This delicious raw treat has the most amazing flavour and texture. I started off with the same base that I use in my Raw Chocolate Caramel Slice. Then I layered it up with a refined sugar-free, and ever so creamy, peppermint filling. The use of fresh mint leaves in this layer not only adds a wonderful depth of flavour to it, but also gives the filling a beautiful pale green colour. It’s then finally topped off with a thick layer of silky smooth, raw chocolate. All of which make this slice is so incredibly good!!
My first attempt at making this didn’t have the best texture, as it was too thick and dense, both in the base and the peppermint filling. This made it really hard going when eating it. The filling was mainly a blend of soaked cashews and desiccated coconut. However, although I own quite a powerful blender, it’s not a Vitamix or similarly type of machine. So I had quite a lot of issues trying to get it to blend to a nice, smooth consistency. I ended up having to add coconut oil and milk to help it along, which is why, once chilled, the filling turned out as dense as it did.
So for for my second attempt, I tried to make a nut-free version instead. This time I used a larger pan and made the base thinner. The result was much easier on my poor old jaw, than my first attempt, when trying to eat it! Then with the filling, I just used desiccated coconut, mixed with coconut oil and milk. However, I still had the same issue of trying to get it to blend together smoothly. And although I had learnt from my previous attempt not to add in too much liquid, this time I didn’t add enough! So it didn’t end up sticking to the base and it had a coarse texture instead. Unfortunately, Nick, Matthew and Caelan aren’t the Worlds biggest coconut fans. So it was left up to Ethan and I to eat this batch over the next couple of weeks.
For my third attempt, I started this recipe from the beginning again, as I wanted a lighter base, with a traditional, creamy peppermint layer. With my earlier attempts, the biggest issue had been with blending the desiccated coconut to a get a consistently smooth texture. So I decided to make the coconut element (coconut butter) separately in my small food processor, because I knew it was capable of doing that. It was then just a matter of experimenting over the next new few weeks, until I achieved the flavour and texture I desired.
Again, another recipe that seems to have taken many attempts to get it just right. But, as ever, perseverance is always rewarded in the end! So I hope you enjoy this slice as much as my family and friends have.
Makes 12 pieces
22g (0.8 ounces or 2 tablespoons) chia seeds
120g (4.3 ounces or 1¼ cups) desiccated coconut (I use this brand)
112g (4.0 ounces or 1 cup) almond meal/flour
100g (3.5 ounces or approx. 8 medium) soft Medjool dates
10g (0.4 ounces or 2 tablespoons) raw cacao powder (I use this brand)
2 tablespoons (30ml) coconut oil, melted (I use this brand)
2 tablespoons (30ml) pure maple syrup
A pinch of salt
Peppermint Cream Filling
160g (5.6 ounces or 1 firmly packed cup) raw cashews, soaked overnight
125ml (½ cup) coconut cream (I use this brand)
125ml (½ cup) pure maple syrup
4 tablespoons coconut butter
1 teaspoon (5ml) pure vanilla extract
A few drops of peppermint extract, to taste
5g (0.2 ounces or ¼ cup) fresh mint leaves
A pinch of salt
48g (1.7 ounces or ½ cup) desiccated coconut (I use this brand)
2 tablespoons (30ml) coconut oil (I use this brand)
90ml (6 tablespoons) coconut oil, melted (I use this brand)
90ml (6 tablespoons) pure maple syrup
27g (1.0 ounces or ⅓ cup) raw cacao powder (I use this brand)
1½ teaspoons (7.5ml) pure vanilla extract
A pinch of salt
Line a 28cm x 18cm slice pan with baking paper or parchment, leaving enough overhanging so you can easily lift the slice out once its chilled
Add the chia seeds to a coffee, or spice, grinder and process until the seeds become a meal.
Place the chia meal in a food processor along with the desiccated coconut, almond meal, dates, cacao powder, coconut oil, maple syrup and salt. Process until the mixture is crumbly and well combined, scraping down the sides when necessary. The mixture is ready when it can easily form a compact dough, when you press it between your thumb and index fingers.
Press the mixture into the prepared pan, then place a piece of baking paper/parchment over the top of the base and use the back of a spoon to firmly compact it further. Then place it in the freezer, while you work on the peppermint filling.
To make the peppermint filling, make your coconut butter first. However, if you have purchased your coconut butter, then you can skip this next step. Now this is actually quite simple. Place your desiccated coconut in a small food processor and blitz for a couple of minutes. As it starts to breakdown, the oils come out.
Add your coconut oil, then blitz again for another minute or so, and you end up with coconut butter.
In a small food processor, add all the ingredients for your peppermint layer and process until thick, smooth and creamy, scraping down the sides when necessary. This should take a few minutes to achieve.
Now pour the mixture over the base, before you bang the pan on the counter a few times to release any air bubbles. This will also help to smooth over the surface.
Place the pan back into the freezer for approximately 3½ hours, until the surface feels firm to the touch, but not frozen solid.
To make the raw chocolate layer, add all the ingredients to a tall cylinder shaped jug and blend until the chocolate becomes thick and glossy. I use my stick blender to do this, but you can also use an ordinary blender too. However, you will need to scape down the sides when necessary, then continue to blend for a minute or so, until well combined.
Because the raw chocolate sets quickly, you will need to work fairly swiftly when pouring the chocolate over the peppermint cream layer. Use a spatula to spread the chocolate evenly over the slice and then place the pan back in the freezer for about 12-15 minutes, to allow the chocolate layer to set completely.
Once the chocolate has set, remove the pan from the freezer and use the baking paper/parchment to lift the slice out of the pan. Then use a hot knife to cut the slice lengthways into 4 and then cut these again into 3 even pieces. Just make sure to wipe the knife clean after each cut you make, otherwise your slice with stick to the blade. You can of course cut this into any shape or size you desire.
Store your peppermint slice in a single layer in an airtight container in your freezer.
Recipe by: The Gluten & Dairy Free Bakehouse