30 g / 1oz raw cacao powder
100 g / 3.5 oz very soft, pitted dates
85 g / 3 oz cacao butter
1 vanilla bean, scraped (optional, but delicious)
pinch of flaky sea salt (optional, but delicious)
1. Begin by pitting the dates and mashing them with a fork, or food processor. You may want to remove the skins first if they are tough. Do not soak dates, as the water will cause the chocolate to seize up.
2. In a double boiler (or a glass bowl over water) over low-medium heat, melt the cacao butter slowly until completely smooth. Add the cacao powder, vanilla, salt, and lavender, and stir to thoroughly combine. Remove from heat.
3. Add the dates and fold to combine. You may need to let the mixture cool a little before this is possible, so put the pot or bowl in the fridge until the chocolate firms up a bit. Taste for sweetness and flavouring.
4. Once the chocolate is cool and you can form a rough ball with it, divide the chocolate in half and place one section on a piece of parchment paper. Fold the parchment paper over the chocolate once and use your hands to mash it down into a thin piece. At this point you can fold the remaining sides up around the chocolate to create a bar and press the chocolate into the corners. Alternatively, you can press the chocolate into a mold or chocolate form. Place in the fridge or a cool place to firm up. Repeat with the other half. Store chocolate in a cool, dry place away from direct light.