There comes a time or two or too many in our busy lives that we need a jolt, boost or uppercut of energy. This week has been one of those times for me. Between work schedules, our two dogs and the kids back to school from winter break we can all use a little pick me up. Whether I pop an energy ball in for quick morning boost or just before a workout these are certainly sure to deliver. This week I have redirected my focus towards more on raw and fresh ingredients. Despite being vegan we too felt the heaviness of all the holiday fare, not to mention, the exhaustion of all the hustle and bustle.
Raw Energy Balls (Makes about 13 balls – depending on size)
½ Cup Organic Roasted Unsalted Peanuts (Divided)
½ Cup Raw Almonds (soaked, rinsed and drained)
½ Cup Organic Pumpkin Seeds (soaked, rinsed and drained)
1 Tbsp Pure Coconut Oil
1 Tbsp Chia Seeds
1 ½ Tbsp Hemp Seeds
2 Tsp Maca Powder
1 Tbsp (100%) Cocoa Powder Unsweetened
5 (pieces) Organic Turkish Apricots
6 (pieces) Organic Medjool Pitted Dates
¼ Cup Organic Maple Syrup
In this recipe I soak the almonds, pumpkin seeds and (1/4 Cup) Peanuts for about 8 hours (see below for a suggestion and note). Soak in fresh water (filtered if available) with 1 Teaspoon of Salt (I use sea salt). After the seeds/nuts have soaked, drain and rinse in fresh water.
-In Food Processor – place Soaked nuts/seeds; Coconut Oil; Chia Seeds; Hemp Seeds, Maca and Cocoa powder and pulse for about 30 seconds. Add Medjool Dates with Turkish Apricots and pulse for another 30 seconds. Finally, add remaining ¼ Cup of Peanuts and Maple Syrup. Pulse until incorporated this will form a ball or a paste-like mixture.
(I only add the ¼ cup unsoaked/dry peanuts in the final step, because it adds a familiar peanut taste/texture that we’re used to. However, you may soak all the peanuts (1/2 Cup) in the initial step for nutritional purposes).
-With wet hands grab about 1½ tablespoons, or so, of mixture and roll into 1 inch balls. You may want to wet hands again halfway through.
-Place Raw Energy Balls on cookie sheet lined with parchment/wax paper. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before serving.
This recipe should produce about a bakers dozen, so if you can’t wait like me, pop one in and call it a dozen! Each ball is about 140 calories.
Store in a sealed container – I like to keep them nestled in the parchment paper. They should remain fresh for 7 days; they typically don’t last that long at home.
Suggestion: If I’m preparing this on the weekend, I’ll put the seeds/nuts to soak the night before and prepare the recipe the next morning. If it’s the weekday, I’ll place them to soak in the morning before I leave for work, so I can prepare the recipe after work. If your initial reaction to soaking is as mine was, that it sounds very time consuming, especially for a quick 10-minute recipe…it’s not so bad. When I plan ahead and use the above system it works for me. There have been a few situations where I forgot to soak or was in the mood (needed) this recipe at an inopportune time; I can say that I’ve made this recipe after soaking for 2 hours and once after soaking for 30mins. to at least softened them.
Note: Soaking seeds/nuts improves the nutritional value – the vitamins, proteins and allows for better digestions. It also removes anti-nutrients/toxins. Place nuts/seeds in warm fresh/filtered water a 2:1 ratio seems to work fine. I typically add a teaspoon of salt.