“I’m a movement by myself, but I’m a force when we’re together,” said the date to the almond. These two nutritional warriors are fabulous on their own, but combined, they satisfy any craving you may have. Yes, I just quoted Ne-yo, and yes I’m humiliated.
My splendid ex-wife, Lisa, laughs when I tell her it’s time for my afternoon snack. So what if I’m a giant toddler? If my days were longer, I’d add a nap, too. I’m happily forced to be creative with my in-between meal bites since I no longer have a teacher to pour me grape juice and slide me some graham crackers.
Y’all know how I feel about supplements, shakes and bars. I always prefer to sponge my nutrients from whole foods. You’ve also heard me say “Instead of juicing, just eat the fruits and vegetables.” While I stand behind by those premises, I also endorse experimentation. Today’s experiment, ground almonds and dates, will become a regular in my refreshment rotation.
Let’s discuss my two ingredients, and then I’ll tell you how to get to the finish line.
Almonds are among the world’s most nutritionally dense foods. From whfoods.com:
Almonds are high in monounsaturated fats, the same type of health-promoting fats as are found in olive oil, which have been associated with reduced risk of heart disease. Five large human epidemiological studies, including the Nurses Health Study, the Iowa Health Study, the Adventist Health Study and the Physicians Health Study, all found that nut consumption is linked to a lower risk for heart disease.
We don’t have to stop there. We know that because of the high content of quality fat in almonds, we tend to feel satisfied after eating them. From SFGate:
The nuts make it easier to stick with the diet because they have a high satiety value, meaning they are very filling, according to a September 2008 article published in “The Journal of Nutrition.” Another article, published in the “British Journal of Nutrition” in 2007, notes that the high satiety value of almonds may be due to a combination of factors, including their fiber and protein contents, crunchy texture, flavor and micronutrient content.
Speaking of satiety, sometimes an injection of sweet hits the spot. Dates are nature’s candy and the combo of their vitamin richness combined with the protein in the almonds makes for a solid compliment to our lifting or fitness routine. From organicfacts.net:
The massive health benefits of dates have made them one of the best ingredients for muscle development. People consume dates in several ways, such as mixing the paste of the dates with milk, yogurt or with bread or butter to make them even more delicious. The paste is beneficial for both adults and children, especially during a time of recovery from injury or illness.
Now that we agree that we dig the combination of ingredients, let’s throw a small handful of almonds and three pitted dates in this spice grinder (I also use this contraption to coarsely break up my coffee beans), and see what happens. No need to create a paste, but run it just enough to pulverize the mixture into a salt/pepper like consistency.
The result is a crumbly, sugary spoonful of delectability. If the end product was in a bowl at a fancy restaurant drizzled with some foo foo liquid, they’d push it for fourteen bucks. I’m not exaggerating; you’ll end up with 4 solid bites of bliss.
You’ll re-enter your day knowing you blessed your system and your palate simultaneously, one of the missions of our blog.
Break out the cots, sheets and special blankets. It’s naptime.