Raw raspberry & cashew balls

Suitable from 12 months

Raw raspberry & cashew balls
I often make snacks for my son out of dried fruit and nuts, especially as they are so easy to pack and take along when we’re out and about exploring. These usually turn out really tasty – always a bit different, depending on what fruit or nuts we happen to have at home just then – but I have not always been happy with the consistency. My snack balls or bars often turn out a bit soft and sticky, and whilst I could just roll them in coconut flakes or similar to take away stickiness, I was looking to actually add a bit of crunch as well.
Raw foods are defined as foods that have not been heated over the maximum ‘allowed’ temperature of somewhere in between 33°C – 48°C (92°F – 118°F), depending on which diet you follow. Raw fruit bars or fruit & nut bars are usually dried in a food dehydrator, a device that much like an oven dries food with the help of (low) heat and air ventilation.
Since I don’t have such fancy appliances at home, I tried drying my snack balls in a regular oven: I turned it to 50°C/120°F, waited until it had finished preheating, put in the baking tray with the balls, and turned off the oven. I left the balls in there for 90 minutes without opening the door, and when the time was up I was quite curious to check on my raspberry & chashew balls… Success!! The slow drying gave them a slightly crispy outside, while still chewy on the inside. As I did not use an oven thermometer I can’t say for sure what temperature the oven held for the 90 minutes, but I would comfortably still classify my snacks as raw food. Nice!
Needless to say, the raspberry & cashew balls were a bit hit with my son and his friends, and even hubby stole some out of the box when he thought I’m not looking. I guess I’ll have to make them again soon!

Recipe tips
You can experiment a lot with the flavours in these raw snack balls: replace the cashews with other nuts like hazelnuts or walnuts, or use other dried fruit – for example dried cranberries – instead of the apricots.

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