The days are now long again. With the sun setting at ten thirty pm and rising just a short hours later at two thirty am.
And when I told Svante last Sunday “Det känns som sommar idag.”, he was quick to answer “Det är sommar.”, something that went in unison with his rhubarb plants, which have dramatically grown over the span of a few weeks.
So I guess summer has started, on a Sunday afternoon.
With the ice gone from the rivers of north Sweden for what feels a couple of days, K. turned into an almost full-time fly-fisherman. And as the last traces of snow disappeared (although I’ve now seen a little patch, by Bonnstan, which is still covered in a mountain of dirty snow), we packed our car, just so we’d have the essentials ready. All day. Everyday.
A blanket on the back-seat, in case we drop by Kusmark to pick up K.’s brother’s dog Kaiser. Waders, wading boots (for him) and hiking boots (for me), neatly arranged in a banana cardboard box in the trunk. A couple of rods and reels. Many fly boxes and manier flies.
Some days, I happily join him, along with our kaffepanna [Swedish coffee pot], two white plastic mugs, and our favourite kokkaffe; a chunky piece of falukorv [Falun sausage], and perhaps a baguette or a few slices of sourdough bread; a knife; a box of matches; and a few energy balls in a little plastic bag.
I love to make a large batch of these and keep them in the freezer for days when we go on a little fishing/hiking trip. And really, they have now replaced the chocolate wrapped in foil that we used to bring along, at times with bits of roasted hazelnuts, other times with salty nuggets of lakrits [liquorish].
The last batch I made was this one: carrot cake-ish, of some kind. But the variations are endless.
You could substitute the carrot for raspberries (a favourite of mine) or bananas. Add a fat tablespoon of raw cocoa powder. Replace the oats for sprouted buckwheat or rye. Add seeds from a vanilla pod, or a grated tonka bean, or a few chopped nuts. And when the stone fruits will be in season, I urge you to try to make these with fresh peach and dried apricots (to replace the dates); and maybe add a pinch of saffron and a small handful of pistachio nuts. Another wonderful option is to use half passion fruit pulp, half grated apples, and roll the balls in matcha powder.
Raw vegan carrot cake balls
Makes 8-12 energy balls
120 g rolled oats
50 g shredded coconut
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp ground cardamom
pinch of salt
130 g grated carrots (approx. 1)
90 g pitted medjool dates (approx. 6)
2 tbsp coconut oil (approx. 30 g)
1 tbsp agave/maple syrup
Place the dry ingredients in a food processor and blitz for a minute until coarsely ground. Add the carrots, dates, coconut oil and syrup, and blitz until it forms a dough.
Transfer to a clean work surface and roll into a log. Cut into 8, 10 or 12 depending on the size you wish your energy bites to be.
Roll each segment into a ball and coat in shredded coconut.
Place in an airtight container and refrigerate for at least 1 hour before eating. The raw vegan carrot cake balls will keep in the fridge for around 4-5 days. You could also make a double batch and freeze them for up to 3 months.