Power Balls

Also known as Energy Balls these are really not my recipe at all, they’ve been around for years in health food magazines and cookbooks, but experimenting with them is fun.

In both China and Japan, the most common type of sweets are probably mocha (in Japanese, 餅糬) or môa-chî (in Taiwan, 麻糬). Like many East-Asian deserts, they are vegan and use only small amounts of rock sugar. I think they taste lovely, especially the green tea and black sesame ones, and I like the fact that they use whole ingredients (red beans, mung beans, peanuts and pine nuts etc.). They are a perfect mouthful!

The stuffed glutinous rice balls served in a sweet soup in China are known as tang-yuan (汤圆), a typical sweet desert in Ningbo, it’s so delicious. You could add these rice balls to one of my fruit stews, like my Stewed Lychee, Ginger, Rose & Thai Basil (coming soon!) or Stewed Strawberries & Hawthorn (also coming soon!).

These rice balls do use glutinous rice flour and and sugar, but I like the concept, so I’ve adapted them to be more like the popular raw power/energy balls. Keep a few in your fridge when you come back from the gym or need a quick snack.

Here are my four different favourite mochi-slash-power ball recipes. All recipes below make around 5-6 balls.

Preparation Time
10 minutes per recipe

Power Ball #1: Sesame & Raisin Berry Balls
Raisins, 5 tbsp       
Tahini paste (white sesame nut butter), 3 tbsp
Black sesame seeds, 1 tbsp (+1 tbsp for coating)
Extra-virgin coconut oil, 1 tbsp        
Raw maple syrup, 2 tbsp      
Sea salt, a pinch    

2. Walnut, Blueberries & Cacao Truffle Balls
Raw walnuts, 5 tbsp      
Dried blueberries, a pinch  
Raw cacao nibs 1 tbsp (+1 tbsp for coating)
Raw cacao powder, 2 tbsp (+1 tbsp for coating)
Extra-virgin olive oil, 1 tsp
Sea salt, a pinch

Power Ball #3: Coconut & Hazelnut Balls 
Desiccated coconut, 4-5 tbsp (+1 tbsp for coating)
Ground hazelnuts, 2 tbsp (+1 tbsp for coating)
Coconut oil, 2 tsp        
Raw maple syrup, 1 tsp
Coconut milk, 2 tbsp       
Cinnamon (optional), 1 tsp  
Sea salt, a pinch     

Please Note: this one tastes like a healthy Raffaello Italian chocolate (for you, my big sister Rosey).

Power Ball #4: Coconut, Matcha & Almond Balls
Desiccated coconut, 4 tbsp     
Ground hazelnuts, 2 tbsp 
Matcha powder (1+ for coating), 2 tbsp     
Extra-virgin coconut oil, 2 tsp       
Raw maple syrup, 1 tsp        
Coconut milk, 2 tbsp
Sea salt, a pinch   

Preparation (for all of the above)
1. Blend or mash all in ingredients until a smooth paste. I highly recommend the versatile NutriBullet for this since it comes with a special blade specifically designed for grinding nuts and seeds.
2. Knead the mixture together until compact, add a little more extra-virgin olive/coconut oil if necessary.
3. Roll into around inch-balls.
4. Roll balls into the final ingredient (black sesame seeds, cacao nibs and desiccated coconut respectively) until smooth and covered.
5. Place the balls spaciously on a baking tray and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.

Alternative Options
To enjoy them with a hot tea or coffee, you can dip in raw maple syrup or cinnamon spiced coconut milk. Substitute any of the nuts for another you have knocking around in your cupboard. Substitute the tahini paste or any other nut butter you can get hold of, like almond, peanut or cashew.

By Dr. Gabriella F. Buttarazzi (Uma Shakti Devi)

| Founder and Director of Education of ' The Art of Integral Being' | Teacher Trainer on the '500-hour Integral Yogic Studies' Teacher Training Programme |

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