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Category: Recipes

  1. Vegan Milk Chocolate Recipe

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    Vegan Milk Chocolate Recipe - Gluten & Dairy Free

    Dark chocolate is by far my favourite type of chocolate, but sometimes there is a time and place for a nice milk chocolate. That extra sugar and milk makes the chocolate beautifully sweet and melts in your mouth perfectly. I've kept this recipe suitable for vegans, so it only has plant based ingredients. It'also gluten and dairy free, which is perfect if you can't have gluten or dairy products. I know my vegan friends would be surprised, why me (a perfectly happy meat eater) would create a vegan chocolate recipe. The truth is that I've recently found that I have IBS and I'm better off staying clear of dairy. So this recipe is also low FODMAP as long as you don't eat the whole chocolate bar at once.

    The recipe is very simple to make, but you do need some fairly specialist ingredients, that you might not always have in your kitchen cupboard. So, here is your shopping list:

    115g Coconut Oil or Coconut Butter

    150g Icing Sugar or about 75g of Stevia or other plant based liquid sugar (use Maple syrup or Icing sugar for low FODMAP diet)

    85g Cocoa Powder

    60g Powdered Coconut Milk

    tiny pinch of salt (to your taste)

    To make your milk chocolate, start with melting the coconut oil or butter. Coconut oil is easier to buy, so I guess you'll probably be using it most of the time, but if you can get hold of coconut butter it's worth it as it gives you slightly stronger structure and the chocolate will have the perfect snap. This is because coconut butter melts at higher temperature than coconut oil.

    Once your coconut oil is melted, add your coconut powdered milk and gently stir. Don't be even tempted to replace the powdered coconut milk with fresh liquid milk. Chocolate doesn't like water and it would cause the chocolate to split. If you find anything else that's plant based powdered milk, you can swap it for that.

    Once the milk powder melts, add the sugar and carry on stirring. Depending on how healthy you want your chocolate to be, you can swap the icing sugar for stevia, maple syrup or other liquid plant based sugars. Just be careful to lower the amount of the sugar you are adding in. I found that adding about half of the original quantity is about right. This is because liquid sugar has different structure than powdered sugar and your chocolate would become too liquid and you might have problems with setting your chocolate.

    Once everything is melted, add cocoa powder. Like with any other chocolate recipe, the better quality of cocoa powder you get the better quality of chocolate you'll end up with. This especially applies to milk chocolate recipes where the cocoa powder is not as high quantity as dark chocolate recipes.

    Finally add a tiny pinch of salt. This might surprise you, but until now, we have been adding pretty much just sugary and fairly bland ingredients. And sugar is normally fairly bland to taste. To bring all the flavours together a tiny pinch of salt is the perfect way to finish this recipe. If you don't believe me, taste the chocolate before you add any salt and then afterwards. I bet you'll love the final taste!!!

    Once everything is mixed, carry on stirring the chocolate with a spatula (or a even a balloon whisk). This cools down the chocolate, make it slightly thicker and temper the chocolate (somewhat...). Then just pour your chocolate to a chocolate bar mould or even just on a flat tray lined with a parchment and let to set in a fridge for about 20 min. If you fancy it, you can also add freeze dried raspberries or other dried fruit, nuts of seeds to make your chocolate bar extra special.

    After that just enjoy and do let me know how you get on!



  2. Boiled Sweets Recipe

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    Boiled Sweets Recipe

    Author: Magdalena Marsden

    This article was last updated on 20 July 2018

     I've always been interested in traditional confectionery - pretty much all of my life I was on a quest for the perfect sweets, chocolates or bonbons. And I was always fascinated about the process of sweet's making and it was partly the reason why I founded Cocoa & Heart few years back. All those demonstrations at seaside sweet's shops of how to make a stick of rock got me thinking, that perhaps I could have a go myself. And I did - successfully - made several batches of boiled sweets and now you can have a go too, following my step by step boiled sweets recipe tutorial.

  3. Chocolate Roulade Recipe

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    Chocolate Roulade Recipe

    This recipe for chocolate roulade looks fairly complex, but I promise you it's not as difficult as you think. Just take your time and don't rush the process and you'll end up with a delicious dessert that taste as good as it looks!

    Chocolate Roulade Recipe


    200g plain dark chocolate

    200g caster sugar

    7 medium eggs, separated

    300g double cream

    3 tablespoons Cointreau or Grand Marnier

    4 tablespoons of icing sugar for dusting

    Fresh raspberries for decorating (or adding into the roulade)

    spring of fresh mint


  4. How to make vegan chocolate

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    how to make vegan chocolate

    I've always been fascinated by the process of making chocolate and whilst in my day job, I usually use already prepared chocolate covertiture, for this recipe I've decided to explore the world of actual chocolate making.

    So, here is how to make a simple vegan chocolate bar with only three basic ingredients. This recipe is of course suitable for vegetarian and vegan diets, but it's also gluten and wheat free and doesn't contain any lactose (milk). So, this is as healthy as chocolate can get! 

  5. Chocolate Buttermilk Cake Recipe

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    Buttermilk Chocolate Cake

    The most delicious, moist and easy to bake chocolate cake with buttermilk. This is my favourite recipe I bake often for my family and friends - it's always a big hit!

    Here is what you need:

    For the cake:

    175g unsalted butter

    1 teaspoon of vanilla essence 

    350g caster sugar

    4 medium eggs separated into egg whites (one bowl) and egg yolks (second bowl)

    100g self-raising flour

    40g cocoa powder

    175g buttermilk


  6. Rhubarb Cake Recipe

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    Rhubarb Cake recipe

    I've developed this recipe for rhubarb cake when I was working at Down House - a historic house where Charles Darwin lived for most of his life. We had an amazing garden kitchen which also had a large patch of heritage rhubarb. I wanted to create a recipe that would use the rhubarb as the main ingredients, as we had a bounty of rhubarb every year.

    So, each day during the rhubarb season, I would walk down to the end of the garden as I was finishing my work and cut few stems of rhubarb. I was under strict instructions to make it look like 'nothing was missing', so I would spend a lot of time working out how to cut the best stems that were ready from each cluster. fortunately the head gardener was a great fan of the rhubarb cake!