As Halloween rolls around for another year and the weather gets chillier, I definitely start turning to comforting food that warms me up from the inside – and so for my latest Halloween-inspired recipe I’ve created something super simple, but super tasty with just a hint of heat.
Pumpkin seeds are one of my kitchen cupboard staples and I throw them into porridge, salads and curries. Or in a trail mix with dried fruit, cacao nibs, nuts and other good stuff. I also love their crunchy nuttiness with chocolate and so for a treat, rather than a trick, I’ve combined silky dark chocolate with pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds and a touch of chilli.
These little bites take all of 15-20 minutes to make and are delicious with a cup of tea or coffee. Or just eaten on their own of course!
You can make the bites smaller or larger, depending on your taste, or pour the whole bowl of chocolate onto baking parchment, spread it out into a single layer, let it set and then break up into shards. Whichever way you choose, I think you’ll probably prefer to keep these all to yourself rather than handing them out to children knocking at the door.
Pumpkin Seed Choco Chilli Bites
Vegan, Gluten Free – Makes 12-15
100g dark chocolate (70-75% cocoa), chopped
45g pumpkin seeds
15g toasted sesame seeds
1/4 tsp chilli flakes
1/4 tsp sea salt
1. Cover a baking tray with baking parchment and put to the side.
2. Pop the chocolate in a small heatproof bowl over a pan of gentle simmering water (the bowl should fit snuggly) making sure the bottom of the bowl doesn’t touch the water. Gently melt the chocolate until most of the outside ring of the chocolate has melted, but the middle is still solid. Take the chocolate off the heat and stir until all the chocolate is melted and shiny.
If there are still a couple of lumps left, pop the bowl back over the heated pan for a short burst of warmth, then remove and stir again until the chocolate is completely melted.
3. Stir through the remaining ingredients until everything is well combined.
4. Drop spoonfuls of the mix on the baking parchment and lightly spread with the back of the spoon to make small circles. Put the tray in the fridge for 10 minutes for the chocolate to set – then munch and nibble!
The bites will keep for a few months in an airtight container (but I really doubt they’ll last that long).
Some other flavour options
– add a little orange zest to the mix (this will reduce the shelf life)
– substitute chopped almonds for half the pumpkin seeds
– add 20g chopped dried apricots for a fruity hint
– stir through the freshly ground seeds of 2-3 cardamom pods