When my daughter was a little girl, she loved a homemade candy called buckeyes—basically, it was a from-scratch take on Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups. While they were homemade, they were anything but healthy—nowhere near healthy, in fact. They included among other ingredients conventional dark corn syrup, something I never use today.
Still, my little girl (and she is, still, for me) deserves something special from the Easter Bunny. Even if the Easter Bunny has to be sure the treats are gluten-free and mostly dairy-free. And, I can do that… with a little help from one of my favorite local sources—My Coconut Kitchen.
Ever since I discovered Angie’s great coconut butters, I’ve been hooked. Coconut butter mint patties have been on my Christmas dessert tray for a couple of years now. And the Divinely Dark and Roasty Toasty flavors are a great addition to my Green Gal Goblin Granola. Why not Easter eggs!
This year I decided to try to recreate some of the flavor in those long-lost buckeyes. I think I came pretty close, although there is a decided coconut flavor to go along with the chocolate and peanut butter. I also splurged on traditional sprinkles for curb appeal. Works for this little bunny! So hop on along…
- One-half cup finely shredded unsweetened coconut
- Three-quarters cup Divinely Dark coconut butter (Espress-Oh-My Love will work great in this recipe, too.)
- Two tablespoons organic brown sugar or coconut sugar
- Two tablespoons pure maple syrup
- Two tablespoons organic, unsalted, no-sugar peanut butter
- One tablespoon vanilla
- One cup chocolate chips or broken chocolate bar pieces (Taking a suggestion from Angie’s website, I tried Enjoy Life gluten-free, dairy-free chocolate chips. They worked beautifully—I’ll use them again.)
- One teaspoon coconut oil
- Melt the coconut butter in the top of a double boiler until liquid. Remove from heat. Using a rubber spatula, stir in the coconut, brown sugar, maple syrup, peanut butter and vanilla. Keep stirring, allowing the mixture to cool until it can be handled and shaped, maybe five minutes for this.
- Shape into little egg shapes and place on a cookie sheet or large plate covered with parchment paper. For me, it was easiest to roll a small amount of the mixture into a ball, place it on the parchment paper and shape out into an egg. (if the mixture just seems too soft, you can stiffen it up by adding a bit more coconut, but do this judiciously. The candy can get too stiff rather quickly.
- Once all your eggs are shaped, place them in the freezer for a least 30 minutes—an hour is better.
- Just before taking your eggs from the freezer, melt the chocolate chips in a double boiler with the coconut oil. Once the chocolate is completely melted, remove it from heat. Get the eggs from the freezer and dip them into the chocolate using a fork. Tap the fork on the sides of the double boiler to remove excess chocolate. Place the eggs on a parchment-lined baking sheet or large plate and refrigerate for a half hour. Your eggs should keep in the frig for about a week without appreciable loss of flavor and texture.
The prep and cook times do not include the time it takes to freeze your eggs for the first step or refrigerate your finished eggs at the end.
Wondering about those burnished eggs next to the plate in the photos? They are two brown eggs that have been hard boiled and dyed using red beet peelings and turmeric. Isn’t that cool? You can make your own “naturally” dyed Easter eggs with the help of this month’s Delicious Living Magazine. There’s a great how-to article with lots of creative ideas for using white, light brown and dark brown eggs with dyes made of fruit, veggies, tea, coffee and spices. The baskets are waiting.