Indulgent chocolate orange truffles


Happy 2015! I'm starting the year with a celebratory recipe. It's simple to make, full of anti-oxidants, fibre and good fats and it's completely indulgent.

Indulgence might seem an unlikely angle to take with a new year's recipe. The beginning of the year often comes with a list of don'ts, won'ts or things to give up in the name of self-improvement. But feeling guilt and failure when we stray from these aren't great for us, or our ability to make lasting changes.

Serving chocolate orange truffles

Positive resolutions

My philosophy is that resolutions should be positive. Saying 'I'm going to eat more un-processed whole foods' is much more appealing and achievable than saying 'I won't eat any processed foods again, ever'. It's also about being realistic - are you really going to stop loving chocolate and never eat it again? Or could you resolve to eat it less often and in a healthier form?

Treating yourself doesn't have to be bad for you, as this recipe perfectly illustrates. So in the name of balance, I bring you indulgent chocolate orange truffles. A treat for January and beyond.

Chocolate orange truffles ingredients

Love chocolate? I should cacao

Raw cacao is the un-processed form of chocolate. It's made by cold pressing cacao beans (rather than roasting them to produce cocoa). This preserves more of the beans' nutrients and active enzymes. Cacao is particularly high in antioxidant flavonoids and minerals. But while it has some nutritional benefits, it also contains some less beneficial substances including caffeine and oxalic acid, which blocks calcium absorption. So while cacao in its pure form is way better for you than processed chocolate, treat it in the same way: keep it for treats.

Just sweet enough

Medjool dates are a brilliant sweetener. Their gooey texture adds a caramel-like richness and unlike many other sweeteners, they also contain fibre. 

The quantities I use in this recipe create quite a bitter flavour. How sweet you like your truffles is down to personal taste, but I'd recommend trying these proportions first and adding another date if you prefer more sweetness.

With health and happiness for 2015! x

Chocolate orange truffles on paper

Indulgent chocolate orange truffles

Makes 9 truffles


1tbsp raw cacao powder
1tbsp ground almonds
1tbsp coconut oil
2 medjool dates - chopped
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
Zest of half an organic orange
Pinch of sea salt

Mix all ingredients in a food processor and then roll into balls, using a teaspoon of mixture for each one.

Lay the balls out on greaseproof paper. Cover and refrigerate for at least an hour so they set and become firm. Remove from the fridge, sprinkle half a teaspoon of cacao into a bowl and roll each truffle in the powder to coat it, shaking off any excess.  Serve straight from the fridge or at room temperature.