Tuesday, 25 June 2013

Raspberry Pecan Balls

There is a nut and berry breakfast bar recipe in the Rawvolution book (posted to my Facebook page before my blog was created) that I have used to make berry balls. I like this format instead of bars because they dehydrate faster, you can make different kinds at the same time and they can be dehydrated alongside crackers or cookies by filling empty spots on trays. Plus, they're more fun to eat and are child portion friendly!

I've made some with blueberries, strawberries, coconut, hemp, almonds, and even babnana but my favourite is the berry ball I crafted for Fathers's Day:
Raspberry Pecan.

"Pecans rank highest among all nuts and are among the top category of foods to contain the highest antioxidant capacity, meaning pecans may decrease the risk of cancer, coronary heart disease, and neurological diseases such as Alzheimer’s."
Find out more about the healthful benefits of pecans here.
Like me, you'll love this recipe because the ingredient list is simple:
  • 4 soaked dates, approx 1/3 cup water (use more dates for more sweetness)
  • 2 cups ground pecans
  • 2 cups frozen raspberies
  • 1 cup whole chia seeds (more or less, to absorb liquid)

I recommend using frozen raspberries and placing them in the freezer once processed into bits so they remain "hard" instead of becoming mushy. This makes it easier to form balls.

In a large mixing bowl, mix together ground pecans and raspberry bits then place in the freezer.



Blend (or process) the dates with their soaking water. Mix in the chia seeds, they will absorb all liquid.


Add the chia and date mixture to the large bowl. Mix thoroughly and form balls with your hands.


Place in the freezer when the phone rings... or to hide if it's a surprise!


Dehydrate for 24 hours, producing slightly soft and chewy Raspberry Pecan Balls!

Maybe I should have called these: Raspberry Pecan Power Packed Antioxidant Balls.



Fun to note: this recipe was inspired by a salad we had for supper alongside smoked trout a few days earlier in June: we had spinach, parsley, raspberries, red onion slices and pecan pieces with a simple vinaigrette made of olive oil, maple syrup and raw apple cider.

Together, raspberries and pecans do make a lovely duo!


...Leave a comment...
What raw pairings do you enjoy most?

Friday, 21 June 2013

Citrus Cookies by Eric (raw gourmet)


How proud I felt when Eric, my spouse, said: "I want to make raw cookies too."

To appreciate this fully, you must know that Eric is a trained chef. He no longer works in that industry but my oh my, he's got the goods! This recipe is top notch.

This cookie is not sweet, it is more like a dry gourmet biscuit, nice for breakfast with fruit salad, yogurt or cottage cheese.



Ingredients:
  • 4 cups of pulp from juicing: 6 oranges, 2 grapefruits, 2 lemons and 6 large carrots.
  • 2 cups almonds (finely processed)
  • 1 cup walnuts, processed until they reach a buttery consistency
  • 1/4 cup hemp seeds
  • 2 tbsp. coconut oil (can be blended with the nuts)
  • 2 tbsp. bee pollen
  • 2 tbsp. lemon rind and 2 tbsp. orange rind, finely chopped
  • 4tbsp agave nectar
Begin with juicing the peeled citrus fruits and carrots. Drink up!

Place the pulp in a large bowl, remove bigger fibrous pieces and any lemon seeds, etc. Mash and mix.
Add all other ingredients and mix thoroughly.

Firmly roll the mixture in plastic wrap, forming rolls of same size. Pleace in the fridge or freezer for them to harden and carefully slice. You will need to reshape some cookies with your fingers so they are uniformly shaped, as shown in our video:

  video

Dehydrate at 105F for 24-26 hours, until they are completely crisp. As with all dehydrated foods, it is best to keep refrigerated in an airtight container and eat within 10 days. If you leave them in the cupboard, they will go sour within a week.

We thoroughly enjoyed topped with thin slices of orange and granny smith apple.

Thursday, 20 June 2013

Benjamin said these taste like banana bread.... Success!

I posted a raw dehydrated banana pattie type recipe before, it was ok. It was very healthy with bee pollen and maca but not like good old fashioned baked banana bread!

These banana carob soft cookies are getting closer to the real thing.

I'm limiting my sugar intake, I'll describe what I did but feel free to add a touch of agave, honey or a couple more dates. If my 11 year old step son Benjamin likes them, to me, it's a winner recipe since he hasn't enjoyed my other dehydrated deserts. these cookies don't contain nuts so they are safe for the school lunchbox.

Ingredients:

  • 1/3 cup carob powder
  • 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp maca powder (optional)
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne spice (optional)
  • 2/3 cup shredded coconut
  • 2/3 cup hemp seeds
  • 1 cup milled flax seed
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 6 lage bananas (frozen or not)
  • 3 pitted dates, soaked in just enough water to cover
  • 2 to 3 tbsp coconut butter (also called coconut oil)
  • 1/4 cup or more, chia seeds

Begin with stirring the water into the milled flax. Set that aside.


Mix together the dry ingredients, except the chia seeds.


I had purchased this bag of bananas for $1 at the grocery store. As soon as I arrived home, they went in the freezer. that was a couple of weeks ago.


Blend together banana pieces, dates and soaking water.



Blend the rest of the banana pieces with a chunk of coconut butter/oil.


The blended frozen banana is nice alternative to ice cream. My toddlers loved it!
I liked it more with dates in it!


Once the banana mixture is incorporated to the dry ingredients, add the flax. The dough will be quite soft/liquid. Add chia seeds, fold them in and let stand about 5 minutes. Mix thoroughly and determine if this is a texture you can spoon drop onto your lined dehydrator trays, if it is too liquid, add more chia seeds and repeat the waiting and mixing steps.

While you wait, check out the site linked below!
I just learned that Chia is being studied as a potential natural treatment for type-2 diabetes because of its ability to slow down digestion. The gelatinous coating chia seeds develops when exposed to liquids-can also prevent blood sugar spikes. 9 more beautiful benefits of chia seeds are listed here.  
My dehydrator tray is lined with cling wrap. I don't use this material often because of it's short life cycle but this was my remedy to only having one silicone tray.


Dehydrate for 20 to 24 hours, turning them over and removing the plastic liner once they have become hard enough. Store in an airtight container in the fridge.

I made berry balls at the same time.



This was a batch of 60 cookies. Less are photographed because... well, I'm sure you can guess why!