Want to help save the bees? Check out my post on the super simple and fun things you can do to support the little workers: Bee the change.
Bees & propolis
Some weeks ago, my colleague, friend and beekeeper Fleur gifted me a beautiful bag of bee’s favorite flower seeds and a cute little pot with propolis. The propolis inspired me to make all kinds of medicine out of it, including (of course!)… chocolate :D.
Propolis is made by bees and contains all kinds of plant resins. The result is a (mostly) dark brown, thick sticky substance with healing and protective properties. Bees use propolis to protect and fortify their ‘city’, hence the name: pro polis in Greek means ‘for the city’.
Benefits of propolis
It supposedly has strong protective, antibiotic and antifungal properties and is subject of extensive scientific research. I love the sweet, earthy smell and every now and then take a deep sniff from the tiny jar sitting in my cupboard.
Sucking on a little piece for some time helped relieve a nasty throat ache and a few months ago when I was still in Alto Paraíso, Brazil, I had an unidentified bump growing on my thumb that magically disappeared after I applied propolis cream twice.
Back to chocolates, right?
Ok here we go.
It’s a beautiful way to surprise a loved one: create bonbons from their favorite chocolate. Add your own signature by carefully choosing a few extra special ingredients.
I’ve done from-the-start chocolate recipes before. This one is different: we start with a ready-made bar of fairtrade (should I even mention that?) chocolate. Check the label to see what else is in there except cacao, cacao butter and sugar – less is more. Pick their favorite one, in my case: 1 extra dark and 1 caramel sea salt chocolate bar.
Recipe for Chocolate hearts with propolis, cardamom and rose
Melt the chocolate au bain marie (in a pan sitting in a pan with hot water).
Then, what I did is break a piece of propolis and the seeds from one cardamom pod and grind them together finely.
When the chocolate has melted, stir it well, let cool as far as you can without solidifying the chocolate too far. You want it cool to preserve the medicinal qualities of the propolis but warm enough to stir. Add the propolis and cardamom spice and mix well.
(Ok I also added a tiny bit of celtic sea salt and rosemary, which was delicious, but in general and especially if you’re just starting out with making chocolate I’d say keep things simple – the stuff is already great by itself.)
Now scoop full teaspoons of the new chocolate creation in a silicone ice cube tray, sprinkle with dried rose leafs and let solidify for some time.
If you just use rose leafs, you won’t really taste them. Adding a drop of rose essential oil to the chocolate will change that and give a heavenly rose fragrance… I haven’t done that but will in the future. I’m already dreaming up recipes for chocolate hearts to make next time! Ginger and walnut maybe, or mandarin mint…
Win a box of chocolates
What’s your dream chocolate like? Let us know in the comments and win a box of your special recipe chocolates, personally made by me for you!
With love in the heart <3