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Saturday, July 21, 2012

Raw "Larabars"

Since I decided we are going to add more "real foods" to our diet, I thought it would be good to have some desserts and/or snacks.  I've never eaten store bought Larabars before, but when I looked at the recipe they sounded really good.  Actually there are many different recipes out there (some without nuts), but I finally narrowed it down (with some changes) and made the following recipe:

Raw "Larabars"
(energy bars)

4 cups pitted dates (mine were somewhat moist)
2 cups raw cashews (or whatever nut you like or have on hand)
1 cup Ghirardelli semi-sweet chocolate chips (this is what I had on hand)
2 tbsp peanut butter (I used PB2)
2 tsp vanilla

Optional additions:
unsweetened coconut
coffee granules

Line a 9" x 13" pan with a piece of parchment paper so that the paper hangs over the long sides. Set aside.

Add the cashews to a food processor and pulse until they resemble fine crumbs. Add the chocolate chips and pulse again until the chocolate chips are also finely chopped.  

Transfer nut/chocolate crumb mixture into a bowl and set aside. 

Add half of the dates to the food processor and process until a paste forms and clumps together in the bowl. Add in 1 tablespoon of the peanut butter, 1 tsp vanilla, and half of the chocolate/nut mixture (if you are going to add anything else like coconut or coffee grounds do it now). Replace the lid and process until evenly combined. Scrape into the prepared pan.  

Repeat with the remaining dates, chocolate/nut mixture, vanilla and peanut butter. 

When all of the ingredients have been processed, wet your hands and use them to press the mixture as evenly over the bottom of the pan as possible. Fold the excess parchment over the bars to cover them and use something flat and heavy to press down firmly on the mixture until it is smooth. 

Refrigerate for at least 2 hours and then slice.

Here is the link to the recipe I adapted mine from: Homemade Larabars

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