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Author Notes: ...aka cocoa nut date balls. Working with raw ingredients and inspired by Merrill's demo of almond meal, and not without echoes of those holiday bourbon balls in my head, here is my inspiration. These will not make you tipsy, though. You can roll these in Aleppo pepper or coconut as one finish. I tried to eat just one, but found that three were far more satisfying. To those who can't eat nuts, I have just made an experiment with fresh garbanzo beans: They taste more garden-like, so cutting down the amount to 1/2 cup or less might work....that will need some more testing. Just did some research online to find that there is a vegan product with great organic ingredients like flax and sunflower seeds in this same type of date-nut ball, known as Dr. Fuhrman's "pop'ems," available in several flavors. Cashews and almonds are combined with walnuts; I haven't tried them, but would like to now. I may be revising this recipe to make it healthier after more experimenting. Getting some flax in these does sound like a good idea. —Sagegreen
Makes 10-12 balls
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- 1 teaspoon fresh orange zest in juice (or substitute bourbon or rum)
- 1 teaspoon bourbon or rum (or more orange juice and zest for nonalcoholic version)
- 1 tablespoon grated peeled ginger
- 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa (powder)
- 5 medjool dates, pitted and sliced in half
- 3/4 cup walnut meat, crushed
- tiny pinch of sea salt
- @ 3-4 tablespoons Aleppo pepper, unsweetened coconut, ground almonds, or just plain cocoa powder for dusting like a truffle
- 12 spriglets of fresh mint
- In the order given add the ingredients through the sea salt in a blender or food processor. Mix until everything comes together, for about a minute or two. Chill for about an hour.
- Divide, squish, and roll the batter in your hands to form ten to twelve small balls. Place the Aleppo pepper, coconut, almond meal, or cocoa in a saucer; roll each ball in your choice to finish. There are many variations. You could try a citrus salt or fleur de sel as other options.
- You can serve chilled in candy cups with a weensy sprig of fresh mint or on toothpicks.
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Dish in the Raw