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    Recipe for fruity chocolate energy bites

    fruity chocolate energy bites
    Jacqueline A. Church for the boston globe

    These are very customizable. I created this to meet the needs of travelers with food allergies, starting with taste, eliminating the top eight allergens, and making them gluten-free. These store at room temp and travel well.

    Ingredients:

    3/4 cup sunflower seeds or pepitas, or combo

    1 tablesppon ground golden flax

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    1½ cup gluten free flour

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    1 cup gluten free oats, old fashioned rolled

    ¼ cups cereal (erewon quinoa/chia flakes) or brown rice crisps

    cup shredded coconut

    ½ teaspoon baking powder

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    ¼ teaspoon sea salt

    ½ cup dried fruit (choose cherries, apricots, prunes, dates or combo)

    ½ cup hot water to soak fruit (minus 2 TBSP), reserve

    cup gluten-free vegetable shortening, combined with sun butter

    ½ cup Lyle’s Golden Syrup

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    ½ cup Enjoy Life mini chocolate chips

    ¼ teaspoon imitation almond extract

    ¼ teaspoon orange blossom water, optional

    ¼ teaspoon cinnamon

    pinch cardamom, optional

    Directions: Preheat oven to 325. Combine seeds, toast about 8 minutes, remove, cool. In a large bowl, combine flour, oats, baking powder salt, spices, cereal, coconut. Combine shortening and sun butter, melt on low setting in microwave, cool shortening. Soak fruit in very hot water, after 15 minutes, strain fruit, reserving all but 2 tablespoon of soaking liquid. Add chocolate chips, fruit, and cooled seeds to flour mix. Add syrup, mix lightly. Add just as much soaking liquid from the fruit as you need to moisten the dough. Use teaspoon size scoop to place on parchment lined cookie sheet. Bake 7 minutes, turn and rotate pans, bake another 7 minutes.

    These energy bites are not overly sweet, but the Golden Syrup and dates add just enough sweetness without being cloying. Mini chocolate chips are the perfect size for these bite-sized snacks. Good as afternoon snack or as part of breakfast.