My dear friend Jo has spent the last two years weighed down chronic fatigue syndrome (and yet still managed to be a human dynamo, achieving the sorts of things it would take most of us forever to get through). There's a lot of quackery around CFS, but Jo has just discovered that adopting a low-carb, Atkins-style diet has had a dramatic effect on her health and she's looking forward to regaining some of her old bounce (look out!) Unfortunately though, this means no making her legendary rum balls or other examples of classic Australian baking. Well, she can make them, but if you can't eat them that seems horribly unfair. I'm no expert on low-carb anything, but I think I've come up with a reasonably safe substitute..
Almond Tofu Balls
This is my version of a recipe from Emma Galloway's My Darling Lemon Thyme - a truly beautiful blog with lovely recipes and wonderful photos. I made these with the Small Girl's help and she ate a LOT of the mixture while I couldn't decide whether to be pleased (all that protein!) or cross (fewer left for me!). I also tested these out on a vegetarian coeliac friend and she adored them.
Don't be scared off by the tofu - it makes for a lovely velvety texture. If you have a very sweet tooth (and are not Atkins-ing), add a little more honey or date syrup.
250g medium-firm tofu
1 cup ground almonds
1/2 cup desiccated coconut
3/4 cup prunes, diced small
2Tbsp date syrup
1tsp real vanilla extract
1Tbsp tahini (or almond butter, or smooth peanut butter)
extra coconut, cocoa or sesame seeds for rolling
Rinse the tofu under cold water and pat dry with kitchen paper. Put into a bowl and mash well with a fork, then add all the other ingredients and mix well. (You could also do this in a food processor.) Roll generous teaspoonfuls into balls, then roll them in extra coconut, sifted cocoa or sesame seeds. Store in the fridge. Makes about 20, depending on how much of the mixture your helper eats.
Have a sweet, sweet weekend everyone. I'm planning to play with all my wonderful birthday loot!