Is it wrong to make chocolate treats for dinner instead of...actual dinner? I should think not. My biggest issue with this is not that I eat my weight in chocolate (surprisingly) or deprive myself of nutrients not found in chocolate alone. No, it's that I won't have a lunch for work the following day. For example, today's lunch is corn tortillas and a can of black beans...and I didn't even bring a can opener. Who does that?! Produce On Parade - Salted Caramel Chocolate Cashews It's all in the name of chocolate. And speaking of chocolate...Valentine's Day might be my favorite holiday. You thought I forgot, huh? Alas, I'm not even remotely romantic. I grew up with two brothers, the vast majority of my friends are of the male variety, and I'm more tomboy than prettygirl. But if there's two things I love, it's flowers and unexpectedly receiving chocolate goodies. Arguably the things to recieve on this blessed, blessed holiday. 

I don't care if it's over-commercialized. Seriously, what isn't? No really, I really want to know. A day of celebrating love (let's not forget flowers and chocolate) is a pretty radical day in my book. I'm down for that. Plus, my favorite color might be pink. It's a win, win, win, win!

Produce On Parade - Salted Caramel Chocolate Cashews This recipe is a win, too. These little guys are absolutely delectable. I got the idea from a friend who told me her husband buys her a huge bin of those salted chocolate cashew clusters from Costco on Valentine's Day. That's pretty awesome. I decided to add a little date of nature's chewy caramel to them because, let's be real, caramel deserves to include itself in anything and everything. Also, nothing is as good as it could be if it's not salted. It's a fact. Seriously

These are scrumptious little cashews, wrapped in chewy caramel dates and dipped in smooth chocolate, all finished with a sprinkle of flake salt. 

Salted Caramel Chocolate Cashews 

Makes about 50 balls (about 1 1/2 cups)

  • 3 oz. semi-sweet chocolate
  • 2 Tbsp. non-dairy creamer or milk (I used hazelnut Silk creamer)
  • 8 medjool dates, pitted
  • 1/2 cup raw whole cashews (about 50 nuts)
  • flake salt for topping

In a small pot, bring about 1 inch of water to a boil over high heat. Reduce to low and place a small, heat-safe bowl over the pot of water. Add the chocolate and the creamer to the bowl to melt. Stirring occasionally, melt the chocolate then remove from heat but keep the bowl over the pot. 

Produce On Parade - Salted Caramel Chocolate Cashews Meanwhile, pit the dates. Cut in half and then cut each half into thirds. There should be six pieces to each date. 

Produce On Parade - Salted Caramel Chocolate Cashews Take one cashew and wrap one piece of the date around it, like they're hugging, to make a ball. Continue with the remaining date pieces. 

Produce On Parade - Salted Caramel Chocolate Cashews Produce On Parade - Salted Caramel Chocolate Cashews Prepare a baking sheet covered with parchment paper. Dip the cashew/date ball in the chocolate to coat and place on the parchment paper. 

Produce On Parade - Salted Caramel Chocolate Cashews Produce On Parade - Salted Caramel Chocolate Cashews Sprinkle the top with salt and continue with remaining balls. 

Produce On Parade - Salted Caramel Chocolate Cashews Produce On Parade - Salted Caramel Chocolate Cashews Freeze for 15 minutes to harden. Store in airtight container in freezer. 

Produce On Parade - Salted Caramel Chocolate Cashews Produce On Parade - Salted Caramel Chocolate Cashews Produce On Parade - Salted Caramel Chocolate Cashews As I was cleaning, I moved the curtain and to my squealing delight I found this guy hiding! I felt so bad because I didn't know he was growing back there and he was so thirsty! Poor little fella. It's a Valentine's Day miracle! 

Produce On Parade - Salted Caramel Chocolate Cashews Can you see me?

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[yumprint-recipe id='77']