Friday, March 1, 2013

Healthy Sugar-Free Raspberry Cappuccino Bark

Oh I'm a nut for chocolate and raspberry together. It is a classic combination. I don't like the fruit dipped in chocolate because it tends to weep and get mushy an funky. But, adding freeze-dried raspberries has been a stroke of absolute genius!  Last year for Christmas we made homemade-thin-mint-cookies and raspberry clusters {of divine happiness-swoon-pass-out}.
With the advent of the new year I wanted a healthy alternative and I'm happy to say that I found one after a good chat with a health and fitness coach, Laura Madden. Laura  teaches classes every Thursday at our Local Honeyville Teaching Kitchen and has a great way of making healthy food accessible to everyone! I love her. Have I mentioned that? At any rate, I made this chocolate raspberry bark adapting her chocolate bark recipe and I'm in love. LOVE. Healthy love. 

When you bite into this bark you get the dark luscious silkiness of a chocolate bar mingled with mocha and vanilla notes. It is deep and rich. It is not super-sweet but that is perfectly off-set by the tart-crispy addition of the freeze-dried raspberries. I've added a small amount of freeze-dried yogurt as well, for a little sweetness and alternative crunch (it is obviously optional if you're vegan or totally sugar-free).  One small piece is just right to fill my chocolate craving and it gives me all the benefits of coconut oil, cocoa, and fresh fruit! How amazing is that?!!

Chef Tess' Chocolate Raspberry Cappuccino Bark 
adapted from Laura Madden's Vegan Chocolate bark

1/2 cup   Coconutreat Raw Organic Coconut Oil
2-3 droppers full liquid stevia (I prefer the flavor of
1/2 tsp Natural Madagascar vanilla bean paste OR double strength vanilla
1/4 tsp LorAnn cappuccino-flavored oil or 1T espresso powder (I don't use coffee)
1/2 cup organic raw baker's cocoa
1 1/2 cup Freeze-dried Raspberries
1/2 cup Freeze-dried Strawberry yogurt bites (optional. contains milk and sugar)

Melt the coconut oil over very low heat just until liquid. Add the stevia, vanila paste, and flavored oil.
Stir in the baker's cocoa until smooth.
Fold in the Freeze-dried Raspberries and yogurt bites (if you use them). Line a 9 inch bread pan with parchment paper or non-stick foil. Pour mixture into the lined pan and transfer to the freezer until set, about 10 minutes.
Remove from pan and chop into chunks. Keep chilled in the fridge, in an airtight container until ready to eat.

There you go. Another great sugar-free option and a great alternative for a healthy snack now and then!

Always My Very Best,
Your Friend Chef Tess

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