Chocolate Coconut Walnut Fudge

IMG_9193

 

 

Sometimes I come home from work and do a face plant into a box of CheezIts.   And eat giant bowls of cereal with honey drizzled on it.  If I have a big bowl of chocolate ice cream, sometimes I throw a giant spoonful of peanut butter on top.  I drink beer(s).  And sometimes, if I’m tired, I’ll eat a frozen pizza.  And I like fudge.

I’m telling you all this because there’s this little pet peeve of mine that I’ve had for a while.  And it’s this: just because I have a food blog which features (mostly) healthy-ish stuff, it doesn’t mean that I eat healthy all the time. I mean, yes, I try to, because when I eat right, I feel/sleep/think/exercise better. But I’m a pretty normal eater, too.  It makes me a little sad when people automatically assume that I’m judging their meal choice or what they made to bring to the potluck…like they really need to apologize to me if they order the steak or if they think their potato salad is bland.  I don’t really care what you put into your body at all, honestly.  That’s totally your decision.  I just need to worry about what I put into my own…and sometimes, I just need a little fudge.  And I’m really not judging your potato salad, by the way.  I’m probably thinking that it’s delicious and finally I can enjoy something that I didn’t have to make.

(This world would probably be a much easier place to live in if we all just stopped assuming we knew what everyone else was thinking.)

The bottom line is this:  I really really love food.  I love purchasing it, prepping/cleaning it, making it, photographing it, and then talking about it.  I love the whole process.  Even if that means I eat a microwave-friendly burrito every now and then.

And now for the fudge.  Ah, glorious smooth and creamy chocolate fudge.  It’s completely vegan, too, if you are looking for a nice vegan-friendly treat.  Now, if you aren’t a coconut fan, you might want to take a pass here-there is a lot of coconut flavor, even if you omit the flaked coconut on the top.

Here’s to everything in moderation.

IMG_9245

 

 

Chocolate Coconut Walnut Fudge

Servings:  about 24 pieces (depending on how you cut it)

 

Ingredients

1 (13.5 ounce) can light coconut milk

1/2 cup sugar

1/4 cup coconut oil

2 (12 ounce) packages semisweet vegan chocolate chips

2/3 cup toasted coconut flakes

1 cup walnuts, toasted

 

Instructions
1. Line an 8×8-inch square baking dish with aluminum foil.

2. In a medium saucepan, combine the coconut milk, sugar and coconut oil.

3. Bring the mixture to a gentle simmer over medium heat, stirring occasionally.

4. Remove the mixture from the heat.

5. Add the chocolate chips and stir until the chocolate is melted and smooth.

6. Transfer the chocolate mixture to the bowl of an electric mixer or your standing mixer and beat on medium-high speed for 3 minutes.

7. Pour the mixture into the prepared baking dish and sprinkle with the toasted coconut and walnuts.

8. Refrigerate the fudge until firm, at least 8 hours or overnight.

9. Cut the fudge into squares (I got about 24 pieces). Keep refrigerated until ready to serve.

 

Source: Barely adapted from Whole Foods.

September 26, 2013 - 7:32 am

Mary Beth - Vegan fudge? Coconut milk? I think I’m in love.

September 26, 2013 - 8:18 am

Christina - That is one delicious looking plate. I love fudge. It’s been a long time since I’ve had any! My husband would go crazy for this. We all need to treat ourselves every now and then!

September 26, 2013 - 2:19 pm

Kelli @ The Corner Kitchen - Amen!! I’ve a HUGE believer in enjoying everything we eat, and enjoying everything in moderation. I think a lot of people have trouble with the moderation part. I probably eat ice cream every single day…sure, some days, on occasion I might have 6 scoops, but most days I’m satisfied with 1 or 2 spoonfuls.

Also, what is it about CheezIts?!?!? Love them!

September 26, 2013 - 6:04 pm

KerryCan - I, for one, will never judge you because you eat unhealthy sometimes. . . . as long as you keep sharing the recipes! This looks terrific!

September 26, 2013 - 10:18 pm

Joanne - People do that to me all the time and it’s really frustrating! No one should ever apologize for their food choices (at least not to me!). I am all about the dessert and fudge love. And i’m super into all the coconut in these. It’s one of my favorite flavors at the moment.

September 27, 2013 - 8:25 am

Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar - This sounds amaaaaazing! Yum!

September 30, 2013 - 3:22 am

Colleen ~ - Looks amazing, and love the whole entry’s vibe. Cheers! :)

November 7, 2013 - 4:33 pm

Joy //For the Love of Leaves - First off, this looks amazing.
Secondly, I hear ya on the whole eating thing/ people assuming I judge them. I get that all the time. I recently off-handily mentioned to my sister that I had finished off a whole jar of salsa and she said “glad to hear you can still pig out like the rest of us!” And I just laughed, of course I can! I probably love food more than the average person. People’s perceptions make me laugh. Glad someone can relate.

Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Scones

 

IMG_0745

 

Every single food blogger out there is blogging about fall and posting pumpkin recipes right now. Myself included, obviously.  And this is a good thing, though, even if you aren’t a pumpkin lover.  Or a pumpkin/chocolate combination lover.  Because this is the transition to where probably 95% of food bloggers start getting really really excited about food.  We’ve got all sorts of new flavors to play with, holidays/sporting events centered around..well, mostly food…and the chilly weather allows us to spend more time indoors…and, if you are like me (which I assume you probably are if you are reading this right now), your kitchen becomes the central focus of your home.

This also means I start downloading obscene amounts of new music on my iPad so that I can listen to music (dance in my pajamas) while I cook. (anyone out there also an Arcade Fire fan?  So ready for this new album…you know you’ve made it when David Bowie (THE David Bowie) is singing back-up vocals for you.)

Regardless, it’s fall (Libran sun…everyone-the best time of the year) and now I am posting something fall-ish for you.  Because, what’s better than curling up with a good book, a hot cup of something with caffeine in it, and a nice pumpkin chocolate chip scone?  I used whole wheat pastry flour here, so these scones were a little dense (but, honestly, if you are kinda-sorta dipping them in your coffee anyways, does it matter if they are lightweight?), so you can play around here with the amounts/combinations of flour that you use (if you don’t have whole wheat pastry flour on hand, just substitute all-purpose flour).  Switch up the recipe by adding in crystallized ginger or nuts instead. I’ve got a large batch of these in my freezer right now for lazy weekend mornings.

One more thing: in the coming weeks, I’ve got a lot of really amazing things coming my way..which, by default, will come your way as well.    I’m going to be

posting

instagramming

pinning

and tweeting away.  (although I don’t really know how to tweet at all.)

Now, if you read this blog, I’m not really big on self-promotion and begging/bribing people to follow me on any sort of social media (and I have a lot of mixed feelings about it anyways, but you know how it goes). It’s just there are some pretty fantastic things going on for the next month, and I figured you might want to be in the loop.  (And I’m not going to lie, if you follow me on Instagram, you might see some great photos of my obese cat or shameless selfies as I go back to being completely blond again.  It’s my life outside of my kitchen.)

 IMG_0760

 

 

Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Scones

Servings:  approximately 12 scones

 

Ingredients

2 and 3/4 cups whole wheat pastry flour

1/3 cup sugar

1 tablespoon baking powder

3/4 teaspoon salt

3/4 teaspoon cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground ginger

1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

1/4 teaspoon allspice

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, chilled, and cut into 1-tablespoon portions

2/3 cup canned pumpkin

2 eggs

1 cup chocolate chips

 

 

IMG_0922

 

 

Instructions

1.  In a large bowl (or, to make it easier, in the bowl of a food processor), combine the whole wheat pastry flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and allspice, mixing until combined.

2. Add the butter, one piece at a time, mixing until the dough resembles coarse sand (if doing this by hand, use a pastry cutter.)

3. In the bowl of your standing mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (or in another large bowl using a hand mixer), beat the canned pumpkin and the eggs on medium speed until smooth.

4. Reduce the mixer speed to low, and slowly add the dry ingredients to the pumpkin/egg mixture.

5. Gently fold in the chocolate chips.

6. Transfer the dough to a clean, flat, and lightly floured surface and divide the dough into two equal portions.

7. Gently shape each dough half into a 5-inch wide, 3/4-inch thick circle.

8. Cut each circle into six separate wedges and gently pull each wedge apart, leaving a 1/2-inch space between each wedge.

9. Freeze the dough wedges for about 30 minutes or so.

10. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 425 degrees.  Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.

11. Once the dough has chilled, transfer the scones to the prepared baking sheets and bake until lightly golden around the edges, about 22-25 minutes.

 

Source:  Adapted from King Arthur Flour.

 

September 24, 2013 - 7:35 am

KerryCan - Well, now I feel like I’m a slacker because I haven’t blogged about cooking with pumpkin yet! ;-) But I love the sound of these scones–just right for the crisp weather we’re having!

September 24, 2013 - 12:22 pm

Kelli @ The Corner Kitchen - We’re on the same pumpkin-chocolate chip wavelength this week! Loving these scones and can’t wait to see what’s coming up!

September 24, 2013 - 1:24 pm

Maria Tadic - Never thought about having pumpkin AND chocolate together – but i love them both and thus I need to make these scones. These will be great to bring to work!

September 24, 2013 - 1:53 pm

Robyn - sounds yummy! i’m also not a fan of forcing my social media upon people, but sometimes life just calls for it. since you are a photographer, you’re definitely going to want to download VSCOcam for iPhone – it is the BEST photo editor/filter app for instagramming, trust me ;)

September 24, 2013 - 2:00 pm

srlacy - Oooh, thanks for the suggestion, Robyn! I am definitely going to check it out!

September 24, 2013 - 2:57 pm

carole - Ooh! I made dark chocolate chip ginger scones over the weekend. I’ll be posting the recipe later this week. These look delicious… I love pumpkin & chocolate together.

September 24, 2013 - 3:41 pm

Hannah @ CleanEatingVeggieGirl - I have never tried the chocolate/pumpkin combo, but I bet it is amazing since I love both chocolate and pumpkin :).

September 24, 2013 - 8:56 pm

Christina - I’m excited to see what you have coming up!

You described the perfect afternoon for me- reading, with a cozy blanket, coffee, and a pumpkin scone. Do you think my 14 month old will let me do that? ;)

September 24, 2013 - 9:29 pm

bellini - You’re right about our love of pumpkin and all things related to fall. It is the best time of year!

September 24, 2013 - 10:36 pm

Joanne - Shameless selfies and cat pics are kind of the best!! I am SOOO ready for pumpkin baking. And fall flavors. Just the thought of all of it is making my head spin!

September 26, 2013 - 8:49 pm

Lisa @ Lisa Living Well - I have been craving pumpkin scones all week and need to make a batch this weekend. I just started following you on instagram. I love twitter, so let me know if you have any questions!

September 30, 2013 - 2:18 pm

Rachel @thedessertchronicles - These look delicious! The perfect recipe to continue my pumpkin kick! Thanks for sharing

September 30, 2013 - 2:32 pm

Marie - 1) This looks fab. I may add this to our thanksgiving treats. 2) I had no idea Arcade Fire was coming out with a new album. You just made my week

September 30, 2013 - 3:20 pm

Phi - These look amazing, I LOVE the pumpkin/chocolate chip combo and you’re absolutely right, as a food blogger I love the fall and all the flavors it brings with it. Just yesterday when I was over at my husbands uncles house, he showed me these two gorgeous apple trees that he was really excited about that no one else was because this was the first year that the tree produced amazing looking apples…umm…hello apple pie?!? so now I have a bag full of apples from the tree and tons of motivation from this post, thank you! Now to find someone with a secret pumpkin patch… haha. I am definitely following you to see all this exciting new stuff, can’t wait!

Carrot Ginger Soup

IMG_0925

 

 

To the people who may or may not watch the security cameras in my condo complex, I have to apologize.

I’m usually a nice, quiet tenant, silently opening my mail in the short elevator ride, or making sure that my dog isn’t trying to invade your personal space (or you are invading hers.)

But that always, always changes when my sister comes into town.  And this time, she brought my future brother-in-law, so that made matters ten times worse.

Yes, there may have been a few drinks involved.  There may have been a late-night watching of Paranormal Activity 3 (which consisted of me mostly hiding my head under a blanket and swearing a lot-especially a lot of swearing directed at Toby-the invisible demonic ghost).  There also may have been two dogs, one of which is still getting used to elevators and isn’t sure what to do in them (I would imagine that, as a dog, especially a smaller one, elevators can be pretty freaky.)

Regardless, at one point, we all got into the elevator, and one of us (me) shouted, “Come on, Toby!” in front of the security cameras, beckoning to an invisible person.  There was one time where the three of us got into the elevator, didn’t say a word, and then each of us stood in the corners, heads down, facing away from one another.  Totally random.  There were a few lyrical dances, including a nice Irish jig that my future brother-in-law performed not only in the middle of the sports bar, but also on the street in front of the bar.  Maybe a few serenades into the cameras.  And a few times where the dogs got their leashes and us all tangled up (from all of the dancing, of course.)  And then there were also the early morning walks for the dogs, which usually consisted of me and my sister, hair all a mess, sunglasses on, frowning, fumbling out into the bright shiny morning sun.

When I think about all of these things, it makes me laugh out loud. I love being random and silly and not caring what anybody else thinks (*within reason, of course*).   And I am thrilled that my little sister (my best friend) and her soon-to-be husband are the same way. So, if you are the person who watches the videos in my complex, I apologize…but not really.

One of the last times Sam was here, we stopped at a nice vegetarian restaurant in my neighborhood.  I tried a vegan carrot ginger soup that was out of this world.  Since then, I had been dying to attempt it myself.  Since I still had some leftover vegetarian pho soup base, I figured that would be an incredible base for the soup. If you don’t have this on hand, of course, you can always use a basic vegetable stock and add in some of your own Asian-inspired flavors.  I did end up putting a small spoonful of creme fraiche on top, but you can obviously skip this if you are looking for vegan option.

 

1236802_10201813762046778_1355674970_n

Thanks for the great weekend, Sammy. I love you so much!

Carrot Ginger Soup

Servings: 6-8

 

Ingredients

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 medium yellow onion, chopped

1 pound carrots, peeled and chopped

2 garlic cloves, minced

6 cups vegetarian Pho soup base, or vegetable stock

1 and 1/2 teaspoons fresh ginger, grated (*I mashed mine into a paste)

For garnish: chives, creme fraiche, orange zest, etc

 

Instructions

1. In a large Dutch oven or sauce pot over medium-low heat, heat the olive oil until shimmering.

2. Add the onions and cook until softened and translucent, about 10 minutes.

3. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.

4. Add the carrots and about 2 cups of the pho base (or vegetable stock-enough to cover the carrots completely.)

5. Increase the heat to medium-high and bring the mixture to a gentle boil.

6. Reduce the heat to low, cover the soup, and let it simmer for about 20 minutes, or until the carrots are completely cooked through.

7. Very carefully, using an immersion blender or a blender (in batches), puree the soup until smooth.

8. Add the remaining 4 cups of pho base  and ginger and cook until the soup is completely heated through, about 10 minutes or so. Garnish as desired.

 

Source:  Adapted from Williams-Sonoma.

September 19, 2013 - 7:58 am

Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar - Bahaha and it SHOULD change when your sister comes into town! So fun. Annnnd this soup looks awesome!

September 19, 2013 - 3:19 pm

Hannah @ CleanEatingVeggieGirl - Can’t wait to try this…I am slightly (okay, REALLY) obsessed with all things carrot related. In fact, I just finished eating baby carrots for a snack :).

September 19, 2013 - 7:36 pm

Joanne - Finding yourself doing ridiculous things in front of security cameras is definitely a hallmark of a good night! Or a good weekend!

I love how this soup seems so creamy…but also so saturated in vitamin A.

September 19, 2013 - 9:56 pm

jennie @sundayswithjennie - It’s so nice to have such a fun relationship with your sister! And this soup sounds amazing! Carrot and ginger is such a nice mix :)

September 25, 2013 - 10:16 am

Debra Rose - Such a perfectly warming soup with the fresh ginger added. Perfect for this time of year.

September 25, 2013 - 1:43 pm

Ali @ Inspiralized - I have been looking for a good soup recipe, and this is just the ticket! Can’t wait to try it!

September 26, 2013 - 12:29 pm

Claire - Was looking for something to do with the last of my carrots from the garden! This looks so perfect! Thanks for sharing

October 1, 2013 - 6:07 pm

Soupy Decisions | OrganicPedic by OMI - [...] Carrot Ginger Soup [...]

October 4, 2013 - 5:28 pm

Ashley - This is lovely! I could go for a bowl right now. Your photos are gorgeous! :)

October 4, 2013 - 5:34 pm

srlacy - Aww thanks…..so are yours!

November 16, 2013 - 11:07 am

Virtual Vegan Potluck – Ginger Carrot Soup | Veg Bon Vivant - [...] for this mashup come from: The Curvy Carrot, Eat Live Run, Whole Foods,  Simply Recipes, Mind Body Green, and May I Have That [...]

February 16, 2014 - 12:46 pm

Carrot Ginger Soup – Pinterest Post #4 | gfreeveggie - [...] Carrot Ginger Soup – adapted from The Curvy Carrot [...]