GO GOJI BARS
Makes: 16 bars
Vegan / Gluten free / Dairy free / Refined sugar free
or otherwise known as Lycium barbarum, has to be my favourite little snacking berry. It really is the ultimate 'super fruit', and for good reason.
Millions of people throughout Asia consume Goji berries every day for both their delicious flavour, and for their health benefits. In China's first herbal encyclopaedia, Shen Nong's Mereria Medica, written in the 1st century B.C., Goji was classified as a 'superior tonic', a class of herbs that people should take on an ongoing-basis to preserve youth and to promote general well being of life. Goji's super tonic classification has stood the test of time. Two thousand years later, these power-packed berries are still being consumed regularly throughout Asian civilisations for those purported reasons.
Goji berries are a high-ORAC antioxidant-rich super fruit featuring important phytochemicals such as beta-carotene, zeaxanthin, betaine, polysaccharides, trace minerals and vitamins.
Goji juice or tea is one of my go-to tonics when feeling like a pick-me-up or if I have a hankering for something sweet. Simply soak a small handful of Goji berries in a glass of water, or steep a few in a tea pot and drink when the berries are very soft and their beautiful pink colour has leached into the water.
A good amount of Goji berries to consume each day is about 28grams, which is around a small handful. Lets get into the recipe!
Goji Power Bars
12 medjool dates, stones removed
1/2 cup gluten-free rolled oats
1/2 cup flax or chia seeds
1/2 cup pumpkin seeds
1/2 cup sunflower seeds
1/2 cup desiccated coconut
1/4 cup goji berries
1/2 teaspoon natural vanilla essence or powder
a pinch of pink salt
- Preheat oven to 175°C and line a 20cm x 20cm cake tin.
- Place dates into a small bowl and cover with boiling water to soften for 10 minutes.
- Drain the dates and pop them into a food processor or blender and whizz until you have a paste.
- Add the remaining ingredients and mix well to combine.
- Press the mixture firmly into your prepared tin. (wet hands is good for this). Place in the oven and bake for 20 minutes or until they are a beautiful golden colour.
- Remove from oven and allow to cool briefly before flipping the slice onto a cooling rack.
- Let the slice cool completely before slicing into bars.
- Wrap individually as pictured above and pop in a glass jar or airtight container.
I hope you and your little darlings love these! The recipe is very changeable and please don't be scared to substitute ingredients for those you have in the cupboard. Organic raisins or chopped dried apricot are great replacements for Goji if you don't happen to have any.