Raw Gingerbread Men
From Karen Knowler, Raw Food Coach in England
It all began with a desire to replace my son's "healthy" (organic, no junk) gingerbread men with truly healthy ones just a couple of days ago. As my mind kicked in to try and figure out how this could be possible and with a little search on the web for traditional gingerbread men recipes, Luke and are were soon equipped with all we needed and raring to go to see what we could create. Fast forward to multiple Gingerbread Men all dehydrated and ready to be gobbled up: Success!
NB: This recipe doesn't have to be dehydrated to taste good or hold itself together, but for the crunch factor, yes, absolutely.
Makes 9 small Men.
* 1 cup of golden flax (linseed)
* 1 cup pecans
* 3 teaspoons powdered ginger
* 2 Tablespoons of dark agave syrup
* 1/8 cup of pure water
1) Mill the flax seed and pecans together into a fine flour. (This is best done in the Vita-Mix dry jug, or by using a coffee mill; a food processor won't get it fine enough on its own).
2) Pour the "flour" - saving just a little back for step 3 - into a food processor adding the remaining ingredients. Process until a dark sticky ball is created.
3) Remove the ball from the processor and lay it out on a flat surface ready for rolling out. This is where you may need to use the flour you held back from step 2 as it might stick to the surface or rolling pin! So lightly coat the board you are rolling on or the mixture itself in a fine dusting of flour and then roll out into a flat dough.
4) Using gingerbread men-shaped cookie cutters, cut out your men and either leave plain or decorate, according to your preference. Once finished, you can either eat as a "fresh" version which will be juicy and slightly chewy, or you can move to step 5 where you'll need a dehydrator...
5) Lay your men out on your dehydrator tray. No protective sheeting is required as the mixture isn't runny. Depending on how crunchy you want your men (!), dehydrate anything from a few hours to 24 hours. The full 24 hours at 100 degrees F will give you crunchy men, so long as they are no more than 5mm thick when they go in to dry.
By following this recipe you'll have gingerbread men ready to go in just minutes if you opt for the fresh version. As this is my first conscious foray into making creative raw food for kids, next time around as I tweak the recipe I'll be experimenting with raisin "buttons", chocolate "icing" and goji berry clothing!
RAW COACH'S TOP TIPS:
* If your child doesn't like this recipe (but does like commercial gingerbread men), try making it using a different shaped cookie cutter, or adding decorations, or mixing their favourite raw ingredients in. My experience suggests that kids eat as much, if not more so with their eyes than their mouths! So be prepared to do things a little more differently than you would do for yourself.
* Try tasting them at all different stages of dehydration to see which one you prefer. My favourite is "almost fully dry with just a little bit of softness in the middle." (Make of that what you will!)