Saturday, August 25, 2012

Eat to Evolve! Raw Chocolate Brownies

These scrumptious brownies are raw, vegan and gluten free, 100% flourless and sweetened only with whole, soft, caramelicious medjool dates, a fruit about which I have previously waxed poetic, here.

Mouthwateringly rich and dense, Eat to Evolve! Raw Chocolate Brownies contain few ingredients but offer a deeply complex taste experience. Make them with your choice of walnuts or pecans; both are equally delicious. Either way, I recommend cutting them small, and chewing each bite slowly for full flavor enjoyment.

I made a batch of the walnut version to bring to a picnic yesterday (see above picture), and was lucky to have one, lone brownie left over to take home!

Here they are with pecans inside and on top, an elegant touch.
After receiving many requests to share the recipe, I am pleased to do so here and now. May you enjoy these sweet treats, body and soul.

Eat to Evolve! Raw Chocolate Brownies

Makes one 8" X 8" pan, or about 25 small brownies

3 cups raw walnuts or pecans
20 medjool dates, pitted, at room temperature
2/3 cups raw cacao powder
1/4 teaspoon Himalayan pink salt, or sea salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 teaspoons cold water

Set aside 1/4 cup of raw walnuts or pecans for topping, and add remaining nuts to food processor along with salt. Process nuts and salt together until finely ground. Add remaining ingredients and process until a consistent, well-mixed dough comes together in a ball. If necessary, sprinkle in more water to help mixing along, but careful not too much—you want it moist, not gooey.

Transfer brownie dough to an 8x8 Pyrex baking dish and with very clean hands, press it down until evenly distributed. Peer through the sides of the Pyrex to ensure a regular height all around. Then give a final pressing with the back of a stainless steel spatula, to create a smooth surface.

Chop the reserved 1/4 cup nuts, sprinkle over the top of the brownies and gently press them in with the spatula.* Or if you prefer, decorate the top with whole pecans, in which case, you may need a few more than the 1/4 cup reserved—think 20-25 total, laid out in neat rows so there will be one pecan atop of each individual brownie.

Cover the dish with waxed paper, put foil or plastic wrap over that, and chill brownies in the refrigerator until they firm up. Once they are firm and hard, you can slice them. I like to cut them small, in one-inch squares, or so. To do this, make four cuts on each side to yield 25 brownies per pan. Or, if you decorated with pecans, use the whole nuts as your slicing guide.

Keep brownies chilled until ready to eat. They taste better at room temperature, but store best in the fridge.

*If decorating the brownies with chopped nuts on top, you may wish to pulse-chop the reserved 1/4 cup of nuts in the food processor as a very first step, before you start making the brownies proper.

Everybody loves my Raw Chocolate Brownies! Won't you have one?

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