I have described this marvellous creation ‘Nutella and Gingerbread’ due to the combination of hazelnuts and dark chocolate (which is essentially Nutella – this is just a healthier version)! The added ‘gingerbread’ is my ‘Christmassy’ twist to the recipe for Blogmas.
This is the time of year where we indulge in delicious treats, but if you are restricted by what you can eat (like me!), sometimes you can feel a little left out. Not only does baking always make me feel festive, but it provides me with some scrumptious snacks. Despite the food I bake always being GF/Dairy/Egg free and consequently Vegan, my family continuously steal their fair share of what I make; which I think is testament to how great some of these recipes taste. You don’t need to be Vegan/GF to enjoy these; no, they aren’t the healthiest, but they are definitely a healthier alternative to your average brownie.
So if you’re a chocoholic like me, these brownies are the perfect partner to a cosy Christmassy night in.
*I’m not Mary Berry, I just adapted a few recipes – but here’s what I did(ish) if you want to make some too!*
- 2-3 tsp ground ginger*
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- ¼ tsp ground cloves
- Optional: 1 tbsp freshly grated ginger*
- 5 tablespoons coconut oil, plus extra for greasing
- 200 g dairy-free dark chocolate (I used 75%, but go with your preference)
- 170 g GF self-raising flour
- 3 heaped teaspoons cocoa powder
- 150 g golden caster sugar
- Sea salt
- 1 vanilla pod
- 240 ml unsweetened organic coconut milk
- 200 g hazelnuts
- Preheat the oven to 180ºC/350ºF/gas 4. Grease a baking tin (mine was with approx 25cm by 15cm) some coconut oil (or whatever oil you choose to use) and then line the tin with greaseproof paper (*Make sure the grease proof paper comes just over the edges of the tin so you can lift it out later*).
- Place a bowl (heatproof of course!) over a pan of simmering water, ensuring that it doesn’t touch the water. Break 150g of the chocolate into the bowl to allow it to melt, and then set aside to cool slightly.
- Meanwhile, finely chop your hazelnuts, or whack them into a food processor like me! Then set them aside until later.
- Sieve the flour, cocoa powder, ginger, cloves and cinnamon into a large bowl; then stir in the sugar and a pinch of salt.
- Halve the vanilla pod length ways, scrape out the seeds and add them to the mixture.
- Stir in the oil, coconut milk and melted chocolate until thoroughly combined.
- Roughly chop (or just break into small pieces) the remaining chocolate and stir it in, along with most of the hazelnuts, reserving a few for the top.
- Spread the mixture evenly into the prepared tin. Sprinkle over the remaining hazelnuts, then place into the prepared oven for 25 minutes, or until cooked on the outside, but still gooey in the middle.
- Leave to cool for approx 5 minutes (it’s so hard to resist not eating it!). Then take it out of the tin and put it onto a wire cooling rack.
- You can attempt to cut it into triangles in the hope that they vaguely resemble Christmas trees like me (they don’t…), but it’s pretty crumbly due to all the hazelnut yumminess!… alternatively just get in there and enjoy!
*Apologies for the poor quality food shots (I can’t find my camera!) – but you get the idea!*
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