With Thanksgiving round the corner, it’s time to start getting cosy round the hearth, and reach out for the comfort foods – without getting to comfy round the girth, I hope ! This is a totally irresistible chocolate log, though I chose to use carob in this instance, which I thoroughly recommend because of its amazing flavour when incorporated in this way. It’s another of those raw desserts that’s right up there, rubbing shoulders with the best of the classic favourites. Nutritious, wonderfully delicious, and completely satisfying. So here goes . . .
NOTE : Make the cashew filling first – you must allow this to thicken in the fridge for a couple of hours.
7 Tbsp oat bran
3 Tbsp carob powder
1 cup (250 ml) coconut oil
2 Tbsp (30 ml) water
200g pitted majool dates, roughly chopped
1 to 2 Tbsp (15-30 ml) maple syrup or agave syrup – adjust according to taste.
¼ tsp of salt
Place your almonds, pecans, oat bran, carob powder and salt in your food processor, and process until crumbs are formed. Remove from processor, and set aside.
Now add your dates and coconut oil together with your preferred sweetener in the processor and process until broken down and a sort of thick sticky paste has formed, add the water to help this process, otherwise omit it.
Now add in your processed nut mixture and process for a few seconds only in order to incorporate the dried ingredients to the ‘wet’ ones. You will be left with a coarse paste.
Carefully decant onto a flat flexible silicon tray, which you first need to line with greaseproof paper, ensuring that you cut the parchment/greaseproof paper well proud of the silicone swiss roll tray, and with a kitchen paper rub on a think film of oil onto it, this will help the rolling process later on. Then place in the fridge for an hour to allow it to slightly solidify.
1 cup strawberry jam of your choice (for best results, use one with high fruit content)
Evenly spread a liberal layer of jam over your date and nut base using a spatula, and return to the fridge.
INGREDIENTS FOR CASHEW FILLING
2 cups of cashews, pre soaked
¼ cup (60 ml) coconut oil
6 Tbsp (90 ml) warm water – use a little more if needed
1 tsp (5 ml) vanilla essence
3-4 Tbsp (45 -60 ml) maple syrup or agave syrup
METHOD FOR FILLING
Process the cashews until wet crumbs are formed, then add the remaining ingredients and process until thick(ish) and smooth. Place in a bowl and refrigerate for an hour or so.
Remove your jammed base from the fridge, and with a plastic spatula, very gently spread your cashew filling on top – as it will probably resemble a dense whipped cream, it won’t be that easy to spread, but don’t worry, evenly dot it around with your spatula, and zigzag gently to distribute it around as best you can (this will not particularly aesthetically pleasing, but will not adversely effect the end-result).
Roll away from you, a few inches at a time, bringing the same amount of greaseproof/parchment paper towards you. Repeat this until it has finished rolling. You will then be left with the greaseproof paper, which you then roll over the entire length of the log. So you’re left with a greaseproof/parchment-wrapped roly poly log. Now carefully lift the log onto a long plate or serving dish and refrigerate for a few hours before serving. Before you slice it for serving, be sure to dust it with some more carob. This will last for up to a week in the fridge, but be sure to store it with the same greaseproof paper covering it for protection.
NOTE : Don’t worry about any cream or jam spillage from either end – spoon this into a separate bowl, and refrigerate.
All recipes and content © Miriam Sorrell www.mouthwateringvegan.com 2010