I love coconut.
I also eat a lot. I won’t deny it.
That means I need in between meal snacks.
This is one of my favourites. If you like cookie dough, like me, you will probably like these as well (unless you are allergic to nuts, in which case please stay far away from this particular recipe…)
First, let me tell you, there are a lot of possible variations of this. Basically you throw in whatever you’d like. You’ll understand in a minute.
Here’s what I did this time:
1 1/2 cups pecans
1/2 cup shredded coconut
1/4 cup cashews (this was all I had left…)
1 tbsp coconut oil
1/12 tsp salt (basically a pinch, but I used to hate when recipes called for a pinch of things, because what is that, exactly?)
1/4 tsp vanilla
1. Blend up the nuts + coconut (in this case, the pecans, cashews, and coconut).
I used my magic bullet, with 3/4 cups at a time. It kinda gets stuck to the edges, because blending it up releases all the oils, but try not to worry too much. You could probably use a regular blender, if you had one.
If you have no blending tool, I bet you could manage with a cutting board and a knife, it just might take you a little longer (and it won’t be as sticky, so you might have do something special – I’ll explain later).
2. Pour the blended nuts + coconut into a bowl.
Mine looks like this:
3. Chop up the dates.
Use a large knife – none of those knives the size of your thumb. I’m talking a knife thats at least the length of your hand. Just trust me.
I recommend cutting them in half lengthways to remove the pit. Then bunch them all up together and make multiple lengthways cuts (yes, they will stick to your knife; just go with it). Then start making a bunch of horizontal cuts. At this point your dates will a mushy mess. That’s what you want.
Make a bunch more random chops with your big knife for good measure.
Who needs a food processor, anyway?
4. Dump the chopped dates + the coconut oil + salt into the bowl with the nuts.
5. Pour the vanilla over the chopped dates.
Or wherever you want, really. I like pouring it over the dates because I’ve decided it makes it easier to spread the flavour around, presumably because it doesn’t soak into the nuts. Flawed logic, I would probably say. But I do it anyway :)
I wasn’t kidding when I said just dump it all into the bowl. Should look something like this:
6. Take a fork and mix it up.
I’ve made that sound easy. In reality, its a bit awkward because the dates are so incredibly sticky. If you alternate between mashing it with the fork much the same way as you would mash bananas or avocado and just sticking your fork in and stirring like a crazy person, you should have some luck.
The goal is to get the date glob separated and spread evenly throughout the mixture.
At the end of the mashing, it will still probably not seem done to you. It’ll seem crumbly, and like it won’t actually stick together.
But stick with me, okay (yep, I’m officially funny).
Mine after it’s been mashed up a bit.
7. Form into little balls.
Grab a spoon and scoop some into the palm of your hand. Squish it together with your hand, transfer it to your other hand, do more squishing. Pretend it’s playdoh, that should help.
It should feel really moist. When you squish your hand together, the goal is to get as much of the air out as possible. The more you squish, the better.
If you ARE finding that they just won’t stick together (I’m looking at you, the people who had to chop their nuts with a knife instead of blending them up), try adding a bit more coconut oil or maybe even another date. But be careful with the dates, they are super sweet.
8. Put the balls into a container, put a lid on, and stick it in the freezer.
This step is essential. One of the things about coconut oil is that it is a solid at room temperature (unless you don’t have air conditioning in the summer and your apartment is super hot… ahem). All the mixing around you did with it probably heated it up a bit and softened it. Sticking the balls in the freezer will help them become more sturdy so that they stay together better.
Plus they really do just taste awesome cold.
And that’s all there is to it! Just try to leave them in the freezer for at least an hour before you eat one :)
Oh and, yes, the amount you see in my little container is the exact amount that this recipe made.
If I had chocolate of some sort on hand, I would have definitely thrown some in.
I wasn’t kidding when I said you could put anything in these. Any other kind of nut. Different proportions. More dates. Seeds. Oatmeal. Flax. Peanut butter. Protein powder. Anything. Think of it this way – if you can put it in a cookie, you can grind it up and throw it in these. The end.
You might have to play around with the amount of dates and coconut oil, but you’ll get it!
Ok. Ready set go. Make them. And tell me how much you loved them ;)