For our second wedding anniversary yesterday I decided to make Man-thing some freezer treats, since I’m a fan of edible presents. I’m not a super romantic person and my love language is feeding others, so this was as much for my own gratification as it was for his 😉 Using protein in different ways is grand, and I’m so chuffed that my experiment worked out, because I’m rather over using peanut butter continuously for my freezer bars! These little bites are delicious and easy, so what more could you ask for?
Sometimes I get deeply sad-face about so many wonderful, delectable looking vegan protein bar recipes because they contain all sorts of wonderful flavoured protein powder. I’ve seen breakdowns of cost and it seems relatively inexpensive if you live in the US, but in South Africa vegan protein powder costs an arm and a leg. Either way, I love my natural proteins, so I make do with what’s about. I think if ever we were to visit the US I would probably gain 10kgs under a week from using or testing out all the products we don’t get here, like vegan gelato, cream cheese, chocolate…gah! Too much! So it’s probably for the best that my budget and country seem to be in cahoots to minimize my options somewhat. Still, it at least makes my brain whirr!
Ingredients (serves 8-16):
- 1/2 cup buckwheat flour
- 1/3 cup dark choc chips
- 1/3 date mush/super soaked dates
- 1/2 cup red lentils, cooked
- 1 TBSP coconut oil, melted
- 1/4 cup carob powder
- 1 TBSP tahini
- 1 TBSP lemon juice
- 1/4 cup raisins + goji berries
- 1/4 cup sunflower seeds + pumpkn seeds
- 2 tsp NuNaturals Simple Syrup/2 TBSP agave
- Cinnamon, allspice, ginger
- 1 dropper NuNaturals Vanilla NuStevia Liquid/1-2 tsp vanilla extract
- pinch salt
- Line a loaf pan with wax paper – enough along the edges to lift out.
- Mix together your dry ingredients and set aside.
- In your food processor, blend together your lentils, dates, lemon juice and tahini until smooth.
- Melt your choc chips with the coconut oil.
- Add the lentil mix to the dry ingredients and stir in melted chocolate until combined.
- Add in the seeds and dried fruit and fold til mixed.
- Pour the filling into the loaf pan and smooth out the top.
- Place in the freezer for 1/2 hour.
- Remove the slab by the flaps and slice before transferring to an air-tight tupperware. You can store it either in the fridge or the freezer. I love freezer treats!
Yum yum! Be warned, however – this isn’t overly sweet. If you prefer more sweetness add either more dates, more agave/Simple Syrup, or perhaps another 1/4 of non-melted chocolate chips. Anything goes! Some blackstrap molasses would also be yummy 😀
I know I shouldn’t but after letting Man-thing take a bite I asked him to guess what’s in it. Immediately his face went a delightful mixture of sour and sad and he uttered “avo” with utter dejection. I love tormenting him with all the wacky things I manage to hide (or not, as is sometimes the case) in my creations, but I figured it would be poor form to make something especially for him with ingredients he loathes (with no good reason!). I’m pretty sadistic in the kitchen, admittedly, but I want to claim something along the lines of “I know best!”.
So, that’s my prezzie to him! He came home yesterday with a beautiful bouquet of proteas (love it!) and some Lindt 90% choc (nom nom!), and then we pranced off for dinner to Col’Cacchio after gym, where I could make my own salad, which is glee itself. I must say I nearly died in gym yesterday, and my asthma started acting up – it’s very clear that being unfit = no breath! Our busy week and walking in prep for the Occupational Therapy Fun Run was fun but personally it doesn’t have the same impact as high-intensity cardio, so I’m going to have to up my game! We have another 10km fun run this weekend for rhinos, but 10km is actually a breeze if you’re power walking, so I’ll rather keep my training in the gym and power walk with Man-thing for delight rather than exercise.
I see so many bloggers who are fitness fanatics and are truly inspirational, but I see just as many who also struggle to be consistent in their exercise. I will say this, however – any exercise, whether it’s a 15 minute walk or a 60 minute weight-lifting session, is better than nothing! I don’t think walking should be looked down on as “nothing”, because sometimes it’s more than most can manage. When I was super obese I could barely walk around the block without wheezing and then stopping for a little break, which is crazy! When we were showing off our place to potential buyers there were apparently one or two that lost interest the moment they saw our one flight of stairs because they were overweight and it would have been too much effort.
Point being, I think one should be proud of small accomplishments and to be positive about any changes made to lifestyle that contribute to well-being, mentally and physically. That goes for exercise, proper nutrition, and especially wedding anniversaries! It may not be a silver jubilee but we survived two years and hope to be holding hands for much longer! ❤