If you peruse the archives of Manifest Vegan, chances are you will find a ton of recipes calling for chocolate and peanut butter. That’s because both chocolate and peanut butter are easy winners in my book. The combo of the two makes for an undefeated champ; add pretzels and you have yourself a legendary dessert.
After I secured myself a nice bag of gluten-free pretzels the other day (so excited as I hadn’t eaten pretzels in over a year!), I knew they would be the perfect crust for a pb & chocolate tart. If you’re gluten free and you haven’t tried these pretzels, look for them at your next grocery outing. They are so good!
If you too love a good choco-butter combo, make these tarts… your taste buds will forever thank you.
And, if you are feeling not so adventurous with the tarts, feel free to put the filling into small cups and garnish with crushed pretzels… still excellent!
I was raised on the idea that: if you want a treat, you best learn how to make it yourself. And, if you want to learn how to make it correctly (or in other words: taste like my mom’s), you must follow the recipe exactly. The first part, I agree with- but the second part… bah. Not so.
Beginning when I was just fifteen I had started veganizing all of my mom’s, grandmother’s, aunts’ and cousins’ recipes out of an old box that my mom kept on the very top shelf of her highest kitchen cabinet (good thing I was one heck of a climber). Buckeye Candy*- popular here in the state of Ohio, where the magical buckeye trees flourish- is one of the first recipes I got my little vegan hands on.
I happen to think these vegan buckeye candies taste just as they should: incredibly unhealthy, rich and so so so delicious.
* I added the cardamom for extra yumminess, ’cause that’s how I roll.
Yes, the title is a mouthful, but seriously, so is this candy. Lots of flavors going on in these babies: coconut, chocolate, peanut butter, and even a hint of vanilla.
Shredded coconut is one of those foods that most people either cannot get enough of, or cannot stand. I fall in between the two: I love it, but only in moderation.
Today, though, there is some major coconut love going around. As I was importing my photos for this post, I noticed that Susan from Rawmazing had created almost the exact same thing! Except she left out the refined sugar, added strawberries, and she didn’t cook anything. Okay, so not exactly the same. And Tasha, from The Voracious Vegan made this insanely delicious looking dessert using coconut milk.
Anyways, these candies are ridiculously easy to make if you have a candy thermometer. They are a tad trickier if you don’t, but still easy. If you are a coconut fan… give these a whirl. Try them without the chocolate too. I really enjoy them both ways.
Yay for caramels! I love love love caramels, but this is pretty much the only time of year I ever really make them. They are so ridiculously easy, though, that I think I should start making these all year long.
And so should you! These are ooey and gooey and have the perfect hint of cardamom… guaranteed to please.
With any candy-making, it helps to have a candy-thermometer… but for caramels, one really comes in handy. There is about a 20 minute (don’t quote me on that, because I have never actually timed it) cooking time where you don’t stir. During that time you just wait for the candy to reach the proper temperature or the proper “firm-ball” stage. So, making the caramels is easy. But, there is a lot of standing at the stove… and waiting.
If it has been a while since you have had a good caramel, or the vegan versions are just too inconvenient to purchase… just make your own! It is totally worth it. I honestly prefer these caramels to any of the store bought, non-vegan versions I remember as a kid. These are actually a veganized version of the caramels I made pre-vegan days…. and guess what? They taste exactly the same.
They are the perfect silky, but sticky, texture. And they have a nice, shall I say, “Earth Balance-y” flavor. These things are absolutely divine….
Okay, I have officially called off the cookie posts for now… they’ll be back… I just need a moment or two to figure out the chemistry of baking all over again.
But here’s a good treat to take your mind (and my mind) off of cookies for a while: chocolate covered dates! These are made with Medjool dates… which I find absolutely irresistible… but any date could probably be used. This is so simple, you may have already tried this- but if you haven’t yet -now is the time. I think this may be my new preferred way to enjoy chocolate. Actually, dates are my favorite thing next to chocolate and avocados… so, yeah, I LOVE these things. Try stuffing some other things in there too while you’re at it… almonds, more chocolate, whatever you want… the dates make a cozy little nook for all your bite sized goodies.