A few things to explain:
1) I went with bananas because when frozen, the fruit is sweet and smooth which reduces the amount of added sugar required and prevents the bar from becoming too icy. Factory made coconut desserts add carob bean gum or guar gum to give it a smoother 'mouth feel'. I like to stick with the natural stuff and bananas provide what I'm looking for.
2) You need a high performance blender or you won't get the consistency you need in the time you need it. If your blender has you pressing stop every two seconds in order to push the ingredients around in hopes of achieving a smooth texture then this recipe might not turn out for you. An icy bar is the result of ice crystals forming. This happens when the mixture melts and refreezes. If your ingredients begin to thaw as you blend (and blend and blend) then ice crystals will form during the freezing process.
2) In order to make a smooth bar all the ingredients (and tools!) must be cold or frozen. The bananas I use are frozen. The coconut milk and maple syrup is stored at the back of the fridge overnight. My ice pop molds are stored in the freezer overnight. My blender jar is put in the fridge for at least 30 minutes. I think you get the point. Keeping ingredients and tools as cold as possible helps reduce the amount of melting that occurs.
3) Set your freezer to the coldest setting. This will help the bars freeze faster to prevent melting which then causes ice crystals - I think i mentioned that already, right? :)
Makes: Eight 4 oz (1/2 cup) bars
What you will need:
4 frozen bananas
1 cup coconut milk, refrigerated
1/4 cup maple syrup, refrigerated
8-count ice pop mold (4oz each)
8 popsicle sticks
1/2 cup Enjoy Life Dairy Free Mini chocolate chips
2 tbsp. organic coconut oil
What you will do:
In a high performance blender such as Vitamix or Blendtec, combine the frozen bananas, coconut milk and maple syrup. I used the ice crush setting followed by the ice cream setting. Blend until smooth. Quickly transfer your mixture to your ice pop molds. Make sure to fill the molds entirely, tapping out any air bubbles that may be trapped in the mold. I kind of went to town here tap-tap-tappity-tapping the molds on my counter top. I did not want air pockets in my bar because I did not want to risk my bar breaking when I removed it from the mold and a huge air pocket would increase those chances!
Insert popsicle sticks into the middle of each ice pop mold. Freeze bars for at least 8 hours.
Remove bars by gently running the outside of the molds under warm water. Place them on a tray or cutting board lined with wax paper and place the bars back into the freezer.
Using the double boiler method, melt the chocolate and coconut oil together. I've also heard that 30 seconds in the microwave works but I have yet to try that. Taking one bar out of the freezer, drizzle or spoon chocolate mixture onto the bar. The chocolate will harden in no more than 20 seconds. You will know it is 'dry' when the chocolate becomes matte. Once this happens you can put the bar back into the freezer. Repeat with the remaining bars.
Store bars in an air tight container using wax or parchment paper to separate them.