I don’t eat many sweet treats these days. It’s not out of desire (my sweet tooth still lurks), but out of a combination of awareness of the damaging effect that sugar has on my health, and the new-found self control that has given me.
However…..it’s nice to have something sweet to snack on from time to time, right? Something that you can look forward to when you feel you’ve earned it. But something that doesn’t contain any refined sweetners, and also contains beneficial ingredients such as coconut oil.
About a year ago I started experimenting with making raw, refrigerated nut slices. The coconut oil hardens in the fridge and binds the slice nicely…..but this isn’t a lunchbox item, it needs to be kept cool.
So far I have created three “flavors” of my nut slice, and the first one, using carob, is probably still my favorite. I like carob because it is naturally caffeine-free and naturally sweet (so less added sweetner is required). Compared to cocoa, I find that carob has more of a caramel-like taste, which I like.
Carob Nut Slice
1 cup crispy almonds*
1 cup crispy pecans*
1/2 cup crispy sunflower seeds*
1/2 cup carob powder (I use toasted)
1 cup dried, shredded coconut
Scant 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 cup raw honey (liquid honey is easiest to work with)
1/3 cup coconut oil, gently melted
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1. Place almonds, pecans and sunflower seeds in food processor and pulse until finely chopped but before they reach “flour” consistency.
2. Add the carob powder, coconut and salt to the food processor.
3. Add the wet ingredients – honey, coconut oil and vanilla.
4. Pulse until everything is well-mixed and the mixture starts to clump.
5. Line a shallow dish (approx. 9″ x 12″) with parchment paper and spread the mixture no more than 1/2 inch thick.
6. Refrigerate for several hours until firm.
7. Slice into small squares and store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
* Crispy nuts is a Nourishing Traditions cookbook concept, where it is recommended to soak nuts in warm, salted water for up to 24 hours (to help neutralize phytic acid), then to dry the nuts at a low temperature (I use my dehydrator) until they are completely “crispy”. I follow the same process with sunflower seeds.