Top o’ the mornin’ to ya on this fine (well, rainy actually) St Patrick’s Day. I love St Paddy’s Day – there’s something about it that brings out the Irish in us all – in my case a not insignificant quarter!
For me, St Patrick’s Day is extra special because it always brings back fond memories. Waaay back in 1999 I was in Sacramento, attending an art course by master colourist Susan Sarback. My trip there just so happened to coincide with St Patrick’s Day and the whole of Old Town Sacramento was decked out for the occasion. Some newly formed acquaintances and I went to the parade and it’s an experience I’ll never forget. Those Americans sure do know how to party!
Fast-track to today, and my workplace is celebrating the day (modestly, in comparison!) by inviting staff to bring green food to share for lunch. Unfortunately for me it’s not the day I work onsite, but that hasn’t stopped me from rustling up some green Avocado Cream Tarts to share with my family. Given it’s mid-week I’ve kept the recipe raw and healthy, but it’s still most assuredly delicious! With its deep, dark and chocolatey base and smooth, creamy avocado and banana filling, how could it not be?
Hoping that wherever you are, you get to bring a little green into your day.
- 1/2 cup whole almonds (or any nut you prefer)
- 1/2 cup soft Medjool dates, pits removed
- 1/4 cup raw cacao powder (if you can’t access it, use cocoa powder)
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 teaspoon pure maple syrup (or as needed)
- About 1 tablespoon coconut oil, melted (or as needed)
- 2 avocados, flesh only (I used about 400g/14oz of flesh)
- 2 small bananas
- 2 tablespoons honey or pure maple syrup, or to taste
- 2 teaspoons lemon juice (or lime juice)
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt or Himalayan salt, or to taste
- Cacao nibs, for sprinkling (or use chocolate chips)
- Place all the ingredients (except for the coconut oil) in a food processor and pulse to blend until you’re happy with the texture (process longer for a finer texture). Taste and adjust for sweetness and saltiness if needed.
- Test the moisture of the base by spooning out a small amount of mixture and rolling it in your hands. If the ingredients hold together, your base is perfect. If it’s not quite there yet, add up to a tablespoon of coconut oil until the moisture level is right.
- Divide base mixture into lightly greased tart tins with removable bases (I used 6 x 8cm/3in deep sided individual tart moulds with removable bases). Press the mixture firmly, making sure that the edges are well packed and that the surface is even. If making ahead, you can pop the bases into the fridge or freezer. NB: If you have some base mixture left over, roll it into truffle-sized balls and store in the fridge – makes a wonderful sweet snack!
- Add all the ingredients into a food processor and blend until completely smooth. Taste and adjust for sweetness and saltiness if needed.
- Spoon the mixture on top of the bases and smooth the surface with a spatula. Sprinkle some cacao nibs over top, then pop into freezer to chill.
- Remove the tarts from freezer when you're ready to serve - they defrost very quickly - and remove them from the tins to serve.
Food Photography Info: Canon 550D (EOS Rebel T2i); Sigma 30mm 1.4 DC ‘Art’ lens / Natural lighting