For some reason I love going grocery shopping. Even when I was in High School I took it on as my own little mission each week to go to the store and pick out the food we would have available in our house. I was so excited when I went to our local Hannafords to find that they now sell Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Milk in the large containers and carry Extra Virgin Coconut Oil! I was even more excited to pick up a large supply of my favorite hummus…Joseph’s!! Although I love my Trader Joe’s extra creamy hummus…there is something special about Joseph’s that I was starting to miss!! I can’t get it out in California, so I will be enjoying lots of hummus and veggies while I am home!
Even though I am not home for very long, I have been taking full advantage of putting my Mom’s kitchen to use! It is always so much fun experimenting here because she has many ingredients that I normally wouldn’t buy to play around with on my own. Even though most of my concoctions turn out extremely yummy ;)…there is usually one that doesn’t make the cut (enter my attempt at making vegan brownies last night…shouldn’t have tried using whole wheat flour…I think I got too adventurous on that one!)
Whenever I get into the kitchen my goal is to make my food as healthy and as yummy as humanly possible! I have been following many vegan blogs lately, so I have had inspiration coming from many different places. Some of my favorite blogs to follow include Oh She Glows, Chocolate Covered Katie, and Loves Veggies and Yoga.
I have had my eye on these “ball” concoctions that many people seem to be enjoying. They are delicious raw vegan treats that I have been wanting to play around with! I got out my big bag of nuts, coco powder, coconut oil and agave and starting my mad scientist project.
My first creation is what Averie from Loves Veggies and Yoga calls raw cookie dough. I took her recipe and put my own spin on it. Instead of using agave in my “cookie dough” mixture I used dates. I also decided to skip the chocolate chips and instead made my own coconut oil dark chocolate which I rolled the balls in and covered in coconut. Then everything went to the refrigerator to set…and the result was a little piece of heaven in my mouth 😉
It was hilarious to watch my family try my “creation.” They usually feel like…if Sarah made it, it most likely has a veggie hidden or tastes like tree bark ;). But they are always good sports because they know how excited I get to share my experiments! My dad looked at me after downing one of my Lentil Burgers (more on those in a moment) and asked…”whats for dessert!?” When I offered him a ball he responded…”I’ll try it if it will make you happy.” He was soon eating his words and quickly asked if he could have seconds (I guess I’m the gate-keeper to the raw vegan cookie dough balls). They are great little treats because it’s all healthy fats that you are consuming, and because the sweeteners are natural, you won’t experience a crash later on in the day! I also love the fact that I can eat chocolate and still be getting in my dose of coconut oil for the day!
Raw Vegan Cookie Dough Snow Balls
- 1/3 C Ground Oats
- 1/3 C Cashews
- 1/3 C Walnuts
- 4-5 Pitted Dates
- 1 Tbs Extra Virgin Coconut Oil
- 2 Tbs Dark Chocolate Coco Powder
- Sprinkle of Stevia
- 2 tsp Agave
- 1/2 C coconut (optional)
In a blender add ground oats and nuts and combine until you have a nutty paste. Add your dates and a couple drops of water and blend on high until everything is combined. In a small dish microwave your coconut oil just long enough for it to melt (20 seconds?). Stir in the coco powder, stevia and agave. You will have a shiny chocolate sauce at this point. Take scoops of your nut mixture, roll them into balls, roll in the chocolate and then cover in coconut. Place them on a cookie sheet covered in wax paper and put in refrigerator until the chocolate forms a shell. Then enjoy!
You can also simply make your own dark chocolate with the same recipe that you roll the cookie dough balls in. I made a small batch and set them in small cup cake wrappers…best dark chocolate I have ever had! I also love the fact that the ingredient list is so small, and technically, its raw!!Although I do like my sweets, I have been experimenting with savory ingredients as well! My family has been planning a cookout for this weekend to celebrate a myriad of things, and since I don’t eat meat I have been coming up with alternatives!
Before I share my AMAZING lentil burger recipe, I have to brag a bit ;). I am so proud and excited to announce that my mom just finished her Masters in Nursing program after almost 3 years of working two jobs and staying up until 2am most nights to complete her homework. She is such an inspiration to me proving that you can complete anything you set your mind to (even when it seems impossible!). She also has a big birthday on the 13….hmmm, Ill let the picture reveal the mile stone we will be celebrating. Not only is it my mom’s birthday but my brother’s aswell! He turns 17 on July 4th, and I am so happy to be home to celebrate with him! (I can’t believe he will be a senior next year…I feel so old!) We also have lots of family coming to town and within that group there are many more birthdays being celebrated!
Back to sharing fun meat alternatives! I don’t eat meat, but I am also unable to eat soy because of a thyroid condition I have. After doing much research on the topic I discovered that soy actually inhibits my medication from working properly, so I avoid it completely. That being said, most of my protein comes from beans and legumes. I had some steamed lentils in the fridge just begging to be used, so I whipped up a new successful creation!
- 1 Large Onion
- 1 Medium Red Bell Pepper
- 2-3 Large Carrots (or big handful of baby carrots)
- 2 Cloves of Garlic
- 3/4 C Ground Oats
- 1 1/2 C Steamed Lentils
- Sea Salt
- Extra Virgin Coconut Oil
Process first four ingredients in a food processor and then move to a saute pan. Allow ingredients to sweat until most of the liquid steams off. When done cooking add to a large bowl with lentils and oats. Mix all ingredients together and add spices and salt to taste (I like lots of cummin in my food!). Then shape into patties and cook in a small frying pan with a touch of coconut oil.
I have more things in the works, but I’ll save them for a future posting. For now I have to run to go get ready for our guests! Happy Saturday!!