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