IT’S A NEW DAY – A NEW YEAR – A NEW BEGINNING! THE SLATE IS CLEAN! YAY!
I am so ready to start eating clean again after all the refined sugar I’ve consumed over the last month. And, what better way to start eating healthy than with three different recipes that contain the naturally sweet Medjool Date.
One of the best gifts I’ve ever received was last September when visiting Yuma, Arizona. I got a giant box of Medjool Dates that had just been harvested. These were the largest, most beautiful dates that I’ve ever experienced. And, I ate my body weight in them until I had to finally give up – bagged up the remainder and stored them in the freezer.
Well, lucky me (and you), I just came across those in the freezer yesterday. These are the perfect beginning for 2016 and the path back to healthy eating – right up until Superbowl snacks and appetizers, anyway.
And, what a bonus – the Medjool Date has so many health benefits. This naturally sweet drupe (called that because it has a single pit), is loaded with Vitamins B5 and B6, which maintains the health of your skin and hair as well as producing chemicals in your brain that regulates your mood (I’m in). Dates also contain Vitamins A and K and a boatload of minerals. There are 4.8 grams of dietary fiber per serving that helps regulate your blood cholesterol level and move food through your digestive tract. They are a bit high in calories – 199 calories for 3 – but you truly only need a small amount to satisfy your sweet tooth.
One new thing I learned is that Hearts of Palm, which I love in salad, is the bud of the tree – The Date Palm – where the Medjool date comes from. Interesting…
So, what about the recipes you mentioned quite a while ago? Oh yeah! Let’s get started.
Way Number One – I remembered that my mom had sent me a recipe about a year ago for a Carrot Cake Power Bite. Amazingly, I found it and here is the link to the recipe that was posted last January on TheKitchn. Carrots combine with Medjool dates, almond meal and almond butter (which I make myself – this way there’s no sugar and I get twice as much for the $$$s) and spices. The original recipe calls for an icing, but I couldn’t bring myself to add refined sugar to these poppable, delicious bites that have a nice balance of good fat, protein and dietary fiber. But, check out the link above for the icing recipe if you need that little bit of sweetness. Update: My hubby wouldn’t eat them unless they were sweeter, so I compromised and melted white chocolate to drizzle on top of ‘some’ of them.
Way Number Two – Love this combination of Dark Chocolate, orange zest and Medjool dates. This yummy goodness is then coated with Toasted Coconut.
And, Way Number Three – who doesn’t think that everything is better with bacon. Well, to be healthy, you could choose to use a Turkey bacon, but even a little bit of bacon in your diet can’t hurt. Choose the one’s without nitrates and you’ll feel better about it. Take a nice, whole, toasted almond and place that in the middle of a pitted date. I usually render the fat from the bacon by putting it in the oven on a sheet tray lined with parchment or foil for about 10 minutes. That partially cooks the bacon so that your bacon will be nice and crisp once it’s baked around the date without petrifying the date.
And I want to wish all of you all the best in the New Year!