I've been reading and reviewing cookbooks at a somewhat alarming pace. In order to give solid recommendations, I try to follow at least one recipe before delivering my verdict on someone's years of hard work. While I've never really been curious about raw food, Stephanie Tourles book about raw snacks hit a different note. Suppose it's possible to reap the benefits of eating raw by simply incorporating it into my snacking regimen, why, I'd have to reconsider my view. The recipes sound surprisingly delicious, particularly the energy bar and snack section. I flagged a number of pages, perused my local bulk store and came home with ingredients to test several raw snacks. Let's pretend I started with the PMS-preventative ones at random.
To my surprise, these Second-Wind Hazelnut Bars are extra sweet and chewy with just the right amount of texture. If this is how raw foods go down, count me in.
Second-Wind Hazelnut Bites
Recipe by Stephanie Tourles (as printed in Raw Energy)
Makes 24 small bites
1/2 cup raw hazelnuts
1/2 cup raw, hulled sunflower seeds
1/2 cup unsweetened coconut, finely shredded
1/4 cup raw honey
1/4 cup raw sesame tahini
- Grind the hazelnuts and sunflower seeds into a medium-fine meal in a nut and seed grinder. [I used the food processor.]
- Transfer the nut mixture to a medium bowl and stir in coconut, honey and tahini. Use your hands to blend the ingredients well and mash them into a small, cohesive dough ball.
- Pinch off small pieces of dough and roll them into bite-size balls about 1 inch in diameter.
- For the best flavor and consistenty, allow the balls to set for 24 hours before eating. Store the balls in a tightly sealed container in the refrigerator and consume within 2 or 3 weeks. They may be individually wrapped, using waxed paper or plastic wrap, and taken with you to enjoy as portable energy bites.
Stephanie Tourles is the author of Raw Energy: 124 Raw Food Recipes for Energy Bars, Smoothies, and Other Snacks to Supercharge Your Body, due out this month from Storey Publishing.