F is for … Raw Fig Almond Balls

F is for ... Raw Fig Almond Balls  - Candy Coated Culinista

F is for … Raw Fig Almond Balls – Candy Coated Culinista

Yield/Serving: 12-16 balls, depending on your size

Ingredients
• 2 cups raw almonds, or almond meal
• 250g soft dried figs, chopped and de-stemmed
• ½ cup dried cherries, chopped
• 1/3 cup shredded coconut, plus extra for coating the fig balls
• 1/8 cup sesame seeds, plus extra for coating the fig balls
• 1/8 cup black sesame seeds, plus extra for coating the fig balls
• 4-6 tbsp pure Canadian maple syrup

Assembly
1. In a food processor grind almonds into a coarse meal. Ensure you don’t over grind to the point of almond butter. If you have leftover almond meal from making almond milk like I do then use that instead of grinding up raw almonds.
2. Add the figs and cherries and process until well combined.
3. Pour almond mixture into a large bowl and fold in the coconut, sesame seeds and maple syrup.
4. Form mixture into 1” size balls with your hands.

Tips
• If all you can’t find soft dried figs, then soak dehydrated figs for a few hours and de-stem them. They should plum back up some.
• I used my leftover almond meal from making my homemade almond milk.

Please Enjoy

My thoughts
I loved the idea of making a raw dish, but I think my palette is not used to this. I love that I found a way to use my leftover almond meal; but for me it just comes down to texture and it’s a little too soft. I loved all the flavours and the coating of coconut and sesame seeds did help me like it more.

Valentine’s Day Sticky Fig Lamb with Beans & Moroccan Couscous

Sticky Fig Lamb with Beans & Moroccan Couscous - Candy Coated Culinista

Sticky Fig Lamb with Beans & Moroccan Couscous – Candy Coated Culinista

This is an exotic, scrumptious and romantic meal that can be served for Valentine’s day or for a dinner party.

My picture was included in the Valentine’s Day Food Newtork Canada Cooking Club Challenge gallery.

Yield/Serving: 4
Prep Time: 15 min.
Cook Time: 10 min.
Difficulty level is: Easy

Ingredients
• ½ cup Moroccan Couscous
• ½ cup chicken broth
• 2 handfuls of green beans
• 8 Lamb loin chops
• Salt, to taste
• Black pepper, to taste
• 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
• 6 tbsp Fig Cabernet & Wine Jelly
• 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
• ½ small red onion, thinly sliced
• Handful of grape tomatoes, halved
• 2 green onion, finely chopped
• small handful of mint leaves,
• 1 tbsp sultana raisins
• 1 tbsp pine nuts
• 1 tbsp dried apricots, finely chopped
• Dash of extra virgin olive oil
• Salt, to taste
• Black pepper, to taste

Assembly
1. Boil a ½ cup of chicken broth and once boiled pour couscous along with broth into glass bowl until absorbed.
2. Trim green beans and steam.
3. Season lamb with salt and pepper and cook in a frying pan along with olive oil on medium-high heat for 3 minutes on each side (for medium rare) and brush jelly onto lamb.
4. Add the balsamic vinegar in the last minute or two of cooking.
5. Remove lamb from pan and let the remaining juices cook until sticky.
6. Fluff up the couscous with a fork and add the red onions, tomatoes, green onion, mint, raisins, pine nuts and apricots along with a dash of extra virgin olive oil, salt and pepper.
7. Plate two lamb loin chops along with the green beans and couscous and serve.

Tips
• Figs aren’t in season right now so I managed to find a fig jelly (PC Fig Cabernet and Wine Jelly).

Please Enjoy

My thoughts
The lamb was perfectly cooked and along with the fig and wine sauce it tasted delicious. The Moroccan couscous was savoury and light. This is a perfect Valentine’s Day meal, not too heavy and the perfect portion size.

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