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Wholly Canadian Blog

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Milk Chocolate Easter Treats: Fair-trade meets Local

Happy Easter Season! In the spirit of Easter (celebrating New Life), Wholly Canadian is excited to share how to bring life & community to your Easter treats.

By the way this recipe is wholly wonderful all-year round! You can simply make chocolate bark, or use other festive/ holiday candy moulds.

Instead of buying the cheap sugar-laden chocolate bunnies made with cocoa beans harvested by workers earning third-world wages, make your own with this oh-so-simple fair-trade recipe. . .with only 4 ingredients.

You can pour the chocolate in candy moulds, or simply make bark.


  • 1/2 cup Canadian-grown raw hazelnuts
      • alternatively you can use any nut of your choice
  • 1 soft plump Level-Ground trading fair-trade vanilla pod
      • alternatively you can use 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup locally-farmed cream (I used organic Harmony unhomogenized whipping cream)
  • 2 bags of Camino semi-sweet fair-trade chocolate chips; approx 16 grams total
      • alternatively you can use bitter-sweet chocolate chips if you desire less sugar

 Many fair-trade ingredients can be found at Ten Thousand Villages

This recipe is a variation of our Valentine's Dark Chocolate Bark

Step 1: Wholesome Food Prep

  • Soak & deyhydrate the hazelnuts

You can skip this step if you do not wish to do this to soak the nuts.


Step 2:  Putting it all together

  1. You can make a bark, or else pour chocolate in candy moulds.
    • Bark: Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, leaving a small overhang. If you are not using a stoneware pan, you may want to grease the pan prior to placing the parchment paper, so that the paper is easily lifted later. Set the pan aside.
    • Candy moulds: prepare and wash them. Make sure they are completely dry.
  2. Extract the vanilla seeds from the vanilla pod (or alternativley pour in 1/2 tsp vanilla extract once chocolate is melted)
    • See this link as a resource, or see this video for help on extracting the vanilla seeds
    • Research the many ways you can use the remaining vanilla pod
  3. In a double boiler, begin to melt the chocolate chips.
    • Add the coconut seed paste from the vanilla pod.
    • Add the 1/4 cup cream
  4. Chop/grind the nuts into smaller pieces--as desired
  5. Continue to stir the chocolate. Make sure no water gets into the pot or the chocolate will seize.
  6. Pour the mixture:
    • Bark: Spread the chocolate over the prepared sheet with a spatula; it may not reach to each corner of the pan. That's okay. Create a "puddle" of chocolate according to how thin you want your bark.
    • Candy Moulds: Pour in the chocolate. Tap the mould on a hard surface so as to remove any air bubbles.
      • Fill as many moulds as possible. You may also use the remainder of the chocoalate for bark as I did--in a small bar pan.
  7. Liberally sprinkle the chopped nuts on the warm chocolate. Gently press, with your fingers, the nuts in the chocolate using a tiny bit of pressue.
  8. Place in the fridge for 30 minutes; or freezer for 15 min.
  9. To serve:
    • Bark: Break into bite-sized pieces.
    • Candy Moulds: remove the chocolate and wrap attractively


Step 3: Enjoyment

To store, place in an air-tight container, or freeze for longer shelf-life.

Wrap them up to give as gifts.

Enjoy these bites of pure pleasure!

Easter decor:

  • vintage glass hen, vintage milk glass bowl, heritage eggs naturally coloured, and a re-purposed crate.
  • I planted wheat kernels (the same wheat that I mill for baking bread) 10 days prior to these pics.


Why makes this recipe outstanding?

1. Nourishment: Whole Nutrition

    • whole cream--no modified milk ingredients
    • simple ingredients--most chocolate treats and chocolate chips have added soy lecithin, but not this premium chocolate!
    • recipe uses organic non-GMO ingredients, but it doesn't end there. . .
    • this recipe also involves traditional wholly nourishing food preparation; this quality of product is generally not available on grocery shelves
      • the nuts have been soaked using traditional methods to aid digestion; eliminating the anti-nutrients (phytic acid)  that contribute to gas and digestive pain associated with seeds and grains

2. Social Justice: Community Orientation

    • this recipe uses all local and/or fair-trade ingredients. . .
    • every bite is a bite of community & goodwill. . . rather than buying what is "cheapest for me," it thinks "we". . . giving way to true joy
    • for a good resource on why this matters see "Why localism"; many of the same principles also apply to fair-trade



What type of Easter treats do you have planned? Share with our readers.


Make sure to check out all our Easter posts. . . here and here.

fair-trade finger puppets

  Check out this Canadian-made Easter bunny that hopped here from Saskatoon, SK. . . . lovingly made by Mary Grishchenko of Mashenka Rose.

Happy Easter!

Posted by Wholly Canadian at 7:00 AM 3 Comments