RANT: Big Bags o’ Candy

Remember when ‘needles in candy’ were the big Halloween scare?

Now I find it frightening to see the pounds of Halloween candy that line the aisles of our already sugar laden grocery stores.

Did you ever have the neighbor gave out apples each year? I hated that.

I now want to high-five that neighbor.

We also had a dentist in our neighborhood that gave out toothbrushes, as a kid, I found that hugely disappointing….

Disappointment quickly forgotten once we found the neighbor next door wasn’t home and had left a large bowl of unchaperoned candy for the taking.

Years later, while in medical school, on Halloween night, I had run out of candy.  I turned of the porch light, which I believe is the universal sign for ” No more candy-I’m not home- I’m done for the night”.

Some pesky high schoolers continued to knock on my door, unrelentingly. I finally acquiesced, explaining through a cracked door, I was all out of the good stuff but  I managed to dig up some microwave popcorn and Big Red Chewing gum.  An exceedingly  altruistic offering, I might add, only to find the wrappers of the above offerings all over my lawn the next morning.  Ingrates!

That was the end of my candy giving career. Now there are only tricks at this house!

So, how many pieces of candy is it reasonable to give out? for your kids to eat? And at want point is it OK to trash the Halloween bounty? How many treats do we allow? Do we trick our kids into being healthy? How many tricks must we play to treat our kids healthfully?

RECIPE: Decadent Dessert Truffles

Who doesn’t need a chocolate fix every now and again…and again…and again?!?

This recipe was passed along to me by a fellow chocolate addict from A Raw Food/Vegetarian website, and they are delish.  Don’t let the raw, vegetarian tag scare you–just means they are extra-healthy.

A little longer than I like for prep time, but just because I’m impatient doesn’t mean I shouldn’t pass them along to you all!

bon bons

 

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Soak Time: 1 hour

Total Time: 1 hour, 20 minutes

Yield: 14 bonbons

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup dates, tightly packed, preferably medjool
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup agave nectar, honey or maple syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon cardamom powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • Pinch sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 cup raw cacao powder
  • 3/4 cup chopped soaked nuts, (almonds, walnuts, pecans, macadamia)
  • 1/4 cup dried fruit (raisins, cherries, cranberries, blueberries)

Preparation:

Place the dates in a food processor and process on high speed for 10 seconds. Add the coconut oil, agave nectar, cardamom, cinnamon, sea salt and vanilla and process again for 10 to 20 seconds or until the mixture is thoroughly combined and the consistency of marzipan. Add the cacao powder and process again for another 10 seconds.

Transfer to a mixing bowl, add the chopped nuts and dried fruit and mix well. Use an ice cream scooper with a release lever, or a spoon, to scoop out your desired size of bonbon onto a parchment paper lined plate or tray. Chill for at least 30 minutes.

You could probably get away without soaking the nuts…you decide [and insert joke about it here]

RECIPE: Strawberry Smoothie

So you’ve heard “juicing” is all the rage and wanna check out a nutritious smoothie option, but don’t have pomagranite seeds or kumquats? Or maybe you’re just looking for something a little less noxious than a pop-tart or egg McMuffin to start your day, but don’t wanna get too crazy health-nutty….This is the ‘starter’ smoothie for you.  I always have these ingredients in my freezer, so that if the veggie drawer and fruit bowl are empty, I can still whip up a deliciously healthy smoothie!  It’s my “go to”.  My “safety smoothie”.  My back up plan. My —I think you get the idea.

I recommend freezing any produce that’s about to go bad, so you can throw it in your own version of a “go to smoothie”—or you can let it rot in the fruit bowl and start a fruit fly farm! Your call.

strawb sp smoothi

Combine the following ingredients in a blender and drink it* in!

1 cup frozen organic spinach

5-6 frozen organic strawberries

1 cup water

1-2 dashes of cinnamon

1-2 Tbsp of honey or maple syrup

(* “it” being the amazing healthy, nutritional wonderfulness, but also the smoothie itself)

 

[photo hijacked from http://www.natashaskitchen.com]