Thursday, May 1, 2014

Salty Balls and Bike Nutrition

I've wanted to try making my own bike nutrition for a while now and finally got the motivation to do so before our training weekend on the Big Island last weekend.....

I've read and seen a lot of information out there about what people like and have used to fuel themselves through their rides. Some of it sounds good and some of it notsomuch. In my opinion, when you are riding for hours on end, a calorie is a calorie, but sometimes you I just get sick of gels and want something different. Hence, my attempt at making something new and different (for me).

I got the salty ball recipe from Haley's Blog and tweaked it a little bit for my own liking. They were a hit! Delicious perfect bike fuel...I need to figure out how to best store them on my bike so I can get to them easier...a zip-lock sandwich baggie in your jersey pocket is not the best method...bento box maybe??suggestions anyone??

The other recipe we tried was a take on Lärabars

Here's the recipe: 
1 cup nuts (almonds, cashews, pecans, walnuts, peanuts, hazelnuts (whatever suits your fancy))
1 cup sweet dried fruit (dates, raisins, figs, strawberries, bananas, cranberries (whatever suits your fancy))
1 cup filling (this is optional) Kind of the same as the sweet dried fruit, just other options (dried cherries, dried blueberries, dried apricot, dried pineapple, cranberries, goji berries, more chopped nuts, dried coconut, chocolate chips, coffee beans, cacao nibs, shredded carrot (whatever suits your fancy))
2-4 tbsp flavoring (also optional) (maple syrup, agave, vanilla, cinnamon, citrus zest, ginger, mint, cloves, coconut oil, cacao)

This "recipe" totally allows you to get creative. Mix whatever sounds good to you. Put the fruit and nuts in a food processor and mix until a sticky, workable "dough" is formed. Add in your flavoring and process until combined. Add in the filling, pulse well (don't ruin the texture). Shape into balls. wrap in plastic wrap or put into sandwich baggies and put in refrigerator until you are ready to ride. Storage/best riding method for holding the balls is still up for debate 
My favorite concoction of the ball making was the tropical balls. It was a combination of cashews, coconut butter, shredded coconut, dried strawberries, and some maple syrup. 
Eat up!

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