I have been trying out new recipes with date paste and cacao powder, and I was recently pleased with a concoction that used a nut butter from one of our pal-companies YumButter. Not only does YumButter make tasty seed/nut butters out of Wisconsin (go team Midwest), but they also package them in portable pouches. Double win!
The recipe below is essentially a vegan chocolate truffle recipe, only with healthier ingredients. The texture is fudge-y, with strong dark chocolate flavor notes. The sweetness level is low. The binder is made of dates. The recipe is raw, vegan, gluten-free and nut-free. I also threw in some puffed quinoa and ground seed meal for a protein boost.
1 cup of dried dates (Medjool dates are best but supermarket dates will also work)
1/2 cup of sunflower seeds
1/2 cup of pepitas
1/2 cup of cacao powder (not cocoa powder, cacao powder is cold-pressed and more nutrient dense, spring for the good stuff)
1 7oz pouch of YumButter Superfood Organic Sunflower Butter (which also contains hemp, chia and lacuma)
1/2 cup of puffed quinoa (optional; this item is a little hard to find in stores but there are sources online)
pinch of sea salt
In a food processor, pulse the sunflower seeds and pepitas into a fine paste. Add dried dates (pits removed) to nut mixture and grind. Add cacao powder and sunflower butter and continue to grind. A crumbly dough texture will be achieved. Transfer to mixing bowl, add salt and puffed quinoa and combine by hand. In the palm of your hand form 1-inch diameter balls. Dust them with some extra cacao powder and arrange on cookie sheet. If dough is too dry, add a splash of (nut)milk. Refrigerate truffles on cookie sheet for 1 hour until ready to eat. Recipe yields 24 truffles.