Friday, 11 April 2014

Carrot Cake Bites

Time for a bit of an infomercial....

Do you crave the moist, carrots goodness of carrot cake, but have to resist due to all of the flour, sugar, added extras that often come with that special treat? Then look no further!!these carrot cake bites taste just like the real thing, but contain no gluten, grains, dairy, soy, or refined sugar, and don't even need baking! Full of nutritious nuts, carrots, and a great selection of spices, these will satisfy even the most avid carrot cake fan :) 

Seriously though, these are so tasty, and you could just about get away with eating these for breakfast! 

Carrot Cake Balls
Gluten-free, grain-free, dairy-free, soy-free, free of refined sugar

1 large carrot (or 2 small), grated
6 medjool dates (or regular dried dates, you may just want to soak in hot water for 10 mins to soften first)
1/2 cup raw walnuts
1tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp ginger powder (or you can use fresh grated ginger if you want a real ginger hit)
1/2 tsp cardamom powder
1 tbsp coconut oil
Pinch of salt

1/2 cup cashew nuts, soaked preferably overnight (you don't need to do this if time is tight, it just sprouts the nuts and also makes them nice and soft)
Juice of half a lemon
Zest of half a lemon
2 tbsp maple syrup

1. In a food processor or blender, pulse the walnuts and dates to make a fine crumb. 
2. Add the cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, cardamom, coconut oil, and salt. Process until well combined. 
3. Now you can choose to either add the carrots and pulse to combine which will make a smoother 'bite' or you can scrape the nut mix into a bowl and then stir the carrot in if you prefer a more rustic style. Either way tastes great!
4. Form into bite sized balls, or push into mould and freeze or refrigerate until firm. 
5. While the bites are chilling, you can make the icing. In a small food processor or blender, combine all ingredients (cashews, lemon juice, lemon zest, and maple syrup) and blend until smooth. My one was not very smooth because I am very impatient which is why it looks chunky in the pic, and I quite liked the texture of the nuts, but if you prefer a smoother texture just keep blending!
6. Remove the bites from the chiller and top with dollops of the icing. 
7. Store in the fridge in an airtight container