Indulge without the Guilt
If you’re trying to curb your sugar intake and generally maintain a healthy balance, a sweet tooth can be the hardest thing to fight. It’s ok to indulge and enjoy yourself, but if you don’t want to somersault off the bandwagon into a huge sugar coma, you might need some alternative healthier recipes in your armour.
With a bit of know how you can create healthy desserts that are both indulgent and virtuous. This celebratory dessert is not only deliciously rich and moreish but wheat, gluten and dairy free. I’ve road tested this one on plenty of volunteers, some willing, some a bit hesitant at 10am just after breakfast! Thankfully the feedback has been fantastic from all.
This special little fruit and nutter is velvety in texture and richly chocolatey in taste. Its creaminess comes from the main ingredient of avocado and its natural sweetness comes from figs and honey.
(Note from The Editor: Laura O’Shaughnessy writes regularly for The Glass House Girls – you can find more of her work here. Check out her personal blog for more recipes or visit her on Facebook.)
To make a generous portion for 2, you will need:
- 1 ripe avocado
- 4 soft dried figs – aim for the ones without added sulphites
- 2 tablespoons of almond butter
- 2 tablespoons of coconut milk
- 2 tablespoons of cacao powder
- 2 tablespoons of honey
- Crushed dried fruit and nuts
- Drizzle of maple syrup
We’ve been wising up to the downsides of sugar over the past few years. As low sugar diets become more prevalent, recipes using more natural sweeteners are becoming commonplace, so you may have tried baking with some of these alternative ingredients already.
If you’re starting from scratch, try to source good quality ingredients. Use the best ripe avocados you can find as under-ripe avocados won’t blend well. Nip into your local health shop for the almond butter and cacao powder. If possible, visit an independent health shop – they tend to offer much better advice and lower prices.
You really can’t go wrong with this one. It scores well on the mess management front using no more than one kitchen appliance and a spatula. It can also be made a day in advance and kept in the fridge.
I have used measuring spoons for the quantities, so a tablespoon is an exact measure in this recipe. You don’t need to do that, but bear in mind the relative measurements I have suggested, as it does come together well using these amounts.
- Start by blitzing the avocado in your food processor for a few seconds until really smooth. Then add and blend each ingredient in the order listed, running the spatula around the edges every now and then.
- Try tasting at each stage, it’s really interesting to see how the flavours build up. Before you add the honey at the end, check that you’ve added enough cacao to your own taste and then add the honey that you need. I think a tablespoon is enough to make it sweet without being sickly.
- Spoon into one bowl or into individual ramekins or small dishes. It doesn’t need to look perfect and smooth, I think a soft peaked scoop gives a more enticing finish for this one.
- Before you serve you may want to add crushed nuts, fruit and a drizzle of maple syrup. Delicious.