Between the weather getting colder and Halloween just a couple days away, there’s no staying away from sugar. Every where I turn there’s something sweet and tempting to eat, and I know it’s only going to get worse. After Halloween is Thanksgiving, shortly followed by Christmas and Chanukah, and whether you celebrate the holidays or not, the seasonal treats are everywhere!
Knowing that I would be home this past weekend, I was preoccupied all last week debating what I would cook and bake. Scrolling through my Pinterest boards and notes in my phone, I had plenty of ideas to choose from and as usual, way too little time home. I always feel that I have long lists of things I want to do on the weekends, and I’m never quite able to do them all. I’m always torn between taking advantage of the weekend time to rest, while also fitting in fun, errands, and socializing. So even though I could have used all my time home just in the kitchen, I knew I would have to prioritize and limit my options down.
When only cooking for myself- my time in the kitchen feels more like a chore than fun. But when home and cooking for others to enjoy, I find it a lot more fun. I get so much pleasure, and find it so rewarding seeing someone enjoy something I’ve prepared. So, my criteria for picking what to make was that I wanted it to appeal to everyone. With that in mind, I decided to make my date balls. Naturally sweet in theme with the season, these satisfy even the sweetest tooth using a short list of only healthy ingredients. They also come together in no time at all. After combining the ingredients in the food processor, I simply rolled the balls and covered them with extra shredded coconut. My true taste- test is always if my 15 year old sister goes for what I make, so she was the first person I shared these with- and I can proudly report that she came back for seconds and thirds.
In contract to all the beautiful colors of the season, there is something grounding and comforting about these monochromatic simple treats. They’re easy enough to make for yourself to enjoy as a snack or after meal bite, but special enough to serve to guests or bring as a side to a holiday meal or party.
Almond Coconut Truffles
8 ounces of Dates*
1/4 cup Slivered Blanched Almonds
2 teaspoons Vanilla
1/4 cup Unsweetened Cocoa
1/4 cup Shredded Unsweetened Coconut, plus more for rolling
If dates are fresh and still sticky skip this step, but if they are hardened soak them in hot water for 10- 20 minutes.
Using a food processor with the “S” blade, process dates until they are chopped small. Add in the remaining ingredients and continue to blend until well combined. Roll into balls, and then coat with shredded coconut by rolling the balls into shredded coconut on a plate.