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Vegan Chocolate Ganache Nut Bars

chocolateganache

In Scandinavia, there is at least one evening in December, where candles are lit, wine is mulled and the whole family gathers in the kitchen to make “juleknas” Christmas treats.

Favorite recipes are found (new recipes are tried, but grandma’s is always best), cookies are rolled and baked in traditional flavors and forms, marzipan is shaped, chocolate is melted and dipped into, dripped onto. Outside the kitchen windows the winter blows by, cold and blue, making the light and warmth of Christmas and family even sweeter.

Here is a recipe for some sweeties that are discreetly vegan, and fabulously delicious.

You need:

2 cups of unsalted nuts, like a mix of almonds, pistachios and hazelnuts (plus a few for garnish)
1 cup Rice Krispies
5 figs
1/2 cup peanut or almond butter
1 Tablespoon vanilla
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 cups dairy-free, good quality dark or semisweet chocolate chips, divided
1/4 cup almond milk (or whatever kind of dairy free milk you have)
A pinch of salt

To make 20 bars:

Pour the nuts into a skillet and toast until golden (keep a careful eye on them lest they burn). Let the nuts cool for a moment then roughly chop them in a food processor, you want them to be the size of lentils. Take out half of the nuts and put aside in a large bowl.

Add the figs, nut butter, vanilla, salt and 1/2 cup chocolate chips to the food processor and process until very smooth, about a minute or so (it needs to be smooth as it is the glue that holds everything together). Add this mixture to the nuts in the bowl, toss in the Rice Krispies and combine well. Very firmly, with conviction, press the batter into a wax paper lined 8 by 8 inch cake pan.

Microwave the remaining chocolate chips with the almond milk and salt until melted, stopping and stirring every 30 seconds.

Pour the melted chocolate over the nuts and let a spoon artfully swirl over the top. Sprinkle with any remaining nuts and put the pan into the freezer or out into the snow until completely firm. Cut into lovely little bites (not too big, they are quite rich) and share with anyone who drops by.

Cook’s tip: You can of course use regular chocolate and dairy for these, if that is what you have in your cupboards.

 

 

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