Chocolate Banana Walnut Bites

We had a snow day yesterday and it gave me the opportunity to experiment with the green banana flour I bought a few weeks ago. I’ve known about green banana flour for a while, but kept forgetting to order some. Then, I conveniently stumbled upon it at the grocery store. Score!

So far, I am pretty impressed with the flour. It worked well in this recipe and did not yield a strong or sweet banana flavor. It’s actually rather subtle. All in all, the bites turned out intensely chocolatey, subtly sweet, and slightly crunchy. In addition to the wonderful flavor, you get a dose of antioxidants, healthy fats, and resistant starch in these decadent bites. Perfect little treat.

Also, if you’re wondering, resistant starch actually, “resists digestion” and feeds the healthy bacteria in the gut. This can lead to improved blood fats, better insulin sensitivity, increased satiety, improved digestion, and more. Cold cooked white potatoes, fresh green bananas, and green plantains are other great sources. If you want to learn more about resistant starch, visit HERE.

Cheers and enjoy!

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup green banana flour (find HERE)
  • 1/4 cup cacao or cocoa powder
  • 3-4 Tbsp cacao nibs
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup raw walnuts, preferably sprouted
  • 4 large medjool dates, pitted

*Note: if you want these sweeter, you can add a little maple syrup, raw honey, or another 1-2 pitted medjool dates

Directions:

  1. Combine all the ingredients except the cacao nibs in the food processor. Process until mixture is well blended and clumps together.
  2. Add the cacao nibs and pulse a few times to incorporate.
  3. With hands, roll mixture into tablespoon-size balls and place in the refrigerator to set for 10-20 minutes.
  4. Store any leftovers in the refrigerator.

Yields: ~15 bites

 

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Gingered Carrot Mash

gingered carrot mash

Let me tell you, these are some mighty fine and decadent carrots! This mash combines the best of all worlds with a little creaminess, spice, sweetness, tang and crunch. Not only that, but it makes for a great side dish to nearly any protein and is a good source of paleo-friendly carbs. I’ve been eating it with my lunch lately, as a side to a big salad. Jesse has been missing out on trying this stuff because I keep eating it, so if he doesn’t get on it soon, he’s gonna miss out!

Cheers and enjoy!

Ingredients:

  • 4 cups peeled and chopped carrots
  • 3 medjool dates, pitted and cut in half
  • 3-5 Tbsp water
  • Himalayan sea salt to taste
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 3 Tbsp grass-fed butter
  • 1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1/3 cup sprouted almonds, chopped

Directions:

  1. Place carrots in a steamer basket in a pan and cover with a lid. Cook over medium heat for 7-8 minutes or until carrots are fork tender.
  2. Meanwhile, add the water and dates to a small saucepan. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally. Continue to cook for a few minutes, until dates have softened and absorbed the water. Add more water if needed. It will be a sticky paste once done.
  3. Once carrots and dates are done, add to a food processor with the butter, salt, ground ginger and lemon juice. Process for about 30 seconds and then remove lid and scrape down the sides. Repeat one or two more times, until smooth.
  4. Pour mixture into a bowl and stir in the chopped almonds by hand. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Yields: ~5 side dish servings

Cardamom Spice Sunbutter

Cardamom Spice Sunbutter.
Cardamom Spice Sunbutter.

Before you decide to make this recipe, here’s a few words of caution: do not attempt if you are not patient! That is no joke either! This was my first time making any sort of homemade sunbutter and it takes WAY longer than making nut butter. Holy cow, it was a good 30 minutes of back and forth blending and scraping the sides down. It might have even been longer! I couldn’t believe it, because nut butters come together in a flash, but not sunflower seed butter. With that said, be sure to allow yourself enough time and don’t expect it to come together in a pinch. In the end, it’s worth it because you have homemade sunbutter and saved money by making it yourself. Plus, it’s fun to play with flavor varieties, as I did here.

Also, if you don’t care for cardamom, feel free to omit it.

*****

Totally unrelated, but stay tuned for part II of my San Francisco trip, coming this Thursday! More great pictures to come!

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups raw sunflower seeds
  • 1 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
  • 4 pitted medjool dates, or more if desired for extra sweetness
  • 1 Tbsp Madagascar pure vanilla extract
  • 1 Tbsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp cardamom
  • Sea salt to taste
  • 1-2 Tbsp melted coconut oil

Directions:

  1. In a food processor, combine the sunflower seeds, coconut and dates. Blend until well ground into flour. Scrape down sides and continue to process.
  2. Add the vanilla, cinnamon, cardamom and sea salt and continue to process, scraping the sides down as needed. Keep processing and scraping – back and forth, back and forth.
  3. Then, add the coconut oil and continue to process. Continue to blend and scrape. Taste and adjust spices and sweetness as desired.
  4. Once desired consistency is reached, pour into jars and store in the refrigerator. Before using, remove from fridge and let sit on the counter for a bit to soften and come closer to room temperature. It firms up quite a bit when cold.

*Note: You can make your sunbutter to be thick like a paste or creamy and runny, which takes more blending. Just watch out, so you don’t overheat your food processor! It takes A LOT of time.