Clean, Fresh, Local Foods. Affordable, Seasonal Breakfasts & Lunches, Artisanal Loaves made with NY flours, From-Scratch Baked Goods and Desserts, all prepared in-house from responsibly grown, primarily local ingredients.

540 Delaware Avenue
Albany, NY 12209


Wed: 6 & 8pm Farm to Chef Dinners (reservation only)

Thurs/Fri: 11am-7pm

Sat/Sun: 11am-5pm

(kitchen open from 11 to 5, limited sandwich menu available between 5 and 7pm)
Loaves, Baked Goods, Sandwiches!

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Friday, May 31, 2013

Oh, Balls. AGB’s Vegan, Gluten Free “Energy Treats” (Recipe)


Or as we more formally call them at All Good Bakers, Energy Treats. Tasty goodness, compacted for on-the-go, impossible to photograph well, containing multiple expensive (delicious) ingredients, a fan favorite, and a pain in the arse to make in bulk.

Volunteers, interns or new employees have, in the past, always been inducted into the AGB kitchen with the task of preparing “The Balls” (no other term came as quickly to the brain or lips when referring to these perfect representatives of tasty pleasure and repeated-preparation-pain). Carpal Tunnel is in one’s future (nee, our reality) if one makes a lot of them, day after day, year after year. We’ve tried pounding the mixture into sheet pans (and other methods) but the mixture just doesn’t stick together properly unless you follow the instructions below. There is no simplification of the process for making them…that we can think of anyway.

We’ve decided to stop preparing The Balls recently (after 3 years). Here’s why: Some ingredient prices have gone up (all are fairly expensive) and we’d have to charge more than people have said they would be willing to pay to make preparing them profitable. Honestly, we need to devote our prep time to other items, as well as preserve our most treasured, skillful limbs as bakers - our hands, wrists and arms - for long-term posterity (and sanity).

Energy Treat fans needn’t despair, because we’re giving away the recipe! These vegan, gluten-free balls-o-goodness are easy to make in small batches on an occasional basis. However, be careful with whom you share your efforts because everyone in your circle will soon become addicted, and you’ll likely  find yourself where we are…icing our wrists & elbows on the sofa every evening to decrease swelling. Feel free to share this recipe. 

Kids and adults enjoy these tasty, nutritious treats during sports breaks, packed in lunches, for an afternoon snack when you hit the bricks at work, and they’re not too sweet for a quick breakfast if you’re in a hurry.

Here’s our recipe, which can be adapted with all manner of substitutions – from different nut or seed butters, dried fruits, and other grains or sweet components. These are the ingredients we use – the quality of the ones you choose will make a big difference in texture and taste, so we don’t recommend skimping on “big box store” ingredients. All of these ingredients can be found at our local Co-Op (The Honest Weight).

All Good Bakers’ Energy Treats
Makes about 10 individual balls; Recipe multiplies easily

1 cup The PeanutPrinciple’s Organic Crunchy Peanut Butter
½ cup Mountain Winds Farm Pure Maple Syrup

--Combine well with sturdy wooden spoon in generously sized bowl

1/3 cup Our Daily Eats finely Shredded Coconut
1/3 cup Our Daily Eats raw Sunflower Seeds
           (avail by special order via links above)

--Add the above ingredients, all at one time, to the Peanut Butter/Maple mixture, incorporate well.

--Add to mixture 1 cup at a time until all cereal is combined.

Fill a separate, small bowl with lukewarm water and dunk a 1/3rd cup measure into it before scooping and firmly packing the mixture into the measuring cup, then tapping it out onto a parchment-covered sheet pan/cookie sheet. Dunk, scoop & tap until all of the mixture is transferred (don’t allow the cup to become too wet, that will moisten the cereal too much so that it becomes distastefully soggy; a dunk in the water every 2nd or 3rd scoop works well enough to prevent sticking. The parchment lining soaks up excess moisture on the bottom of the ball, preventing further soggy-ness).

Lightly wet your hands (as necessary, preventing excessive moisture) and pack the individual mixtures into balls as tightly as possible. With repeated preparation, it's best if more than 2 hands share the work of shaping. Transfer to a parchment/doily covered plate, cover lightly and refrigerate for an hour or so, till they firm up (layer parchment between stacks to prevent fusion). Balls can be stored in a covered container for up to a week, or frozen if wrapped up tight, to be meted out when needed. They dry up and become very crumbly if left out or refrigerated too long.

Our Saturday DelmarFarmers Market customers are sure to be disappointed to learn we won’t be offering Energy Treats this season (staring tomorrow, Saturday, June 1). Feel free direct interested parties to our blog for the recipe (so you don’t get Carpal Tunnel too), because they will surely be asking you for it. With a little help and creativity, everyone can enjoy making (& eating) these wholesome treats at home. 

Come see us at the shop! Nick is always making something interesting and we’re starting Wednesday Night Fresh Market Dinners very soon! Details after the weekend.

Eat Well, Do Good
Britin & Nick

p.s. As professionals, we kindly ask that you do not use this specific recipe for profit and please link back here when cross-posting on other social media. :)