Peter hosted a board retreat last month; we used the occasion to introduce “Choco-Bana”, a gluten free, raw, vegan dessert to nine neophytes, the best kind of GF taste testers. The recipe, inspired by the taste of chocolate dipped frozen bananas, initially sounded enticing, but the guys were a little cautious as I described the healthful qualities. “Raw” seemed to be the biggest obstacle. However reports were uniformly enthusiastic. Most rewarding was that several asked for “seconds” and there was only a sliver left for the chef.
Vegan Chocolate Banana Cream Tart – Serves 10-12
9 oz. pitted dates
7 oz. walnuts
1/8 teaspoon sea salt
3 medium sized ripe bananas
2 oz. raw cashews
3/8 cup coconut oil
1 tablespoon honey
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 ripe avocados
1/8 cup honey
3 tablespoons coconut oil
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 1/4 cups very good quality cocoa
1. Prepare a 10″ spring form pan by spraying or wiping it lightly with vegetable oil.
2. Crust: pulse the pecans, dates, and salt in a food processor until the consistency of (rolled oats). Press firmly into the prepared pan. Chill whilst preparing the filling.
3. Banana layer: combine the bananas, cashews, 3/8 cup coconut oil, 1 tablespoon honey, 1 teaspoon vanilla in the bowl of a food processor and blend until creamy smooth, scraping down as needed. Spread 1/2 the banana “cream” onto the prepared crust and return to the refrigerator whilst you make the chocolate “mousse.” Turn the rest of the banana “cream” into a small bowl and set aside.
4. Chocolate layer: in the bowl of the food processor puree the avocados, 1/8 cup honey and coconut oil, 1 tablespoon vanilla and salt in a food processor or blender until creamy smooth. Add the cocoa powder and blend completely, scraping down as needed. Add a tablespoon or two of water to help the consistency if the mixture is too thick to spread fairly easily.
5. Dot the banana layer with half the chocolate “mousse”; carefully connect the (dots) with a small spatula and spread evenly (I like to use a “Lazy Susan”: place the tart in the center, spin with one hand whilst spreading from the center with the other.)
6. Repeat, spreading on the rest of the banana cream, refrigerating for 10-15 minutes (start the dishes….), before covering with the remaining chocolate mousse. Cover and chill for 2-3 hours or over night.
7. Run a warm knife around the edge of the spring form pan and gently remove the side and “plate” (leaving the tart on the metal bottom of the pan – tricky to transfer, but go ahead and try if you like.) Serve with fresh berries and/or Coconut Cream.
Enjoy this successful healthy dessert!