One Part Plant, and became instantly obsessed. So much so that I stalked its author, fellow Chicago girl Jessica Murnane, and asked if she could put together a special recipe just for Bubby and Bean readers. Because she is rad, she agreed. And I can't stop drooling over what she came up with. Once you're done reading through all the deliciousness, see my notes at the bottom of this post on where you can find more of Jessica's awesomeness. xo, melissa
Whenever anyone asks me if there are any foods I don't like, the answer is always the same: 1. "Salads" that don't include lettuce (potato salad, chicken salad, tuna salad, pasta salad) and 2. The combination of chocolate and fruit.
I'll never budge on the salads, it's been a thing for me for as long as I can remember. But the other day I was experimenting in the kitchen and it got me thinking twice about chocolate and fruit hooking up. I realized that my prejudice against the combo started when I was little, with a single cherry cordial. You know the kind, with the weird fakey-cherry gel in the center? It's the original Fruit Gusher. As soon as I bit in, I immediately spit it out...and at that moment decided that I hated fruit and chocolate together. Forever.
But like so many other things since I changed my diet, I've found that the natural version is so much better. Celtic salt has so much more flavor than the table kind. I never liked honey until I tried the real-deal, raw version. And maple syrup that's actually made of real maple syrup (and nothing else) is 1,000 times better than the kind I grew up with. So with this recipe, I ditched the cherry goo and strange chocolate coating and went with the real stuff. And now, I officially have a place in my heart for chocolate and fruit together. And I'm also loving this coconut cream, an updated and even tastier version of the tub of whipped stuff from Thanksgiving Days past.
This brownie is a riff on one of Terry Walter's brownie recipes. I changed up the flours a bit and added the cherries and some extras. But I highly recommend checking out her books. She has so many great recipes that you can take and make your own. And thankfully, not one mention of salads that don't include greens!
8 pitted dates (soaked in almond or rice milk for a few hours)
15-20 pitted cherries diced
1 banana (the more ripe the better)
1/2 cup applesauce (natural)
1/4 cup maple syrup
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 cup chickpea flour
1/2 cup almond meal
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
WHIPPED COCONUT TOPPING INGREDIENTS
1 can of coconut milk (chilled in fridge overnight)
1 tablespoon maple syrup
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Combine dates, banana, applesauce, maple syrup, and vanilla in a food processor. Mix until smooth, but there should still be a few chunky date pieces. In a large bowl, combine your remaining dry ingredients. Pour your wet ingredients into your dry ingredients and add cherries. Fold together. Pour batter into a lightly greased 8 x 8 pan. Bake for 23-25 minutes until cooked through.
While brownies are baking, take chilled coconut milk carefully from the fridge. Do not shake. The coconut cream and water have separated and you want this. Open the can and scoop the coconut cream from the top into a small bowl. Keep the coconut water for a future recipe. Add your vanilla and maple syrup and use an electric mixer to mix until stiff and creamy. If you don't have an electric mixer, just mix together quickly with a fork - it will still be delicious.
Let cool completely and top with coconut cream. I like to use a pastry bag to make pretty dollops or swirls. -Jessica
Huge thanks to Jessica for stopping by and sharing this recipe with us! I'm hoping she'll come hang out on a more regular basis - I am a huge fan of the creative ways she incorporates clean, whole ingredients into delicious recipes. She also really likes hats, which automatically makes her a kindred spirit in my book. Make sure you guys check out One Part Plant - I promise you'll be glad you did. You can read more about Jessica and OPP here, like OPP on Facebook here, follow on Twitter here, and check out her Instagram photos here.