Tuesday, 14 February 2017

Date and Walnut Truffles: Valentine's Day inspired recipe

Valentine's Day recipe, healthy dessert

Yesterday evening I was fuming on Facebook, saying that the prize of the "romantic" of the century goes to my dear husband who planned to have a high table dinner in his college tonight. He's a typical Oxford don, who doesn't take any notice of the "important" dates.
But thankfully, he managed to cancel so we had our Valentine's meal at home after all.
I didn't bake a cake, but bought profiteroles at M&S, and made some delicious date and walnut truffles.

Heart shaped truffles are a perfect treat for Valentine's day. They are easy and quick to make, and are a healthy alternative to chocolate.

Date Truffles (recipe courtesy of Forest Feast)
7 Forest Feast Medjool Dates, pitted
65g pecans (any nuts can be used)
85g ground almonds
30g cocoa powder + more for dusting
1/2tsp vanilla
pinch sea salt (add to taste)

- Soak the dates in hot water for a few minutes to soften. Drain and squeeze out excess water.
- Finely grind pecans (or walnuts), ground almonds and cocoa powder in food processor. Add dates, vanilla and sea salt. Pulse until a sticky ball forms.
- Taste & add more salt if necessary.
- Take small balls & place into silicone mould.

- Pop into the freezer overnight
- Once hard, pop out of the heart-shaped mould and roll in Cocoa powder.

I used walnuts rather than pecans, because I prefer their taste, and also couldn't find any pecans in M&S today, which was the only shop I managed to pop in today after taking my son on a playdate. I also used a little bit more cocoa.
These truffles don't really need an overnight stay in the freezer. I took mine out of the mould after and hour and a half in the freezer, and they were perfectly fine.
Very moreish snacks. I can easily eat the whole lot. My husband loved them too. Kids are not big fans of dates, so didn't fancy trying.

Valentine's day recipes, healthy snacks

In this recipe I used Medjool Dates from Forest Feast. They come in sealed pouches, for freshness. These are aromatic, melt in the mouth dates, plump and sweet.

healthy snacks

Medjool dates are a great healthy snack, and also a fantastic ingredient for baking and cooking. How about a sticky date pudding, with caramel or butterscotch sauce?!

Forest Fruit Smart and Hearty Dates, 100g (RRP £1.99) are a nutritional powerhouse of minerals, energy and fibre, and have been selected as they contain no added sugar, additives or preservatives.
Known for their caramel flavour and plump flesh, Forest Feast Medjool Dates, 180g (RRP £2.85) are a tasty snack or the perfect addition to cooking or baking.

"Now considered a superfood, dates were previously viewed as boring fruit that only featured at Christmas. Today however, dates have once again found the love they deserve.

And here are a few facts about dates:
- Dates are a rich source of amino acids, which are known to increase sexual stamina and libido. Therefore, dates are a popular aphrodisiac, especially in North African countries.
- Dates are also the symbol of the goddess Ishtar, the goddess of fertility, love, sex and power.
- Indeed, is is believed by some scholars that it was a date and not an apple used by Eve to lure Adam in the Bible's Garden of Eden - the ultimate temptation.
- The word "date" comes from the Greek word daktylos, meaning finger.
- There are hundreds of different varieties of dates but Medjool are the hardest to grow. This, coupled with their soft, sticky, caramel quality make them the most luxurious dates on the market.

healthy snacks

Disclosure: I received three packs of Medjool dates and a silicone mould for the purposes of testing the recipe. All opinions are our own.

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