Brendan Brazier’s Raw Vegan Cranberry Walnut Energy Bars2
It is DAY 25 of "Gluten Free Vegan Recipes with Breville" and I couldn't throw a vegan party and not invite the ROCK STAR of the plant-based world, the incomparable Brendan Brazier -- Canadian Pro Ironman; Formulator of VEGA; Creator of Zon Fitness, Thrive Foods Direct, and Thrive Juice Bars; Best-Selling Author, Famous Speaker, Celebrity Trainer; and all-round great guy!
Those of you who followed "Raw Food Recipes with Excalibur" will remember Brendan's delicious Raw Vegan “Toasted” Apple Cinnamon Cereal. I have made a TON of Brendan's recipes and they are always super tasty and nutrient-dense. EXACTLY what you want to enjoy healthy foods! Brendan's books ROCK! As one of the leading experts on plant-based nutrition, Brendan Brazier is the bestselling author of the THRIVE series: THRIVE, THE THRIVE DIET, THRIVE FITNESS, and THRIVE FOODS.
I have read all of his books, but his latest book, THRIVE FOODS is FULL of AMAZING vegan recipes created by Brendan and some of the most famous vegan chefs in the world, including: Tal Ronnen, Matthew Kenney, Amanda Cohen, Chad Sarno, and Julie Morris. I have made almost every single recipe in this book and they ROCK! Some of my favourites include: Chocolate Carob Sacha Inchi Smoothie, Kombucha Mojito, Buckwheat Banana Pancakes, Thai Salad, Dandelion Salad with Lentil Dressing, Rustic Sweet Onion Flatbread, West African Yam and Bean Patties, Buckwheat Sunflower Seed Carrot Pizza, Chocolate Chip-Maple Maca Ice Cream, and the Yacon Dessert Ravioli and these Raw Vegan Cranberry Walnut Energy Bars that are absolutely LOADED with live enzymes and nutrients, are super easy to prepare, and taste AMAZING! These workout bards are high in antioxidants and flavonoids, help reduce free radical damage in the body, and improve cellular regeneration.YUMMO!
If you don't want to cook, Brendan offers Thrive Foods Direct, a food delivery service based on the nutritional philosophy in his books. These delicious, organic, plant-based, whole food, nutrient-dense meals are shipped anywhere in North America in vacuum-sealed, recycled and recyclable containers.
As a fierce environmental warrior, Brendan is in huge demand to speak about sustainability issues. Highlights include presenting at Google, speaking with David Suzuki and Stephan Lewis at Canada's largest environmental tour, "Students For Sustainability"; and addressing the US Congress on Capitol Hill.
Brendan is also a fabulous teacher. He has served as a guest lecturer at the prestigious Cornell University, presenting a eCornell module entitled, "The Plant-Based Diet and Elite Athleticism" and trains celebrities such as Hugh Jackman, and high-profile athletes in the NFL, MLB, NHL, UFC, PGA, Olympic, and the Tour De France. He will be writing a book about plant-based living in professional sports, and this book will be published by Rodale, and cross promoted with their magazines: Men's Health, Women's Health, Runner's World, Bicycling, and Prevention. He is also about to share his fantastic high-protein, nutrient-dense, raw and vegan juice and smoothie recipes using his incredible VEGA products in a full-colour recipe book with Penguin in 2013.
Always a media favourite, Brendan has been featured in The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, Veg News Magazine, and many others; and has partnered with the world's largest distributor of sporting goods, Big Game International to create a line of fitness equipment called ZoN Fitness, and the acclaimed ZoN Thrive Fitness Program. To learn more about Brendan's favourite nutritional, fitness, and eco-friendly products, you can follow him on Open Sky.
I look to Brendan constantly for fitness and nutrition advice. Check out his books and website and fall in love with the brilliant Brendan Brazier.
Brendan, thanks for sharing another recipe as part of this event and indulging me in everything I ask you to do. You are just SO COOL!
Brendan Brazier’s Raw Vegan Cranberry Walnut Energy Bars
- 1 cup fresh or soaked dried dates
- 1⁄4 cup raw walnuts
- 1⁄4 cup fresh or frozen cranberries
- 1⁄4 cup ground flaxseed
- 1⁄4 cup hemp protein
- 1 Tbsp coconut palm sugar
- 1⁄4 cup unhulled hemp seeds
- Sea salt to taste
- 1⁄2 cup sprouted or cooked buckwheat (optional)
- 1⁄4 cup chopped walnuts
- 1⁄2 cup frozen cranberries
- In your Sous Chef® food processor, process all ingredients except the buckwheat, second lot of walnuts and cranberries until desired texture is reached. If you would rather a bar with more crunch process for less time. Generally, if I’m making the bars specifically to be eaten during physical activity, such as long training rides, I’ll blend the mixture until it is smooth, as this will reduce the amount of chewing required. However, for variety, I’ll also be sure to make a few batches at the same time that are crunchier, to eat as a regular snack.
- Once the ingredients are well blended, knead in the buckwheat, walnuts, and cranberries into the mixture by hand, or pulse a couple of times to get a nice rustic finish.
- Put on a clean surface and either roll into balls, or shape into bars.
- To share into balls: use a tablespoon or your hands to scoop the mixture (however much you like to make one ball) and roll between the palms of your hands.
- To shape as bars, flatten the mixture onto a clean surface with your hands. Place plastic wrap over the top, then, with a rolling pin, roll mixture to desired bar thickness. Cut mixture into bars. Alternatively, form mixture into a brick, then cut as though slicing bread. OR I pressed the mixture into a baking dish lined with parchment paper, place in the fridge for about 5 hours and then sliced into bars. This worked better for me, because as the bars dry they become easier to handle and slice.
- Makes about a dozen 1 3⁄4 oz bars.
- Store in the fridge in a sealed glass container.
- Takes 10 minutes to make.
Reprinted with permission from Brendan Brazier and Thrive Foods copyright © 2011. Published by Da Capo Press, A member of the Perseus Books Group.
Learn about Brendan Brazier at VEGA & Thrive Foods Direct
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Piggy Cooking Tips
selecting the best raw walnuts
Raw unshelled walnuts are widely available in pre-packaged bags as well as bulk bins. Always purchase from a supplier where there is a high turnover to ensure freshness and quality. Look for walnuts that are uniform in colour. Avoid the limp and shrivelled ones. Walnuts should smell nutty and sweet. If they smell musty or rancid they are bad. Walnuts are extremely susceptible to rancidity due to their high polyunsaturated fat content. To preserve the precious oils, store walnuts in a sealed glass jar in the fridge for up to six months. Always soak walnuts before using to remove the enzyme inhibitors and make them more digestible.