Thursday, December 5, 2013
Chocolate Coated Dried Apricots with Toasted Nuts
When faced with an insect inside the home, my first instinct is to kill it. Murder it. Cease its existence. It is, perhaps, a macabre way of handling the situation. But I just want the thing out of my life.
So it was definitely strange when I saw the bee at the kitchen window and didn't have the urge to kill it. I instead wanted to save it. An especially strange response, when one considers its ability to sting. Maybe I've read too many articles about the declining bee populations, maybe my heart went out to this struggling little creature, maybe I was just hoping to bring back some good karma in the form of honey - who knows. But I surprised myself with this anti-bloodthirsty side of me.
I opened the window, hoping the bee would somehow make its way out. It did not. So I waited for it to calm down a bit, let it climb on a scallion, placed it in a cup, and got the bee outside.
And I continue to surprise myself in other ways. I've been vehemently anti-dried-fruit for so long. Yet, here I am happily eating them. Though, it is hard to resist anything when coated with chocolate and almonds. Life is full of surprises. A fact that became quite clear to the spider I smashed with my child's play baseball bat.
1/2 pound dried apricots
6 ounces semisweet or dark chocolate chips
2 tablespoons coconut oil
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
1/2 cup toasted almonds and/or hazelnuts and/or sunflower seeds
fleur de sel
Melt the chocolate with the coconut oil in a double boiler or very carefully in a microwave. If using a microwave, heat it in 30-second intervals, and stir. Once the chocolate has melted, add in the almond extract. Dip a dried apricot in the chocolate mixture, then into a bowl of toasted nuts. Place on a baking sheet covered with wax paper. Sprinkle the coated apricot with a bit of fleur de sel. Repeat for each apricot. I keep these in the fridge once coated.