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Homemade Larabars Made of Dates and Cashews and a Flash Fiction Story

Updated on May 10, 2015
cam8510 profile image

Occasionally Chris will have something to say about food preparation, but only if he has tried it and had good results.

Red Cashew Apples

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Literary/Culinary Articles

Recently here on HubPages we've seen a few recipe hubs presented alongside a poem, flash fiction or short story. The featured food item is creatively worked into the creative writing to pull the whole hub together. I used this technique once after Jodah/John Hansen used it with his world famous scrambled eggs and a poem called How to Make the Worlds Best Scrambled Eggs. Faith Reaper weighed in with her recipe for Baked Fried Green Tomatoes along with the short story, Savannah's Smile. My original attempt at this budding genre was my recipe for Acorn Squash and a flash fiction story called Dream Date.

My latest addition to this literary/culinary combo is a recipe for homemade larabars made from dates and cashews and and a flash fiction story called Survival. Actually, this recipe has been published her for quite a while, but I wanted to give it a needed upgrade. Homemade larabars are a delicious, energy packed food, so it's worth keeping the hub going.

I'll begin with the recipe, then move on to the story.

Healthy snack bars that are excellent energy bars while hiking

We all need energy and no matter how much we might want to stay or get fit, we have to eat adequately to keep our energy up. The solution to balancing weight control with maintaining energy is to eat smart.

Homemade, cashew and date Larabars is one of the smart foods. Yes, the calories are a bit on the high side because of the cashews, but they are loaded with antioxidants, minerals and vitamins.

Ripe Dates and Cashews

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Ripe dates in Taormina (Sicily). Picture by Giovanni Dall'Orto, September 30 2006. The cashew bean at its "rawest." The bean (or the nut) sticks out of the center of the base of the fruit. The bean is what we like to eat: the cashew nut.
Ripe dates in Taormina (Sicily). Picture by Giovanni Dall'Orto, September 30 2006.
Ripe dates in Taormina (Sicily). Picture by Giovanni Dall'Orto, September 30 2006. | Source
 The cashew bean at its "rawest." The bean (or the nut) sticks out of the center of the base of the fruit. The bean is what we like to eat: the cashew nut.
The cashew bean at its "rawest." The bean (or the nut) sticks out of the center of the base of the fruit. The bean is what we like to eat: the cashew nut. | Source

Larabar Ingredients: Cashews and Dates

  • 32oz Raw or dry roasted cashews, Ground to texture of corn meal
  • 1.5lbs Dates, pitted, Pureed to a paste

Author's Demonstration.

  1. Place a golf ball size lump of pureed dates in the palm of one hand and add to that hand a handful of ground cashews. Continue kneading more cashews into the mixture until it is consistently slightly tacky.
  2. Place the ball between sheets of waxed paper on the table and press the bottom of a sauce pan down onto it until it is uniformly one quarter inch thick. Trim to the desired size and shape.
  3. Wrap the bar in waxed paper and then press it once more with the sauce pan.
  4. Freeze, refrigerate or eat immediately.
Homage Larabars ready for the freezer and ready for the trail or wherever you need quick energy.
Homage Larabars ready for the freezer and ready for the trail or wherever you need quick energy. | Source

Dried Cherries. Store them in the freezer. Use alone as a snack or in salads, muffins. and recipes.

Nutrition Facts
Serving size: 1 (one) bar
Calories 190
Calories from Fat90
% Daily Value *
Fat 10 g15%
Saturated fat 2 g10%
Unsaturated fat 0 g
Carbohydrates 22 g7%
Fiber 2 g8%
Protein 4 g8%
Cholesterol 0 mg
* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.

Weigh in with your opinion about the calorie count in Larabars

After comparing the nutrition information to the calorie per bar, do you consider Larabars to be a high quality snack food?

See results

Will you and your family enjoy Larabars? Rate them here.

Cast your vote for Homemade Larabars Made With Dates and Cashews

Montana Mountain Peak with Scree Fields Forming Below

Source

Survival

A lone hiker named Chris lay sprawled on the ground more than a hundred feet below the trail he had been hiking. Weariness from carrying the heavy backpack too many miles had left him dragging his feet. It was inevitable that he would trip on one of the rocks protruding from the trail if he didn’t stop and rest.

He hadn’t stopped--he did trip--and the descent was brutal.

After a ten foot fall he had struck a rocky ledge, rolled and fell again, tumbling down the sharply sloping side of the mountain. Gravel ground into his skin, cutting and scraping his arms and face. He finally came to rest against a pile of scree, large pieces of stone that had broken off the peak high above.

Chris awoke to the sound of rushing water not far below. His body ached with the cuts, bruises and sprains. How long he had lain on the flat boulder, he could only guess, but judging from the pool of congealed blood from his nose, it must have been hours.

While no bones seemed to be broken, his right knee was swollen. He drank from his water bag and began to think more clearly. He inspected his backpack and found that the shoulder straps had broken, but the waist belt had held. The top of the pack had been torn open, but most of his gear was still inside. Only the items on top were missing, which included the two bags of dehydrated meals.

Mountain Stream

Source

Chris looked at the slope above him. He could make out the route his flailing body had taken to get to where he now sat on a boulder with his back leaning against yet another boulder. In fact, all he could see was the rubble of a scree field.

His knee would keep him from climbing out. He had been warned against hiking these mountain canyons alone, but, as a long term visitor to the State of Montana, he didn’t know anyone who would take time to accompany him on his weekend excursions.

He recalled having mentioned to his coworkers at his temporary job where he would be hiking this weekend, and he also had texted his family back home about his plans. Today was Sunday. Eventually someone would come looking for him.

Chris dug deeper into the pack and found his cell phone which had evidently taken a direct hit on the ledge above because it was crushed. The water bag was intact, but he hadn’t filled it since leaving his campsite that morning. He listened to the sound of running water below. He might not be able to climb out, but he knew he could find a way to get water from the stream. He lay his head back against the rock and slept.

When he awoke, it was getting dark, and he was seriously hungry. Thoughts of the dehydrated lasagna and the scalloped potatoes and ham taunted him. Then he remembered the larabars. He had made a batch of his favorite hiking snack in the middle of the week and had brought them along. He tore into the backpack, searching the pockets, afraid that they too had flown out during his fall.

He finally found the larabars, and emptied them out onto the boulder. He remembered packing two for Friday afternoon and eight more for Saturday and Sunday. Fortunately, he hadn’t eaten as many as he thought he might. Six date and cashew bars lay before him, his only source of sustenance until help came. He opened one and recalled that there were nearly two hundred calories in each bar. He hoped it would be enough.

Larabars

Source

Chris barely slept that night. His knee hurt, and he was hungry. As the sun came up on Monday morning, he had another larabar and some water. This was the day that his coworkers would realize something was wrong when he didn’t show up for work.

He drank the rest of his water for breakfast and immediately began plotting about how to get more from the stream. He crawled to the edge of the flat boulder and peered down. Twenty feet below was a pool connected to the side of the mainstream. He found the length of rope he carried for hanging his food from trees at night so bears wouldn’t visit his campsites. He lowered the bag to the pool where it floated. He retrieved the bag and put a couple of rocks inside, then tried again. The bottle began to fill.

Rescued

Source

With the food and water problems solved, he began to relax, knowing that sometime, somebody was going to find him. He waited expectantly all day until the light began to fade once again. This night he slept long and hard.

For breakfast, Chris ate the fourth of the six bars. All day he lay, thinking, reading a paperback of Hemingway short stories and making notes about his ordeal. He dozed on and off as the sun slowly sank for the third time since he had fallen.

He was awakened late Tuesday morning by gravel pouring down on top of him. At first he feared a land slide, but looked up the slope to see a man descending with the aid of a rope which was being played out by another person up on the trail. The rescuer introduced himself as Conner, and his partner was Sarah.

An hour later, a helicopter hovered overhead, lowering a rescue harness. Chris waved to Joel and turned to Conner. “You two might need these before the day is over,” he said, holding out the remaining two larabars.

Chris began to slowly rise out of the scree field, seeing the magnificent, treacherous scene around him in a new light. This was the Montana wilderness, and it demanded man’s respect.

Comments

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    • cam8510 profile imageAUTHOR

      Chris Mills 

      3 years ago from Hartford, CT

      I appreciate the visit and thanks for reading my hub.

    • cam8510 profile imageAUTHOR

      Chris Mills 

      4 years ago from Hartford, CT

      Wasteless project, they really are very good. And fun to make as well. Thanks for visiting.

    • Wasteless Project profile image

      Wasteless Project 

      4 years ago from Worldwide

      Yummie! That recipe sounds delicious and is inviting to be experimented with;) Thanks for sharing!

    • cam8510 profile imageAUTHOR

      Chris Mills 

      5 years ago from Hartford, CT

      carozy, I make these out of dates, figs, dried cherries and dried cranberries. They are all wonderful and easy to make. Thanks for reading and sharing.

    • carozy profile image

      carozy 

      5 years ago from San Francisco

      I'm familiar with Lara bars and like some of them. This sounds like something my roommate would do. He loves dates.

    • cam8510 profile imageAUTHOR

      Chris Mills 

      5 years ago from Hartford, CT

      Hi Robin, Thanks for reading. I am right this minute working on an article about how to incorporate dried cherries into our diets. I got to wondering if the larabar process would work with cherries. I only had almonds, so I tried it and it is great. It is the same process as I used here except with cherries.

    • RobinGrosswirth23 profile image

      Robin Grosswirth 

      5 years ago from New York

      Love dates and cashews so it is a great marriage. Love healthy snacking. Thanks.

    • Michael-Milec profile image

      Michael-Milec 

      5 years ago

      Very much so, maintening energy/health a need or necessity. Keep up with these great receipts . ( one for to encrease iron in the blood ) .

      Thank you for inspirational writing .

      Up and interesting.

      Have a blessed journey now, and in upcoming 2013 .

    • cam8510 profile imageAUTHOR

      Chris Mills 

      5 years ago from Hartford, CT

      You're welcome RTalloni, thanks for reading and commenting. Enjoy the Larabars.

    • RTalloni profile image

      RTalloni 

      5 years ago from the short journey

      A super recipe hub--thanks for sharing method so clearly in the video!

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