Dates, sea-salt, and vanilla make the perfect “caramel” to be used in a vegan caramel slice. The best part is, you could fool absolutely anyone with this no-bake recipe. All natural ingredients? Full of amazing healthy fats? No refined sugar? Yes, please!
- 1 cup of desiccated coconut
- 1 cup of blanched almond meal *
- 115-125g of melted coconut oil **
- 1/2 cup of coconut sugar
- 1 tsp of vanilla extract
- 1 pinch of sea-salt
- 12-15 Medjool dates (softened for 10 minutes in hot water if you live in a cool climate)
- Generous dash of vanilla extract
- 1/2 tsp of cracked sea-salt
- 2 tsp of coconut oil
- 2 tbsp of maple syrup (optional***)
- 1/3 cup of unsalted roasted peanuts
- 200g of 85% dark chocolate (RSF option featured below)
- 1/3 cup of roughly chopped unsalted roasted peanuts
- A pinch of sea-salt
- Line a 20 cm X 30 cm baking pan with baking paper.
- Place all of the ingredients for the crust into a mixing bowl and mix together. Ensure that the coconut oil is thoroughly mixed through.
- Take a small amount of the crust mixture and press it between your finger and thumb. If it holds, your mixture should be ready to press down into the pan. If not, add one tablespoon at a time of coconut oil into the mixture until it has reached the desired consistency.
- Transfer the mixture to the baking pan and press down firmly with a spatula or a flat kitchen utensil to ensure that it is level across the pan. Keep pressing until there are as few loose crumbs as possible.
- Place in the freezer for 15 minutes or the fridge for 30 minutes.
The peanut-caramel layer
- Place dates, coconut oil, maple syrup*** and the sea salt into a food processor or blender. If your food processor/blender has a pulse setting, pulse on low to chop up the dates. Alternatively, you can chop the dates regularly before processing. Scrape down the sides and process/blend on low-medium until smooth. If your food processor/blender is having trouble blending the date mixture, add a dash or 2-3 tablespoons of boiling water, and keep scraping down the sides.
- Once your date mixture is smooth, transfer to a bowl and fold in the roasted peanuts. Give the mixture a quick taste test to see if it needs another pinch of salt (depending on how salty you like your caramel).
- Next, we will spread the mixture over the crust. Refer to the photo below. To prevent the peanuts from damaging the crust, dollop the date/peanut mixture in each corner of the crust, as well as the centre. Stretch the mixture delicately across the crust with the back of a clean tablespoon. Once complete, place in the freezer for 10-15 minutes, or alternatively, the fridge for 20-30 minutes. Omit this step if you aren’t fussed about a neat chocolate layer.
The chocolate layer
- Melt the chocolate in a glass casserole dish placed inside of a slightly bigger saucepan that is filled 1/3 of the way with boiling water. If you have a double boiler, unlike me, feel free to melt your chocolate using the double-boiler method. Place it on the stove on a low heat and constantly stir until the chocolate is just melted.
- If you used the glass casserole dish and saucepan method, carefully remove the casserole dish from the pan and allow the casserole dish to cool slightly.
- Evenly pour over the top of the date-peanut layer. Spread with a baking spatula or the back of a clean spoon. Sprinkle over the roughly chopped peanuts and lightly dust with cracked sea salt.
- Place in the freezer for another 15 minutes, or alternatively, the fridge for 30 minutes. If you are not pressed for time, place the slice in the fridge to set over-night, or for at least 2-3 hours.
- Once set, slice with a sharp, clean knife and enjoy.
*If you don’t have blanched almond meal, go ahead and use crushed almonds with the skin on, or another nut meal of choice. You can even blend your own almonds from scratch until the crumbs resemble the size of the desiccated coconut!
** If your mixture is a little dry, add one tablespoon at a time of coconut oil until the desired consistency is achieved.
*** If your mixture is too thick for your food processor or blender, and you would like to stretch out your mixture a bit more, add 2-4 tablespoons of maple syrup.
As always, here’s to happy travels and happy stomachs.
Lots of love,