Dark chocolate and coconut bites

Morbidosi al cioccolato fondente e cocco

You might be wondering what I did with the leftover spongecake after making my Valentine’s day cupcakes… I hope that if you made them you didn’t throw the sponge out because in this recipe I use it to make soft chocolatey bites – I really hate to waste food, so I had to invent something for the spongecake, and chocolate and coconut is the Italian boy’s absolute favourite combination. In fact, he thinks that dark chocolate bounty bars are the best thing in the known, and perhaps the unknown, universe. As they say here, ne vado ghiotto… which basically means “they turn me into a glutton”! I think we all have things that do this for us (nutella, anyone?) and can relate, so as you can imagine these made him happy.

chocolate coconut bites
inspired by the dark chocolate bounty bar

As an aside, chocolate is quite a big deal in Italy, and aside from well known commercial names like nutella and ferrero rocher Italians also produce some of the world’s finest luxury chocolate. Tuscany, in particular is well known for chocolate, including Amadei, winners of various awards over the years. I first tried Amadei at the Italian boy’s house and fell in love with it, but I don’t eat it often as it is pretty expensive.

Tuscany is also home to what is probably Italy’s most popular chocolate, Perugina (from Perugia, of course), and this is what I used in this recipe. Perugia is also home to the Eurochocolate festival, which I absolutely must go to this year… all in the name of research, you understand.

For this recipe, you will need:

1 bowl of sponge cake bits (also works if you have a failed spongecake to hide…er, use)
250g of dark chocolate
one cup of dessicated coconut
one stick of butter
half a cup of maraschino for deserts

1. Crumble the spongecake into fine crumbs – you can use a food processor for this if you want.

2. Set the chocolate in a bowl over a pan of boiling water to melt

3. Pour the maraschino over the crumbs, and work in the stick of butter. Add the coconut and half of the melted chocolate and work it into the mixture, being careful not to burn your hands, until you get a smooth paste.

4. Form the paste into bite sized balls.

5. Roll first in the rest of the melted chocolate, then in the coconut.

6. Place in the fridge to harden.

These are little bites of chocolatey heaven – careful not to eat too many, it’s way too easy to!

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