Nut-free tahini banana power balls 

As our last days in the Costa Rican forest approach, we are very much enjoying making the most of local ingredients and concocting new recipes from the random army of foods we have lying around our hotchpotch little kitchen. While the natural flavours of local organic fruit like these bananas is so beautiful and vibrant, cooking without my favourite things like almond butter or hemp seeds is always a challenge. And yet it’s always in these times of snooping and scavenging around for that final perfect ingredient that some of my favourite recipes are born; this is one of them: little balls of power that – for once – don’t contain nuts and are super quick and easy, and a clean and nutritious source of energy and flavour. So many shop bought snacks rely so heavily on nuts, binders and sugars to pack in taste and a decent shelf-life, and moving away from these is often a welcome move for your body whether you’re allergic to nuts or just a little over-reliant on them, as most healthy eaters can be. Tahini and sunflower seeds give us good protein and fats, while blood-sugar balancing cinnamon keeps hunger pangs at bay.

I can’t yet vouch for how these taste back home with non-native bananas but I can say that this little batch didn’t hang around long. Between satsangs, meditations and hot afternoon hikes down to the river, they flew out of the fridge and into our mouths without us even noticing. And then they were gone.

Now to use up the cacao…


Makes about 8


2 mashed bananas

1 cup rolled oats

2 tbsp sunflower seeds

1 tbsp chia seeds

1 tbsp thick honey

1 tbsp coconut oil

1 tbsp tahini

1 tsp ground cinnamon

A pinch of salt

Black sesame seeds to sprinkle

Mix all the ingredients in a bowl and adjust any flavours to taste. If you like your spices you might want extra cinnamon or even to add a sprinkle of ground ginger as well. Leave for ten minutes to allow the chia to absorb any liquid, then roll into balls in the palms of your hands, sprinkle of roll in a little black sesame, and place in the fridge to set. Serve cold and store in an airtight container for up to three days.

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