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Let them eat flourless cake?

Passover-Friendly Dark Chocolate Coconut Tart

Passover means family, a celebration of freedom, food and, in our home, a flourless cake.

I grew up in a fairly traditional Jewish family. We celebrated many holidays together, we went to temple as a family on every High Holy holiday, and my brother had a Bar Mitzvah. I, however, never got any Jewish education.

Back in the day, it was believed that the son of the household obtained a Jewish education through Hebrew school, but many females did not. As much as I participated in going to temple, and being part of family events, I never truly understood the meaning of our Jewish traditions and holidays. However, now that I am grown, and have my own child, I feel it is important for her to understand what I did not know. She is only three and a half, so I don’t expect her to comprehend much, but I do have her participate and sit at the Passover table.

Most people who celebrate other non-Jewish holidays have a basic understanding of Hanukkah, especially since it is so close to Christmas; however, many people do not know much about Passover. Passover is simply celebrating the freedom from being enslaved by the Egyptians. We have a dinner, called a Seder, which represents the struggles and triumphs of our story. Part of that story explains the origins of matzah. The story says that the Israeli children escaped Egypt so quickly that they did not have enough time to let their bread rise. Unleavened bread, or matzah, was known as the bread of affliction, because every time the Jews ate matzah they would remember their family’s struggles. The tradition states that no item served during the seven days of Passover should have anything leavened. You will never see any bread, cakes or cookies that have any sort of leavening product in it for this reason.

Every year, my family sits down for a traditional Passover Seder. We have all of the usual dishes like stuffed cabbage, matzah kugel, pot roast, and more. Desserts tend to be a little trickier since you cannot have any leavened sweet treats. This is why my mother always serves a flourless chocolate cake for dessert. As yummy as that is, this year I am taking my own spin on the traditional dessert. I am making a raw, vegan chocolate tart! Raw and vegan tend to scare some people, but trust me, after you take one bite, your fears will fade away and this Passover-friendly dessert will be a welcomed addition to anyone’s table.

Passover-Friendly Dark Chocolate Coconut Tart

Ingredients:

For the Crust:

1 Cup Dates, pitted
1/3 Cup Toasted Hazelnuts
1/3 Cup Raw Almonds
1/3 Cup Dark Chocolate
2 Tablespoons Coconut Oil, Melted
½ Teaspoon Sea Salt
¼ Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
1-2 Tablespoons Water, if needed

For the Filling:

1 Cup Agave Syrup
½ Cup Cocoa Powder
2 Tablespoons Coconut Oil, melted
2 Teaspoons Flaky Sea Salt
2 Teaspoons Vanilla Extract
2 Ripe Avocados

For Garnish:

½ Cup Pomegranate Seeds
1/3 Cup Flaked Coconut

Instructions:

  1. Line the bottom of an eight-inch tart pan with removable bottom with a round of parchment paper.
  2. Combine dates and the next seven ingredients in the bowl of a food processor; process until all ingredients come together, adding water one tablespoon at a time as needed to form a sticky ball. Transfer to the tart pan; using lightly moistened hands, press the mixture evenly along the bottom and up the sides of the pan to form the crust. Refrigerate until ready to fill.
  3. To prepare the filling, combine syrup and next 5 ingredients in the bowl of a food processor, process until smooth, scraping down the sides as needed. Spread filling into prepared crust and chill at least thirty minutes or until set. Garnish with pomegranate seeds and coconut.

This article was written by RCBC pastry arts student Shari Van Fleet for the Courier-Post. Photo by RCBC student Devon Spedden.