DIY no-bake oat bars

It’s Friday.  Thank goodness.  These ‘have anytime’ treats take next to no time to make.

Whipped these up the other day.  My guinea pig (aka hubby) nearly scoffed them down before I could take a pic!

Great for breakfast, as a healthy snack between meals, or even as dessert (melt some chocolate to drip on top or crumble a bar and add some vegan icecream).

nuts + coconut + seeds

nuts + coconut + seeds

Raw Coconut Oat Bars

1 cup of almonds (or any nuts of your choice)
½ cup of shredded coconut
½ cup of rolled oats
¼ cup seeds of your choice: chia seeds, pumpkin seeds
¼ cup of melted coconut oil
¼ cup agave / stevia
handful chopped prunes
1 tsp sea salt
lemon zest (as much as you want – I used one whole lemon)

Blitz almonds in food processor quickly until they resemble crumbs.

Transfer to bowl and mix in coconut, oats and seeds.

In food processor again, blitz together the coconut oil, sweetener, prunes, sea salt and lemon zest until it forms a paste.  For those without a food processor, ensure you mix together very well in a mixing bowl.

Combine the nut/oat/seed mixture with the sticky paste.

Press the now combined mixture firmly into a baking tin and put in freezer for an hour.

When hardened, cut into bars and transfer to container.  Keep in the fridge.

TIP: The almonds can be substituted for almond meal – I had some leftover from making almond milk.  Ditto for the rolled oats too.  I used leftover oat pulp from oat milk!

Waste not… want not.

Prunes are another favourite of mine.  Not many would call this a ‘superfood’.  Read on for its health benefits.

Naturally rich in hydroxycinnamic acids and anthocyanins

A university study in Boston  ranked prunes as the #1 food in terms of antioxidant capacity. Its ORAC (Oxygen Radical Absorbency Capacity) levels are more than twice the antioxidant capacity of other high ranking foods such as blueberries and raisins.

Antioxidants protect cells from damage caused by free radicals, which are caused by normal cell metabolism, smoking, pollution and UV rays.  These are the causes of pre-mature aging, certain cancers, cardiovascular disease and the dreaded wrinkles!

Full of fibre and natural laxatives

It’s been a remedy for constipation for as long as I can remember.  Even 100 grams of prunes contains approximately 6.1g of fibre. Plant food fibres cannot be digest and that is therefore not absorbed into the bloodstream.  Therefore fibre absorbs water and softens stools in the colon.  Sorbitol is a naturally mild colonic stimulant.  Prunes also contain neochlorogenic and chlorogenic acids which assist constipation sufferers.

Osteoporosis and osteopenia protection

Florida State University researchers suggest prunes may reverse osteoporosis in post-menopausal women.  Women who consumed 100g of dried plums per day had improved bone formation markers after only three months (comparatively to the control group). This can be attributed to the high boron concentrations which is purported to assist in the fight against osteoporosis and osteopenia.  One single serving of prunes fulfils the RDI for boron.  The potassium found in prunes also supports bone health.

Le premier blog post: from routine to raw

Le premier means “the first” in French.

After frequent prods over the year by my husband, close friends and newly-met acquaintances to start a blog… I have finally taken the plunge and dived in.

So yes, hopefully this is the first of many upcoming posts by moi.

I’ve always had an uncanny preference for raw or very slightly cooked food.

Even when I was in single digit years, I recall liking soup at room temperature and other traditionally hot dishes such as pasta and toasted sandwiches chilled!  It has only been in the past few years that I discovered this preference of mine is actually quite a widespread food philosophy often called the “raw food movement”.

I’ve read several books on the subject and won’t go into the health benefits here.  But I’ve met a few people who healed themselves of various diseases and ailments such as arthritis, diabetes, cancer, tumours to name a few.

Vegetarian since I was 15, transitioned to vegan for a while now, and consuming about 80% raw – I’m feeling great!  The choice to stop eating meat came unexpectedly and abruptly.  One day I was eating a burger, looked down at it half-eaten and felt thoroughly disgusted by it.  And myself.  What had become my favourite go-to meal since childhood now repulsed me.  I threw it away half-eaten and have never looked back.  Just like that.  So yes, a very rapid conscious decision.  What can I say, I’m known to never do things by halves.

I come from a family that eats anything and everything (from turtle soup, sheep balls, frog legs, chicken gizzards and everything in between!) whether it be breakfast, lunch or supper, you can be sure at least one dish has parts of animal in it.  Needless to say, they continue with their eating habits while I have mine.  For many years they couldn’t understand why I no longer ate meat, and did their best to offer me traditional Asian delicacies such as BBQ pork, sizzling beef or crispy skin chicken.  I did not waver and several years later… they have accepted it and are sure to order more veg, tofu and tempeh dishes when we dine out.  Hurrah.  Only took half a decade.  LOL.

Anyway, just last week I brought some home-made cookies to a potluck dinner at a friend’s house.. and again to a raw food picnic.  It was gobbled up by all, and the recipe was requested by many so here it is.  I luuuuuuuuurrrrveeeeeee my desserts, however a little sweetness goes a long way for me so if you find you need it, add 2 tbs agave or stevia.

Raw Oat ‘n’ Fruit Cookies
2 cups rolled oats
2 cups chopped dried apricots
1/2 c chopped prunes
1 c dessicated or shredded coconut
1 grated apple (I used green granny smith)
3-4 tbspn coconut oil (to bind)
1-2 tbs lemon zest (you can add more if you prefer)
1 tsp vanilla essence
pinch of sea salt
Pulse all ingredients in a food processor until well combined and a rough ‘dough’ is formed.  Taste.  Tweak flavours to suit  your palate.
Using your hands, shape into balls and press down to form a cookie shape.  You can also shape into bars.. kinda like a muesli bar.
That’s it!  You can even dip half the cookie in melted raw chocolate and let it cool.
I don’t have a dehydrator, so I set the cookie at room temperature for a few hours somewhere warm or in sunlight, then put it in the fridge.
Lasts for 4-5 days in the fridge.  Freezes well.
Till next time!

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