Dark Chocolate Sunflower Seed Bark

When in Toronto for work at the end of May, I stocked up on snacks. Now that I have a “normal” 9-to-5 job, I need good desk snacks daily. Some of my favourites include fried corn and sesame sticks, but I also discovered a new (to me) company Barkthins. (Sidenote: snacks are way better in North America. UK, you could really do with upping the snack game!)

After devouring the bark in about two days at work, I decided I would try to recreate it. I used this recipe as a base. I experimented a bit with the ratio of seeds to chocolate: in the end I used 300g dark chocolate and about 200g sunflower seeds — you really do need quite a bit of chocolate if you’re going to make a big batch.

This is really easy to make. I only used sunflower seeds — make sure you lightly toast or roast them. I was a bit nervous that it wouldn’t set, but it did (make sure to refrigerate at least an hour). It is delicious, especially with the added sea salt. I’d encourage everyone to give this one a go! 🙂

Sorry, no photo this time!

Salads for Summer

London has recently decided that it was missing out on summer; we’ve now had about 2 weeks of very hot temperatures (mostly sunny, but with a few massive summer storms). So, like last year, I am doing a wee roundup of new (to me), interesting salads that are good for hot weather.

Carrot, Couscous, & Chickpea Salad with Tahini Dressing {recipe}
I made this quite a while ago now – my version featuring the addition of couscous and cilantro (of course) and without the pistachios. The 3 Cs make a great combination — tasty, filling, healthy, and little effort required. *Note: to make this no-cook, simply use chickpeas from a can, or soak overnight. I like the roasting though because it adds a bit of a bite.

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Roasted Carrot, Avocado & Citrus Salad
 {recipe}
I’m contradicting myself a bit with this salad because it does involve turning the oven on and roasting carrots (of course better done on a BBQ if you are fortunate enough to have a yard one!). This salad might look a bit tedious and intimidating, as there are quite a few ingredients, but I promise it will be worth it! The recipe is Tim from Lottie + Doof’s take on one served at the Pump Room at Chicago’s Public Hotel. He calls it “the salad of our generation.” I don’t know about that, but the mix is delectable and the effort worth it.

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Grilled Corn Salad with Mint, Cilantro, & Feta {recipe}
This Lebanese salad is surprisingly filling, and perfect either on its own or as a side for a BBQ or summer potluck. In my version, I omitted the red onion and added a healthy dose of fresh cilantro leaves. Unfortunately I wasn’t able to grill my corn, but it was still good without. This dish is so tasty (if, like me, you love corn 😉 ), and ideal for hot weather!

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The Seduction of Simplicity: Summer Greens in Tahini Dressing

This is definitely one of those “it’s so simple, why didn’t I think of it before” dishes. And although it looks and sounds a bit like a side dish, I had this meal on its own for lunch one day and it was so filling that I couldn’t finish it. The “recipe”, from a new book called A Modern Way to Eat by Anna Jones, appeared on A Little Bird, and I happened to have all of the ingredients, including some green beans that really needed to be eaten up. It is the perfect example of less is more.

In my version I didn’t include the maple syrup (too precious!), so just toasted the nuts with a bit of salt and pepper, and then replaced it with honey in the dressing.

Although this is perfect for summer (very little prep and less than a minute to blanch), Anna’s recipe includes options for all seasons using other greens such as kale, broccoli, sprouts, etc. If you like tahini or haven’t yet tried it I would urge you to give it a go. 🙂

 

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