Healthy Valentine’s Day treats made from pure homemade chocolate

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Preparation time: 10-15 minutes active, 30 minutes chill time

Ingredients

  • 1 cup food grade cocoa butter (pure)
  • 1 cup cocoa powder
  • ½ cup pure maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • Optional add-ins: toasted nuts, seeds, or a few drops of a flavor extract like peppermint

 

Preparation:

  1. Melt cocoa butter in a double boiler or a glass bowl on top of a small pan with an inch of water (make sure water isn't touching bowl) over medium heat. TIP: Be careful to make sure no water from double boiler or wet hands gets into the cocoa butter or chocolate or it will cause the chocolate to seize up and get mealy. Alternatively, instead of the double-boiler method, you can melt cocoa butter very easily in 10-12 minutes in an oven set at 170°F.
  2. When cocoa butter is completely melted, remove from heat and add cocoa powder, maple syrup, and vanilla. If you are using any flavor extracts like peppermint, add them at this time, too. Stir until all ingredients are well incorporated and smooth.

OPTION 1CHOCOLATE MOLD:

  • Carefully pour the melted chocolate mixture in to a chocolate mold. If using optional add-ins, just fill each mold partially with chocolate, then add filling and cover with additional melted chocolate. Place in the refrigerator or freezer for approximately 30 minutes to harden. Keep the chocolates stored in the refrigerator or freezer until ready to eat.

OPTION 2CHOCOLATE COVERED STRAWBERRIES:

  • Wash and thoroughly dry strawberries.
  • Line a sheet pan with parchment or waxed paper. Holding the strawberry by the stem, dip the fruit into the melted chocolate mixture, lift and twist slightly, letting any excess chocolate fall back into the bowl. Set strawberries on the parchment paper. Repeat with the rest of the strawberries.
  • Set the strawberries in the refrigerator until the chocolate sets, about 30 minutes.
  • If you have extra chocolate, fill a chocolate mold or pour out flat over parchment.
  • Keep strawberries stored in the refrigerator until ready to eat.