Amorous Chocolate Mousse
This mousse is packed with gifts from the jungle. The avocado, coconut, and cocao provide antioxidants such as B vitamins and vitamin C, E, A, and K, minerals like magnesium, potassium, copper, and iron, tons of fiber, healthy mono unsaturated fats, as well as Omega 3s and 6s, and the anti-fungal, metabolism-boosting lauric acid. The cacao even has a chemical called phenylethylamine that is a known mood elevator. Even those who aren't fans of avocado will love it and will never guess that this chocolaty concoction is made without dairy. My husband requests this dessert routinely; I am always happy to accommodate him due to the speediness of the preparation process, ease of clean up, and because I love him.
This recipe has some ingredients you might not expect, but they really do complement one another. If you cannot find coconut butter, you can substitute coconut oil (just be sure to use cold-pressed and not one that is hydrogenated). Coconut butter is solid at room temperature and can get quite hard when it is cold. To make the butter easier to scoop and measure gently warm it by placing the jar in a pot of hot water for a few minutes. I list 2-3 tablespoons of agave because unlike my husband--who has a major sweet tooth--I prefer a little less sweetener. I usually scoop some out of the processor for myself after 1 tablespoon of agave and then add extra sweetener for him.
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Adapted from The Balanced Plate by Renee Loux
2 ripe avocados
2 tablespoons virgin cold pressed coconut butter
1/4 cup grade B maple syrup (not raw but full of minerals and is still slow to metabolize, substitute 3-4 soft medjool dates and/or more agave if you want 100% raw but use less since agave is sweeter than maple syrup)
2-3 tablespoons raw blue agave nectar
1 teaspoon aged balsamic vinegar (optional and not raw but adds a layer of richness)
1/2 teaspoon tamari or shoyu
1 tablespoon vanilla extract or 1 vanilla bean scraped
1/2 cup raw cacao powder
raspberries and mint to garnish
Place the first seven ingredients into a food processor (I use the smallest Cuisinart bowl) or mixer, pulse 3 or 4 times and blend until creamy, adding agave according to taste and scraping down the sides of bowl as needed. (I have also used a hand mixer, but that takes a little longer to process.)
Add cacao powder and blend until creamy and whipped-looking, scraping the sides of the bowl if necessary.
Scoop into serving dishes and garnish.
This dessert can be prepared ahead of time and covered tightly with plastic wrap, it will keep for several hours but it is best served immediately at room temperature. That said, it also makes an amazing gelato; just freeze it, blend it again and serve.