As a kid, I was obsessed with coconut ice. In fact, I’ll admit it right here, right now – I’m a vanilla dessert kind of girl. Coconut fits this description. I am somewhat concerned by my public announcement of my love for vanilla because I know I will be up against a giant fan club of cacao lovers around the world.
Now, don’t get me wrong cacao-ers, I love dark chocolate too! I’m the first to admit the potent affects of unprocessed cacao on the body! Plus, the endorphin high is particularly enjoyable. However, when it comes to my taste buds being fully satisfied I have to stand by my old faithful and vote vanilla for the win!
Whenever I tuck into a vanilla dessert, I feel like white puffy clouds of heaven are floating around my tongue. You hardly feel like you’ve even bitten into something but the lightweight, barely-there vanilla dessert is slowly dissolving onto your grateful taste buds.
My grandmother would always grumble at my strong will when it came to desserts – dark chocolate desserts, obviously! Whenever I tried telling her I was a vanilla girl she completely ignored me. Perhaps it helped her guilty conscience seeing me as a despondent somebody with an aversion to desserts, but all the while vanilla was my thing!
Today’s recipe takes me back to my school going days. One of my girl friends at primary school had the most killer coconut ice recipe that she would make for every school event. It was so flipping good and I was at the stage of my life where sugar rushes were most welcomed. My love for vanilla and subsequently coconut ice was at an all time high.
One day I asked her for the heavenly recipe and she point blank refused. The news was so depressing that in an attempt to get my own back I stole three pieces off her bake sale stand whilst my best friend distracted her with jokes and flattery. The victory was short lived. We engulfed them in 5 minutes flat. And still, no recipe!
Who would have thought that all these years later I would be a raw vegan blogger, with a passion for mixing and matching different ingredients in an attempt to find a plant-based coconut ice substitute. Finally, I have a rendition of my own that appears to have taken the cake, (no pun intended)… Not only is it packed with all things coconut, it also comprises of high quality and unprocessed plant-based products. See you later, guilt! Heeellooo nutrient density!
Loco for Coconuts
Whenever I sip on a coconut, I experience this full body sensation of being completely supported by some cosmic force. I feel totally relaxed and spontaneously switch to long, slow and deep breathing.
In India, there are coconuts for days. Every second corner is littered with them. It is pretty much the best way to end off an intense yoga session. They are packed with revitalising electrolytes (especially potassium and magnesium) making coconuts absolutely perfect for rehydration.
In Sanskrit, the direct translation for the coconut palm is the tree that supplies all that is needed to live, most likely because it is identical to human blood plasma. It is also the closest match to mother’s milk. I think this accounts for the exhilarating effects I feel when I’m sipping on a coconut.
Coconuts are comprised of MCT’s (medium chain triglycerides) which have numerous positive effects on human health. MCT’s require less energy and fewer enzymes to digest providing us with more energy more more efficiently.
Finally, It is a great oil to cook with because it is a saturated fat, meaning, it contains no double bonds that can react with oxygen causing harmful side effects. Monounsaturated fats (e.g. olive oil, canola oil, peanut oil, safflower oil and sesame oil) have one double bond and polyunsaturated fats (e.g. soybean oil and sunflower oil) have many double bonds that can react with oxygen when cooking at high temperatures, forming aldehydes and lipid peroxides that are dangerous to human health.
Don’t forget to use coconut oil as a natural body moisturiser! It is packed with antiseptic properties that protect the skin and give it a youthful glow. I scarcely use anything else these days. It is a beautiful way of getting in touch with our most natural selves.
2 C Pecans, Soaked & Dried
½ C Dates
½ C Goji Berries
1 ½ C Cashews, Soaked & Dried
1 C Desiccated Coconut
1/3 C Coconut Oil
4 T Raw Honey
½ t Vanilla extract
1 T lemon juice
1/2 C Organic Coconut Milk
1/2 Orange, Juiced
1 t Psyllium Husk Powder
The Chocolate Sauce
3 T Coconut Oil
1 ½ T Raw Honey
3 T Cacao Powder
1 Pinch Karoo Salt
Start by soaking your pecan and cashew nuts some time before you make this dessert. I like to soak mine when I get home in the evenings (for at least 4 hours). I’ll then rinse them, and leave them to dry in a nut milk bag overnight.
Blend the base ingredients together in a food processor until you form a fine to medium textured dough. The mixture should form a ball when rolled between two fingers. Press the mixture evenly into a square pan greased with a little coconut oil.
Blend the filling ingredients together until smooth and creamy and pour into your square pan lined with the crust. Place in the fridge for 1 hour.
In the meantime, prepare your chocolate sauce by melting the coconut oil on a very low heat. Remove from the stove and mix in the honey, cacao powder and salt. Place in the fridge for a few minutes (5-7 mins) to slightly thicken the mixture.
Slice the coconut slab into decent sized squares and place them onto a large chopping board. Spoon 1 T of chocolate sauce over each square and place the squares back into the fridge until the chocolate sauce solidifies.
Serve up & Enjoy X
PS. This recipe would make a great birthday gift. It’s a fun and genuine way of giving something to somebody you love. It adds a thoughtful touch and is definitely more cost effective. Everyone loves home made goodies to celebrate their special day!
This dessert is relatively simple to make, not very time consuming, nor does it leave a huge mess. Sourcing your ingredients would probably be the most time consuming part if you’re not a local at your closest health shop. Usually, however, I find the staff at the health stores I frequent to be both knowledgeable and helpful.
So Much Love