6 Nov 2014

ALMOND BUTTER + CHIA JAM BARS with CHOCOLATE


I am getting back into dreaming of recipe ideas. It used to be my main source of creativity for my blog, but after writing Rawsome Vegan Baking my mind for thinking up raw vegan sweets was basically run dry temporarily. Now I am fortunately returning to the familiar groove that is imagining new recipes as I am falling into dreamland, or just waking from it. I have also been perfecting a super healthy, super easy curry recipe for ya'll. Stay tuned. 



These bars are gooey, sweet, and comfortable. Maybe you think comfortable is a weird adjective for food, but I think it's appropriate. Of course this recipe is reminiscent of PB&J (aka the stuff of childhood), so the flavour combo brings back memories for me of being young and not having a substantial care in the world. Comfort. I will be the first to admit these bars can get messy. So have a napkin handy... or #yolo it and proudly wear bits of jam and chocolate on your face for the remainder of the day, I won't judge. Isn't getting a bit dirty part of life, anyway? 

I've been focusing lately on remembering to live in the moment and 'be here now' as my wrist tattoo dictates. I get so caught up in all of the responsibilities I have to myself and others, and the seemingly endless lists of tasks I need to complete at any given time. It's like I am attempting to be perfect - i.e. clean and not dirty - because I believe that is the only standard I can hold myself to, otherwise I'll let myself down along with everyone else who I think is counting on me. Then I inevitably remember that NO ONE is perfect, and I am only human; a human with many faults. This gives me a lot of comfort, re-realizing I can let myself get dirty. I breathe a deep sigh of relief and then allow my mind and body to take a break, chill out, then eventually get back to work. I do love what I am always so busy doing - studying history at university, maintaining my blog, writing cookbooks, spending time with loved ones, exercising, making and eating delicious healthy food, and communicating - A LOT - with you guys. My life is a blessing! I do not subscribe to any organized religions but I AM constantly thankful for the gift of life I have been given by whatever forces rule our world and universe. It seems pretty miraculous to be alive and be aware of such a reality. I struggle with myself a lot, mentally, spiritually and emotionally, about the nature of being human - especially in this age of modernity - but I can usually calm myself down with the fact that no matter what this crazy cosmos means or doesn't mean, I am fortunate enough to have a healthy body, an intelligent, self-aware mind, a very comfortable lifestyle, and be surrounded by people with whom I share mutual love. I am keenly conscious of the fact that most of the global population doesn't get to enjoy some if any of those luxuries; this just makes me more grateful, and eager for the worldwide standards of living and human rights to balance out. I imagine us to be living in an awakening era, caught between the industrial revolution and the future of environmentalism and more responsible human agency, and sometimes it saddens me to know I won't be here to see our society finally bloom into the more compassionate, ethical, open-minded, earth-conscious community I believe we will become. However, it gives me great comfort merely believing in this future. 

At the end of the day, even though I let myself get stressed out over school, my blog, my books, my relationships, myself, existentialism, and the exhaustive list of world problems... I am always able to remind myself that to face these challenges successfully I need to be happy, not anxious or upset. Knowing this reminds me I don't have to be perfect. It reminds me I am just one person, trying to make sense of this ridiculous, amazing, strange thing we call life. It reminds me it's okay to get dirty, because that is part of life. 

Now let's eat.


ALMOND BUTTER + CHIA JAM BARS with CHOCOLATE 

Almond butter base:
1 cups rolled oats 
1/2 cup almond butter
1 tablespoon maple syrup 
1/4 cup flax seeds

Jam: 
1 cup berries
4 tablespoons chia seeds

Chocolate:
Click here for the recipe.

To make the base: grind the rolled oats into flour in a blender, then mix together with the other ingredients in a bowl. Press into the bottom of a lined bread pan (I used two small ones). Put in the fridge. 

To make the jam: mash or blend the berries until smooth, then thoroughly stir in the chia seeds and let it sit for 10-15 minutes so the chia seeds can gel with the mashed berries and thicken into jam. Spread this onto your base, then drizzle on the chocolate evenly. I swirled in some more almond butter at this point because... why not. Stick it back in the fridge and let sit for an hour, then slice and munch! Note: slice them carefully, the jam is gooey... 

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28 comments:

  1. These photos! So simple, so delicious. I want 20 of these bars!

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  2. I love the fact that the base can be made in a bowl!! And a berry chia jam is always a good idea ^_^

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  3. Sounds and looks gooood! And so easy :) love it

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  4. Wow, I am an American Woman and proud of it despite your Anonymous commenter's views........Weh!
    Anyway,
    I love these bars and I bet that goey chocolatey square didn't last long after you took that pic ;0
    Ever since your smoothie recipe for the Breakfast In Bed event, I've been a Chia freak, using them in just about anything I can including plain water! I went through a phase with them years ago and don't know why I stopped. Thanks for your inspiration as always Emily. In some ways, hearing you makes me remember how complicated things were for me in my 20's. You'll figure a lot of it out I'm sure and be less stressed! Here's to that day for you and for these delicious bars ♥♥

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  5. hey emily why you use oat ?

    maybe if you try buckwheat floor with mesquite pod floor, almond floor and maple syrup.

    oat contains gluten.

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  6. Ooops, you did it again. These look great.
    Glad you're feeling clearer about stuff
    Wishing you well
    Kimberly

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  7. @Anonymous - you can do that, sure! FYI there are gluten-free oats available, but you can always replace oats with buckwheat groats if you prefer :)

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  8. These look so delicious! And totally agree with everything you said, I definitely need to take that advice recently!

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  9. Hi,
    This is for anonymous who stated Oats contain Gluten. They naturally do not contain Gluten as this article and many reputable articles explain;

    http://www.cureceliacdisease.org/archives/faq/do-oats-contain-gluten

    And the reason why some brands or types of Oats are not labelled Gluten-free is due to the fact that some Oats are processed with the same machinery that processes Wheat or gluten-containing products.

    I stress it's really important for people to do PROPER, balanced research on food if they can before stating facts that may be untrue.

    Sophia

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  10. P.S I LOVE this recipe.... hmmmm.
    Sophia

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  11. Can you possibly use flax seeds instead of chia? Chia seeds are so expensive where I live, but flax is dirt cheap.

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  12. You are wise beyond your years Emily! Keep staying positive and living in the moment.

    PB & J plus chocolate. Ok, I'm in!

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  13. This is a powerful post Emily and thank you for sharing. The recipe looks amazing and I can't wait to try it but moreover, I am glad you share such a positive outlook for those of us who struggle. The world can be harsh and its hard not to get down about it all but it is so important to try and stay positive so thank you for shining your light!

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  14. Thanks for this tasty recipe. I made the bars the other day and they are so delicious. Maybe too delicious that I have been having a piece for breakfast as well :)

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  15. So yummy! I'm going to make some straight away, thank you for your inspiration and ideas :) x

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  16. You have such an enormously broad, open and intelligent mind and your compassion is palpable in your post. Thank you for reminding us to not have to be perfect. Will try this recipe out.

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  17. OHMYGOD I am SO hooked on your blog! Truly amazing recipes! Quick question though, as I am making this beauty tonight, are the flax seeds ground or actual seeds? Thank you!

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  18. @Tia - go for it!

    @Rita - ground :) you can buy them like that or do it yourself.

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  19. just tried this recipe :DDD but with a twist. for the base i used nuts and cranberries (i didn't have anything else :P) and in the middle i used some banana icecream, and on top of that i put the jam, but it was mangos with chia, it was fantastic! almost like a pie *-* i truly love your blog, since i'm trying to go vegetarian, it's been a huge help :)

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  20. These were exceedingly delicious! I was poised with my phone ready to take a picture it mine didn't come out nearly as pretty. I'll spare you the graphic red and brown visual -- this is why our girl Emily has the blog and not me. Freaking delicious though!

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  21. These look incredible! I love that they are made with clean ingredients and have many health benefits!!

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  22. these look soooooo yummy. :) i am going to make them for the holidays when we have family in town.. am curious about how many they make?

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  23. Hi Emily,

    Just wondering what I could use instead of flax for the base? I'm allergic.

    Thanks. Love your site!

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  24. @Amelia - nuts or any other seed, or oats ;)

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  25. Hi!
    I've been looking at those for quite some time, and finally gave them a try!

    My chocolate didn't turned out great though. It was tasting fantastic, yes, but was too thick to be spreadable, so i ended ruining all my bar trying to spread it and it just mixed everything together... Any clue to why my chocolate was that thick?

    Thanks!

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  26. Hi. I'm looking forward to trying this recipe today. I am wondering if it is possible to use ground flax in the crust, or is that what was meant to be specified? Thanks so much!

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  27. Hi Emily!

    I've been meaning to make these, but have eliminated grains from my diet completely. Do you think I could replace the oats with a nut or seed? I was thinking pecans might be yummy... thoughts?!

    Thanks :)

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  28. I made these for my stepdad's birthday this weekend (always gotta have healthy treats- storebought cakes leave soo much to be desired) and everyone loved them! They're SO good-I'm so happy to be able to share healthy treats that people go crazy for and all thanks to your blog!
    Thanks so much for the awesome recipe. I love your blog and am rooting for you in everything *hugs*

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