As I’ve mentioned before I’ve had a shocking number of careers. I’ve been a puppet, a pirate, a pauper, a poet… OK not really. But before the internet bubble burst, I was a user experience lead at an internet consultancy and a project manager at some ad agencies. All of these positions required you to know a thing or two about branding.
So lately I’ve been obsessing over the name Almond Joy. (Just me?) The name implies a candy bursting with almonds. One where you really experience the joy of almonds. A candy loaded with almonds, not one that has only a few. I feel cheated. The people at Mars really dropped the ball on this one. Don’t get me started on Mounds. Really? Mounds?
Now, I still don’t have a kitchen. I’ve already mentioned this in two posts and clearly, I am starting to lose it. They claim they’ll be done this week. I don’t see it. So with my very limited resources, a microwave and a toaster oven, I have created for you what I think almond joy should be—a candy full of almonds with a little coconut on top. The beauty of limited resources is it makes for a very flexible recipe. You can make these as healthy or as naughty as you like.
Yields 30 Clusters
Adapted from Sally’s Baking Addiction’s Sea Salt Dark Chocolate Almond Clusters
15 minPrep Time
15 minTotal Time
12 ounces semi-sweet, bittersweet or milk chocolate chips or chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 teaspoon coconut oil (optional)
3 cups whole salted or unsalted roasted or raw almonds
3/4 cup coconut butter
3 cups shredded sweetened or unsweetened coconut*
*If you use unsweetened coconut, you can stir in some honey to sweeten to taste. If you use this with dark chocolate (or homemade Paleo chocolate) and unsalted almonds, you can make a Paleo treat.
- Position the rack in the middle of the oven and preheat the oven to 350F degrees.
- Place the almonds on a cookie sheet and bake for 5 to 10 minutes, until crisp. Set aside to cool.
- Line two cookie sheets with parchment or wax paper. Set aside.
- Melt together the coconut oil (if using) and the chocolate in either a medium bowl set over simmering water or in the microwave. Tip: Click to learn how to melt chocolate. Also, you can temper the chocolate by melting 2/3 of the chocolate and stirring in the remaining 1/3.
- Add the almonds to the melted chocolate and stir until they are all coated. Set aside.
- Melt the coconut butter in either a medium bowl set over simmering water or in the microwave.
- Add the coconut to the melted coconut butter and stir until coated. Set aside.
- Spoon a tablespoon of chocolate-coated almonds onto one of the lined baking sheets, 15 per sheet.
- Spoon a tablespoon of coconut onto the top of each almond cluster.
- Allow the clusters to set either on the counter or in the refrigerator.
- Store untempered clusters in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 weeks. Store tempered clusters in an airtight container on the counter for up to 4 weeks.
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