and lemon juice in a blender until smooth. Pour into a cold metal bowl, cover, and chill for about an hour. Then pour the mixture into an electric ice cream freezer and process according to the directions on your machine. Once the mixture has thickened, place back into the freezer and allow to harden slightly (keep in mind that you will will want it stirring consistency).
Toast the coconut and pecans at 350 until they are browned. Be careful not to burn either, as they brown quickly. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely.
For the chocolate chunks, place the chocolate in a bowl and pour the coconut oil over the chocolate and microwave in 10 second pulses to allow the chocolate to melt. Then spread over a piece of wax paper in a thin layer and allow to firm up in the refrigerator. Drag a knife or spoon over the hardened chocolate and break into pieces.
Take the bowl of ice cream out of the freezer and stir in the pecans, chocolate pieces, and the coconut. Serve immediately or store in the refrigerator. I am not sure how long it will last there, since the ice cream is so good it is typically gone within a few days!
Happy Birthday, Andy! 🙂