I’ve been on set filming for almost a month and as much as I love to indulge in a biscuit or five the novelty is beginning to wear off, not only for me but for the majority of the cast and crew too. Filming life is not known for eating well or healthily….
So, I took it upon myself to make these Banana, Date & Dark Chocolate Chip Squares as a healthier alternative snack for when the bellies start grumble during a long day.
These are Vegan, Gluten Free, Dairy Free and No Refined Sugar – the perfect no-guilt snack for those on the go!
Ingredients for Banana, Date & Dark Chocolate Chip Squares
200g dates (pitted/stoned)
50ml boiling water
4 small or 3 medium bananas (ripe and mashed with the back of a fork)
100g coconut oil
500g gluten free oats
100g dark chocolate chips
a little maple syrup/date syrup/honey* for drizzling
*honey only if you are not vegan
line or grease (with oil) a 12×9 inch baking tray
makes 24-26 small squares
preheat oven to 180oC
1) Throw your dates and boiled water into a medium bowl and mix. Leave to soak for at least 5 minutes, stirring a few times.
2) While they are soaking, melt your coconut oil in a small saucepan over a low heat. Once melted, leave to the side to cool slightly.
3) Pour 300g of oats into a large bowl and pour the remaining 200g into a food processor/nutribulllet. Whizz the 200g oats until they are fine and have a flour like consistency and then add these and the mashed bananas to the large bowl as well.
4) Blitz the dates and the water in the food processor/nutribulllet until smoother and broken down and add these to the large bowl with the coconut oil.
5) Using a wooden spoon (and some strength!) mix everything until it all comes together. Add 75g of the chocolate chips and then mix again. For the last part I got my hands in – it was much easier to mix and squish together!
6) Spread the mixture into your prepared baking tin, making sure it’s even and flat on top. Scatter the remaining choice chips on top and place on the middle shelf of your preheated oven for about 20-23 mins. It’s are done when it starts to brown around the edges.
7) Once baked, drizzle 1 or 2 tablespoons of syrup over the top and leave to cool completely in the baking tray. Once cooled, transfer onto a board and, using a sharp knife, cut into squares.
Banana, Date & Dark Chocolate Chip Squares Done!
P.S. They are best kept in the fridge (mashed banana) if you don’t eat them all in one sitting :)