Thursday, January 23, 2014

Mamma's Almond Surprises

I have never liked any American Chocolates except Almond Joys. I am not being a food snob, but after spending the first 22 years of my life strictly seeing Cadburys Dairy Milks and exquisite European chocolates (thanks to friends and family who made a stop at Duty free Shops) as a vital food group, you just cant stomach a Hershey Kisses or a Milky way bar. Its just too sweet for me. But I have to say, not belonging to the too sweet category are Dove. Lets just say, one piece of that slow melting milk chocolate keeps me sane after a bad day, infinitely improving my mood.
Note to self: "FOCUS!"

I have been making healthy changes towards myself and my family, starting last year. As a part of that big overhaul, I made an attempt to cut out processed foods (which is still an ongoing process) , I tried my hand making my favorite Almond Joys at home sans the hydrogenated fats and preservatives. I also wanted to make them in one perfect serving size unlike the originals which messed with my will power with those two bars-in-one-pack bait.

Two things: 
1. I was pretty much streaked all over with chocolate and didnt want to ruin my camera. The pictures have been taken on my phone. I apologize in advance for the poor images.
2. This recipe serves 20 balls. I dont want to say how much is one serving size. It wont be fair. Feel free to choose your serving size and do keep in mind the last line of this post.

The first time making it, I was impressed by the simplicity of it. I hope you will too. So without much ado, here goes:


10 oz sweetened, flaked coconut
10- 14 oz can of condensed milk
1/2 tsp sea salt
12 oz semisweet chocolate chips
2 tbsp coconut oil
20 toasted, salted whole Almonds

In a medium bowl, stir together the coconut, condensed milk and salt. (You might not need the entire can of condensed milk. I had about 1/4 can leftover which I used up for a Cold Coffee). Better yet, gently knead it with your fingers to make a dough like, sticky, mixture.

Shape roughly into 20 balls. Place a toasted Almond in the center and perfect those spheres. Take care you dont leave any cracks. One way to achieve this is to press them down firmly to help them stick together and then shape it to get a crack-proof ball.

Place the spheres into a wax paper lined cookie sheet and pop them into the freezer until they are firm.
Meanwhile, melt the chocolate chips in a double boiler or melting pot. Take care it doesn't burn. Stir in the coconut oil. Keep it warm.

Bring out the frozen coconut balls. Carefully dip them individually in the melted chocolate and arrange them in another wax paper lined cookie sheet (or you could be a resourceful laddie like me and just flip over the earlier mentioned wax sheet and plop these beauties on them)

When they are hardened enough, remove carefully from the wax paper and arrange in tiny pastry cups or just save the planet, forego the wrapper and deposit them directly in your mouth. Enjoy! :-)

Please note: These might not have preservatives or chemicals, but are by no means a diet food. Relish Wisely! 

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