Saturday, 21 April 2012

Trail Mix Balls

Chewy Balls of Goodness
Quinoa is all the rage. Amirite? It seems like everyone is a goddamn expert on the stuff and everyone was using it in everything before anyone else even knew what it was.


I'll be the first to admit that I'm nowhere near a quinoa pro. I second guess myself EVERY TIME I make the stuff. It's almost always either over or undercooked. Oh well. Practice makes perfect!

This recipe was originally called "Chocolate Chip Quinoa Trail Mix Balls". Not entirely sure why quinoa is in the name because A. you can't really see it B. you can't taste it C. the quinoa totally plays second fiddle to all of the other ingredients.

That said, these are pretty tasty and they are seriously FILLING. And you KNOW that means something coming from a fat kid. I made some altercations to the original recipe, though. I used desiccated coconut because that's what I had on hand - although desiccated coconut is pretty close to the unsweetened shredded kind - just quite a bit more dry. I doubled the oatmeal because it was just a little too wet (I blame that on my inability to cook quinoa like a boss) and doubled the peanut butter to assist in binding the ballage. Also, I wanted to use dried cranberries but settled for a mixed blend of dried sultanas, raisins and orange peel. Why? Because it was waaaaaay cheaper than dried cranberries. Mama didn't raise no fool.

They're super moist and flavorful and in my experience, get better the longer they sit. Today is day 3 and they taste fantastic.

These guys are great for snacks, breakfast "on the go" or a damn-close-to-guilt-free late night snicky snack. Nom nom nom.

Enjoy my slightly altered take on this great recipe!


2 cups old fashioned or quick-cooking oats, dry

1/4 cup quinoa, dry + 3/4 cup water

1/4 cup desiccated coconut

1/3 cup unsalted sunflower seeds

1/2 cup dark chocolate chips

1/3 cup dried fruit of your choice

1 tsp vanilla extract

2 tbsp peanut butter

1/3 cup honey

1/2 tsp coarse sea salt (optional)

1. Combine the quinoa and water in a small sauce pan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for about 12 minutes, until quinoa has absorbed all the liquid. Fluff and scoop quinoa into a large mixing bowl.

2. Add sunflower seeds, oats, dried fruit, and coconut to quinoa and mix well.

3. Bring honey to a simmer on the stove then stir in the vanilla extract and pour on top of nuts and seeds. Mix until well combined.

4. Let mixture cool before adding the chocolate chips and peanut butter. Mix well with your hands so the peanut butter is evenly dispersed but be careful not to melt the chocolate chips!

5. Using wet hands, gently roll mixture into golf ball-sized balls.
6. Place balls on a plate and sprinkle salt over the top (optional)

7. Chill for at least two hours until firm.

(in case you missed it up top, original recipe found here)

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