Saturday, December 19, 2015

Homemade Apricot Cardamom Pralines

Here is something I indulge in without any guilt whatsoever. I have a sweet tooth and love sweet treats, but I also know that sugar, especially the refined version, is really bad for health. A piece of fruit may satisfy sugar craving, but is not always what I want. I created these delicious pralines that can be made any time of the year, but especially when the Holiday Season comes. They make a perfect gift for Christmas and are very easy and fun to make. If you have children, they would love to do the work for you. 

This recipe makes 34 delicious pralines. They are vegan, gluten-free, and suited for people who follow raw food or paleo diet.  No sugar added.
  • 2 cups dried, non-sulfured seedless apricots
  • 1/2 cup raw cacao
  • 2 Tbsp virgin coconut oil (melted in water bath)
  • 1 1/2 cups coconut flour (you can also use almond flour)
  • 1 Tbsp grind cardamom
  • 1/2 Tbsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 Tbsp mixed spices: allspice, nutmeg, cloves, dried ginger
  • 1/2 tsp Celtic salt
  • coconut flakes for garnish
  • raw cacao with cinnamon for garnish
  • coconut flour with cardamom for garnish
  • raw sesame seeds for garnish

  • Place washed and cleaned apricots in a medium large bowl. Add enough purified or spring water to cover the apricots set aside. Allow to macerate over night.
  • Strain apricots but do not discard the liquid. It can be added to smoothies.
  • Place apricots in a food processor and mash using the S blade. Process until you receive a smooth paste. Add melted coconut oil and mix again. To melt coconut oil fill a medium large bowl with hot water. Put the measured amount of coconut oil into a small bowl. Place the small bowl in a bowl of hot water and allow it to sit there until coconut oil turned into liquid.
  • To make the dough you can use the food processor, I prefer to do it the old way - by hand in a large bowl. I use large spatula. It is quite a fun and a good exercise, but it takes a bit of time.
  • If you decide to follow me in the exercise, transfer apricot paste into a large bowl add spices, salt, raw cacao and mix well with a wooden spoon. Gradually add coconut flour and mix well. You should be able to make a dough that is firm, but sticky enough to form small round pralines. 
  • To make the pralines portion out a chunk of dough (about 1 Tbsp) and roll it to shape between your palms. Set each praline aside. 
  • Prepare four small plates with garnish ingredients. I leave the proportions to you. Divide the amount of pralines you formed out of the dough into four groups and give them the final touch rolling them in garnish ingredients. Shape pralines back to shape if necessary. Ready!

You can place the ready pralines in individual candy paper cups and box them or leave them on a platter for everyone to enjoy right away.

This candy never lasts long when I am around so I have no need for refrigeration, but I suggest that you keep your pralines in the fridge if you want to preserve their goodness. You probably can dehydrate them in your dehydrator on the lowest possible temperature, but this will, most probably, alter the texture a bit. If you have time and means you can also dip this confections in a chocolate ganache and decorate them as they cool off. Experiment. And whatever you decide to do, enjoy it!

By Dominique Allmon

Dominique Allmon©2015