Learning to Love the Process
Happy Valentine's Day!
Life update: I've been chugging along with projects, brainstorming new ones, starting up new client work, and I feel at a steady pace--though I could always do more. It's the restlessness that haunts me continuously. I mean, I spent hours on an ongoing project and felt guilty for diving into a TV show while doing it even though I met my goal for the night (I didn't used to watch TV). This project's "due date" was originally aimed for end of December so maybe that's why I feel amped to finish it. Le sigh...Though it is good to set deadlines for myself, I have to remind myself to trust the process, expect unpredictability, and know that some things take more effort and time. Like cooking for example, I cook meals every night (I kid you not, 90% of the week is home-cooked meals) because I firmly believe that there is no other way to do it. There is no question! But again, even that takes a ton of effort and time. I've recently gotten myself to be okay with buying a quick meal once in a while--especially if it makes time for other things. I am still learning to find my balance--a 2018 goal!
In order for me to take a break from these projects and to remember what it feels like to relax while trying something new in the kitchen (I know it doesn't sound super relaxing but it is pure joy to me!), I decided to make dessert because who doesn't love to use sweets as a distraction, amiright? Plus, these sweet treats are vegan, gluten-free, no-bake, and don't contain sugar! Four less things to think about ;) On top of that, I didn't adjust or change anything up like I usually do--except for the ganache. I used cocoa powder instead of chocolate.
They are rich, creamy, delectable, and elegant in taste--perfect in time for Valentine's Day. These guys are rich enough that they're probably better split between you and your love (which I totally did).
Enjoy the recipe below, from yummymummykitchen.com
1 1/2 cups almond flour
1/3 cup unsweetened cacao/cocoa powder
3 TBS maple syrup
2 TBS melted coconut oil
2/3 cup unsweetened peanut or almond butter
1 TBS maple syrup
1/2 TBS melted coconut oil
pinch of sea salt
3/4 cup chopped dark or semisweet dairy-free, GF, chocolate
1/4 cup canned coconut milk
1/2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
Coat the bottoms of tart shells lightly with cooking spray or rub with coconut oil. In a medium bowl, stir together the almond flour, cacao, maple syrup, and coconut oil until mixture holds together when pressed. If it's too dry, add just a little more coconut oil. Press firmly into the bottoms and up the sides of the tart shells, about 1/4 inch thick.
In a small bowl, stir together the nut butter, coconut oil, and syrup. Gently spread a layer of this nut butter mixture about 1/4-inch thick over the crust. If using unsalted nut butter, sprinkle a pinch of sea salt over.
Place the chocolate in a medium bowl. Heat the coconut milk in a small saucepan until it just begins to simmer. Carefully pour the hot coconut milk over the chocolate and whisk until the chocolate has melted and turned into a thick ganache. Whisk in the vanilla. Pour the ganache over the peanut butter filling and smooth with the back of a spoon. Place the tarts in the refrigerator to set up overnight.
Paleo Option: Use almond rather than peanut butter. Be sure to use paleo-friendly chocolate.