Yesterday was Diwali and while I am not the religious type I did grow up in a partially Hindu household. Diwali is the festival of lights where the goddess Lakshmi is worshiped, and many, many desserts are made and consumed!
I remember Diwali being a really festive event at my grandparents’ house in Trinidad. Family would get together to celebrate, eat tons of desserts and light up a million diyas (candles). Those days are long gone but randomly, on Facebook of all places, I saw it was Diwali yesterday and thought I would have my own mini-celebration. I found this recipe and it inspired me to make some raw barfi (gasp!).
Barfi is traditionally made by using powdered milk, cream and sugar and boiled to death. It tastes like an East Indian fudge and is yummy, I will admit, but is a far cry from what I would consume today! I love the flavour but not all the dairy, sugar and processing. The recipe uses a whole food sweetener that will not leach nutrients from the body and is full of healthy fat containing almonds and cashews. In my humble opinion (and my picky fiancé’s too), the recipe below is nutrient dense, flavourful and hits that sweet spot well 🙂
Serves 2, please buy organic if possible
- ¾ cup of half cashews and half almonds (preferably sprouted then dehydrated)
- 2 medjool dates
- 1/8 tsp freshly ground cardamom
- Himalayan pink salt to taste (1/8 tsp)
- 1 tbsp of water
1. Process nuts into a fine powder in a food processor OR high-powered blender.
2. Add medjool dates and process until finely ground.
3. Add water, salt and cardamom to nut-date mixture in food processor and process until a dough-like consistency.
If using a blender, remove nut-date mixture and place into a bowl, then add water, salt and cardamom and knead into a dough-like mixture.
4. Spread mixture onto a non stick mat and roll into a 1/4-1/2 inch thickness.
5. Cut into squares and serve. Alternatively, you may leave it in the freezer to set for a few minutes then serve.
6. Eat and enjoy your amazing healthy, raw and yummy dessert!
Better for you ingredients:
- a rich source of minerals like manganese, potassium (nerve function), calcium (bone health), iron (blood health), magnesium (calming and important for fat metabolism), zinc (for great skin), and selenium (part of a powerful antioxidant complex in the body)
- rich in mono-unsaturated fatty acids like oleic and palmitoleic acids that help keep the heart healthy
- great source of B vitamins which help in energy production and are especially needed in times of stress
- contain vitamin E which is a powerful antioxidant that not only protects the body from free radicals but helps your skin look great!
Reference: The World’s Healthiest Foods by George Mateljan