There is a heat wave warning in Ottawa.
Our tiny apartment has reached unreasonable temperatures and our lack of air conditioning has led me to do things I am not very proud of in order to cool off; I put bags of frozen peas in places where bags of frozen peas should not go. It worked – but I lost some of my dignity in the process.
And then the worst thing that could possibly happen on a sweltering day did – I started to crave brownies. I know, I know, I know: summer is all about fresh fruit, herbed salads, grilled meats and the like. Unfortunately, my cravings do not ever change with the seasons, especially when it comes to brownies. And so, I set out to make a brownie that would satisfy that chocolatey gooey image I painted in my head without the need of an oven. And guys – I really think I did it.
This brownie is so so so incredibly simple (only 3 ingredients!!!) and it tastes super chocolatey; it is gooey and sweet and most importantly, for my particular circumstances, it’s cold. I know this recipe may seem to good to be true, but it’s true ya’ll. These brownies are just what the Ottawa heat wave ordered. So grab some dates, cocoa powder, almonds, and a food processor (or blender) and you’ve got yourself some no-bake brownies perfect for summertime weather.
No-Bake Date Brownies
2 cups almonds
2 1/2 cups pitted dates
3/4 cup + 1 tbsp. cocoa powder
1 tbsp. water
Chocolate Glaze (optional)
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 cup coconut oil
3/4 cup cocoa powder
Brownies: Line a 9 inch square pan with parchment paper and place in the fridge. Place the dates in a bowl of warm water and let them soak for 5-10 minutes. Drain the water and place them into the food processor. Process for about a minute, until the dates break down and stick together. Remove and place in a bowl for later. In the same food processor, put the almonds and cocoa powder. Process for 30 seconds or so, until most of the almonds are broken down nice and fine and there are still a few visible but very small chunks left. Add in half of the dates and half of the tablespoon of water. Process. Add the other half of the dates. Process. At this point, the mixture should be almost like a chunky paste – it should hold itself together and be thick and sticky. If it is too dry, add the other half tablespoon of water. Once the mixture looks good and is sticking together nicely, remove it from the processor and place it in the baking pan, pressing it down so it is nice and even – you want it about 1 inch – 1 1/2 inches thick. Place in the fridge, covered. Leave for about 2 hours, take out of the fridge and cut into squares. Must be stored in the fridge so that the brownies stay nice and cool and don’t get too sticky.
Glaze: While the brownies are in the fridge, place melted coconut oil, cocoa powder and cinnamon in a bowl. Whisk until smooth. About 30 minuted into refrigeration, pour glaze over brownies and place back into the fridge, covered. Ta-da! you are done. Let it sit int he fridge until the glaze hardens a bit (for another hour and a half or so) and thats it, thats all.
This took me only 10 minutes of kitchen time – which meant I had about a half our more time on my hands than I usually do when I make brownies. So, what did I do with that extra half hour of my life? Sweat, mostly.
Hopefully it’s cooler where you are – but then again, the heat may be worth this recipe.