Are you a slave to your sweet tooth? Here’s a healthier way to satisfy it with Hemsley & Hemsley's delicious coconut paradise bar recipe
If your sweet tooth is your healthy eating downfall, fret not, as Hemsley and Hemsley have cooked up a way to make your 4pm snack time a little easier on the waistline: their deliciously moreish and aptly named Paradise Bars.
The perfect handbag companions for when you’re on-the-go, they’re the ideal swap for your bar of chocolate to satisfy sugar cravings and tastebuds in one fell swoop. “If we find ourselves stuck somewhere and hungry, these bars do the job without sending our blood sugar levels flying sky high,” the London-based Hemsley sisters say. “We prefer them without the additional water, but every now and then we find someone who likes them a little softer in the middle, so add water to the mix if that’s you.”
Feeling inspired? Here’s how to create your own slice of paradise, all from the comfort of your own home.
Makes 24 bars
7 oz bar of creamed coconut
6 tbsp coconut oil
3 tbsp raw honey
1½ tsp vanilla extract
A pinch of sea salt
5 oz shredded coconut
7 oz (85% cocoa solids) dark chocolate
1. Line an 8 in square tin with baking parchment. In cold weather, place the unopened packet of creamed coconut in a bowl of warm water to melt it through (you can massage the packet to help it along). In warm weather, the creamed coconut will already be fluid enough.
2. When it’s soft all the way through, pour into a bowl and mix in the coconut oil (it will melt if it’s hard), raw honey, vanilla, salt, and 2–4 tablespoons water if you like a softer centre.
3. Stir in the shredded coconut evenly to create a doughy consistency.
4. Pour the dough into the prepared tin. Press the mixture down with the back of a spoon to make it level and set in the fridge for 15 minutes until hard.
5. Turn the tin of coconut mixture out onto a chopping board and slice into 6 horizontal slices by 4 vertical. Place them onto a baking tray lined with baking parchment and keep in the freezer while you prep the chocolate.
6. Melt the chocolate in a glass or metal bowl over a pan of warm water – make sure the water does not touch the bottom of the bowl and do not allow the water to boil or simmer – you may have to keep removing from the heat. This should take about 30 minutes.
7. When the chocolate has almost melted, take the bowl off the heat and place on a tea towel to avoid slipping. Leave it to cool as much as possible without it hardening to give a thicker coating to the paradise bars – stir occasionally.
8. Dip the frozen coconut bars into the chocolate using two forks, letting the excess drop off, and carefully place back onto the cold baking tray, leaving space between each bar. If the chocolate mixture becomes too cold, you may need to put it back over the simmering water again.
9. When you’ve finished dipping all the bars, place the tray back in the fridge until set. Once set, seal in a glass or ceramic container in the fridge or freezer until required. If they are kept sealed in the fridge, they will keep for a month – or longer in the freezer.
For more mouth-watering recipes that are free from grain, gluten and refined sugar, check out The Art Of Eating Well by Jasmine and Melissa Hemsley, £25 for some great healthy cooking food for thought. Buy online here .