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Fruit and nut nibbles

Unlike some of my other energy bite type recipes, this was an attempt to recreate one of the favourite snacks of my children. They’re rather partial to a Nakd bar and while, as a parent, I’d much rather they snack on something healthy and sugar free than a chocolate bar, I’m not so cruel that I want to force feed them something even a budgerigar would refuse! This is a great compromise for both children and adults alike. Sweet and soft, it feels enough of an indulgence to make you forget that it’s largely a sin free alternative!

 

Ingredients

Method

Place the dates, puffed rice, ground almonds, pumpkin and chia seeds into a food processor and blitz for about 60 seconds.

Add the vanilla, cocoa, cinnamon and date syrup and give another good blitz.

Finally, add the orange juice and blitz several times (you want everything to be completely combined with as fine a texture as possible), scraping down the sides with a spatula each time to make sure you’re not leaving any ingredients behind!

Roll into 12 equal sized balls and roll in the coconut.  Refrigerate and enjoy at your leisure!

Trivia

While “puffing” rice grains as a culinary technique has been used for centuries in places like India where it was heated in sand-filled ovens and called muri, the modern method is attributed to the American Alexander P. Anderson who stumbled across it while trying to discover the precise amount of water content in a single granule of starch. He created a machine for doing this which he introduced at the World’s Fair in Saint Louis, Missouri, in 1904. This in turn led to Kellogg’s and Quaker Oats introducing puffed wheat as a breakfast cereal, and after the cereals came the puffed rice cakes.