[Note: this recipe is now available in my cookbook, Naturally Sweet and Gluten-Free, along with over 100 more refined sugar-free, gluten-free, egg-free and dairy-free treats!]
[Grab a few of these babies and while away the afternoon. . . . photo credit for photo above: Celine Saki]
Seriously, what more do you need than the word “bon bons” in a recipe title to know you want to make these asap?
Still need more? Okay, then, how about this:
- GINGER SNAP!
- LOW GLYCEMIC!
- COOKIE DOUGH-LIKE FILLING!
- AMAZING COCONUT-CINNAMON COATING!!
- I ATE SIX OF THEM IN LESS THAN 10 MINUTES!!!
(Oh, wait. Did I say that last one out loud?)
I got the inspiration for these little balls of bliss from the recent Raw Cake Pop event co-hosted by Lisa of Vegan Culinary Crusade and Nicole of A Dash of Compassion. I was late to the party and didn’t have a chance to enter the event, but just looking at all those innovative cake pops made me want to try my own hand at these confections. Even missing the necessary equipment (just imagine they’re beckoning from atop a lollypop stick), I forged ahead anyway. As soon as I saw Deanna’s raw cake pops, each irresistible orb in its own shiny white coat(ing), I knew I’d use that for my recipe, too. But what about the all-important interior?
[And also delicious as a snack without the coating.]
While I’ve made raw chocolate chip cookie dough before and absolutely loved it, this time I wanted to go for a less common flavor (but one I love equally well). One of my all-time favorite recipes in my sugar-fheavy, pre-ACD, pre-gluten-free, pre-HH days was called Triple Ginger Cookies from that 80s and 90s staple, the Silver Palate cookbook. It’s a mélange of molasses, three kinds of ginger and loads o’ brown sugar that bakes up into chewy, crackly, intensely ginger cookies that are extremely addictive.
Without the candied ginger (or most of the other ingredients), I decided to go for the same ginger intensity. To reproduce the distinctive bite of molasses, I chose yacon syrup, which has a slightly milder flavor and not quite the same mineral undertones, but worked well nonetheless. I also added more spice to the mix, with cinnamon and a touch of cloves to balance out the ginger. These are great eaten on their own without adornment, but if you have the time and inclination, the “white chocolate” coconut coating is a showstopper. It firms up completely after a few minutes in the freezer and remains firm at room temperature, so you can line these up on a plate and serve at the end of a dinner party or on a buffet table. Or, if you’re like me, you serve them for no particular occasion at all. . .mostly because you just like the word, “bon bons.”
[A mouth-watering bite of gingery cookie dough bliss.]
Raw Gingersnap Cookie Bon Bons
The variations are endless for these yummy bites–either press into a loaf pan and cut in squares, or roll into balls and coat in “white chocolate” coating for a mind-blowingly good treat (and an impressive gift). The balls are great without the coating, too, for a healthy snack, or frost the bars with icing before cutting–either way, they won’t last long.
2/3 cup (110 g) raw natural almonds
2/3 cup (110 g) raw or lightly toasted cashews
2/3 cup (65 g) old-fashioned rolled oats (not instant or quick cook)
2 tsp (10 ml) cinnamon
1/4 tsp (1 ml) ground cloves
2 tsp (10 ml) whole chia seeds, measured and then ground into a powder in a coffee grinder
Pinch fine sea salt
1 Tbsp (15 ml) finely grated fresh ginger pulp
2 Tbsp (30 ml) yacon syrup
50-70 drops plain or vanilla stevia liquid, to your taste (about 1/2 tsp/2.5 ml)
up to 2 Tbsp (30 ml) almond or soy milk, as needed
“White Chocolate” Coating (adapted from this recipe):
2 cups (160 g) raw unsweetened shredded coconut
2 Tbsp (30 ml) coconut oil, preferably organic
15-25 drops plain or vanilla liquid stevia, to your taste
1/2 tsp (2.5 ml) pure vanilla extract
extra cinnamon, if desired, for sprinkling
Make the dough: Place the almonds, cashews, oats, cinnamon, cloves, chia and salt in the bowl of a food processor and process until the mixture resembles a very fine meal (like a coarse cornmeal). Add the remaining ingredients and process until it begins to come together in a ball. It should look fairly dry but stick together when pinched between your thumb and fingers. Add milk only if absolutely necessary to make the dough stick together; it should not be wet.
Using a small scoop or a teaspoon, scoop the dough and form into balls. Place on a plate in the freezer to firm up and become very cold, 10-20 minutes. (Alternately, press the “dough” in the bottom of a loaf pan and refrigerate).
Prepare the coating: Place all ingredients in the container of a high-powered blender and blend until perfectly smooth and liquid, about 5 minutes, scraping down sides as necessary. Pour the mixture into a small, deep bowl. (If you don’t have a high-powered blended, you can first process the mixture in a food processor until it comes together and looks like coconut butter, up to 10 mintues. It should be loose. Transfer the coating to a regular blender and blend, in batches if necessary, until perfectly smooth and liquid. Transfer to a bowl).
Coat the bon bons: Line a large, flat plate with plastic wrap and set aside. Dip each ball in the coconut coating until it is completely covered. Scoop out carefully with a fork, and tap the fork handle on the edge of the bowl so that excess coating drips back into the bowl. Place on the plate and return to the freezer until coating is solid (about 5 minutes); then repeat the coating process once more. Sprinkle gently with cinnamon, if desired. Once the coating is hard, the bon bons may be kept in the refrigerator. Makes about 20 bon bons. Store, covered, in the refrigerator up to one week.
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