Frigid weather and the region’s related power outages have me thinking about nutrient-dense foods that can be kept on hand in the case of emergencies, stashed in the car or tossed into a backpack.
Better than commercially made “power bars” are homemade “energy bites.” A scaled-down version of grab-and-go snacks, energy bites are popping up at coffee shops, juice bars, artisan bakeries, online recipe sites and social media such as Pinterest.
Like the oatmeal bars featured in this blog’s previous post, this recipe from the Kansas City Star would be another fast fueling option for athletes. And a batch will keep for weeks in the refrigerator or transferred to resealable plastic bags and frozen for up to three months. Or in this weather, just plop them on the back porch.
1 cup pitted, dried dates (such as Medjool)
1 (6-ounce) package dried apricots, about 1 cup
1 cup pecan halves or chopped pecans, toasted (see note)
1 tablespoon honey
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon (optional)
1/2 cup finely chopped nuts or shredded sweet coconut (optional)
Place the dates, apricots and pecans in bowl of a food processor. Process until finely chopped. Add the honey and cinnamon, if using, and pulse to combine.
Use a heaping tablespoon to form mixture into approximately 16 balls. Use your hands to roll balls and make solid.
If desired, roll balls in more chopped nuts or the shredded coconut.
If not serving immediately, refrigerate. These can be enjoyed straight from refrigerator or allowed to stand at room temperature for 30 minutes.
Makes 16 balls.
NOTE: To toast nuts, preheat oven to 350 F. Spread nuts in a single layer on a baking sheet. Bake in preheated oven for 5 to 7 minutes or until lightly toasted.