Raw Chocolate Hazelnut Cakes

Raw Chocolate Hazelnut Cakes

It’s Easter Sunday today, so first of all, I’d like to wish you all a very magical love-filled day. I was doing an Oracle card reading this morning (if I haven’t told you before, I adore my cards – I have several decks and always do readings with my sister whenever we’re together – so much fun!), and saw a card called Ostara. I thought it was timely that that particular card popped into my awareness, since Ostara is the Goddess of fertility, and of giving birth to new ideas, projects or conditions. We’ve just celebrated the Autumn equinox here down under, but in Europe it’s the Spring equinox energy. Easter gets its name from Ostara, who is also known as Eastre. She is associated with the rising of the sun in the east, and the increase in daylight during the spring. Eggs and bunnies are naturally associated with spring festivities in her name. So there you go, a little old magic to start the day.

This morning I am excited to share a recipe and new cooking segment filmed for The Hype on E! TV Au/NZ. It seems that raw foods are coming more and more into the mainstream lately, so I was delighted to demonstrate a healthy Easter recipe for one very sceptic host. We had a great afternoon filming in my parent’s beautiful kitchen and talked at length about the benefits of a whole foods, plant based diet, and particularly of raw desserts as a healthy alternative to conventional and commercial desserts. And, I have to admit I was a wee bit nervous, but nothing a double dose of Rescue Remedy couldn’t fix!

Lauren Glucina E! TV Au/NZ

The recipe I prepared were these decadent, Raw Chocolate Hazelnuts Cakes, which we creatively named ‘Easter Egg Nests’ – I guess if you squint your eyes the hazelnuts and chocolate sauce on top look like chocolate eggs!

Have a wee peak below.

We also had some great discussions about the benefits of raw vs. cooked chocolate, which didn’t quite make it into the segment. But in a nutshell, cooked cacao is sold as cocoa (or chocolate), and undergoes significant heat treatments, causing a huge loss in antioxidant flavonoid content. Many commercial chocolates also undergo a step called Dutch processing, in which an alkalising agent is added to decrease the bitterness of the cacao powder and make it less acidic and more mild tasting. Raw cacao products (cacao powder, beans, nibs, liquor/paste and butter) are kept under 48˚C along each step of the manufacturing process – from drying, to fermentation (yes – chocolate is a fermented food!), to dehydrating (rather than roasting). Finally, commercial chocolate is often made with emulsifiers such as soy lecithin, which are more than likely to be genetically modified. Of course, they are also laden with refined cane sugar, and have added milk or milk solids.

So whilst raw treats like this are still indulgent – you can see how they are naturally better for you.

Healthy Raw Chocolate Hazelnut Cakes - a bit like Nutella x Ice Cream - recipe here! Click To Tweet

Ok let’s get into this recipe shall we?

Raw Chocolate Hazelnut Cakes

Raw Chocolate Hazelnut Cakes
 
Easter undoubtedly is a time of over-indulgence, but it doesn’t have to be an unhealthy one. These mini chocolate hazelnut cakes taste a bit like nutella x ice cream, though they’re entirely raw and made without any dairy, eggs, flour or refined sugar. If you use your imagination, you’ll see the hazelnuts pressed into the cakes, drizzled with chocolate sauce, resemble a nest of eggs!
Guaranteed to impress family and friends, vegan or otherwise!


Equipment needed:

Blender
Food processor
Squeeze-bottle
Silicon muffin trays (12 cavities)
Serves: 12
Ingredients
BASE:
  • 1½ cups coconut flakes/chips
  • ½ cup rolled oats (fine)
  • 1 tablespoon raw cacao powder
  • 100g of Medjool dates, pitted (about 6)
  • Pinch of coarse sea salt
FILLING:
  • 1¼ cups hazelnuts
  • 1¼ cups almond milk (or oat milk/coconut milk)
  • ⅓ cup 100% pure maple syrup
  • ¼ raw cacao butter, liquefied*
  • ⅓ cup raw cacao powder
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons coconut sugar
  • Large pinch of coarse sea salt
TO TOP:
  • 1 cup hazelnuts
CHOCOLATE SAUCE:
  • ½ cup 100% pure maple syrup
  • ½ cup raw cacao powder
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil, melted
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 pinches coarse sea salt
*To liquefy cacao butter, shave it with a knife and place in a glass jug, stand in hot water till it melts.
Instructions
BASE:
  1. Place oats and coconut in a food processor and blitz for 30 seconds.
  2. Add cacao powder and salt and blend again.
  3. Add dates last, one at a time, and blend till the mixture holds together when pressed. If it is on the dry side, add a tablespoon of coconut oil.
  4. Press mixture evenly into the base of silicon muffin moulds (about 1 heaped tablespoon per cavity, there is enough to fill 12 cavities).
FILLING:
  1. Place hazelnuts and almond milk in a high-speed blender, and whiz till smooth (about 1 minute).
  2. Add all other ingredients and blend for another 1 minute. Stop and scrape the sides down as needed.
  3. Pour filling into the muffin moulds, but don’t fill right to the top – leave about a 5mm gap.
  4. Gently press a small handful of whole hazelnuts into the tops.
  5. Transfer to the freezer to set (will take a few hours).
CHOCOLATE SAUCE:
  1. Place all ingredients in blender and blend till smooth.
  2. Pour into a squeeze-bottle, and drizzle over frozen cakes.
TO SERVE:
  1. Remove from freezer 15-30 minutes before serving, to soften.

Raw Chocolate Hazelnut CakesRaw-Chocolate-Hazelnut-Cake-10

Hope you enjoy these – the crew devoured them and took them home – none left for me! I also hope you had (raw) chocolate for breakfast. It’s compulsory after all on Easter Sunday is it not?

Lx.

I’d love you to follow me on Instagram
tag me @ascensionkitchen so I can see your creations!  

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Lauren Glucina is a plant-based whole foods Nutritionist, Naturopath and Medical Herbalist. She is a passionate advocate for food as medicine. Lauren has also formally trained as a Raw Foods Chef and has a soft spot for raw treats. 

Lauren is available for Natural & Nutritional Medicine consultations here.

  • Hannah Phoebe Bowen

    You are AMAZING taking it on TV! Can’t believe i’ve never “seen” you before and that was lovely! Can’t wait to try these treats – that base sounds right up my street! xxxx

    • Thank-you Hannah!! It was so scary! Hope you had an amazing Easter xx

  • These look absolutely amazing. Unfortunately I have a sensitivity to raw hazelnuts, which is very disappointing as I love them!

    • Oh noooo! That is unfortunate! You could try cashews instead if you can tolerate those, and use a dash of Medicine Flower Hazelnut Extract?

      • Medicine Flower Extracts are new to me. Thank you! I’ll try experimenting.

  • Caitlinn

    Cant wait to wait to make these! You were a natural on TV! Would you be able to tell me/ post the pot to where you bought your silicon moulds from and what size they are? Happy Easter! xx

    • Hi Caitlinn, thank you 🙂 The moulds are from a kitchen shop (Stevens) and I threw the packaging out so can’t tell you the brand, but I have two, 6 cavities each, they are regular muffin sized, hope that helps, happy un-cooking!

  • Carolyn Bruce

    Was all keen to make these, but discovered a mistake. You only have hazelnuts listed for the topping/filling, but you mention things like almond milk and ‘other ingredients’ in the instructions.

    • Morning Carolyn – I’m just wondering if perhaps you misread the recipe? I have all the filling ingredients listed under ‘Filling’ and have extra hazelnuts listed under ‘To Top’ which are just to press into the finished cakes as decoration. Hopefully that makes sense? Hope you get to enjoy them!

      • Carolyn Bruce

        No I didn’t misread the recipe, I went up and down the page several times to double-check, but maybe it was just a temporary computer glitch because I can see all the other ingredients now. How weird. Anyway, I will give these a shot!