Decadence Delivered: Coco-Nutty Topping


Another recipe.


The process of cooking is amazing when you stop and think about it.  You have all these various ingredients and you put them together in a way where the combination of flavors become more interesting than any single ingredient’s flavor by itself.  This is the very definition of synergy as seen from a positive light—and perhaps the reason cooking is so much fun.


Dieter’s Dilemna

Now, as I’m in the process of trying to shed a few pounds, I should probably point out that topics of food have taken on a heightened awareness in my stream of consciousness.  This another way to say (a) I’m hungry more often than not and (b) everything sounds better than normal.  Rest assured, today’s recipe would taste great whether I was dieting or not.


Vanilla is my favorite flavor of ice cream.

There’s nothing wrong with ice cream, but I wanted to try something new.

Hey, I Did My Excercise

Yesterday, as I finally arrived at the point where I believed I had earned my favorite treat (i.e. one scoop of vanilla ice cream with a touch of chocolate), I had an inspiration.  I didn’t want the same old thing, I wanted something special.  And as I didn’t want to load up on foods I know to be empty calories or junk, I raced to the cupboard to see what I could find.


What Do We Have Here

A good granola topping mix requires nuts!

Thankfully, I had some things to work with in the pantry.

It’s always fun when the pantry is stocked with a few goodies.  I found chopped walnuts, raw sunflower seeds, shredded coconut, chopped dates and light brown sugar.  Now, as I love all these foods individually I felt certain I might combine them in a way where I could put “cooking synergy” to work.


Here’s what I did—first I measured everything:

¼ cup of the nuts

¼ cup seeds

¼ cup coconut

¼ cup dates

1 tablespoon of brown sugar


I did chop my dates some more before adding them.

This was a snap to whip up.

Doesn’t Take Much

Next, I combined the ingredients in a small bowl and then spread it all out on a cookie sheet before broiling it about a minute or so.  That was just enough time for the coconut, nuts and seeds to brown, to give the brown sugar the opportunity to stick to the other ingredients, and to release some of the amazing aromas locked in these foods.  (Note:  If I was in a hurry, I’d just pop this all in a microwave safe bowl or ramekin and nuke it about 30 to 40 seconds).


Is This Good Or What?


The aroma of these ingredients is astounding.

This only needs a minute or so under the broiler.

Mmm!  The smell was divine as I removed the pan from the oven.   The toasty, nutty aroma sent my imagination soaring.  This wouldn’t just taste good on ice cream—which was my intended target—it would also taste fantastic if sprinkled over fresh strawberries, mixed with in with yogurt, or go great as a oatmeal topping.  In fact, if one didn’t go overboard and just poured on a little milk, it would make a fantastic cereal all by itself.


I love this topping.  It's downright decandent.

This would go great over everything…berries, yogurt, oatmeal or even salads.


Okay, I’m not nutritionist, but I looked at the packages and have tried calculating the caloric content for 2 tablespoons of this mix.  If my math is correct, it breaks down as follows:


¼ cup walnuts = 200 calories

¼ cup sunflower seeds = 190 calories

¼ cup coconut = 140 calories

¼ cup dates = 120 calories

1 tablespoon brown sugar = 40 calories


Total = 690 calories


Now, as I roughly concluded there are 4 tablespoons in a quarter cup of this mix and there are about 2 cups overall that’s 16 tablespoons.  Divide 690 calories by 16 and you get 43 calories per tablespoon.  My ice vanilla ice cream was 130 calories per half-cup (about one scoop).  My chocolate syrup was about 1 tablespoon or 50 calories and my topping (at 2 tablespoons) was 86 calories.  Thus, my treat today came in at a total of 266 calories (or about double the ice cream by itself).


Licked The Bowl Clean


I love the nutty goodness this added to my ice cream.

You’ve got to enjoy the perks once in awhile.

Clearly, this is one place where I’d do better to skip the ice cream and eat just the topping alone as the walnuts, sunflower seeds, coconut and dates are all much better for me.  However, life is short and you do need to treat yourself once in awhile.  Besides, the combined flavors and textures here were nothing if not phenomenal.  When you’re ready for a special treat, you’re really going to want to try this Coco-Nutty Topping with touch of chocolate syrup over your favorite ice cream.





If you enjoyed this recipe you’ve may want to read:
Make Your Own Granola Bars
Shocking Good Almond Butter And Date Cookies
Or for more recipe ideas visit our new Recipe page by clicking here.



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