Ever since I attended that vegan food workshop back in January, I've been dying to recreate the raw carob brownies that Chooi-Leng made. Granted, they are not entirely raw (the topping is made from melted chocolate) but there is absolutely no baking required, and most important of all - no eggs, no gluten, no dairy, and definitely no soy! I'd say this is a winner. I am bringing these "brownies" to a friend's house for a late lunch tomorrow - so I decided to make them today and stick them in the fridge, giving them enough time to "set" and harden up a bit. I remember at the workshop the brownies had less than an hour in the fridge before we were all leaving, so I had the gooiest meltiest brownie in my hands - still delicious, but would have been awesome if it was all in one nice solid package.
The way I made them was a bit of an experiment, and a little bit different to the brownies we made back in January. First of all, there is no carob here - I used cocoa powder in the main brownie "batter". I also got a bit overzealous with the moistness of the batter and added a splash of rice milk - highly unnecessary, as this made it impossibly sticky. So I'm only including the recipe for what I think it should be (rather than what I used today) - plus my photos of just the batter, and then with the melted chocolate on top (before putting in the fridge to cool and set).
This is a delicious and decadent dessert without the guilt - it's pretty harmless, except maybe for the chocolate part :)
Yields a 15 x 20 cm tray full
- 2 cups cashews (soaked or unsoaked)
- 2 cups dates, chopped in thirds
- 2 tbsp cocoa powder (I used Green & Black's)
- 1 bar dark chocolate, broken into small bits
- 1 tbsp agave nectar
- 3 tbsp shelled hemp seeds blended with 3/4 cup water OR 3/4 cup non-dairy milk
- Blend the cashews in a food processor, then add the chopped dates and cocoa powder. Blend until fully mixed.
- Melt the chocolate bits in a glass bowl over a pan of simmering water. Add the hemp (or other non-dairy) milk and the agave nectar to the melted chocolate and stir until fully combined.
- Scoop the cashew blend out of the food processor and press into a tupperware or glass container. Pour the melted chocolate sauce on top. leave to cool - put in the fridge once mostly cooled and leave until ready to serve.
Lesson learned: I've seen lots of raw and vegan brownie recipes around the web, and most involve walnuts or pecans instead of cashews. This would make for a nuttier brownie - so give it a go if you don't really want a smooth or cashew-flavored variety.