One Recipe, Two Desserts

My dogs are smart enough to know they don't want to go outside for a long walk anytime after 10 am these days. So, taking their lead, the actual thought of turning on the oven or cooking over flames in the hottest part of the day actually scares me. All I can think of is cold foods which equates to sweets. Frozen, creamy, cold  and luscious desserts.

David recently called out our coconut sugar habit by reminding me, even though we "think" it is the best option for a sweetener, it's not that much better for you than sugar. Yes, it is low glycemic, but it is still sugar. Granted, white sugar is evil, and we don't eat that stuff, but, honestly, we really needed to cut back on our consumption of coconut sugar.

This acknowledgment quickly got my imagination running because I cannot live without desserts. I needed to start only making desserts either no sugar or with stevia.

My mother's favorite popsicle was a fudgsicle and being the chocolate freak that I am,  the sugar-free fudgsicle recipe on Elana's Pantry blog keep creeping on me on Facebook. Or so it seemed. The recipe and picture of the fudgsicle was always in my feed. The thought of cold and creamy fudgsicle after a dip in the pool as we try and beat the triple digit afternoon heat sounded too good to pass up.

What happens next is where this recipe gets fun. My popsicle molds are small and there was chocolate mixture leftover, so I poured the small overage into a 4 ounce ramekin and stuck it in the fridge. I figured it was enough for one popsicle which I would make after we ate the first pop and freed up a stick and mold.

A few hours later, I went to the fridge and noticed the liquid popsicle mixture had set up quite nicely. In fact, it looked like a perfect pudding so I grabbed a spoon. Delicious and who knew the recipe was so versatile? Perhaps Elana doesn't even know. 

Years ago, I made her vegan chocolate pudding recipe which does have coconut milk, but calls for chocolate chips which have lots of the sugar I am trying to avoid. So, it's your choice with this recipe. Popsicles or pudding--whatever you want. Make half popsicles, half pudding and see which you like better.

The "accidental" pudding won out in my house which means I have made two batches of this recipe to accommodate David's preference now. After eating his second pudding, he proclaimed this "the best pudding ever" and then asked, "What's in here again?" Honey, did I mention it's dairy-free and sugar-free? He never even knew it was good for him until I told him, but he knew it was simply delicious.

With a few ingredients and a few hours to set up, you can have this dessert ready to go by tonight. Because who is going to say no to fudgsicles or velvety chocolate pudding on a hot summer night? Be sure and add whipped cream to the pudding for extra fun. It is summer after all. 

Buen provecho!

Sugar-Free Chocolate Dessert (Fudgsicles or Pudding)
The Cowgirl Gourmet is always grateful to Elana's Pantry for her constant and healthy inspiration
Makes 7 popsicles or 4 puddings

Chocolate lovers and fudgsicle fans will rejoice with this one recipe that can be made into popsicles or pudding. Chocolatey, frozen and fabulously easy to whip together, these are going to be the family's new favorite. Unless you are more of a key lime pie popsicle kind of family, which is equally fabulous. For pudding lovers, this makes equally great chocolate pudding. One dessert--two ways.

1-13.5 ounce can organic coconut milk
2 ounces Baker's unsweetened chocolate bar
3 dates, pitted
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/6 teaspoon SweetLeaf stevia drops

In a high-speed blender, add the coconut milk, scraping the entire can to make sure you get all the coconut cream and milk out of it. Drop in half of the 4 ounce bar of chocolate, a few pitted dates and blend until creamy. This will take about 60 seconds. Then add the vanilla and stevia and blend again for about 15 seconds.

Fill a 1/4 cup measuring cup with the chocolate mixture and carefully pour into the popsicle molds. If making pudding, carefully pour the chocolate mixture into ramekins. Place the popsicles in the freezer and/or the puddings in the fridge for four hours.

Run the popsicle molds under hot water for about 10 seconds to remove it from the mold. 

Add whipped cream to the pudding and enjoy.

Note: This is a picture of Baker's chocolate.

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