It’s a most wonderful time of year…. when I’m forever remembering yet another dedicated teacher, staff member, godparent etc etc who I’ve failed to buy a Christmas gift for.
So I like to make batches of foodie gifts that can be bagged up last minute for those crisis moments.
This festive tiffin includes all the flavours of the season – chocolate, orange, cranberries and warming spices.. and is also fully vegan – and easily adapted to gluten free.
Best made with a glass of mulled wine firmly in hand!
1 dried chilli
100g coconut oil
150g maple syrup
300g dark chocolate
1/2 tsp cinnamon
300g good quality ginger biscuits (check they are dairy free – many brands are)
75g dried cranberries
75g crystallised ginger – chopped to small pieces.
75g chopped toasted hazelnuts
For the topping
200g dark chocolate
1 tbsp coconut oil
Line a 20 X 30 cm baking pan with greaseproof paper. Put the dried chilli, coconut oil, maple syrup and dark chocolate into a small saucepan, and heat gently to melt. Turn off the heat, stir in the cinnamon, the zest of the orange and a good squeeze of juice and allow to infuse for a few minutes.
Put the ginger biscuits into a large bowl and bash into small chunks with a rolling pin. Add the cranberries, ginger and nuts and mix well.
Remove the chilli from the chocolate mix, and pour the chocolate into the bowl, stirring well until it’s all well coated, breaking up any larger pieces of biscuit with a wooden spoon.
Tip the mix into the lined pan, press down well with the back of a spoon and then allow cool before putting it into the fridge to chill.
Put the 200g dark chocolate into a heat proof bowl, add 1 tbsp coconut oil, and melt in short blasts in the microwave, stirring regularly.
When the the biscuit mix has chilled completely, pour the chocolate over the top and return to the fridge to harden.
When the chocolate topping has hardened, remove from the pan, cut into bite sized squares and decant into festive bags as a lovely Christmas gift – or just pile up on a plate and dig in!