The Great Indoors: Raw treat keeps away late-morning hungerIt happens every morning like clockwork. Around 9:30 or 10, no matter what I’ve had for breakfast – a 3-egg omelette or a peanut butter Pop Tart – my stomach starts to growl.
By: Tracy Briggs, INFORUM
It happens every morning like clockwork. Around 9:30 or 10, no matter what I’ve had for breakfast – a 3-egg omelette or a peanut butter Pop Tart – my stomach starts to growl.
It’s tempting, of course, to head for the vending machines at work, but thankfully my friend Angie Schulz has a better solution for all of us morning snackers.
Schulz is well known in the community for her work with Music Theatre Fargo Moorhead. She has an amazing voice and lovely personality. (I’d say I want to be her when I grow up, but I’m older than she is, so that doesn’t really work.) In the past few years, I’ve learned a lot about healthier eating from Schulz.
It all started a few years back while she was pregnant with her third child. Schulz says she developed a slight aversion to meat.
“It just didn’t taste good to me at that time,” she says.
So she started experimenting with vegan cooking. Now her daughter is 10 years old and that dabbling has turned into a lifestyle. But she says she’s not a die-hard vegan.
“I don’t like to label myself. If I feel like having a piece of cheese, I’ll have a piece of cheese,” she says.
In addition to the vegan cooking, Schulz started making gluten-free choices after she learned she has a sensitivity to the wheat protein. Most recently, a trip to New York City started her on the road to raw cooking.
“We ate a place called Pure Food and Wine, and the food was so good!’ she says.
The raw food movement advocates serving food not heated above 115 degrees. It’s believed that foods cooked above that level lose their natural enzymes and nutritional value. Schulz says she feels good when she eats a heavily raw diet and says she even lost 15 pounds last summer without feeling hungry. But she says it’s a little harder to do in the winter time.
“I think it’s really hard to eat raw in this part of the country in winter time. I think we just need that cooked food,” she says.
But one way to get that raw food into her diet is by making her favorite raw balls. (Shall I pause so you can snicker? I dare you to not think about that famous “Saturday Night Live” NPR skit right about now). OK, I’ll go on. The balls are a good combination of healthy fat, fiber, protein and carbohydrates.
Schulz says they remind her of raw cookie dough (which is one kind of raw that is definitely not good for you) or those nutty snack bars you can buy at coffee shops.
She eats them in the late morning to tide her over for lunch and her daughters will pop them into their lunch boxes. All of the ingredients are available locally.
We whipped them together in less than 10 minutes, and they were fabulous – rich and sweet even without any added sugar. The vending machine will have to wait.
My Favorite Raw Balls
2 cups walnuts
1 cup packed pitted medjool dates
1 cup rolled oats
½ tablespoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon cinnamon
¼ teaspoon salt
½ cup raisins
Process walnuts in a food processor until they are almost like butter. Add the dates and process until it becomes like cookie dough. Then add the oats, vanilla, cinnamon and salt. Process for a little bit, then add the raisins and just combine.
Shape into balls and refrigerate or freeze.
Watch ‘The Great Indoors’ with Tracy Briggs every Thursday on www.InforumTV.com