Category Archives: Candy

How to use Young Coconut

You’ve seen fresh coconuts in the stores, well lately, fresh young coconuts are becoming popular in health food stores, however, most shoppers don’t know what to do with them because they are not like a full-grown coconut that you just crack open and eat the meat inside. A young coconut is not fully developed yet, the meat inside the shell is very soft and slimy, like the consistency of a cooked egg white. It does not taste as good as mature coconut meat; so what do you do with it?

Young CoconutIf you are into coconut water, there is nothing in the world that tastes better than the coconut water you get from a fresh, young coconut. It rivals anything in a can, bottle or box. So the first thing to do with a young coconut is save the water. The best approach to using young coconut is to take a very sharp knife and cut away as much of the surrounding fiber shell as possible, then, hack away at the top of the coconut as if using an axe until you cut a small hole or crack in the top of it, then turn it upside down onto a glass or cup to catch the wonderful tasting coconut water. You can keep in in a jar with a lid in the refrigerator for about 4-5 days.

Now for the meat, since it does not taste like the coconut meat we are accustomed to, it takes some creativity to figure out just what you can use it for, but for starters, you must crack the coconut in half (I have found the best way to do this even with a mature coconut is to throw it down as hard as you can onto a concrete walk, garage floor or driveway to bust it into pieces or crack it enough to break it open. This actually works like a charm with the least amount of effort. You may have to throw it down onto the concrete a few times to crack it enough to split it open.

Once you are able to split the coconut into pieces and break it apart, take a spoon and scoop the tender young meat off the shell and use it in the following ways.

1.) Add it to dishes. Young coconut meat adds an interesting slight coconut flavor to chicken, fish and salads. Also add it to smoothies.

2.) Coconut chips: It’s easy to cut the young coconut meat into strips and dehydrate them for a great tasting snack that’s also high in calcium, magnesium, manganese and potassium. Even better yet, make them into a awesome treat with our recipe below.

Chocolate Covered Coconut Chips Recipe:

1 fresh young coconut

1 dark chocolate organic candy bar

Cut and slice the coconut meat as described above. Dehydrate it with a dehydrator or an oven at a low-heat; such as below 300 degrees. Once dried, coconut chips can be stored in a sealed container in the refrigerator for 1-2 months to make a fast, easy to grab snack.

Melt a dark chocolate candy bar in the microwave for 30 seconds, dip and coat the coconut chips in the chocolate, put them on a plate to cool. Once cooled, the chocolate will harden on the chips making a wonderful, highly nutritious and non-processed treat.

The Difference Between Coconut Milk and Coconut Water.

Coconut water is the juice, or water, found when you crack open a fresh coconut. Coconut milk is made by blending the coconut meat and water together into a fine milk, much the way almond milk is made.

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Molasses Coconut Chews

Molasses Coconut Chews: Makes 2 1/2 pounds.

Of course, these are so much better with dark chocolate.

1 1/4 cups Rapadura or evaporated cane juice 1/2 cup honey or agave
1/3 cup molasses
2 Tbsp butter

4 cups shredded coconut (fresh coconut tastes best)
12 oz semisweet chocolate pieces or a 12 oz dark chocolate bar.

Combine cane juice, honey, molasses and butter in a saucepan. Cook, stirring constantly until cane juice dissolves. Cook without stirring until candy thermometer reaches 266o or the hard ball stage.

Remove from heat; stir in coconut. Pour mixture into a well-buttered 13×9 inch pan. Cool until lukewarm and comfortable to handle. Form candy into 1/2 inch balls, then cool completely before coating them.

Coating: Melt chocolate in a saucepan on very low heat or a double
boiler. Dip each ball into the chocolate with a fork. Cool on a plate. Store up to 3 weeks in the refrigerator.

For more recipes like this one using non-GMO and non-processed ingredients, follow this online recipe book.

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Popcorn-Various Flavors: Caramel Corn, Red Hot Popcorn etc

Homemade caramel corn is so fresh, never stale like some of those gift cans you see sitting in the stores. Another bonus to making your own is that you can give it your own unique, special flavor which really makes a sweet gift, and you can make it without all that nasty refined white sugars and corn syrup.

Caramel Corn / Maple Corn:

Maple syrup makes this traditional treat more special as a gift and a bit lighter in taste.

6 quarts popped popcorn
1/2 cup butter
1 1/2 cups firmly packed brown sugar or Rapadura (omit for Maple corn)
1/2 cup honey (use 1/4 cup honey and 1/4 cup maple syrup for Maple corn)
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp vanilla (omit if making maple syrup corn)
1/2 cup peanuts

Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Lightly grease a large roasting pan (something to bake the corn in that has higher sides than a cookie sheet).

In a heavy pan, melt the butter, stir in sweeteners of choice and salt. Bring to a boil stirring constantly. Once boiling, stop stirring and boil on low heat for another 5 minutes.

Remove from heat and add baking soda and vanilla if using. Spoon syrup over popped corn while mixing it around with a spoon to coat it all evenly. Mix in peanuts.

Bake for 1 hour stirring and flipping the corn over in the pan every 15 minutes to bake it evenly.
Cool and pour into a large bowl. As it cools, keep breaking apart the larger clumps until it’s completely cool.

Cinnamon Corn: This may sound bizarre as a popcorn flavor, but it’s a more natural, non-processed spin on the “red hots” flavored popcorn which is yummy and unique.

Substitute the vanilla / maple syrup in the recipe above with 1 tsp ground cloves and 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon. In place of the maple syrup or Rapadura sugar, increase the honey to 3/4 cup. Add the cloves and cinnamon to the pan when you melt the butter etc.

If you want it to have that red coloring, add 2-3 Tbsp of maraschino cherry juice to the corn while you are baking it.

Chipotle Turmeric Spiced Popcorn: Like your popcorn with a little kick. Add 1/2 tsp chipotle (or to taste) 1/4 tsp ground turmeric in place of the vanilla.

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Homemade Butterscotch Candies

Homemade Butterscotch: Makes 8 dozen, 1 inch patties. This recipe makes enough to give as gifts during the holidays. If you don’t want that much, cut this recipe in half.

2 cups Rapadura or Sucanat evaporated cane juice
1/2 cup honey
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup milk (almond milk is a good substitute for dairy)
1/3 cup organic butter

Lightly butter 3 cookie sheets (if you don’t have that many cookie sheets you can use a 9x9x2 inch pan as instructed below). Combine cane juice, honey, water and milk in a heavy saucepan. Bring to boiling, stirring constantly to 260o on a candy thermometer. Add butter.

Continue cooking to 280o on candy thermometer to hard ball stage.* Remove from heat

Drop hot syrup from the tip of a spoon onto prepared cookie sheets to form a 1 inch patty. You can also pour it into a 9×9 inch buttered pan or dish and when almost set, cut it into small squares. Turn out on a plate and let firm up.

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Fresh Pumpkin Fudge

Get a little nutrition out of this candy treat by using pumpkin. This recipe also uses honey instead of refined, white, processed sugars, corn syrup and a substitute for processed evaporated milk. There are quicker (cheating) ways to make fudge, but the old-fashioned way of stirring it until your hand falls off is still the best-tasting.

1 cup cooked, fresh pumpkin puree. See how to use fresh pumpkin in recipes here.

3/4 cup honey or 2 cups evaporated cane juice (sugar)

1/2 cup milk

1/2 cup butter

1/4 cup chopped pecans

1 tsp vanilla

1/4 tsp salt

1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice or 1/4 tsp nutmeg and 1/4 tsp cinnamon

Grease an 8×8 inch baking dish, set aside.

In a 3 qt. saucepan, melt 1 Tbsp butter and add the pecans. Toast the pecans for about 5 minutes. Remove them to a small bowl.
In the same saucepan, combine honey, milk, pumpkin and salt. Bring to a boil over high heat, stirring constantly. Reduce heat to medium and continue boiling. Do not stir.
When mixture registers 232 degrees F (110 degrees C) on candy thermometer, or forms a soft ball when dropped into cold water, remove pan from heat. Stir in pumpkin pie spice and nuts. Add butter and vanilla but don’t stir them in. Cool to lukewarm or cool enough to handle with your hands.
Beat mixture with a wooden spoon until it is very thick and loses some of its gloss. Quickly pour into a greased eight-inch pan. When firm cut into 36 squares.

Want to follow our recipe club and get updates on new postings, holiday recipes when they get posted and special pages? Follow this online recipe book.

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Chocolate French Truffles

Makes 2 dozen.

3 squares unsweetened chocolate

1/3 cup butter

1 1/4 cups confectioner’s sugar

4 egg yolks

1 tsp vanilla

Cocoa powder or ground nuts

Melt chocolate in a saucepan on very low heat or in a double boiler. Cool slightly. Combine butter and confectioner’s sugar (to make your own mix 50% Sucanat evaporated cane juice and 50% organic cornstarch) in a medium bowl. Beat until smooth. Beat in egg yolks, one at a time. Stir in the chocolate and vanilla. Chill until mixture is firm enough to handle with your hands.

Shape dough into balls about 1 inch in size. Roll in cocoa powder,coconut or ground nuts. Place on a plate until set. Store in a covered glass container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.

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Make Your Own Caramels / Sweetened Condensed Milk

Stir 2 cups sugar (Rapadura tastes good) in a saucepan with a heavy bottom until it melts completely and browns slightly, do not burn.

sweetcond_milkAdd 14 ounces, sweetened condensed milk, or make your own by mixing 1/4 cup organic cornstarch with 14 ounces of milk. Cook in a saucepan over medium heat until starts to thicken then add 1/2 cup honey or 1 cup sugar substitute.

Cook just until thick.

Pour hot caramel onto a greased cookie sheet and cut into desired sized caramels. Let cool and wrap in individual pieces of waxed paper.

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Rocky Road Clusters / Chocolate Turtles:

Makes about 1 1/2 pounds.

1 pound milk chocolate chopped in pieces

1 cup coarsely chopped pecans, peanuts or walnuts

1 cup marshmallows (or our homemade marshmallows – search for

the recipe in our site search)

Melt the chocolate in a small saucepan with a heavy bottom on very low heat, or use a double boiler. Spoon half the mixture into an 8×8 inch foil-lined baking dish or well-oiled pan. Return remaining chocolate to the heat. Sprinkle nuts and marshmallows over the chocolate in the foil-lined or oiled dish or pan. Spoon the remaining chocolate over

the top. Let cool at room temperature until firm. Turn upside down on a cutting board, remove the foil if you used it and cut candy into chunks. It will stay fresh for several weeks if covered with aluminum foil or placed in a glass container with a lid.

Chocolate Turtles:

You can make this recipe into Turtles by using peanuts and caramel instead of marshmallows. Search our recipes for how to make your own caramel.

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Fresh Pumpkin Fudge

Get a little nutrition out of this candy treat by using pumpkin. This recipe also uses honey instead of refined, white, processed sugars, corn syrup and a substitute for processed evaporated milk. There are quicker (cheating) ways to make fudge, but the old-fashioned way of stirring it until your hand falls off is still the best-tasting.

pumpkin_fudge1 cup cooked, fresh pumpkin puree. See how to use fresh pumpkin in recipes under our “Non-processed ingredients category”.

3/4 cup honey or 2 cups evaporated cane juice (sugar)

1/2 cup milk

1/2 cup butter

1/4 cup chopped pecans

1 tsp vanilla

1/4 tsp salt

1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice or 1/4 tsp nutmeg and 1/4 tsp cinnamon

Grease an 8×8 inch baking dish, set aside.

In a 3 qt. saucepan, melt 1 Tbsp butter and add the pecans. Toast the pecans for about 5 minutes. Remove them to a small bowl.

In the same saucepan, combine honey, milk, pumpkin and salt. Bring to a boil over high heat, stirring constantly. Reduce heat to medium and continue boiling. Do not stir.

When mixture registers 232 degrees F (110 degrees C) on candy thermometer, or forms a soft ball when dropped into cold water, remove pan from heat. Stir in pumpkin pie spice and nuts. Add butter and vanilla but don’t stir them in. Cool to lukewarm or cool enough to handle with your hands.

Beat mixture with a wooden spoon until it is very thick and loses some of its gloss. Quickly pour into a greased eight-inch pan. When firm cut into 36 squares.

Want to follow our recipe club and get updates on new postings, holiday recipes when they get posted and special pages? Follow this online recipe book.

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Nut-Seed Brittle

nut-seed-brittleMakes 2 3/4 pounds. Of course,  you can make this into peanut brittle, or we like it with a mix of nuts and seeds for added nutrients and flavor.

3 cups Sucanat or Rapadura evaporated cane juice

1 1/4 cups water

1/2 cup honey or agave

3 Tbsp butter

1 pound peanuts, or 1/3 pound each of peanuts, walnuts and pecans

1 cup sunflower seeds

1 tsp baking soda

1 Tbsp water

1 1/2 tsp vanilla

Butter 2 large cookie sheets. Combine cane juice, water and honey. In a large, heavy-bottomed saucepan, bring to boiling over medium heat stirring constantly. Once boiling, stop stirring until syrup reaches 270º on a candy thermometer (soft crack stage).

Add butter, nuts and seeds. Continue cooking until candy thermometer reaches 300º ( a teaspoon of syrup dropped into cold water will separate into brittle threads). Remove from heat. Mix baking soda with the 1 Tbsp of water and add to hot candy with the vanilla. When bubbles subside, pour candy onto prepared cookie sheets as thinly as possible. Let cool to room temperature and break into pieces. Store in a glass container with a lid putting foil or waxed paper in between stacked pieces so they don’t stick together.

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