Ooh it’s almost Valentine’s Day and while I find the idea of waiting for a set day in the calendar to show someone how much you love them RIDICULOUS, I’ll tell you what’s not ridiculous: any excuse to get your hands on chocolate.
If February 14th is not enough of an excuse, here’s a few more:
Chocolate (a quality piece with 70% cocoa or more)…
- helps release serotonin and endorphins which help relieve anxiety and give you feelings of pleasure,
- has anti-aging properties thanks to it’s impressive antioxidant levels, and
- helps make blood vessels more flexible.
Ready to eat some now?
Here’s an easy and healthy-ish way to enjoy chocolate from my chocolate e-recipe book, “If It’s Not Chocolate, It’s Not Worth It” that you can use to impress your valentine, impress yourself, or eat it just because…who needs a reason?
Recipe: Chocolate Truffles with Orange
⅓ cup almond milk
1 ¼ cups dark chocolate chips or chunks (70% or more cocoa)
flavorings (see below)
1/3 cup cocoa powder or raw cacao powder
- Place almond milk in a double boiler (over about two inches of water in the bottom pan) over medium heat. NOTE: If you don’t have a double boiler, just put a heat-proof mixing bowl (aka “not plastic”) over a pan.
- If using a flavoring (optional), add it now and let it steep for five minutes. Here I used 1 tbsp of fresh orange zest but you could try all sorts of things like chopped candied ginger or even steeping a tea bag (peppermint or earl grey is great!) in the milk.
- Turn off heat and immediately add chocolate, stirring until it melts and the mixture is smooth and glossy.
- Pour melted chocolate into a heat-proof bowl, cover with plastic wrap and place in the freezer for one hour (or fridge for a few hours).
- Place 1/3 cup of cocoa powder (or raw cacao) in a shallow bowl, sifting with a fine mesh strainer to remove clumps.
- When chocolate is set (you can add a tablespoon of cocoa powder directly to the mixture and stir if it’s still too watery), scoop out 1 tbsp at a time, roll into a ball between your palms, and roll in the cocoa powder to coat.
- Repeat with remaining chocolate and enjoy!
You can also roll them in finely chopped nuts or dried coconut.
You can grab this recipe and 10 more easy, gluten-free, vegan, healthy-ish chocolate recipes in my chocolate recipe e-book here.
What’s your favorite chocolate pairing? Mint? Peanut butter? Or are you a chocolate purist? Let me know in the comments below.