1 hour 15 minutes
you will definitely need a food processor for this one!
18 medjool dates, soaked and pitted
1 1/2 cup coconut flakes
6 strips of bacon, chopped and cooked
5 tbsp carob powder
5 tbsp bacon fat, melted
3 tbsp water, saved from soaked dates
*optional - 2 tbsp cricket protein powder
Soak dates in water for at least one hour, then remove pits. Save the water.
Chop bacon into small bits, and fry until done. Save the fat!
When the bacon is cooked, start putting all ingredients into your food processor and blend until it's a big gooey blob.
Press the gooey goodness into a parchment lined 8 x 8 inch baking dish and put it in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours to set. I didn't use parchment, and the bars were quite difficult to get out of the dish, so don't say I didn't warn you! ;)
Cut into 8 bars and enjoy with your friends! They'll keep in the fridge for a few days I think, and freeze quite well if you wrap in parchment, then a freezer safe bag or container.
I call these "Tastes Like Breakfast Bars" not that I would serve these for breakfast, but because they really do taste like breakfast, all in one bite. The salty bacon with the carob makes it taste like coffee, and the dates give it just a bit of sweetness, but not over-much, and the coconut is just barely there. These are AIP compliant, using carob instead of cacao powder. If you are not following AIP you could use cacao powder, but reduce it to about 3 tbsp. You could also use chocolate chips, but I like the all over darkness using a powder. I tried to find carob chips, but they all have hydrogenated oils and soya lecithin, so not a particularly good choice for health generally, or for AIP. These do not need any added sweetener of any sort, the dates and the carob are sweet enough naturally. If you add the cricket powder, please note that crickets sometimes cross-react with shellfish allergies, so be cautious if you have a shellfish allergy! Cricket powder really has no flavour, so adding the extra protein doesn't change the flavour profile at all, but it does up the fear factor a bit! ;)
These were inspired by all the dates wrapped in bacon stuffed with almonds that are all over Pinterest, (and because I am addicted to dates and bacon!) but I wanted a snack bar that could be wrapped and taken along for a bike ride, or a walk in the woods, that would be some tasty energy for someone following AIP who has few (or no) options for convenience foods. Other than fruits and vegetables of course. These fit the bill perfectly I think! They're super easy to make (if you have a food processor) and really super tasty! I quite like the carob flavour. My Kreacher dog did too! There's nothing in there that he shouldn't eat, though like for people, this is an occasional treat, not an every day thing.
If you try this recipe, please let me know if you like them.