Christmas is around the corner, and what is better than chocolate on Christmas?
When you have Celiac disease, you are scared to eat any chocolate from the shops. You never know what’s inside those chocolates, and you are always tempted to try some. Today I’m going to help you to resolve this problem. Let’s make our own chocolates and enjoy them with the whole family. We are going to experiment with different flavors, from coconut (which will remind you of Bounty Chocolate) to chocolate stuffed with dates and dried apricot and nuts (a very traditional Lebanese way of serving chocolate in big feasts) and “Mendiants” (a French style “chocolat” that are very thin and filled with nuts and dried fruit). So, no more store-bought chocolates!!

Ingredients

Servings: 20 pieces of each type of chocolate (It depends on the size of the mold)

Chocolate

- 300 grams (for each flavor) dark or semi-sweet chocolate (I use Hershey’s chocolate chips)         
- 1 tsp vegetable oil (It’s best to use coconut oil or canola oil)

For the Coconut Filling

- 1 cup coconut milk
- 1 cup icing sugar
- 2 cups desiccated coconut flakes
- 1 big size round chocolate mold, or a big size ice cube tray

For the Marmalade Filling

- 3 tbsp. marmalade jam (store-bought) (I use Bonne Maman)
- 1 tsp orange zest
- 1 tsp Grand Marnier (Orange Liqueur) (Optional)
- 1 chocolate mold medium size

For the Dates Filling

- 20 dates
- 20 whole pecans or walnuts

For the Dried Apricot Filling

- 20 dried apricots
- 20 whole almonds

For the Mendiants

- 2 tbsp. chopped dried and sweetened ginger
- 2 tbsp. Chopped dried cherries
- 2 tbsp. Chopped dried apricots
- 2 tbsp. peeled pistachios

Method 

Chocolate 

  1. Put 250 grams chocolate chips and 1 tsp oil in a glass bowl over a pot of hot water on the heat.
  2. Don’t let the bottom of the bowl touch the water (Bain Marie).
  3. Keep it on low heat until the chocolate melts.
  4. Take the bowl off the heat and add the remaining 50 grams of chocolate chips on top of the melted ones.
  5. This is called “tempering”. It’s a process made to cool down the chocolate.
  6. Once all the chips are melted, you can start assembling your chocolate.


Method (Coconut Filling) (You should prepare the day before)

  1. Put the coconut milk and icing sugar in a pot on the heat.
  2. Mix the milk and sugar well while on the heat until all the sugar dissolves and the mix is hot but not boiling.
  3. Put off the heat and add the coconut flakes.
  4. Mix well and put in the fridge once it’s cool.
  5. Once the coconut is firm and cold, start forming the coconut balls.
  6. Put one spoon of chocolate inside each compartment in the mold.
  7. Add one coconut ball and fill the remaining space with more melted chocolate.
  8. Keep the mold on the side until it cools, or you can keep in the fridge until the chocolates are firm.


Method (Marmalade Filling)

  1. Mix the marmalade with the zest and Grand Marnier if using.
  2. Put some melted chocolate in each compartment in the mold.
  3. Add some of the marmalade mix, but make sure it’s in the center.
  4. Add more melted chocolate over the marmalade and make sure the chocolate fills all the gaps.
  5. Keep the mold on the side until it cools, or you can keep in the fridge until the chocolates are firm.


Method (Dates Filling)

  1. Cut each date in the middle and remove the seed.
  2. Put one pecan or walnut in the place of the seed.
  3. Close the date well and dip in melted chocolate.
  4. Keep on a rack until dry, then keep in the fridge or in a tight container.


Method (Apricot Filling)

  1. Cut each apricot in the middle and put on almond.
  2. Close the apricot well and dip in melted chocolate.
  3. Keep on a rack until dry, then keep in the fridge or in a tight container.


Method (Mendiants)

  1. The Mendiants are free style chocolate.
  2. You can do them any way you like.
  3. They are usually wafer thin chocolates topped with dried fruit and nuts.
  4. I use one tablespoon of melted chocolate for each Mendiant.
  5. I spread it on wax paper and top it with chopped dried fruit and some nuts.