by Buffy Ellen
Can you believe another amazing year has flown by and we're already less than three weeks away from Christmas. December is a busy month for everyone, and you'll no doubt have a bunch of events to get to over the coming weeks. What's meant to be a month of cheer and relaxation however can sometimes be a bit of a roller coaster ride. In addition to that, there's often a few not-so-healthy options floating around - made with lots of meat, dairy and refined sugar. There's nothing wrong with indulging in a few treats, and in fact I encourage you to do so (it ain't no fun going to a party then refraining from partaking in the cake), but thinking about your overall physical and mental health and wellbeing is key.
I often refer to this as the 80/20 approach. Your body and tissue cells will reflect what you are feeding them (both physically and emotionally) 80% of the time, not the other 20%. So instead of calorie counting, just keep the old 80/20 concept in the back of your mind when you're making food or general lifestyle choices this Christmas. For example at Christmas lunch, load up your plate with veges, whole grains, nuts and seeds to start, then reserve 20% of your plate for one of those delicious homemade fluffy white rolls. Or grab a few fruit skewers and strawberries from the dessert table, then snag yourself a slice of that amazing looking cheesecake to go with it.
The other option of course is to bring a healthy plant-powered treat to your next Christmas event from my blog archives. Not only will it taste delicious, you'll be helping your guests stay healthy and happy this Christmas too. Today I'm sharing with you one such recipe that's quick, easy, delicious, and perfect for a shared Christmas lunch. These Berry Chocolate Crackles will go down brilliantly with both adults and kiddies alike.
Traditional chocolate crackle is made with puffed white rice, icing sugar, coconut, cocoa and copha (coconut oil which has been hydrogenated to keep it solid at higher temperatures, but can create unhealthy transfats). This version is a little bit fancier, combining soaked activated and dehydrated buckwheat with raw cacao, goji berries, incan berries and coconut. The crunch of the buckwheat pairs beautifully with the chew of the goji and incan berries.
I've spoken about the health benefits of raw cacao before which you can read about here. Buckwheat meanwhile is the seed of a fruit, unrelated to wheat, derived from the sorrel and rhubarb family. It is naturally gluten free and contains a high protein content (13%) with all essential amino acids making it a complete protein. Activated buckwheat is soaked, rinsed and dehydrated at low temperatures to allow for easier digestion and absorption of nutrients including zinc, iron, copper, manganese and B vitamins for efficient energy production.
Goji berries are also protein powerhouses (14%) with all the essential amino acids. They are high in vitamin C (great for immune health), carotenoids - the precursors of vitamin A (good for your eyes), B vitamins (for energy production) and vitamin E (for the skin, hair, and cell walls).
Incan berries are tart little berries, also known as cape gooseberries or golden berries. They are indigenous to South America, but have been cultivated in England and South Africa since the 18th and 19th centuries. They are high in antioxidants, have anti-inflammatory properties, as well as cancer, liver and kidney protective effects.
These Berry Chocolate Crackles use Loving Earth Chocolate Buckinis from our online store as the base, making them really easy to make. They're sweet but not overly sweet, and have a rich dark chocolate flavour to them. I've used half and half cacao and carob powder, to soften the rich cacao flavour (which can sometimes be quite strong on it's own). You could however use all cacao or all carob depending on your preferences. I've also used half and half coconut oil and cacao butter - lots of raw sweet treats just use coconut oil, but cacao butter gives a more complex and authentic chocolate flavour (real chocolate is made with cacao butter not coconut oil). It also has a higher melting point, so they hold together better out of the fridge and are less likely to melt in your hands.
These are really easy to make with only a few ingredients, so definitely give them a go. If you'd like to share your delicious Berry Chocolate Crackle treats with the world, head over to Instagram and tag @begoodorganics and #begoodorganics so I can come say hello and admire your creations. Have a great weekend, and here's to a calm, relaxing, peaceful Christmas this year!
PS Have you tried my Chewy Chocolate Goji Crunch? This is a bit similar, just easier and quicker to make!
Makes 9 individual crackle cups
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We always use certified organic, local and fairly traded ingredients wherever possible
3c Loving Earth Chocolate Buckinis* (buckwheat, coconut chips, cacao, incan berries, goji berries, cacao nibs, coconut sugar) 1/2c desiccated coconut1 tbsp coconut nectar 1/4c cacao powder + 1/4c carob powder OR 1/2c of either 1/3c coconut oil (melted) 1/3c cacao butter (melted) 1/2 tsp vanilla powder pinch sea salt
Extra goji berries and incan berries to sprinkle on top
c = 250ml cup, tbsp = 15ml tablespoon, tsp = 5ml teaspoon
* If you don't have our Loving Earth Chocolate Buckinis, you can use soaked & dehydrated plain buckwheat, or just raw buckwheat. You'll want to increase the coconut nectar though to 2-3 Tbsp.
PS If you liked this recipe, feel free to share it on Facebook (hit the like button below), Pinterest (hover over any of the images and click Pin It), Instagram or Twitter.
Sources:Loving EarthHealing With Wholefoods (P. Pitchford)
Buffy is the founder of Be Good Organics, and loves creating delicious yet simple plant-based whole foods recipes.
Buffy also oversees our Be Good Organics online store, full of plant based goodies that she personally uses and loves. Sign up for our newsletter below to be the first to receive her weekly recipes.
by Buffy Ellen
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I'm Buffy, a food obsessed nutrition nerd, former financial research analyst and investment banker, and now - full time blogger, nutritionist and soon to be naturopath. I live in Auckland, New Zealand with my partner Tony, our two cats Zeus and Luna, and our cute-as-pie little girl Mila. Can't wait to share some healthy recipes with you! READ MORE HERE...
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