29 Nov 2009

A Jen But Never Jenn Creation: Raw / Vegan Gingerbread Balls

Every couple of months I go on a raw vegan kick. I've been about 80% raw vegan this week - the rest being vegetarian with just one small portion of lean meat snuck in there. So far, so good. Not sure how long I'll stick with it but I hope to eat this way at least until next week when we go to St. Catharines for an early Christmas get-together at Byckingham Palace.

When the weather gets cold, it's a little tough mentally to not crave toasty traditional foods, so those who eat raw vegan year-round tend to warm up their meals through spices. I decided to play around with some ingredients and came up with a vegan / mostly-raw version of unbaked gingerbread cookies (although in my case, I just rolled them into balls). They're nice because they're gluten-free, are sweetened by fruit (with one tiny, optional exception) and filled with fibre and healthy fats. Spicy, warm, chewy! Mmm!

The picture was taken from my phone (an HTC Dream):

Here's my recipe for raw vegan gingerbread balls (measurements are rough as I was just goofing around):

  • Take 1.5 cups of raw almonds and blend in a food processor until they form a sand-like texture (not quite flour consistency). To get the most nutrients from almonds, it's best to soak them in water for a few hours before using.
  • While you're grinding your almonds, use a coffee grinder to pulverize three or four whole cloves.
  • Add the cloves along with 2 tsp of cinnamon and a rounded teaspoon of powdered ginger (you can also try fresh grated ginger!) into your almond mixture. Mix it all in the food processor.
  • Pit five medjool dates and toss them into the processor (medjools are much better than honey dates as they are stickier and juicier!). Toss in 1/3 cup of raw, organic raisins. Blend everything in the processor until it's all quite sticky.
  • Have a little taste - if it needs more of certain seasonings, pop them in. You might also want to toss in a small pinch of salt to help draw out the other flavours.
  • Pour in 1 tsp of pure vanilla extract.
  • Add 1 tsp of pure maple syrup (which is not 100% raw, btw) or honey or even just water. I like the maple syrup because it has a bit of a smokey flavour and gives these balls a nice gloss.
  • Pulse your food processor until the whole thing becomes a ball of dough.
From there - I just rolled them into little balls and stuck in the fridge to firm up. If you're a raw foodist who misses fresh-baked goods, you might want to consider forming these into cookie shapes (roll into balls and then press them down) and popping them into a dehydrator. I might try that next time.

Anyway - enjoy! If you do try out this recipe, let me know how it worked out for you!


Anonymous,  12:20 am, November 30, 2009  

I sometimes find very tasty menu items from http://www.vegweb.com/ My *signature* chocolate cake is from here too!


Marigold,  9:50 am, December 17, 2009  

These are great. I was searching for raw gingerbread cookies and came across your recipe - so good! Thanks!

Keep living in the raw!

James,  5:08 pm, December 26, 2009  

Mmmm - just made these. Great recipe! Please post more of your raw vegan creations :D

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Need words? I'm a Toronto-based freelance writer who injects great ones into blogs, websites, magazines, ads and more. So many services, one lovely Jen (with one 'n').

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