As I’ve mentioned recently, I’ve been reading more about Swedish food. The main reason I like to explore other cultures is I’ll see different ways to use ingredients I already have on hand. One of the best examples of this idea is when I came upon the concept of Chokladbollar. It’s a little treat usually given for dessert in many Swedish restaurants. A blend of butter, sugar, vanilla, coffee, cocoa and oats that is then coated in coconut. Simple ingredients, easy preparation. I was left thinking, “Where has this recipe been all my life?!?!?”
I’m not the biggest fan of coconut (I know, I know, take it easy “coconut everything” people), so I obviously had to coat it in something else. I toasted some flax seeds and rolled oats, cracked them into smaller pieces and coated with that. You could coat it with all kinds of things. I’m thinking of coarsely cracking toasted spices next time as a coating, like fennel seeds.
The interior could also be up for interpretation. If you like more coconut, use coconut fat instead of butter and coat with coconut. You could also play around with different coffee varieties or use brewed tea instead or a favourite boozy beverage like an orange liqueur. Like I said, I saw the recipe and thought of the endless possibilities (and the subsequent increase in gym time afterwards 😉 ). It’s about having fun either way. And a little treat along the way adds to the fun! 🙂
Chokladbollar (Swedish Chocolate Coffee Balls) (adapted from one of my new favourite sites for Swedish recipes: swedishfood.com
1/2 cup superfine sugar (I just took evaporated cane juice and buzzed it in a blender for a few seconds to take it down to nearly a powder consistency)
1/3 cup softened butter
1 tsp vanilla extract
3 Tbsp strong coffee, hot
3 Tbsp cocoa powder
1-2/3 cups rolled oats (I used a larger flake rolled oats. If you use quick oats, the volume may differ. Add 1-1/2 cups initially and see how it combines)
3 Tbsp flax seeds, toasted in a dry skillet over medium high heat for 3-4 minutes, until it starts to “pop”)
3 Tbsp rolled oats, toasted in a dry skillet over medium high heat for 4-5 minutes until starting to go golden
In a medium bowl, whisk together the butter and sugar until smooth and no longer gritty. Whisk in the vanilla until smoothly combined.
In a small bowl, whisk together the hot coffee and cocoa powder. Allow to cool to room temperature. Whisk into the butter/sugar/vanilla mixture until smooth. Whisk in the salt to combine. Add the oats and fold in until uniformly combined. I find the mixture at this stage too soft to form into balls, so I place the bowl in the freezer to firm up the butter for about 15 minutes.
Coarsely grind the toasted flax seeds and oats and set in a small bowl, tossing with your fingers to evenly combine.
Using about a tablespoon of the mixture at a time, form into small ball shapes about the size of a walnut. Roll the ball in the flax-oat mixture and place on a wax-paper lined baking sheet. Place in the freezer to firm up and transfer to a container with a tight fitting lid. Makes 25-30.
I did little egg shapes because it is the Easter season and everyone is egg crazy 😉
To serve, it’s normally given at the end of a meal, but I enjoy it with a coffee as an alternative little sweet bite.