No, this isn’t some post about the latest pointless trend of the rich and famous.
It’s about making a virtue out of a necessity, emphasising the positive and refusing to believe that something that’s good for you has to be dull and tasteless. Good can be good.
This is a recipe for a fruit, nut and seed bar. See what I mean? If I’d called it that, you’d have moved briskly on to something a bit more interesting. But I have to tell you, it’s gorgeous. Delicious, chewy, sweet without being sickly and lavishly topped with dark chocolate. It’s incidentally also gluten and dairy free. It’s grain free. It’s almost raw: I toasted some seeds and heated the chocolate to melt it, but the bar itself has not been baked. It’s actually good for you, but pretend I didn’t tell you that. Look, it’s dead easy, give it a go why don’t you? And then tell me it’s not absolutely yummy.
1 cup of lightly toasted pepitas (pumpkin seeds)
1½ cups pitted dates, roughly chopped
½ cup chunky peanut butter
¼ cup runny honey
2/3 cup almond meal
½ cup moist coconut flakes
200g dark dairy free chocolate (I used Whittakers 72% Dark Ghana)
2 tblsp dairy free margarine (I used Nuttelex Sunflower)
Line a 22cm/9″ square brownie pan with greaseproof paper.
If your pepitas are untoasted when you buy them, toast them lightly in a frying pan or in the oven for a few minutes. You can used them untoasted, but the flavour is improved by the toasting. Put all the bar ingredients into a processor and pulse till everything is blended and a sticky dough is formed. Press the dough into the paper lined pan and put into the fridge for a couple of hours to firm up. Overnight is good if you can wait that long… Break the chocolate into small pieces and put into a shallow bowl with the margarine. Microwave on full power for 30 seconds at a time, for a total of 1½ minutes. Stir gently for several minutes to integrate the margarine into the melted chocolate till smooth and glossy. Quickly pour onto the hardened bar, and spread out, giving the top a ripply finish. Return to the fridge to harden up. Once the chocolate’s hardened, remove from the pan by lifting with the lining paper. Cut into bars.
Eat one, and develop a whole new opinion of ‘bird food’….