Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Bananas Brulée with Homemade Chocolate or Carob Bars

This recipe is super easy! And very quick to make. I find myself reminiscing at times about the days that I ate pretty much whatever kind of dessert I wanted. Not because I feel that I'm missing out in some way, but rather, I find myself wanting inspiration for new healthier desserts. In culinary school, I found that bananas (because of their high sugar content) could be bruléed just like sugar is on top of crème brulée. I hadn't made bruleed bananas since then, but this memory popped into my mind the other day and I decided to share this technique with you.

Also, as inspired by this post from Healthful Pursuit, I have decided to start making my own chocolate bars. Making your own chocolate (or carob) bars at home could not be more easy. And, you can control how sweet your chocolate is. And even better, especially for you non-dairy folks, you can control the ingredients in your chocolate. Commercial chocolate that has not been exposed to milk is hard to find! And even more better, you can make them raw if you want added benefits of more o fthe healthy vitamins like A, B1, and B2 (from raw carob poweder) or like A, B1, B2, B3, C, E (from raw cacao powder). When the carob or cacao bean is processed, depending on how high the temperatures are during processing, many of these vitamins can be destroyed. However, if you just want to use regular old cocoa or carob powder, you still get the benefits of essential minerals and antioxidants in these healthy home-made chocolate or carob bars. I have not been able to find carob bars in the store, so I am excited to being experimenting with carob chocolate treats at home.

The first recipe, for the bruléed bananas is really more of a technique than a recipe....especially since there is only one ingredient involved! You can use them as a topping for ice creams or other desserts, or simple eat them by themselves. I like mine with carob or chocolate :) The recipe for the bars is a formula so you can make whatever amount you like at home.

Bananas Brulée with Homemade Chocolate or Carob Bars

For the bananas brulee:

  • Bananas, sliced longways (you can make them any size you like, just make sure to cut the slices length wise). I cut mine in half and then long-ways like so:
  • Use a torch like this one that comes with a crème brûlée kit. Or, if you don’t have one of these, set your oven to “broil”, and place a rack at the highest level in your stove. If using an oven, simply brulee the bananas in the oven until the tops have caramelized (about 5-10 minutes depending on your oven). If you are using a torch, just turn it on and wave it over the bananas like so....... until the sugars have bubbled up and browned, or caramelized- like this:

There you have it- easy right? Not a whole lot of work for a sweet and crunchy, caramely topped dessert :)

For the Chocolate Bars or Carob bars, here is the formula I use:

  • Equal parts coconut oil, melted and cacao, cocoa, or carob powder (can also use raw versions of these powders). For today, I used ¼ cup coconut oil and ¼ cup carob powder.
  • I used vanilla crème stevia to sweeten it and a tiny bit of raw coconut nectar. However, you can use any kind of sweetener you like, and if you don’t use vanilla stevia- you might want to add a couple drops of vanilla extract to enhance the chocolateness of the bars.
  • Spread out onto a parchment or wax lined pan or plate with an offset spatula or spoon and slice with a knife how big you want your bars to be:
  • Freeze for 20 minutes and then break them apart.
  • Store in the fridge until you want to eat it.
This recipe has been linked up to Slightly Indulgent Tuesdays and Sugar Free Sunday. Check out these blog carnivals/ potlucks for more great recipe ideas.

Happy Brulée-ing and Chocolate or Carob Making!
Eryn

4 comments :

  1. I am completely fascinated by your healthy raw cooking! So different from the sugary desserts we enjoyed from you in Fort Collins! I'm having fun reading your blog and I have to admit, it does sound nuts to make milk out of nuts!:)

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  2. Oh man do those brulee'd banans look delicious! I never would have thought to do that!

    How smooth is the chocolate when it's hard?

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  3. It's fairyly smooth. Although, I left it out of the refrigerator and after I got home my husband said he liked the "fudge" I left out for him :) It is smoother if you make it with cacao powder rather than carob, though. If left in the fridge it has the "bite" feel of chocolate, but it's not exactly the same experience of the store bought stuff. Hope that helps!

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  4. I've been playing around with my own homemade chocolate, too. It's fun - haven't gotten the recipe just the way I want it but it's close. :)Love how you bruleed the bananas.

    Thanks for linking up to SIT!
    Hugs,
    Amy
    Simply Sugar & Gluten-Free

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