Delicious raw cacao balls PLUS an avocado salad!

My sincerest apologies for taking so long to post my first blog.  Life has been very busy.

I thought I would start with a raw, delicious and healthful recipe for kids lunches, as well as a simple salad for mum’s ‘lunchbox’ or as an addition to dinner.

RAW CACAO BALLS

1 cup almonds (Soaked overnight and rinsed, or raw)

2 tbsp Cacao powder (This powder is different to cocoa powder as it’s not processed and therefore very high in magnesium)

5 fresh dates (the juicy plump ones), or 10 smaller dried dates from a packet

1/4 cup coconut, desiccated

Blend all ingredients together in a blender or food processor and add tablespoons of coconut oil to moisten the mixture to a consistency perfect for rolling into balls (depending on whether the almonds are soaked or not, I can use no coconut oil or 2-4 tablespoons).

Roll into balls & refrigerate or freeze.  

Delicious!

Almonds are particularly healthy when soaked, as well as providing both protein and calcium to our diet.  Cacao powder is a fantastic source of magnesium and fresh dates contain iron.  These delicious raw balls are perfect for all ages!

ROAST PUMPKIN, GREEN BEANS AND AVOCADO SALAD

1 small pumpkin, peeled and cut into 2cm cubes

1 tbsp ground cumin

2 tbsp olive oil

200g green beans (top and tailed)

100g baby spinach leaves

2 avocados cut into 2cm cubes

100g chopped macadamia nuts, toasted or flaked almonds

Dressing:

1tbsp honey

2tbsp Tamari (wheat free soy sauce)*

¼ cup olive oil

Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

  Preheat the oven to 200degC. Line an oven tray with non stick baking paper. Place pumpkin, cumin and olive oil on the tray and toss to coat.

  Roast the pumpkin in a preheated oven for 20-25mins. Toss occasionally, or until cooked through and coloured on the edges. Place in a large serving bowl.

  Meanwhile, bring a medium pan of water to the boil over high heat. Add beans and cook for 2-3 mins. Drain and refresh in cold or iced water.  Add to serving bowl.

  Add spinach, avocado and nuts to the bowl and drizzle the dressing over.

*Tamari is available from health food shops and supermarkets in the health food section.

Avocados are super foods.  They are fantastic for women, in particular pregnant women, as they assist in balancing hormones.  Surprisingly, they actually take 9 months to grow from blossom to ripened fruit.  We have both good and bad cholesterol in our bodies – avocados lower our bad cholesterol (LDL) and raise our good cholesterol (HDL) which assists in the manufacture of our hormones.  Avocados balance blood sugar levels and regulate blood pressure due to their high concentration of potassium (twice as much as bananas).  Natural oils in avocados also help to improve dry skin and brittle nails.

For my first post I thought I’d get the ball rolling with some delicious and healthy recipes.  I look forward to sharing more healthy knowledge soon.  If you haven’t read my article on green smoothies in the latest edition of Cairns Parenting Companion, grab a copy now!  Everyone can benefit from delicious green smoothies!  

Happy healthful eating!

Janelle.