Monday, September 24, 2012

How to Make Sugar-free Chocolate. Honest.


....This. Is. Dangerous.

I just made chocolate.

Did you hear me? I JUST MADE CHOCOLATE! 

Like....real chocolate. Myself. From scratch. And I just ate half the batch, in under three minutes. 

(Okay - I only made two small bars, but still!)

Oooooh, it was so good.

Why was I bothering to make chocolate when, in my room, in the not-so-secret basket on my bookshelf, lies a small mountain of chocolate bonbons?

Let me explain. But hold on - *grabs readers' sleeve* - I promise to share the recipe if you just hang in with me.

Almost three weeks ago, I discovered - through a chain of events that I won't take the time to relate here - that I have a certain health problem. It was making my life miserable in several apparently unrelated ways; all non-life threatening, and none of them too terrible a calamity in moderation or on their own, but when taken together, enough to make me take notice. When I realized they were all related, a breeze of sweet relief/excitement/dread/hesitation/apprehension swept over me. At last I had answers! ....But the implications of my answers filled me with dread.

This "minor" (though very annoying and socially-awkward) set of problems (including a rash all over my face and scalp - yay for helping me fight pride!) was just the tip of the iceburg. The bump of the potato underground. (Okay - so my metaphors aren't so good today.)

These "issues" were all being caused by a source that could lead to more serious things. Things that start with a "D" and a"C", and end in "iabetes" and "ancer."

I got a little scared. And hopeless.

One avenue was open. And it's an avenue I've thought about taking before, but would not venture down until this set of circumstances herded me down the alley with no option of a different road.

Change of Diet.

Oh yes. The thing we Americans hate to mess with; our food.

I was in denial at first. After all, I eat healthy! Really, I do. (Aside from that little mountain of chocolate, that is.) I hate soda. I hate pop tarts. I love fruit. I love steamed veggies. I eat very little pasta. I love soaked oatmeal, made from Old Fashioned oats. I prefer molasses and honey over white or brown sugar. I like fish. I don't eat much pork at all. We eat grass-fed beef whenever possible. We have fresh eggs from our own chickens. We drink raw milk, fresh from the farm.

I eat healthy! Really.

So WHY, God? Why put me through extra self-denial? Couldn't You go pop this lovely little problem on somebody who could really use a wake-up call? How 'bout that family down the street that lives on TV dinners and soda? Yeah - that sounds more logical.

But His ways are not our ways. And you know what? I think I'm finally okay with that. I smile to think how much smarter He is than me. :)

But on to practicalities.

For almost three weeks now, I've been living on a diet that contains none of the following:
- No milk (except kefir or almond)
- No cheese
- No butter
- No other dairy products
- No grains except oats (no rice, no wheat, etc.)
- No fruit except berries and citrus
- No nuts except almonds
- No oils except olive and coconut
- No potatoes
- No corn
- No carrots
- No peas
- No sweet potatoes
- No winter squash
- No legumes except navy beans and lentils
- No refined sugar
- No honey
- No molasses

...Have I forgotten anything? No, I don't think so.  

Yes, this is a limited diet! It's been a long three weeks. Thankfully, the Lord is beginning to heal me, and I can see a light at the end of the tunnel. I hope to be able to add dairy, fruit, and some other vegetables back into my diet in a few weeks. After that....we'll see!

Why am I sharing all this?

I almost didn't. Health is kinda personal, ya know? But I am actually enjoying the challenge of coming up with new recipes, and I want to share them with you! Maybe some of you are gluten-free, or dairy-free, and you'd like some ideas. Maybe you can share ideas!

But let's get 'round to the point...finally.


Yes. That's a good point, isn't it?

I'm not technically "supposed" to have chocolate on this diet. It contains sugar. And bad fats. As well as whatever additives are inside those brown bars.

But who says you can't make your own?

This way: 
Coconut Oil
Hershey's Special Dark Cocoa Powder

Make molds with foil. Little bar shapes. Sprinkle Almonds inside. Melt Coconut oil. Add cocoa powder to taste. (You could also add sweetener at this point; honey, or sugar.) I made mine really dark. Pour melted mixture into molds. Place in freezer for one hour.

Pop out of molds. Break off pieces.


(*Tip: You will enjoy even more if you go without sugar for three weeks*)

If there WERE any leftovers, they are best stored in the freezer, or at least the refrigerator. Coconut oil gets soft at room temperature.
P.S. Mom says this is REALLY dark chocolate. I love it. For those of you who can add some form of sweetener, you will probably want to. Just to taste.

Edited 3.5 hours later to add:
Just for future reference....when a person has not had caffeine in several weeks....eating roughly 2 tsp. of pure cocoa powder in one sitting will probably lead to a racing heartbeat. Just saying. Hypothetically.


Elizabeth said...

Sounds awesome - this will really help me because I REALLY love dark chocolate, but am attempting cut out everything non-healthy from my diet. :)

Matt Willer said...

Great post you were describe good this about how to make sugar free dessert its awesome thanks