This works and it’s very easy. It’s a relatively low-sugar vegan pudding or frosting made with just a few ingredients: avocado, banana, dark chocolate, and vanilla extract. Dark (bittersweet) chocolate has far less sugar than sweet chocolate, it’s more chocolatey but less sweet. The higher the cocoa content, the darker and more bitter the chocolate. I have used Cordillera 70% cocoa bittersweet chocolate discs in this recipe and I’ve used sweeter dark chocolate chips. Both worked but I preferred the Cordillera.
While you could skip the refined sugar altogether by using cocoa powder instead of chocolate, cocoa powder alone is too bitter for me, and with a natural sweetener like dates or maple syrup the result tastes too much like the sweetener and not enough like chocolate.
For all its evils cane sugar has a neutral flavor that works well in recipes, so if you do sub cocoa powder for the chocolate, 3 Tbsp. cocoa powder and 2 Tbsp. powdered sugar will work. I still prefer the recipe with chocolate, I suppose I prefer the extra fat from the cocoa butter. Part of my problem may be that I haven’t found an ethically sourced cocoa powder that I really like. If you have a favorite one let me know.
This recipe is meant as a base for you to enhance as the mood strikes you or to include as a part of a larger recipe. By itself it’s a little bland. I like it with a little cinnamon and whiskey in it to jazz up the flavor. Kahlua is also excellent here, as is chocolate liquor (either will add a little more sugar). Chopped salted pistachios on top are good and I’ve found that Dang Caramel Sea Salt Coconut Chips on top are excellent!
Earlier this week I served this with sliced mangoes and a date/pistachio crumbled topping that I whipped up in the food processor. I don’t bake a lot so I haven’t yet tried it as a layer or frosting in baked goods, but I’m imagining it will work fine for me there. Obviously as a frosting this will be less heavy and sweet than a palm oil or butter/confectioner’s sugar frosting, and as a pudding it’s going to be much lighter than one made with egg yolks and cream or coconut milk.
With the bananas and avocados, this frosting/pudding will not last, so plan to make and eat it on the same day. That shouldn’t be a problem! 5/6/14 update: I’ve made this several times atop an oat-date-almond flour crust adapted from the crust of these brownie fantasy bars. Perhaps I will write it up for Fit and Fed sometime but meanwhile here’s the photo:
- 1 medium banana (6-8 oz when weighed with peel), peeled
- flesh of 1 large avocado (8-9 oz when weighed with skin and pit)
- ¼ tsp. vanilla extract
- 2 oz. bittersweet (dark) chocolate
- a few grains of salt
- ½ tsp. cinnamon (optional)
- 1 tsp. whiskey or coffee liquor or chocolate liquor or ¼ tsp. instant espresso powder (optional)
- 1 tsp. toasted coconut flakes or chopped salted pistachios (optional toppings)
- If chocolate is not already in rounds (as in couverture rounds, or chips) break it up a little. Place in bowl. I melt chocolate using the microwave method. Zap for about 1 minute, stir, zap again for 30 seconds, stir, give it a minute to finish melting. If it needs an additional 30 seconds, zap again. The amount of microwaving needed will vary with your machine.
- Blend avocado and banana in your blender or food processor.
- Add melted chocolate and vanilla and blend again.
- Add a tiny bit of salt (optional).
- Add optional flavoring(s) if desired.
- Serve immediately.