When the weather starts to take on a bitter chill, and the city is covered in a blanket of beautiful white snow, I know it’s time to break out the gingerbread. There’s just something about the warm, fragrant spices that’s so comforting. I often turn to this tried and true recipe for gingerbread cupcakes with brown sugar cream cheese frosting when I need my gingerbread fix.
That’s the thing about winter. You just want to cuddle up in big, bulky sweaters – unaware as to what all that comfort food is doing to your waist line. Which is why I set out to disguise my favorite winter comfort food as a healthy truffle that’s chocolate-free! Medjool dates have a great fudgy quality that makes them the perfect raw and healthy base for decadent truffles. They’re virtually fat free, rich in potassium, and a great source of dietary fiber.
Sure, there was a time when dates looked like cockroaches, and I wouldn’t go near them with a ten foot pole. But when I finally took he plunge, there was no going back. How can you go wrong with sweet syrupy chews that are virtually guilt-free? They make a great addition to smoothies, granola bars, and even salads.
If you haven’t picked up on this month’s link-up theme just yet, it’s all about comfort food! Read on for a collection of decadent comforting recipes that are sure to keep you warm all winter long!
1/4 cup ground almonds
15 medjool dates, pitted
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp ginger
1/8 tsp nutmeg
1/8 tsp cloves
1 tbsp molasses
For coating: cocoa powder, cinnamon, coconut, chopped nuts or cookie crumbs (gingersnap, Lotus cookies or spiced biscuits).
Remove and set aside. Add all ingredients (besides for coating) to the food processor and mix until a ball forms (see picture). If the mixture does not pull away from the sides of the bowl, add a little more ground almonds. With wet hands, form the dough into balls and roll in coating of your choice.
Makes approximately 10 truffles.
PACKAGING OPTION: for a play on rustic homemade toffee, add a bit more ground almonds to make the dates less sticky. Do not roll in crumbs. Wrap portions in parchment paper, twisting the ends to resemble candy wrappers.
gingerbread cupcakes with brown sugar cream cheese frosting