Calgary has gone from Fall to Winter over night, it isn't even an exaggeration. Just a week ago it was a beautiful 15 degrees Celsius, now it is -22 degrees Celsius and we have lots and lots of snow. One thing that I am super excited about as the weather turns cold, is that one of my favourite fruits become in season.
How many of you love pomegranates? Those beautiful jewel looking seeds inside that are filled with the ruby red juice, are just so scrumptious. I love the pop of colour and the burst of flavour they add to a salad or a dessert.
What inspired this recipe, was a few amazing friends that I have in my life. They have some majour dietary restrictions and I wanted to create something that brought the joy of food back to them. Many years ago I had to go on a strict diet as they ruled out a few stomach issues. My desire to eat was next to none, anything I had loved was not allowed in my stomach. Honestly the joy was gone, I ate to stay alive. For people who love food and is a big part of their life, it can be devastating when you have to go on a restrictive diet for health reasons.
For me food brings joy into others lives, when you can share that joy for others who haven't been able to enjoy something luscious and tasty in a long time, it makes me feel so good inside.
Chocolate Pomegranate Tart (Vegan and Gluten Free)
2/3 cup of unsweetened coconut flakes
2 cups of almond flour
1 cup of coconut flour
1/3 cup of melted coconut oil
1/3 cup of maple syrup
a pinch of sea salt
Chocolate Ganache Layer:
20 ounces of thinly shaved or cut dark chocolate (the darker the better)
2 cups of canned coconut milk (get the good stuff that is super thick, I use Western Family Organic Coconut Milk)
2/3 cup of chopped dark chocolate
1 tablespoon of coconut oil
1 pomegranate, seeds removed
thick cut toasted coconut
Whipped coconut cream (you can buy it in a can or make it yourself)
Preheat oven to 350F. In a large bowl combine all the dry ingredients for the crust. Pour the liquid ingredients on top, with a pastry blender or your hands, combine the ingredients until they are moist and looks like coarse meal.
Press the dough into a tart pan, one that the bottom can be pushed out. Using your fingers press the dough into every corner, use a cup to flatten the bottom and press the dough into the pan. Place in the oven and bake for 14 minutes, or until golden brown on the edges and in the center. You want it to be firm but not dry. Remove from the oven and cool completely.
In a large bowl add the dark chocolate for the ganache. In a microwave safe bowl, heat the coconut milk in to microwave until scalding hot, takes my microwave about 4 minutes. Pour the hot coconut milk over the dark chocolate and let sit for 5 minutes. Slowly and gently with a spatula, mix the melted chocolate into the milk in a circular motion. Pour into the cooled tart crust. Use a skewer stick to get rid of any bubbles, by gently moving it throughout the ganache. Place in the refrigerator for 2 hours to set up and chill.
For the chocolate topping, add the dark chocolate and coconut oil to a microwave safe bowl. Cook for 30 second intervals in the microwave until the chocolate is starting to melt. Do not melt it all the way, you want it to have some unmelted chunks. Using the residual heat to finish melting the chocolate. Cool for 5 minutes, the pour on top of the tart, spread out over the tart. Allow to cool on the countertop for 20 minutes until it has hardened.
Gently remove the tart from the pan, you might have to take a tooth pick and gently release the edges from the pan.
Top with the whipped coconut milk, coconut chunks and pomegranates. With a hot knife (run under hot hot water for a minute and wipe the water off) slice the tart into 10 to 12 slices. You can top with more of the toppings before eating.
You can store the leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week.
With all of the upcoming holiday parties where we have lots of loved ones joining us, this is a dessert that can be enjoyed by pretty much any dietary needs. Plus those family members who claim they could never enjoy anything without butter or cream in it, just don't tell them what is in this when they eat it and they won't believe you this is Vegan.
Look at it! Doesn't it just look so fudgy and rich, what is awesome too is the sugar content is very very low in this. The only added sugar is the maple syrup and a bit in the dark chocolate.
Hopefully everyone is staying warm and safe out there.
A little about me