Toasted Almond, Sticky Date, Dark Chocolate & Orange Bars.
Ingredients: Raw organic European almonds (unpasteurized), soaked pitted dates, dark chocolate chips (fair trade/organic), almond butter, alcohol-free vanilla extract, sea salt.
Lightly toast the almonds in a dry skillet to enhance the nutty flavour. Set aside to cool.
To make the sticky date filling, mix the almond butter with 2/3rd of the soaked dates (minus soaking liquid), and vanilla into a paste. Set aside.
For the base layer, pulse the almonds into a crumble texture. Then add the rest of the date mixture and big pinch of salt. Pulse to combine.
Press the base mixture into a plastic lined rectangular cake pan.
Then smooth over the sticky date/almond butter mix on top.
Add some toasted almonds to the date layer. NOTE: Roughly chop the almonds instead of using them whole as seen above because they were difficult to cut through at the end. We learn by doing/trying!
Melt the dark chocolate chips in a double boiler/bain-marie and spoon it over the top.
Using a microplane, zest some fresh orange over the chocolate layer. Let the bars cool in the fridge for 20 minutes.
Slice the bar into about 2-inch pieces. This is a rich dessert, so a bar this size (about 60 gr) should provide 4 servings.
This delicious and nutritious dessert is made from whole food ingredients, with no added refined sugars or oils. To make this recipe as an everyday snack, simply skip the chocolate layer, adding the citrus zest to the date paste instead.
- Organic European natural almonds (unpasteurized)
- Soaked pitted dates (soak in warm water or tea for extra flavour!) split into 2
- Almond butter
- Dark chocolate chips or chopped chocolate bar (organic & fair trade if possible)
- Alcohol-free vanilla extract
1. Lightly toast the almonds in a dry pan, to enhance the nutty flavour. Set aside to cool.
2. Make the sticky date filling: Mix the almond butter with 2/3rds of the soaked dates (minus soaking liquid), and vanilla into a paste. Set aside.
3. Prep the base layer, pulse the almonds into a crumble. Then add the rest of the soaked dates and big pinch of salt. Pulse well to combine.
4. Press the almond base mix into a plastic lined rectangular or square pan. Add the sticky date/almond butter layer on top.
5. Melt the dark chocolate chips in a double boiler/bain-marie and spoon it over the top of the date layer.
6. Finally, using a microplane, zest over some orange onto the chocolate. Set in the fridge or freezer to set until slicing into small bites!
- The almonds and almond butter provide plenty of protein, healthy unsaturated fats, iron, calcium, magnesium, potassium, vitamin E, B vitamins, and fiber.
- While dates are high in sugars, being a whole food, they also offer nutrients like iron, calcium, and fiber, making them the healthiest sweetener. The fiber found in dried fruit allow the body to regulate the natural sugar content, preventing a severe blood sugar spike, like one experiences when consuming refined sweeteners.
- Dark chocolate is high in calories and fat, but it is fine to enjoy once and a while in small quantities! Dark chocolate is also source of iron, magnesium, calcium, zinc, Vitamins K, B vitamins, and fiber. Buying organic fair-free dark chocolate is optimal, especially from Camino brand, who make pure products with no added emulsifiers or additives. I used their Bittersweet dark chocolate chips (see here), and their Extra-dark chocolate bar (see here) is great too!