Monday, October 10, 2011

'Sweet Handful' Natural Fruit Snacks

Sweet Treats for a Sweet Girl

I have been experimenting in the kitchen making raw, sweet snacks using all natural ingredients - no sugar, no honey - just dried fruits, nuts and seeds. I wanted to come up with a recipe with exact amounts but discovered that providing that you throw in enough 'sticky' fruits to bind the dry ingredients you really don't need to measure anything out - hence the name I chose for our sweet treats 'Sweet Handfuls'. They contain a handful of this, a handful of that and just a splosh of water!

Our favourite combination contained a handful of

organic dates
organic, unsulphured apricots
dried cranberries (with no added sugar, purchased at the health food store)
organic dessicated coconut
goji berries
slivered almonds (you could leave out the nuts if allergies are an issue)

Place all the ingredients into a food processor and blend away! If the mix seems a little dry you can add a splosh of water.

The girls loved rolling out the mixture and cutting out shapes with cutters. They also shaped some into balls and rolled them in coconut. They insisted on placing a craisin on top to make them look like cookies but these 'cookies' did not require any baking and were ready to eat! Talk about fast food.

Time to taste test our sweet handful treats!

And the verdict? Delicous - that's double delicious by the way!

This was our second batch of raw treats for the day. Our first was raw gingerbread men - similar ingredients with just a pinch of ginger, cinnamon and cloves. We used a miniature gingerbread man cutter and rolled out the mixture with a rolling pin to ensure an even surface. The girls were not so sure about the spices when they first tried these but a second tasting produced a 'mmm - good'!

Do your children like dried fruits? Dates and apricots are a pantry staple in our home - they are chopped up and incorporated into sourdough bread, muesli and baked goods such as scones and muffins. I have noticed that my older children are not so keen on dried fruits but my younger ones who were introduced much earlier to more natural and wholesome foods love them and will eat them whole straight out of the jar. Do you make raw natural sweet treats for your family - ones that can be made quickly, that require a minimum of effort? Do share your ideas - I'd love to hear them!

Now for some experimentation with sourdough baking. I'm thinking of trying this recipe today!


Finding Joy said...

One son won't eat dried fruit, whilst the other one will so whilst they where growing up I would have to make two batches of things, one with dried fruit and one with out !! The sweet treats looks very nice, however I don't like dates so I would leave that out. Nuts would be nice in them.

Unknown said...

I also like making little fruit and nut balls, so easy in a food processor.

Renata said...

Hi Ann
These sound just delicious~ what is pepitas though?
My kids love dried fruit ~ in fact sometimes I buy those packets of dried apple/sultanas from Woolies as their shopping treat ~ much better for them than lollies or chips.
Look forward to hearing how your experiments with sourdough goes ~ my starter is still going well & we enjoy a loaf most days, but I really should experiment a bit more as I still use the same old recipe.

Anonymous said...

I love to hear of new ways to make healthy snacks for the family. Now and then I will make fruit and nut balls. Just recently I made (for the kids) blended drink with oranges, water, small amount of almond and cashews and a little agave. For my husband and I we had organic pecans. It was really delicious although my three were not too keen. A little ice added to the blender is nice.

Unknown said...

Everything sounds delicious! I need to experiment and come up with a fruit and nut ball combo that my family will like. Thanks for giving me some new treat ideas!


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