Whole30 – Raw Coconut-Date Squares

It’s Day 22 of my Whole30 journey. Cravings are definitely down, it’s the home stretch. A wee sweet treat is a much welcome  pick-me up to make it to home base.

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After making these I realized they might qualify for what they call SWPO (Sex With Your Pants On) desserts. But then I figured, they are allowing Larabars (which I made a version of on Day 6), and they are essentially the same ingredients, with a bit of coconut oil (also on the approved list). The key difference* is the visual presentation — these look way better! They’re still in the fridge so I will have to wait till tomorrow to post the finished product, but I know from having made them last week that they are beauties.

*Portion control  (my personal nemesis) is also important, as always.

Dates

Raw Coconut Date Squares

Makes 10 big squares or 20 little ones:)

[For Miss Drew and Miss LP]

Modified from this recipe

Ingredients:

Crust/crumble:

1 cup raw walnuts
1 cup raw pecans
6 soft Medjool dates, pitted and chopped
2-3 TBSP coconut oil, melted
1 tsp dried ginger
pinch of salt

2-3 tsp coconut, shredded

Date filling:

1-1/2 cups soft Medjool pitted dates
1/2 cup hot water
1 teaspoon vanilla
pinch of salt

Directions:

Prep the dates for the filling by softening them first. I boiled some water, and soaked the dates in a bowl with the water for about 30 minutes.

Line an ~8″x8″ baking dish with parchment paper. In a food processor fitted with an “S” blade, pulse the walnuts and pecans until they are finely ground. Add in the chopped dates, coconut oil and salt, and process again until the “dough” is formed – basically it clumps together.  Save 1 cup of this dough for the crumble topping, then transfer the rest of the dough to the lined baking dish,  using your fingers to press it evenly into the bottom of the pan. (Being a germophobe, I did not press this with my fingers but used the spatula.)

Combine all of the ingredients in a blender or food processor, and blend until  it has a purée like feeling, with a few little chunks of date left for texture. Add more water if necessary.

Spread the filling over the crust evenly ( I used a silicone spatula) , then crumble the reserved cup of dough over the top. Sprinkle the topping over the filling and garnish with the shredded coconut.

Important> Chill in fridge for at least 2 hours to set. I found they were even firmer and more delicious the next day, after being chilled overnight.

Serve chilled for best presentation. Store in fridge for up to a week.

Raw, Vegan, Paleo, Delicious and Nutritious!

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Whole30 – Days 8 & 9 – the accidental dose

For about a year I’ve been drinking my coffee with (unsweetened) coconut milk. This makes it easy to differentiate between my cup and Mr. OP’s cup, as he takes it black with sugar.

This morning our coffee was in identical cups and I accidentally swigged a sip.

How many sips are in a cup of coffee? It was smallish sip. I realized as it was already being swallowed what I’d done.

There was about 3/4 of a teaspoon of organic brown sugar in there. If there are 10 sips in a cup (stabbing in the dark here), I consumed a statistically insignificant amount. Not that you would have noticed by my shouts of “Oh No, What Have I Done – Aaaargh!”

Onwards.

These last two days have brought improved energy and a sense that I will persevere. My Day 7 glibness towards not missing wine was, of course, overturned on Saturday evening, when the thought of a delicious glass of ice cold chardonnay (ABCers piss off) haunted me for at least an hour. I made delicious tea and enjoyed the zero side-effects the next morning by going for a run.

Sunday I faced a family dinner and managed aok. There was enough food to eat, and although the mashed potatoes with loads of butter looked fantastic, they did not cross my lips. And although I carefully inspected the salad dressing for sugar (none), a small, yet bigger than miniscule dose of sugar passed my lips via the BBQ sauce that was on the salmon. I scraped most of it off, and having scoured the forums for information found out that a wee bit of sugar does not require a restart to Day 1. Passing on the chocolate decadence cake for dessert was slightly more daunting, but I clenched my teeth and smiled.

Pureeing tomatoes for the lentil soup

Cooking.

It being a long weekend (which of course thinking about Remembrance Day puts this modest challenge into perspective) I cooked. A lot.

More chia/flax seed crackers, more vegetable lentil soup, and coconut date squares were the top of the list.

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Coconut Date Bars

(Culled from here and here w/ miniscule modifications – these are raw and Vegan)

  • 1 cup of pitted dates
  • 3/4 cup walnuts
  • 1/4 cup shredded coconut
  • 1 tsp ginger
  • 1 tsp cinammon

I have a mini cuisinart, so had to make this in two batches. Otherwise, if you have a regular one, I’m sure you could blend it all at once.  I chopped the walnuts first, then added the dates and coconut.

Blend until it starts forming into a ball.

Roll out between two sheets of parchement paper to desired thickness and slice and serve.
Mine made about 10, plus some little bits that didn’t make the cut. Myfitness pal tells me they are about 100 calories each. A perfect snack, and Whole30 approved. I estimated the cost at 55 cents a bar (all organic ingredients) versus those Larabar ones at $1.99 a pop.

And Mr. OP likes them too.

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Today is Day 10, it being a holiday I  had grandiose plans to cook even more, but chores and dealing with stuff got in the way, so  my new half-baked plan to add a full recipe section  to this fledging blog will have to wait another day.

I am stoked I am 1/3 of the way through this regime!