When I was reading Fellowship of the Ring, I was immediately drawn to Goldenberry. She was just such an organic and angelic character that I found reminiscent of the faerie queens I had read about when I was younger. The name Goldenberry also brought to mind a delightfully sweet and tangy golden berry. At the time, I figured that golden berries didn’t exist, and that the name was simply something that Tolkein had thrown together. Only a month later, though, I got a super food cookbook where one of the ingredients highlighted were golden berries, or cape gooseberries if you prefer. In any case, they looked delightful and I have been bound and determined to get my hands on them ever since then. I haven’t been able to get my hands on said golden berries, though…
In any case, I did happen to get my hands on a dried fruit blend from Trader Joe’s called Golden Berry. This blend is a tangy/sweet combination of golden raisins, cherries, cranberries, and blueberries. With this blend on my hands, I decided to make a rich, sweet, nutrient-dense bar fit for adventures!
Returning now to the Lord of the Rings theme, these are assuredly great bars to pack for a day of travel. The dry fruits provide wholesome sugars to deliver instant energy without a subsequent crash, while the protein and fats in the nuts help to sustain. In addition, I threw in my favorite seeds. Chia seeds. These little suckers are great and amazingly versatile. In these bars, they serve to offer their bountiful nutrients as well as to help curb hunger. The seeds readily absorb water and expand in your stomach to help keep you full and fueled! (I don’t know, was that last sentence kind of weird…?)
These are adventure bars. Make them and then go make some memories having adventures!
GOLDENBERRY CHIA BARS
Inspired by The Kitchn, http://www.thekitchn.com/how-to-make-easy-3-ingredient-energy-bars-at-home-cooking-lessons-from-the-kitchn-184306. If you don’t readily have access to a Trader Joe’s, feel free to make your own Golden Berry blend with equal parts golden raisins, dried cherries, dried cranberries, and dried blueberries. If you don’t want to go that far, however, you can always just use one of the four.
- 150 grams / 1 cup dry roasted almonds (roasting is optional, but doing it really makes these bars something else)
- 200 grams / 1 cup pitted medjool dates
- 100 grams / 3/4 cup Trader Joe’s Golden Berry Blend
- 40 grams / 1/4 cup chia seeds
- 40 grams / 1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
- a pinch of fine flake sea salt
- a shot of pure vanilla extract
Pulse almonds, dates, and golden berry blend until crumbly. Add in the chia seeds, coconut, sea salt, and vanilla extract and process. Process for minute-long intervals, scraping down the sides of the bowl between intervals. Grind until a dough forms. Turn the dough out onto some wax paper, and use your fingers to form a rough 8×8-inch square. Wrap in wax paper and chill for at least an hour or overnight. Once chilled, slice into 8 large bars or 16 smaller bars. Store in an airtight container for weeks in the fridge or several months in the freezer.
Makes 8-16 servings