Recently my family has been going crazy over dried dates. I found a deal at the grocery store recently, and bought them on a whim (although Ramadan is nearing ever-closer, so maybe that had something to do with it), and now we are hooked! We’re eating them like candy, because, uh, they’re pretty much nature’s candy.
Today I’d like to share with you a recipe that’s so easy you could do it in your sleep. Well, maybe not in your sleep, but seriously, you need zero cooking skills to do this. What you do need is a food processor. Very important. Mine may have kicked the bucket after making this round of date balls, but that’s another story…
I think these date balls would be great for a natural pick-me up for endurance athletes (I used to be one, so I know the pains of processed energy bars) or simply for someone who has a sweet tooth and wants a healthier option. Dates are traditionally used to break fast after a day’s worth of not eating or drinking during the month of Ramadan. I don’t know what the Libyan ones taste like, but a friend of my husband recently said mine tasted like his mother’s, which is pretty much as high of a compliment as a white girl can get from a Libyan man.
Loaded with nuts and dates, it’s a simple, easy, delicious treat. Here we go.
How to make world’s easiest date balls
Start with a nice package of dried dates. These are Tunisian, but you can find them from all over the Maghreb region (the last we bought were Algerian).
Get your food processor ready.
Add equal parts dates to walnuts or nuts of choice. In my recipe, I did about 1 cup dates and 1 cup of walnuts. Just a word to the wise, add your dates first, or process your walnuts, take them out, and then put the dates into process. It can take a while for them to get ground up together, but the end result is a mass of date-nut mixture.
it looks a little something like this.
Add some vanilla for good measure.
Believe me, vanilla sends this simple recipe over the edge.
Roll the date/walnut mixture into balls.
roll balls in coconut flakes, almonds, pistachios, etc.
There you have it! Date balls. These are going to go in about five minutes, fast.
Makes about 6-8 one-inch date balls.
- 1 cup walnuts
- 1 cup dried dates
- 1 tsp vanilla
- coconut flakes, almond slices, toppings of your choice for rolling balls in
- Process the dates and walnuts in the food processor. They should begin to form a large ball in the food processor, but it does takes some time.
- Add the vanilla in and process for about a minute longer.
- Roll the date/nut mixture into balls about one-inch thick.
- Top with coconut flakes, almond slices, pistachios, etc., for a pretty finish.