Monday, August 5, 2013

Raw Chocolate ... hard to believe it is good for you!

Recently I attended a Raw Chocolate workshop. It's not that I am obsessed with chocolate (no really I am not), although every so often I do get a huge craving for it. This Raw workshop simply was the only workshop that fit into my schedule.

I am so glad that I attended it though because although I had used cacao (it looks like cocoa) before I had never truly realised just how good this stuff is for you. It is in fact what they call a superfood. For a start it has the best natural food source of antioxidants of any food in the world and is huge in magnesium. I won't bother going into all it's health benefits, but if you are interested, google cacao and you will be blown away!

In case you were wondering the difference between cacao and cocoa is ...
  • Cacao refers to the raw form of chocolate, including the tree and bean. Raw cacao powder is not roasted, relatively unprocessed, and contains no sugar or cocoa butter.
  • Cocoa is the Anglicized version of the word “cacao.” Cocoa powder has been roasted, ground, and sometimes mixed with a sweetener and cocoa butter.
During the workshop we watched the following being prepared and got to sample each of them (clever Debbie had some pre-prepared):
  1. Chocolate Cacao Protein Smoothie with Almond Milk
  2. Chocolate Mint Slice
  3. Raw Chocolate Fudge
  4. Raw Homemade Chocolates
It was a hard job but someone had to do it! They were all made from raw ingredients but I am pretty confident that if you served it to someone and didn't mention it, they wouldn't even be aware.

I came home rather inspired, as you do, and made my first batch of chocolates. I confess they didn't turn out as pretty as Debbie's, but still tasted delish. I just need to practice a bit more with the rubber moulds that I picked up at a cheap variety store, as there were a few little holes in my chocolates.

My First Batch of Cacao Chocolates

Homemade Chocolates

  • 100 gms cacao butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup cacao powder
  • 1/4 cup organic maple syrup (substitute for raw agave if you want total raw, as maple syrup is not actually a raw food but make sure you use less as it much sweeter.)
  • 10 drops organic peppermint oil (food grade) *
  • 1/4 cup cacao nibs (optional)

  1. Melt the cacao butter in the dehydrator (for raw purposes) or over a very low heat
  2. Add the maple syrup to the cooled cacao butter then stir in the cacao butter and mix to blend well
  3. Stir in the peppermint oil
  4. Spoon the mixture into chocolate moulds or ice cube trays and top with the optional cacao nibs.
  5. Freeze until set, then simply pop out and taste! (Store them in the freezer too)
* You could substitute crushed almonds, macadamias, strawberry oil, coconut, etc. The sky's the limit really.

Be warned that cacao and cacao butter is really expensive but I made my batch of chocolates nearly two weeks ago and am still eating them. They are not something you can gorge on, and so a little seems to satisfy any sweet craving I get. The added bonus is that eating cacao is actually good for you (apparently it can even help lower high blood pressure!) so really it is my best interest to eat a piece a day.


  1. Lisa,

    This is something I really want to try! I have a few recipes that use cacao powder, butter or nibs. I haven't yet been able to buy cacao. Our shopping centre doesn't cater for such things, being rather small. I think I shall have to buy my supplies online. Is this what you do? We have been eating dark chocolate with 85% cocoa which is supposed to be better than the other more sugar-laden varieties. But homemade chocolates sound even better!

    1. I have been fortunate in picking the items up when I have been taking my Raw Food Workshops but otherwise I would be ordering it online as it is really hard to
      find. I wonder if it is because it is so expensive so maybe hard for stores to keep a pile in stock.


Pin It