Wednesday 17 October 2018

Chocolate Week - Chocolatier's Porridge

   Chocolate Week. A UK celebration of fine chocolate, not an excuse to scoff Dairy Milk, but to appreciate real chocolate - cook with it, taste a variety of bean-to-bar, and give artisanal and small-scale brands a chance to shine. My personal favourite is CoCo Chemistry, based in Lacock, and I had the pleasure to visit their store last Christmas. Their peanut and caramel chocolate salami is to die for. Try now, thank me later.
   So, in celebration of chocolate week, I decided to create a less sweet and more flavourful chocolate porridge - what else, right? - using raw cacao powder as both ingredient and garnish, the favourite cocoa nibs, some dark salted chocolate and some enrobed whole cocoa beans. This is not a porridge for your corner shop scoffer. This is dark, this is decadent - and, would you believe, healthy. Without all that added sugar, and with a focus on the actual cocoa beans and pre-refinement processes, you're getting a lot of the goodness the tabloids say all chocolate bars contain (though rarely do). And, while whole cocoa beans might sound like something you would have to source professionally and in bulk, that's not really the case anymore. Whole cocoa beans, chocolate-covered and otherwise, are becoming more common in both cooking stores and health food shops. Though I admit I sourced mine from Hotel Chocolat.

   This porridge is low in sugar, rich in antioxidants and all the good things about chocolate. It is dark, and sweetened only with that dash of melted chocolate - you can add a sweetener if you choose to, or keep it pure. It's much healthier than it looks, I promise! And the added whey - which is always optional - will keep you full for much longer and contribute to your protein needs (which should be about 1g for every 1lb of body weight). I've listed the brands I've used in the Notes section below, as always, but this post is not sponsored by any of them. You can also find the nutritional values at the bottom, too!

Serves 1
30g rolled oats
20g whey protein
100ml skimmed milk
100ml water
10g cacao powder
sweetener of choice, if desired
1 square dark chocolate, chopped
5g/1 tsp cacao nibs, for garnish
5g/1 tsp cacao powder, for garnish
chocolate-covered cocoa beans, for garnish

Overnight Oats
1. Combine oats, whey, cacao and sweetener in a bowl (or shaker bottle) and, stirring all the while, add the milk (or shake it all together and transfer to a bowl).

2. Set in the fridge overnight, then add 50ml water and heat the following morning in the microwave at full power for 1 minute, stir, and set back in for 20-30 second bursts until desired consistency is reached. Move on to step 3 below.

Oats on the Hob
1. Boil water.

2. Thoroughly combine oats, whey, cacao and sweetener in a pan, then, stirring all the while, add the milk, then 100ml boiled water. Bring to a boil over medium heat, then reduce to a simmer for 15 minutes or until desired consistency is reached, stirring occasionally to keep from burning.

3. Transfer to a bowl and drop the chopped chocolate on top, let it melt and then stir through.

4. Dust with a little cacao powder (no need to use the whole teaspoon) and sprinkle with cacao nibs. Place your chocolate-covered cocoa beans in the centre and serve for rich, chocolatey goodness.

• I used Pulsin premium whey
• I used Aduna raw cacao powder
• I used 1 square of Green & Black's dark salted caramel
• I used Hotel Chocolat cocoa nibs
• I used Hotel Chocolate supermilk velvet cocoa beans (typically 4g a piece)

Without chocolate covered cocoa beans
347 cals, 10g fat (5.5g sat), 30.5g carbs (5g natural sugar, 3g added), 9.5g fibre, 29.5g protein


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