Almost raw cherry + almond butter caramel bars

Almost raw cherry + almond butter caramel bars

HEY. HELLO. HI GUYS!

Well. It is no exaggeration to say that the past almost-five months have been the weirdest almost-five months of my life. I know I keep saying that but things just keep getting weirder and weirder and my life keeps getting more and more unrecognizable and I spend a good chunk of each day trying to figure out how the hell I got here. To where I am now. Tucked into a funky 680 square foot loft (and another!) in a part of town I said I’d never live in (previously: Cheesman or Die, man), with a triple-net lease and a whole food edibles company so close to launching that it makes my head spin.

Most days I wake up and think HOLY SHIT I’M STARTING AN EDIBLES COMPANY! And then some days I wake up and wonder WHY THE FUCK DID I DECIDE TO START AN EDIBLES COMPANY? It should come as no surprise that I’m saying this but.. this process hasn’t exactly been a walk in the park (understatement of the year); it’s been hard and frustrating and all-consuming. For a solid 12 months. But I guess if it was easy, everyone would be doing it (at least that’s what people like to remind me). We were hoping to be launched by 1 August but apparently the Universe had other plans so 1 September is the target launch date now. And it’s looking like that date is totally doable because Thom got word last night that we’re thisclose to jumping over our final hurdle which means ALCHEMY EDIBLES WILL BE AVAILABLE SOON! Well, assuming the city doesn’t pull anymore surprises out of their bag of MIP Barriers to Entry. Cross your fingers. Send good vibes. Pray to your god(s). PLZ.

Anyway! My weekend plans consist of working on a recipe for Califia (Kickass Breakfast Sandwiches will be coming your way soon) (title pending approval) and removing alllll the rust from our balcony that was ignored by the previous owner. If you have any rust removal tips, I’ll take ’em. So long as it’s not to use a combination of baking soda + vinegar because mixing an acid with a base results in a mostly neutralized solution that doesn’t do shit. So please stop cleaning your house with a mixture of baking soda and vinegar because science says it doesn’t work as well as either of those things would work on their own. Vinegar and salt, however, have done a number on the rust so if you need me I’ll be scrubbing the hell out of our balcony.. probably with one of these almond butter caramel bars in hand. But still, I’ll take your tips if you’ve got ’em. ;)

Here’s hoping your weekend shapes up to be a lot more enjoyable than mine. <3

C H E R R I E SBlendin'Almond + coconut crustAlmond butter caramelSpreadin' the almond butter caramelAlmost raw cherry + almond butter caramel barsAlmost raw cherry + almond butter caramel barsAlmost raw cherry + almond butter caramel barsAlmost raw cherry + almond butter caramel bars

Notes: If you’re not a fan of almonds, feel free to make these bars with your favorite nut/nut butter. If you don’t like coconut, you can replace the coconut in the crust with 1 cup (90g) rolled oats. But I’d avoid using oats to top the bars. ;) The almond butter caramel is pretty dang thick so if you don’t have a high powdered blender, you might want to soak the dates, mash them up with a fork, then mix everything by hand (bonus: totally counts as an arm day workout in my book). If cherries aren’t your thing– nah, I’m not even going to go there because I refuse to believe that anyone doesn’t like in-season cherries.

ALMOST RAW CHERRY + ALMOND BUTTER CARAMEL BARS

Almond + coconut crust
1 1/2 cups (170g) raw almonds
1 cup (70g) unsweetened shredded coconut
Pinch of fine sea salt
2 (30g) medjool dates
, pitted
1-2 tablespoons (14-28g) unsweetened almondmilk
1 tablespoon (12g) unrefined coconut oil, melted (but not hot)

Almond butter caramel
3/4 cup (185g) raw almond butter

10-12 (160g) medjool dates, pitted and soaked in hot water for 30 minutes
1/4 cup (55g) unsweetened almondmilk
Heavy pinch of fine sea salt
1/4 cup (45g) unrefined coconut oil, melted (but not hot)

You’ll also need
Bing cherries, pitted and halved
Raw almonds
, roughly chopped
Flaked coconut
Sea salt flakes

In a food processor fitted with the S blade, blend the almonds, shredded coconut, and sea salt into a fine meal. Add the dates and 1 tablespoon of the almondmilk, and process just until combined. While the processor is running, slowly drizzle in the coconut oil and blend just until combined; about 15-20 seconds. Press the mixture between your fingers to make sure it sticks together. If it doesn’t hold well, add the additional tablespoon of almondmilk and blend until combined. Firmly press the mixture into a 6″ square/round pan (or two smaller pans, like I did) lined with parchment paper; set aside.

In a high powered blender, such as a Vitamix, blend the almond butter, dates, almondmilk, and sea salt on high speed until smooth and creamy; about 1-2 minutes. Reduce the speed to low and slowly drizzle in the coconut oil, then increase the speed to high and blend for 30-45 seconds (using the tamper as needed).

To assemble the bars, spread the almond butter caramel over the crust. Top with cherries, almonds, flaked coconut, and sea salt flakes. Chill bars in the freezer for at least eight hours before serving. Will keep frozen, in an airtight container, for up to one month (but they probably won’t last that long because these things are delicious).

When you’re ready to serve, use a sharp knife and quickly slice through the bars (if you slice them slowly, the toppings will smoosh – ha, smoooooooosh – the filling). Once sliced, let the bars thaw for 10 minutes so the cherries have some time to soften. And in case you were wondering: yes, they’re totally acceptable to eat for breakfast.

Yield: 12 bars


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Almost raw cherry + almond butter caramel bars

23 Comments

  • Reply Hannah 21 July 2017 at 8:31 AM

    Preach! The scientist in me flips whenever I see people recommend baking soda and vinegar together as a cleaning solution. NO NO NO! I blame Pinterest for the spread of this misinformation. Thanks for trying to put an end to it.

    Good luck with your balcony! If you get tired of scrubbing with the natural stuff, CLR is your friend.

    • Reply Stefanie 24 July 2017 at 7:16 PM

      Can I be that annoying person who says that if you do it right, it works really well?? In the right place. Like an oven! If something has spilled and baked on, cover it in a layer of baking soda then splash vinegar on top. It’s the bubbling of the neutralisation reaction that lifts the dirt and scum. Mixing it in a bowl then using it is total rubbish and science says no.

      • Reply Ashlae 25 July 2017 at 6:36 AM

        Hi Stefanie –

        I use the same method to clean my oven, but with water instead of vinegar. Works the same. 😉

  • Reply Aimee 21 July 2017 at 9:19 AM

    Almond butter caramel…just when I thought almond butter couldn’t be improved upon.

    Also, please tell you me you recruited someone else to pit all those cherries. Pitting cherries = THE WORST.

  • Reply dixya @food, pleasure, and health 21 July 2017 at 9:41 AM

    sending all the good vibes your way..alchemy edibles sounds pretty awesome. i have no patience to pit those cherries otherwise, i’d be all for this bar…unless i find someone to do that for me ;)

  • Reply Valentina | The Blue Bride 21 July 2017 at 10:07 AM

    Sending good vibes!
    But I swear, I use baking soda and vinegar to whiten my ceramic kitchen sink and my always burnt looking saucepan and it’s the only product that works! :D

  • Reply Maya | Spice + Sprout 21 July 2017 at 10:59 AM

    OMGGG these look incredible. Good luck with the business! Can’t wait to see it all come together. xo

  • Reply Hannah 21 July 2017 at 12:03 PM

    This. Is. My. Everything. Cannot wait to have that almond butter caramel in my face.

  • Reply Elizabeth Jarrard 21 July 2017 at 1:26 PM

    Don’t mind me, just over here drooling.

  • Reply Jean 21 July 2017 at 1:36 PM

    Ahh a combination of so many favorites. Held off buying a cherry pitter for 3 years as , really do I need one more kitchen tool but just broke down and bought the Oxo one…love it. Sure wish Alchemy was open now (but surely not as much as you do) as I will be visiting the Denver area next week and indulging in what I can only assume will be amazing edibles would have been the perfect vacation treat. Next time for sure. Best of luck with the launch.

  • Reply Sally 21 July 2017 at 2:48 PM

    Thanks for sharing the recipe. Can’t wait for the new company to start. i know that it has been a LOT of work on your part, but it will be a delicious part of our lives!! Keep up the good and hard work!! :)

  • Reply Becky 22 July 2017 at 12:06 AM

    Sending all the luck your way in these final few weeks of preparation and as Alchemy launches! 🍀

  • Reply Yuri 22 July 2017 at 7:15 AM

    Cannot WAIT to try this! Cheeseman grew on me too…although I’m not sure enough to live there 😉

    Super excited things are about to blossom! Best of luck!

  • Reply Kari 22 July 2017 at 8:03 AM

    I made a deconstructed version of these bars last night and they were a hit. The best part is that you don’t have to wait for them to chill…you can just dig right in!

    Best of luck with Alchemy! Everything is crossed. 🤞🏼

  • Reply Rainbow Koehl 22 July 2017 at 8:39 AM

    Hmm, I wonder if an immersion blender would work for the Almond Butter Caramel topping?

    • Reply Ashlae 22 July 2017 at 8:59 AM

      Hi Rainbow –

      It wouldn’t hurt to try! Just a heads up, the mixture is pretty thick so I’d use warm ingredients instead of ones that are room temperature. Just throw the almond butter, almondmilk, and coconut oil on the stove (for a few minutes) prior to blending. You’ll need to chill the warm caramel before assembling the bars. If you try it, please let me know if it works!

  • Reply Abby | Lace & Lilacs 22 July 2017 at 9:41 AM

    Ahh good luck with everything, Ashlae ! Also: these bars look freaking amazing and I adore your photos. xx

  • Reply Weekend Reading | The Full Helping 23 July 2017 at 4:53 AM

    […] of no-cook/no-bake things, check out Ashleigh’s scrumptious almost raw cherry almond butter caramel bars. I’d make these for the caramel layer alone, but it’s all calling my […]

  • Reply Madhvi 24 July 2017 at 4:03 AM

    HEY. HELLO. HI. its looking Yummy

  • Reply Edie 24 July 2017 at 9:04 AM

    Oh, baby. These look all sorts of amazing. Also! I can’t wait for your company to launch. My husband and I are freaking stoked. He basically has no idea who you are, but I keep reminding him of the “rad Colorado blogger who will be selling edibles in the v near future.” :)

  • Reply Kate 24 July 2017 at 12:13 PM

    These look awesome! Do you think tart cherries could sub for the bing cherries? I got them from my CSA last week and have no clue what to do with them.

    • Reply Ashlae 25 July 2017 at 6:35 AM

      Hi Kate –

      The filling is pretty sweet soooo it might work. Just depends on how tart those cherries are.

  • Reply Adele 1 August 2017 at 3:30 AM

    So cherries are most definitely not in season in Australia. Any suggestions for us poor folk down south?

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