I was talking to my mom the other day, and she told me I had to post some paleo recipes; it’s the latest craze, she tells me.
In a nutshell the paleo diet= no grains, legumes, dairy products, potatoes, refined salt, refined sugar, and processed oils. One can enjoy fish, pasture-fed meat, fruit & veggies, nuts and eggs (thank you Wikipedia)
So of course, right after she mentioned the word paleo I could not stop thinking about paleo. Paleo. Paleo. Paleo. I scoured over my repertoire and it turns out that I actually have a few paleo recipes. Then it got me thinking about my fig + cherry bites.
And yes, they’re paleo.
What I’ve learned about this recipe is that it’s very flexible; it’s more of a method if anything. You take some sticky dried fruit (figs, dates, etc.) and blitz them up in the food processor. This is your base. Combine your base with some additional dried fruit and nuts. Finish by rolling them in unsweetened coconut flakes. It only takes about 15 minutes to put together and your food processor does most of the work. Easy peasy.
Keep in mind, you don’t have to be paleo to enjoy these little bites. They’re simply a satisfying sweet treat without the guilt. My kids even like them (they think they’re meatballs though…). They’re great for curbing that 3PM snack attack and for breakfast on the go.
They look like truffles, don’t they?
*For paleo purists, you might want to leave out the chocolate chips in this recipe. However, if you’re up for some chocolatey goodness, choose an all-natural, 70% dark chocolate free of any additives. My paleo friend recommends the brand, Enjoy Life semi-sweet mini chocolate chips (gluten, dairy, soy & nut free).
- 14 dried kalamata figs
- 1 c. dried cherries (or cranberries)
- 1 c. chopped hazelnuts (or walnuts)
- ⅓ c. dark chocolate chips*
- ½ tsp. cinnamon
- 1 tsp. vanilla
- 1 tbsp. maple syrup + more to taste
- 1 c. unsweetened coconut flakes or shreds
- Before you begin, line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Add the coconut flakes to a large bowl for rolling. Note: if using large coconut flakes (instead of shreds), pulse them 1-2 times in a food processor for smaller pieces. They will be easier to roll this way.
- In a large food processor, add the cherries and hazelnuts. Pulse 2 or 3 times until roughly chopped. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.
- Now add the figs, cinnamon, vanilla and maple syrup to the food processor. Run the machine until the figs form a sticky paste. If your mixture is not quite sticky enough, add a teaspoon of water or juice to bring everything together.
- Add back the cherries, hazelnuts, and chocolate chips and pulse 2 or 3 times to combine the mixture. Taste and add more maple syrup if necessary. Remove the blade and get ready to start rolling.
- Using a small cookie scoop (or 1 tbsp. measuring spoon) form the mixture into balls and transfer right into the bowl of coconut flakes. Roll them around to coat and place onto your lined cookie sheet. Repeat until you have used up all of the mixture.
- Enjoy right away or refrigerate until ready to use.