I have been a chocolate connoisseur for most of my life, starting at an early age with milk chocolate. My appetite gradually increased to all forms and varieties of chocolate including; chocolate covered donuts (I had a cat that loved them too!) cookies, pies, cakes, and candies. Ok, I was a chocolate addict.
When I moved to England, I was spoiled by the variety of wonderful English, Belgium, and French chocolate pastries and candies, and for years I consumed truckloads of deliciously smooth, velvety chocolate until one day after my excess consumption, I developed a severe migraine. This was the beginning of my food allergies. Within a short period of time, I could no longer eat chocolate, cheese, red wine, sugar or coffee without suffering the consequences. People would often say they would rather die than give up their chocolate or coffee. Believe me, you would survive.
I eventually found the answer to my chocolate prayers. Carob is a healthy alternative to chocolate with a variety of reported health benefits including boosting the immune system, aids in digestion, and is also a powerful antioxidant. Carob contains twice the amount of calcium that cocoa has, is full of vitamins and minerals including A, B-2, B-3, B-6, manganese, potassium, zinc and selenium and is high in protein, pectin, and fiber The best part is that Carob is caffeine free, no more migraines!
I now make my own carob bars and candies. One of my old favorites is chocolate (carob) stars that remind me of Christmas time, but any kind of candy mold will work. Below is a recipe for a chunky nut carob bar.
(makes a small batch)
1/2 cup organic coconut oil (heat in microwave)
1/4 cup Bob’s Roasted Red Mill Carob powder
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 cup cashews (or nuts of your choice)
1/2 cup Dandies plain or pumpkin marshmallows
Mix together and pour into molds or large ice cube trays and freeze.
This recipe can be altered by adding more or less of any ingredients including adding orange or mint oils. I eat the candy right out of the freezer as sometimes the carob melts in your hand.