Monday, 30 April 2012

Foodie Pen Pal Parcel – Chocolate Orange Bites

If you regularly peek at my blog you will have seen that last month I took part in foodie pen pal parcel scheme where foodie bloggers from around the UK (and now the rest of Europe) send each other parcels filled with wonderful foodie delights. We then all receive parcels from someone else in the pen pal parcel chain, get incredibly excited when we open them and then share our delight by blogging about what we got.

This month I was lucky enough to receive a wonderful parcel from Jen @lifestarts. As can be seen in the photos my parcel came in a personalised ‘Something’s MISSING!’ box…such a lovely touch which increased my excitement before I even broke into the box.

But the contents were just as exciting;

Apple rings…a natural fruity crisp that I enjoyed munching on at the cinema this weekend proving a great alternative to popcorn. Jen also challenged me to create my own version of these…I haven’t had time to experiment yet but definitely will give it a go soon!

Vita coco…as instructed I enjoyed this chilled after a rather hectic game of squash and it proved to be nicely refreshing.

Halva…mmmmmmm, I adore all things sesame.

Popcorn tea…this was really good, it didn’t taste of popcorn but had a toasted nutty flavour that complimented the green tea really rather well.

Kaffir Lime Leaves…I love Thai food so these will definitely be used up quickly.

Seaweed peanuts…I have had these before and knew that I loved them so tucked into these first (they didn’t last long!)

Caribbean cocktail…a really nice selection of tropical dried fruit

Nakd Bar…This is one of Jen’s favourite healthy snack bars. I had never come across them before but this was absolutely delicious.

It is gluten and wheat free just containing dates, cashews, raisins and cocoa with a little orange flavouring and tasted divine with a rich chocolaty orange flavour...definitely a great alternative to a normal chocolate bar when you are in need of a sweet fix. In fact I enjoyed it so much that I decided to attempt my own version of this raw food bar. I had a slightly different selection of dried fruits and nuts in my cupboard at home so went for a cherry and almond version but was quite chuffed with my final result.

So thanks Jen for my lovely box of goodies and for the inspiration for the following recipe.


60g flaked almonds
85g dates
40g dried cherries
15g cocoa
1 tsp. orange juice
½ teaspoon orange blossom water

Makes 8 bites

Place the flaked almonds in a food processor and blitz until ground up (it may just be easier to use ground almonds but I didn’t have any at the time!) then transfer the almonds to a bowl.

Roughly chop the dates and cherries and put into the food processor with the orange juice and orange blossom water. Blitz until well combined and then transfer to the bowl with the almonds.

Add the cocoa to the bowl and mix until well combined. After initially mixing with a spoon I found it easier to get stuck in with my hands to thoroughly mix the ingredients together.

Then divide the mixture into 8 little balls and pat each down to form little disks and decorate with a flaked almond slice.

Store in an air tight container until you are ready to munch!


  1. oooh never heard of halva! i enjoy sesame stuff also!

  2. Hey Julia, I'm really pleased you enjoyed the contents of the parcel - I was very nervous being a first-timer! I've also got to say that your version raw treats look amazing and I look forward to giving the recipe a whirl :-D. x

  3. Thanks for the inspiration for the recipe Jen, your parcel was just as exciting as my first! I'm hoping the foodie pen pal parcel continues to get better and better :o)

  4. What a great post - a beautiful, thoughtful parcel AND an inspired recipe! Brilliant work, you two x

  5. I'm sad that this is only around europe! I wish I can play too! I've been reading a lot of these posts and tempted to play along!

  6. I love that the box was personalized. And I'm jealous of your kaffir lime leaves! Such a fun cooking addition.