Cocoa nibs & dates brownie – a recipe
Around June last year I decided it was time to change things a bit in my ‘fitness regime’. After years of wasting time with pointless zumba classes or putting effort into the likes of spinning and body pump, I got myself a personal trainer to see whether I could loose a couple of kilos that seemed stuck on me for good. After meeting a couple of enthusiastic sales people, I came across the deceptively gentle Peter Pazdro who almost reduced me to tears during our first meeting (“everyone says they eat well”) but then a few weeks in, I started seeing some results. I had to change a few things not only in the actual fitness routine (very welcome changes, such as less cardio and more weights) but also in my food habits. Without giving me a ‘diet’ he helped me understand what I needed to eat less of or more of, if I wanted to achieve my desired goal (leaner, slimmer, stronger). There went excessive carbs, potatoes, cakes, alcohol. In came nuts, seeds, low fat yogurt, protein. I stopped baking for a while: what was the point of baking my beautiful sourdough or a Sunday afternoon tea time treat? I wouldn’t be able to eat it!
Yet I slowly started to think a change of ingredients did not mean I could not bake! I started experimenting with protein bakes. Less carbs, less gluten, less refined sugars, but alternative flours, raw sugars, raw chocolate. After a few near miss disasters, a few hard rock cakes (“yum, they are edible, and so high in protein!”), I finally seem to have managed to find and adapt one of the many internet recipes for a pretty nice, high protein, low carbs chocolate brownie. With a difference of course.
Here’s my recipe. It is really quite delicious.
Sweet Potato Protein Brownie
(makes 9 square slices)
250gr sweet potato, peeled and cooked (about 1 medium sized)
2 scoops coconut flour
2 free range eggs
2 tbsp cocoa powder (unsweetened)
50gr almond, coconut and chocolate butter (I used this)
2 tbsp raw honey
60gr 0% Greek yogurt
3 scoops whey powder (chocolate flavoured or plain, I use a cheaper whey powder for baking than when using on its own)
1 tsp baking powder
1 tbsp sweetener (I used Stevia)
6 small chopped dates
Roast the unpeeled sweet potato in the oven at 180c for around 45 mins until soft. Peel, and let it cool. Keep the oven hot to 160c fan / 180c non fan. Once cooled, place in a blender with the rest of ingredients and mix until smooth. It will be quite a dry mix by the time it’s ready. Bake in a 20 x 20 baking tray (I used a silicon tray so did not grease it but using a non stick, it’s recommended to grease it or use baking parchment). Bake for 15 mins, until cooked. It will still be quite soft when you take it out. Let it cool in the tray for around 30 minutes then remove and cut as desired. Keeps well for at least a couple of days.
Approx. nutritional info per large slice: