Thursday, September 8

Raw "Brownies"

No, not batter...

Oh baby I like it raw... 
Let's talk raw food.

I, for one, don't really understand the raw food diet. I mean, for starters, cooking (most!) foods makes them taste better (and that's obviously my main concern). Cooking kills bacteria and other things that aren't so great for you (HELLOOOO, ECOLI!?). And I'm going to go ahead and side with my man Alton Brown (swoon...) on this one, and argue that the ability and common sense that we, as humanoids, possess to cook our food, is really what sets us apart from the animals and we should make use of this skill frequently. Just to show off.

And yea, I know, just because I can do something, doesn't mean I should. We all know that. But just because because someone somewhere gets the idea that something is bad for me, doesn't mean it is (helloooo.. salt, carbs, etc) or that it's any worse for me than anything else I'm doing (Who wants to go grab a drink?). I'm just a skeptic. Furthermore, I just feel that life is all about balance and eating a raw food diet is a serious extreme that I'm just not ready (or willing!) to commit myself too. I can only be so healthy or I'd go crazy. 

Besides, what the HELL do you do with your stove/oven? Store off-season clothing? Or do raw kitchens just not have one of those? What if you have to boil water? Oh wait, can you even consume boiled water? See!? It's just such a confusing lifestyle.

But like they say, live and let live and I for one won't stick my neck out there and criticize any raw foodists. It's just not for me. And I gotta say, after making these "brownies," I also think some of them have some particularly good ideas.

That being said, it is my pleasure to introduce you to the raw-food "brownie." I refuse to remove the quotes, because I just won't consider it a sub for all that chocolatey-sugary-butter-gooeyness. Not even close. The taste is actually eerily similar to that of a brownie though and I have to say, if I hadn't actually eaten a real brownie in awhile, it might be totally fooled. I am actually pretty taken aback by how good this actually is. The consistency is more that of an energy bar though, so be prepared for that.

I found this recipe today and after reading all the comments touting how amazing and decadent (yes, someone used that word to describe something made mostly from dates and walnuts) these were, I just had to see if what all those health nuts were raving about was actually that good.

No, these ingredients aren't cheap. I'm just a person who is willing to drop $20 on a baking (or not...) experiment.  Medjool dates and raw cacao powder (although I'm sure unprocessed cocoa powder would be just find) probably aren't easy to find either. A friendly neighborhood Whole Foods should really be listed as ingredient number one. 

But now that I've tried it for you (and you know you can trust my taste buds) and I've certified it "More Than Edible" (and Organic!), I think you should give it a go as well. In the name of adventure.

Raw "Brownies"
Recipe from My New Roots

2 c walnuts
1 c
raw cacao powder¼ tsp kosher salt
2 ½ c Medjool dates, pitted
1 c raw unsalted almonds, roughly chopped
Put walnuts in the bowl of a food processor and run on high until they are finely ground. Add the cacao powder and salt, and pulse until fully combined.

With the food processor running on low, drop the dates in, one at a time, using the feed tube. Make sure to cover the tube after each date is added, as it will cause the ingredients to agitate and could be a potential mess. 

In a large bowl, stir the almonds into the cacoa-walnut-date mixture.

Line a cake pan with parchment paper (this is one instance, where cutting corners will help you!). Press the "brownie batter" into the pan, using your hands. It's not as sticky as you would think. Place the brownies in the freezer until cooled before cutting.

OMG! It looks like there's butter from this angle!

Back to basics

The best part? No waiting for it to cook!

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