Not-So-Guilty Pleasures: Cacao And Coconut Sugar Brownies
I don't know anyone who doesn't like a chocolate brownie.
And rightly so. If I'm craving a decadent, gooey, chocolatey treat, a brownie hits the spot every time. Whatever the occasion, a brownie always rises up to it. Satisfaction guaranteed. The perfect pick-me-up. Well - almost perfect.
I'm not going to beat around the bush here; brownies are hardly recognised for their nutritional value. Sure, they may provide us with a few moments of pure unadulterated pleasure but they're not great for our guts. So, today I thought I'd spend the day making healthy brownies. Healthy body, healthy mind and all that.
And it turns out, brownies don't have to be bad for you. There are so many recipe variations out there that are vegan, gluten-free, dairy-free or made with beetroot or sweet potato or ground nuts... That's one of the things that I love about them; there are a million different ways to make a brownie and they all taste as fabulous as the next.
Today's brownie is supercharged and packed full of goodness. I've substituted a few key (nutritionally undervalued) ingredients with replacements from Indigo Herbs so they're wholesome and even a little bit good for you. Instead of cocoa, these brownies contain raw cacao powder, which is exceptionally high in essential minerals including iron, phosphorus and potassium. They're also made with organic coconut sugar, a low GI alternative to refined sugar which is better for maintaining blood sugar levels.
As well as a whole load of goodness, my brownie recipe is jam-packed full of texture: raisins, nuts, dark chocolate chunks and chia seeds to make every bite that bit more interesting. I'm sure you'll love them as much as I do - and your body will thank you for choosing a healthier alternative.
100g of wholemeal flour
100g of coconut sugar
1 banana (mashed)
1 teaspoon baking powder
50g of dark chocolate (70%+)
6 tablespoons of maple syrup
6 tablespoons of cacao powder
3 tablespoons of coconut oil
4 tablespoons of chia seeds
45g of raisins
50g of pecans
Sprinkle of sea salt
1. Preheat the oven to 170 degrees celsius / gas mark 3. Line a 20cm tin with baking paper and let the sides overhang.
2. Finely chop the dark chocolate and pecans and set aside.
3. Soak the chia seeds in 10 tablespoons of water and set aside.
3. Melt the coconut oil and remove from the heat.
4. Add the coconut sugar, cacao powder, mashed banana and salt to the oil and beat.
5. Leave to cool slightly then beat in the egg and stir in the flour, baking powder, maple syrup and raisins.
6. Pour the batter into the tin and spread evenly, then sprinkle dark chocolate on top.
7. Bake for 30 minutes until firm then cut into squares.
How do you like your brownie?