I discovered something about myself the other day whilst in the middle of flinging powdered sugar around my kitchen. When I’m not cooking- I am not happy. When I’m not mixing and roasting and spilling and rinsing, I feel….without. Cooking brings a sense of security, not because I know I have enough dark chocolate chips in the freezer to survive the upcoming 3 winters and probably the next Ice Age, but because I know I am exercising this little thing that I hold so near and dear to my heart- creativity. Art means something different to everyone. I can’t paint The Last Supper but best believe I can cook it up and probs end up force feeding it to others.
“Cooking is like love- it must be entered into with full abandon or not at all.” Or something like that, right? It’s true. And there is absolutely nothing I like to do in life half-assed. I’m either in it or I’m not. I either feel very deeply or not at all. I set a goal and I chase after it like a rabid coyote or I decide I don’t care enough and never think about it again. For me, there is no gray area. Never did fancy that color, anyway. Dull af.
Aren’t they cute? I know, I could barely bring myself to eat them. Just kidding my nose is growing as I type and also I am lying. Introducing a no-bake chewy salty tahini nut-crust mixed with rich chocolate hazelnut filling and topped with fluffy ice cold coconut. *wipes saliva off keyboard*
Creating these mouth watering tarts was truly a labor of love because I simply love creating edible art inside my kitchen. First of all, these desserts are vegan, sans-the-gluten, and no actual baking required! So easy, a caveman could do it…if cavemen had food processors from Bed, Bath, & Beyond. I digress, not only are they seriously addictive, chia seeds unite with almonds, hazelnuts, and dates to bring you a fiber-filled happy tummy. Monounsaturated aka “healthy” fats from coconut cream and gooey tahini are guaranteed to give your body seriously sustainable energy. So you are absolutely not allowed to feel the least bit guilty devouring one of these tarts, they’re smart tarts, mkay?
Chocolate Tahini Coconut Tarts
Makes ~4 small tarts
For the crust:
- 2 cups raw almonds
- 6-7 Medjool dates, pitted (if too hard, soak in very hot water for ~5 minutes)
- 1/4 cup tahini
- 2 T chia seeds + 6 T warm water
- 1/4 tsp cinnamon
- 3/4 tsp sea salt
- In a small bowl, combine chia seeds and water and let coagulate for about 5 minutes until gooey.
- In a food processor, process almonds until crumbly and course. Add in dates and pulse. Add in chia seeds + water mixture along with tahini, salt, and cinnamon.
- Place mixture in a bowl and refrigerate.
For the filling (AKA HOMEMADE NUTELLA): pero like, if chu lazy you can use store-bought Nutella, ya dig?
- 3 cups raw hazelnuts (or you can buy roasted and skip first step)
- 2/3 cup dark chocolate (could be chips or a chopped up bar)
- 2 tsp vanilla
- pinch of sea salt
- sprinkle of cinnamon
- Preheat oven to 350. Line a baking sheet with tin foil and spread hazelnuts in a single layer. Bake 10-15 minutes, or until skins become a caramel brown color. Do not burn. I repeat: do nooooot burn.
- Remove from the oven and let cool for a bit. Working in about 3 batches, place hazelnuts in a dish towel and massage gently until the skins become loose. Try to get as much off as possible.
- Meanwhile, heat chocolate over extremely low heat in a small saucepan until fully melted. This should take a ~5 minutes.
- In a high speed food processor, add the hazelnuts and process until smooth and creamy (~10 mins) scraping the sides of the processor down frequently with a spatula. If you’re standing there scratching your hazelnuts, check out this post on homemade nut butter for all the deets.
- When smooth and creamy, add in the chocolate, vanilla, and some sea salt and cinnamon until mixed. Taste and add more salt/cinny/vanilla if you think it needs it.
- Remove the crust from the fridge and fill 4 small tart pans with the crust dough, smashing it in as densely as you can. If you are lacking in the small-tart-pan-department, you can also use a muffin tin and make mini-tarts using your fingers to press the dough along the bottom and the edges. OR, you even get CA-RAZYYY and use a large tart pan for one big one! Omg much wow. Regardless, you are smashing the dough into the bottom of the pan and around the edges for a nice crust that won’t fall apart later. Then fill with homemade nutella. For my small tarts, I used about 2 T of nutella per tart. Adjust accordingly.
- Next, place the nutella-filled tarts into the freezer for at least an hour.
For the coconut whipped cream topping:
- 1 15-oz can *chilled* full-fat coconut cream (NOT coconut milk)
- 1/2-3/4 cups powdered sugar
- 1/2 tsp vanilla
- Place a mixing bowl in the refrigerator for ~10 minutes before using. Make sure coconut cream has been chilled, I usually stick a can in the night before I make this.
- When you open the can, place all the sticky cream into the bowl, leaving the liquid behind for somethin’ else. Whip coconut cream for ~30 seconds.
- Add in sugar and vanilla, whip again until smooth. Pour topping over the crust shells and decorate until your heart’s content. These can go back in the freeze for like, a long time. Bu no guarantees they will last passed the evening.