Friday, 8 November 2013

Orange and sweet potato filled chocolates - inspired by TMWRNJ's Curious Orange (TV Dinners)

Healthy vegan chocolates with a smooth orange flavoured filling that is creamy with cashew butter and coloured orange by sweet potato.

Television Show: This Morning with Richard Not Judy, comedy, 1998-1999, UK

What does it mean to me? The Morning with Richard Not Judy, also known as TMWRNJ was a satire on morning television shows. Richard Herring and Stewart Lee played the hosts (satirising Richard Madeley and Judy Finnigan who had a popular morning show).  The show included lots of silly chatter and even sillier sketch comedy such as 'When Things Get Knocked Over, Spill or Fall Out of Cupboards'.  Richard Herring would regularly look to the sky, shake his fist and yell out 'curse you God for making me this way'.

Share house cupboard doors in Edinburgh

The anarchic undergrad humour was just the thing to watch in the slightly shambolic shared flat in Edinburgh where I lived while on a working holiday.  It was the sort of place where everyone had their shelf in the bar fridge and a cupboard for food.  Each person decorated their cupboard door with their own personality.  The kitchen has a hole in the ceiling and a television on the benchtop.

I had never heard of Lee and Herring nor the morning show they were satirising.  Yet it was quintessential British.  Great for sharing a laugh with a flatmate who was wandering n to put on the kettle for a cuppa.  And after working on a BBC comedy webzine I was in the mood for a spot of British comedy.  Later I saw Richard Herring in a play during the Edinburgh Comedy Festival and Stewart Lee doing stand up at the Melbourne Comedy Festival.  Neither live performance delighted me in just the same way their television show did.

Food featured:
One of the silliest sketches was the Curious Orange, a man dressed as an orange who asked existential questions, had dalek tendencies and was revealed to be Richard Herring's illegitimate child.  No wonder the orange never seemed very happy.   In his honour I made some orange filled chocolates.  Actually I made the chocolates and decided they would go very well with this favourite sketch of mine! 

Recipe notes:
I went through a period of making filled chocolates earlier in the year.  My mum even hunted out some of her old chocolate moulds.  One reason I thought I would make sure I posted them is that chocolates make great presents and, in case you haven't seen all the decorations starting to appear in the shops, Christmas will be upon us before you know it.  Or if you live in the USA, Thanksgiving will be nipping at your heels even sooner.

After making some peppermint filled chocolates (and a few others that I must post soon), I had a notion to try a fruit-flavoured creamy filling.  I found a recipe for Strawberry Cream Filled Chocolate Truffles that intrigued me.  It used cashew butter, coconut oil and no refined sugars.  The chocolate was even home made.  I had some sweet potato which seemed a perfect pairing for an orange flavouring.

I wasn't brave enough to try a home made chocolate and reverted to a commercial one.  I crossed my fingers after some problems with chocolate bloom previously.  They seemed to work ok.  One day I will learn to temper chocolate to be crisp and shiny.  (Melting the chocolate in the microwave keeps the temperature down which is helpful.)

These were indeed lovely and creamy chocolate centres.  Not quite as much orange flavour as I had hoped but enjoyable nevertheless.  Consider them work in progress.  I only used half the filling and kept meaning to use the rest.  When I finally looked at the filling again about a month later, it was mouldy, despite being stored in the fridge.  They made great gifts but shouldn't be left too long before eating.

Random notes:
I made these when planning to meet up with fellow bloggers Kari and Mel when Kari was in Melbourne.  I was trying out some recipes from Ricki's book Naturally Sweet and Gluten-Free and thought they would love to taste the baked goods so I decided to make a little package for each.

I was quite tired at the end of the evening, having made cookie dough balls, icy poles, halva and the amazing sweet potato and choc chip muffins.  Fortunately I was motivated to keep going because I had some sweet potato leftover.  Chocolates seemed just the right addition to the packages.  It was lovely to sit and chat with Kari and Mel.  I was glad to be able to give them a taste piece of my baking.

I am sending this post to Ricki Heller's Wellness Weekends; to Healthy Vegan Fridays #68, an event run by Gabby @ Veggie Nook, Carrie @ Carrie On Vegan, Katherine @ Green Thickies; and to Karen's Foodie Gifts for Christmas blog challenge at Larder Love.


Previously on Green Gourmet Giraffe:
One year ago: 
Cheese and apple soda bread
Two years ago: Smoky potato, bean and corn salad
Three years ago: Afghans – childhood comfort food
Four years ago: Recreating Pad Thai
Five years ago: Soup from the Black Lagoon

Sweet potato and orange chocolate
Original recipe inspired by DAMY
made about 40 chocolates, depending on your moulds

1/2 cup of sweet potato puree*
1/4 cup cashew nut butter
2 tbsp coconut oil
1 tbsp maple syrup
2 tsp orange juice
1 tsp orange zest
 pinch salt
350-450g dark chocolate**

Melt half the chocolate and use a spoon to line chocolate moulds and place in fridge or freezer to firm up.  Blend remaining ingredients until smooth.  Spoon mixture into firm chocolate lined moulds.  Cover with chocolate and return to fridge or freezer to firm up.  Pop out chocolates and keep at room temperature.  Due to the low sugar content they will only keep about two to three weeks.

*I baked the sweet potato in the skin until it was soft when squeezed and then I scooped out the flesh.  I just mashed it with a fork as once blended with the other ingredients it was quite smooth.

**To make your own chocolate, check out this chocolate.

On the Stereo:
Fathers Day: Weddings Parties Anything

This post is part of  my TV Dinners series.  You can see the other shows I have featured in my full list of TV Dinners posts.  In each post I reminisce about a favourite television show and cook a recipe inspired by food on the show.  I initially started this theme during Vegan MoFo in September 2013.  

25 comments:

  1. These sound like a great idea! And I can't believe how much you made-you must've been on a roll! I sometimes get like that but not often :)

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    1. Thanks Lorraine - I was on a roll but I think having a deadline always helps me

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  2. These chocolates look great, and ir's lovely that Kari and Mel got to sample them.

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    1. Thanks Cakelaw - it is always a pleasure to go offline and share real food with bloggers

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  3. I wish I'd taken pictures in the share houses I used to live in! They seem like vague ancient dreams to me now. The world before digital cameras! Oh, and the chocolates look great too. Great idea to use sweet potato and orange together.

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    1. Thanks Linda - I took some photos of the house when I was leaving Edinburgh because I was feeling quite nostalgic and even so the photos are pretty ordinary - wish I had a decent camera back then.

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  4. Hehe, you are getting well ahead of me on the chocolate making front. These look fabulous. Love the ingredients and the colour. One day, I too will get to grips with tempering!

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    1. Thanks Choclette - shame I didn't get these to we should cocoa last month (if only I had thought of it) - I always feel you are so far ahead of me with all your chocolate baking and making but seems we both need some chocolate tempering workshops :-)

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  5. Mmmmm, creamy orange (or sweet potato) cashew butter chocolates?! Divine, and they turned out wonderful! Have a great weekend!

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    1. Thanks Rika - they were really lovely - though I had thought they could have been sharper with the orange flavour but I still enjoyed them and by all reports so did kari and mel

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  6. Two of my favourite ingredients are chocolate and sweet potato, but I have never thought to pair them. Thanks for the inspiration.

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    1. Thanks Womble - oh you must try chocolate and sweet potato together (I also loved Ricki Heller's sweet potato brownies)

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  7. What great looking chocolate cups!

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  8. The tv programme sounds like it would appeal to me. I can just imagine that kitchen in your undergrad days. I don't think much has changed at universites!
    I haven't made my own chocolates yet but I need to get some moulds and change that. These ones look just like the Cadbury Roses Orange Creams I used to enjoy.

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    1. Thanks Emma - actually it wasn't really a student household as I think most of us were working but not too much had changed since student days in this household :-) I find that silicone ice block moulds work just as well as the chocolate ones so if you have any of those hanging around they can be quite handy. I suspect that Cadbury Roses Orange Creams were the ones in my mind when I made these as I could remember some that I had used to have as a child.

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  9. These sound just great! They remind me of my sweet potato truffles (though those aren't gluten-free!). I love the addition of cashew butter here, and orange-sweet potato is such a perfect combo! Thanks for linking up to WW, too. :)

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    1. Thanks Ricki - I did think of your sweet potato truffles but I think I decided not to use that recipe because it wasn't GF - hoped you might like my version as a GF alternative

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  10. You put sweet potatoes inside chocolate cups?! Love it! Now I'm thinking...sweet potato peanut butter cups?

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    1. Thanks Joanne - sweet potato peanut butter cups sounds like fun

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  11. Hooray, you did get round to your TWRNJ-inspired recipe! And it sounds totally delicious in its own right.

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    1. Hey ETL, so glad to have another fan of TWRNJ visit this post - I thought this show probably a fairly esoteric choice but I did love it. Thanks for the encouragement to keep on with the series

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  12. I think I'd eat the filling before making the actual chocolates.

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    1. Thanks Veganopoulous - I should have done that with the leftover filling - I kept thinking manana, manana I will do some proper chocolates but I don't get around to them often (probably just as well for my waist)

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  13. I wish I'd seen this in time to be the first comment and proclaim to everyone below just how good these are :-) I'm sure they speak for themselves though and don't need my admiration - and I am so thrilled to see this recipe because I am looking forward to trying them out myself. They won't have the same associations of meeting you and chatting, but I'll keep my fingers crossed that I manage to make them taste as good!

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    1. Thanks Kari - that is very sweet of you (just shows you are what you eat ha ha) I hope you do make the chocolates and that they do give you a little proustian moment of remembering our happy time in Brunettis

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