The first recorded history of carob goes all the way back 4,000 years ago in the eastern Mediterranean. It is believed that the ancient Greeks were the first to cultivate this plant and incorporate it into their diet.1
This Carob Slice recipe comes from my reader, Sharon Huxtable. It’s a delicious, chocolatey snack and good source of protein, which allows healthy repair of muscles and internal organs. This recipe is a wonderful mix of ancient, organic ingredients, making it a great treat in the afternoon, or an after-dinner dessert.
- 12 dates
- ½ cup walnuts
- ½ cup almonds
- ½ cup coconut
- 2 Tbsp. coconut oil
- 1 tsp. vanilla
- 1 Tbsp. pea protein
- 3 pinches stevia powder
- 4 Tbsp. organic carob
- ¼ cup organic cacao nibs
- 3 Tbsp. black sesame seeds (optional)
- Place dates into a cup and fill with water until they are just covered. Soak for 4 hours.
- After soaking, drain ½ of the water and put the dates with the remainder of the water into a food processor.
- Add all the other ingredients except the cacao nibs. Blend until well-mixed then add the cacao nibs and blend a few seconds longer.
- Put into a shallow dish and refrigerate. You may sprinkle 1 Tbsp. of sesame seeds on top.
- Once the mixture cools, you can slice it into 10 bars. Each bar contains approximately 2.6 grams of fructose and 116 calories. Keep it refrigerated to maintain its freshness and taste.
Carob: The Ancient Alternative to Chocolate
The first historical account of carob came from Greeks, who cultivated the plant before it eventually spread throughout neighboring countries such as Italy, Spain and Cyprus. Today, it’s known as a popular substitute for chocolate due to its similar taste. Carob has several important nutrients, such as:2
- Vitamin E
The health benefits of carob are amazing. It has less sugar, fat and calorie content than chocolate. This means that it prevents sugar spikes, making it a safe choice for diabetics. Another benefit is the fiber content of the seeds, helping you feel full longer and manage your weight. Fiber also promotes regular waste elimination.3
Dates: Ancient and Nutritious Fruits
Dates are similar to carob: they originate from the same era, are used by nations along the Mediterranean and are a popular food source even today. I recommend adding dates to your diet because they contain essential nutrients, such as:
- Vitamin A — protects your eyes, skin and mucus membranes
- Vitamin K — a blood coagulant that helps metabolize your bones
- Potassium — helps control your heart rate and blood pressure
Dates contain vitamin B6 and copper as well. They are also known for their dietary fiber content, which helps facilitate smooth waste movement in your intestines and absorbs bad cholesterol along the way, leading to a cleaner digestive tract.
Carob and Cacao: Chocolate Cornucopia
If you’re not familiar with cacao nibs, they are basically roasted cacao beans with the husks removed. This makes cacao nibs a healthier choice to processed chocolate. Their flavor isn’t as sweet as processed chocolate, so it will not overpower the base flavor of carob in this recipe.
Cacao nibs are high in fiber, which gives you a healthier digestive system. They are also a source for magnesium, which helps improve muscle and nerve function. Cacao nibs also contain iron, helping your red blood cell production.4
Nut Party: Walnuts and Almonds
This Carob Slice recipe is rich in nuts, namely almonds and walnuts, which are incredibly good for your health and provide unique benefits. For example, walnuts are found to be helpful in:
- Diabetes maintenance: studies have shown that patients with type 2 diabetes who eat a quarter cup of walnuts daily had reduced levels of insulin compared to those who did not in just a span of three months. The dietary fat found in walnuts is attributed to the study’s results.
- Healthier heart: walnuts are found to have alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), an omega-3 fat that can help prevent blood clots. Research has shown that people who eat a diet high in ALA content have a nearly 50 percent lower risk of a sudden heart attack. If you have herpes however, I suggest limiting your walnut consumption as it contains high levels of arginine, which can trigger herpes relapses.
Meanwhile, almonds (especially their skin) contain a healthy amount of polyphenols that add their own set of benefits to the recipe, including:
- Cancer prevention: polyphenols protect your DNA, helping prevent free radical damage in your system.
- Osteoporosis prevention: they can have a positive effect on your bone metabolism, improving rigidity thereby reducing your risk for osteoporosis.
An important note about almonds — I recommend purchasing from vendors who sell them in small quantities and have a waiver from the pasteurization requirement. There are three pasteurization methods for almonds: dry roasted, steam processed, or Propylene Oxide (PPO) treatment. PPO is the most toxic and was deemed to be carcinogenic, which is why it was banned as a racing fuel. Suffice to say, it is something you do not want in your body.
Coconut — A Fruit, Seed, and Nut Rolled Into One
The coconut is classified as a drupe: fruit, seed, and nut all in one. That being said, eating raw coconut can help you achieve:
- Healthier breastmilk: coconut is a great addition to breastfeeding mothers because it’s rich in lauric acid that converts to monolaurin, which strengthens a baby’s immune system.
- Reduced risk of stroke: coconut is found to have high levels of manganese, potassium, and phosphorus, helping reduce your chances of having a stroke.
The recipe also makes use of coconut oil, which offers antimicrobial, antifungal, and antiviral benefits. It’s made up of medium-chain fatty acids (MCFA) that are easily digestible and immediately converted to energy. MCFAs are burned right away rather than being stored as fat.
Aside from cooking, coconut oil can also be used for personal hygiene. One great way to use it is for oil pulling (gargling healthy oil around your mouth for 15 minutes daily), coconut oil can reduce the buildup of plaque and detoxify your mouth.
Blending It All Together
One important thing to watch out in this recipe is the fructose content, mainly from the dates. I strongly advise moderate fructose consumption because it has been linked to increased insulin resistance, increased blood pressure and obesity. Excessive consumption can potentially harm your health instead of gaining the amazing benefits of this delicious treat.
To sum it all up, Carob Slices provide you with a multitude of nutrients with seeds and nuts as the foundation. It’s a great, organic snack that’s very easy to prepare — just be mindful of the fructose content.
Sources and References
Tags: Fruits and Vegetables, High-Protein