Thursday, April 17, 2014
By JEFF PETERSON
Most people think when you decide to become vegan, sweet tasty snacks go away with the meat, dairy and eggs. I am here to tell you that is far from the truth.
There are many snacks and desserts you can make that are healthy and don't contain processed sugar. Check out this raw lemon bar recipe from local nutritionist Sara Sullivan.
This dessert is perfect for the summer because you don't have to use the oven. The lemon bars taste good and are very healthy for you.
Something I didn't know initially is that some health specialists say eating one date per day is beneficial for a balanced and healthy diet. Dates are high in fiber and calcium, among other things. Cashews and walnuts are good for you as well.
Strawberries, a super-food that is high in antioxidants, are also included in this recipe. You don't have to spend a lot of time in the kitchen either because raw lemon bars are easy to make, although you'll need a decent food processor.
Try this tasty treat and enjoy that vegan thing.
RAW LEMON BARS
1 cup almonds
11/2 cups soft dates
1 vanilla bean or 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
Zest from one organic lemon (Do not omit this; it's what gives the bars the lemony flavor.)
2 tablespoons organic lemon juice or freshly squeezed
11/4 cups dried coconut
3/4 Celtic sea salt
Place almonds in food processor and process into fine powder. Add dates, vanilla, lemon juice and lemon zest to processor. Once everything seems pretty well processed, set mixture aside for a moment.
In a large mixing bowl, place the fried coconut and salt. Mix with a spoon to distribute sea salt. Now dump your food processor mixture into the mixing bowl. Mix everything together with clean hands so that it's nicely combined and resembling a delicious lemon bar dough.
Transfer the dough into your final dish with your hands so that the mixture sticks together nicely. Ideally, you should refrigerate your raw lemon bars for about an hour so that they really stick together and are easy to cut. Cut strawberries into quarters and place them on top of bars to add to taste and visual appeal.
Jeff Peterson anchors the 5 a.m. and 5 p.m. news on WGME-TV and is a vegan.