Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Step Forty Nine: Raw chocolate Christmas bonbons

Dearest Sylwi,

Happy New Year!!!! I hope 2011 is full of love and light and dreams coming true... and lots of time for creative adventures, too!

As mentioned in my last post, I had initially hoped to cook some Christmas cookies for a Step at the end of last year. However, food guilt set in over Christmas :-))) and I made a promise to myself, that instead of a holiday completely filled with refined sugars and dairy, I would teach myself to make one raw food treat.

This recipe came from a book that I was given as a Christmas present, called 'Naked Chocolate' by Shazzie and David Wolfe. It's a recipe for fudge squares, made from nuts, dates, coconut and cacao nibs. 

To make the fudge look a little more treat-like, I rolled each square into a ball and then covered it in either shredded coconut, or raw cacao powder.

They tasted very good... not "excellent", but pretty darn good for my first adventure with raw treats. I'm looking forward to improving on the recipe a little. 

My ultimate goal is to invent raw treats that will taste soooo good, that everyone will like them... even friends who don't really understand the whole raw food concept and think it's all a bit crazy! :-) I shall certainly know I've achieved that, when my husband likes them! 

Today's Step was really two creative adventures in one. Not only did I make the treats, I also persuaded a photographer friend to show me how to light my pictures. I styled these pics, with the Christmas tree behind and an old, wooden, chopping board that belonged to my Grannie... and then I ran out of props! (and began dreaming of trips to Paris, to browse flea markets for pretty ceramic plates and saucers!) 

In the end, I just made a quick origami gift box, using these instructions. In hindsight, I should probably have left it out of the shot, but I hadn't really planned the shot, it just kind of fell together... so, well, that's why there's a weird paper box in there! heeee! :-) 

I learned so much about lighting today. We played around with lighting the bonbons from the front, then the side and then from slightly behind. The pics I liked most, were lit from slightly behind. It seemed to give the bonbons much more shape.

I'm exhausted from all of the work. This was supposed to take a couple of hours and ended up taking far longer! Especially when you're trying to take the pic and a curious and hungry puppy sneaks into the background of the shot...

... so, you shoo them out of the shot, run back to the camera and take another pic, only to discover ANOTHER curious and hungry puppy, attracted by all of the noise... and then the chocolately smell wafting down off the counter, has sneaked in to the vacant space...


Lots and lots and lots of love to you! Happy, Happy, Happy New Year, sweetpea! 


  1. Oh! I love these pictures!!!! and the bonbons look so yummy!!! and your dogs really blend in he, he - so cute!

    Love :*

    Did you send me some? (chocolates not your dogs!)

  2. Oh Fi! I'm in fits of laughter, then coughing (getting over another respiratory illness), then laughing. Your adventures in life are filled with so much quirk and humor. It's as if you planned the shots with the kids. :) Oh, so funny.

    The pictures are fantastic. I actually love the origami box because you know right away they are gifts. Had they been sitting there alone, you might have thought - oh a delicious raw treat. But the box... oh... now I can dream that one, two or three of these might be venturing across the seas for me to taste. I learned from my food styling that sometimes surrounding the food with the ingredients makes for good props. Like a bowl of coconut, or cocoa nibs scattered about the board, or in a bowl. And yes, of course you did that with the jar of coconut. See, you didn't even have to know from a pro. Oh, and yes, I dream of French flea markets and gathering all kinds of lovely props too.

    You've inspired me to get back on my food styling wagon and get some shots!

    I wish you were closer. I want to sit with a cup of tea and hear all about your adventures with raw food. Jana is experimenting this month eating all raw and asked me to join her, but I'm too uncertain. It makes me a little nervous.