Healthier Brownies with Cashew Nut Butter – We Should Cocoa #54
Well I know it’s very hard to make brownies healthy, but I have done my best to make these ones as healthy as possible whilst still retaining their essential sweet fudgy brownieness. I used coconut oil and cashew nut butter instead of butter and rapadura instead of sugar. And to top it off, my flour of choice was freekah. Freekah, Rapadura? Read on.
Excuse me while I indulge in a trip down memory lane. Rapadura is dried cane juice and is meant to be the least harmful form of sugar, retaining all the vitamins and minerals removed by the refining process. It always reminds me of cycling through the sugar cane fields in Egypt, gnawing on a piece of cane as we pedalled. Talking of Egypt, freekah is a commonly eaten form of wheat there. It is made by harvesting the grains when young and green. roasting then drying them in the sun. It is said to be particularly nutritious with a low glycemic index. It has a pleasant nutty scent and flavour and I am quite taken by it.
When I was asked to choose some products from leading purveyor of sports nutrition, My Protein, I was excited to see organic freekah in stock. I’ve never actually used it before and was keen to do so. I also chose some coconut oil and a kilo tub of cashew nut butter – yes, a whole kilo. Of all the nut butters cashew nut butter is my favourite, but I’d never used it for cooking. Coconut oil seems to have come into its own recently, providing a healthy alternative to dairy fat and its benefits are well known.
Seeing as brownies feature in this month’s We Should Cocoa, why not, I thought, use these three ingredients for a healthier take on an old classic. I debated whether to mix in the nut butter thoroughly or ripple it through the mixture. The latter won out.
Well you wouldn’t know these were a healthier version, they were lush, fudgy with a true brownie taste and texture. The nut butter interspersed like cookie dough through ice cream gave additional variation in flavour, texture and appearance. If you like cashews, these are the brownies for you.
As stated, this month’s We Should Cocoa is all about brownies and is being hosted by Katie over at Recipe for Perfection. You still have five days left to join in the fun.
- 150g dark chocolate
- 80g coconut oil
- 200g rapadura – dried cane juice (you can use coconut sugar or unrefined light brown sugar instead of rapadura)
- 3 large eggs (I used duck eggs)
- 60g freekah flour (you can use kamut, spelt or wholemeal flour if you can't get freekah)
- 1 heaped tsp cocoa powder
- ¼ heaped tsp bicarbonate of soda
- ½ tsp cream of tarter
- 2 heaped tbsp cashew nut butter
- Melt the chocolate and coconut oil together in a large pan over a low heat.
- Turn of the heat and stir in the rapadura.
- Beat in the eggs one by one.
- Sift in the dry ingredients and stir until just combined.
- Scrape into a 20cm sq. silicone mould or lined tin.
- Spoon in the cashew nut butter and swirl amongst the batter to distribute.
- Bake at 180℃ for 25 minutes or until almost firm, but with a slight wobble. Allow to cool, then cut into 12 pieces.