On a holiday that revolves around chocolate, dairy-free and vegan diets threaten to take away some of the romance. Luckily, carefully selected foods and some homemade goodies can offer indulgence to your favorite special diet Valentine, even if it is you!
Food Allergy author Cybele Pascal dares readers to trial some recipes rich in natural aphrodisiacs, such as bananas, chocolate, honey, peaches, a smidgen of alcohol, and…oats? Well, who am I to question Cybele’s “Recipes of Love,” especially when they include Banana Chocolate Swirl Bread, Bourbon Peach Bread Pudding, and Red-Hot Vegan Chocolate Mousse.
In addition to Cybele’s wonderful recipes, I have a few suggestions of my own:
The widely circulate vegcooking.com recipe for easy (no, I really mean EASY) Vegan Chocolate Truffles is a good no-fail option. Pick-up a package of Tofutti (trust me, it isn’t hard to find), your favorite package of non-dairy chocolate chips, and you are half way there.
If rich dark chocolate is your Valentine's passion, then they will surely enjoy the Dark Chocolate Almond Cake w/ Dark Chocolate Espresso Glaze recipes from Claire's Corner Copia. If you happen to have a little heart-shaped baking tin to prepare this in, then you are golden (I actually do!).
Short on time? I recommend popping into a local Whole Foods Market or your favorite Natural Food Grocer. Some items may be a bit pricier than your local Safeway, but the quality is typically better, and it is a special occasion! On limited notice, these stores offer the best odds for finding fabulous vegan (dairy and egg-free) treats.
A few gift-worthy items that I have spotted, and confirmed as nationally distributed, include Lake Champlain's Dark Chocolate Covered Confections, Sjaak's Organic Vegan Truffle Assortment, and the fun tins of sweetriot Cacao Nibs. Of course, any chocolate loving valentine would be grateful for a gift box packed with an assortment of non-dairy chocolate bars from Endangered Species, Chocolove, and Green & Blacks. The dark chocolate varieties are a good bet with these manufacturers. If it is true love, seek out the Rice Milk Choco Bar from Terra Nostra, a truly unique and passionate experience.