With Ireland exiting the Euros yesterday, I thought we could all do with some cheering up this Monday morning and so I am sharing with you a new recipe for delicious energy balls. I made these during the second half of the match yesterday as I was too nervous to watch it. In fact the nerves were so much that I also did two loads of washing, cleaned the kitchen, made a homemade coleslaw and gave my juicer a good wash; I'd be a domestic goddess if the Euros were on more often.
Energy balls are everywhere these days and with good reason. They are delicious, the perfect accompaniment for a cup or tea and super easy to make. Today’s recipe is for orange and cardamom energy balls rolled in sesame seeds. Cardamom is popular in Indian, Middle Eastern and Swedish cooking. It’s aromatic and is known as a warming spice. It works just as well in sweet dishes as it does in savoury dishes. For this recipe, I am teaming cardamom with orange, a combination you often see in Middle Eastern style desserts. The aromatic cardamom perfectly complements the sweetness of the orange and enhances its flavour.
Makes 12 energy balls.
1 cup almonds
½ cup walnuts
5 cardamon pods
1 cup medjool dates, pitted*
Zest of an orange**
1 tbsp orange juice**
Pinch of sea salt
3 tbsp sesame seeds
*if you want to use dried dates instead of medjool dates, use the same amount, but soak them in warm water for a half an hour and drain them before use.
**a sweet orange works best in this recipe.
Place the almonds and walnuts in a food processor and pulse until broken down into chopped nuts. Don’t pulse into ground nuts.
Using a pestle and mortar or the broad side of a knife, crush the cardamom pods and remove the seeds. Discard the pods, and again either using a pestle and mortar or a knife, grind the seeds into ground cardamom. Add the ground cardamom along with the dates, orange zest, orange juice and sea salt to the nuts in the food processor and turn the food processor on until the mixture has completely broken down and formed into a dough like consistency.
Using your hands, form the mixture into 12 ball shapes. Place the sesame seeds on a plate and roll each energy ball in the sesame seeds until each is fully coated in sesame seeds. Place the energy balls in a dish and place in the freezer for an hour to set and then remove and store in the fridge.
These should keep in the fridge for seven days and are best eaten straight from the fridge.