Snack Attack (and The Fig Dilemma)

As final weeks pushes on (although I haven’t taken an exam yet) I find myself wanting to snack all the time. There’s something about doing stats problems or going over flash cards that is so much more enjoyable when munching. So of course I had to find some healthy snacks. First I tried edamame, which was great. The next night I got multi grain tortilla chips, probably not the healthiest way to go especially when I tend to eat at least half the big bag. But tonight I wanted to switch it up, mix sweet and salty and healthy all together. I’ve really been wanting to make a vegan caramel sauce recently, so what better time than the present? AKA what better time than when I have to study for a math test tomorrow. So I decided on caramel covered popcorn.

So I set to it, armed with my new favorite ingredient: dates. It was actually absurdly easy and took more time to clean up than to actually make. Also, the school’s market got pitted dates… Hooray! (It’s the little things I swear). Here is the recipe just for the caramel… Just make some popcorn and mix it around with the sauce.

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Ingredients: 1 cup pitted dates

3 tablespoons water

1 tablespoon maple syrup

Directions:

1. Heat maple syrup and water over medium heat until they have mixed completely and the sauce is warm.

2. In a blender, blend the dates in small amounts until all are broken up as much as possible.

3. Pour syrup over dates and blend again until the whole mixture looks, well, like a caramel.

How easy was that? I mixed the popcorn and sauce with some dark chocolate and almonds. Next time I think I might try a chocolate caramel sauce because the chocolate made it even better. I thought this actually tasted quite similar to caramel corn! (Fun fact, Cracker Jacks are actually vegan as well, but not nearly as healthy as this.)

Healthy, Delicious Snack

Healthy, Delicious Snack

Also, I want to answer a question I’ve been asked a couple times now. Are figs vegan? I had mentioned earlier about having a fig salad but at that point I hadn’t even realized there was a dispute about whether the fruit was vegan. First, to clarify I am more “plant-based” rather than “vegan,” because I am only “vegan” in the fact I don’t eat animal by products. I still wear non-vegan clothes, drink non vegan beer and wine, etc. So in that sense figs are OK for me because they are definitely plants, thus plant based. But even if I was more stringent I would probably still eat figs. Having now done some research, I found out that a certain kind of wasps pollinate figs and then the female wasp dies in the fig. The fig basically breaks down the wasp and that’s that. They have a mutually beneficial relationship because the wasp needs the fig to pollinate while the fig needs the wasp to ripen. To me, it’s kind of like saying I can’t eat plants because the soil might have dead animals in it that made the soil fertilized. Obviously that cuts out my entire diet. Here is a helpful article on it:

http://science.howstuffworks.com/zoology/insects-arachnids/fig-wasp2.htm

Remember, I always want to answer questions so please send me more! Or if you want me to veganize anything I would love to.

Enjoy the rest of the weekend!

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6 thoughts on “Snack Attack (and The Fig Dilemma)

    • Since becoming vegan it’s been really interesting what people consider to be vegan or not vegan. But definitely try making some caramel corn, it was so easy and perfect addition to help me study.

      • Yeah sugar is another big surprise. Most commercial sugars aren’t vegan because they’re processed using bone char. It depends on what kind of vegan you are. Some “vegans” still eat the sugar because they are vegan for the health reasons rather than the ethical reasons. I do it for the health reasons, so although I usually tell people that I’m vegan to keep it simple, I consider myself more as someone who eats a plant based diet.

      • I like the way you describe yourself! It really makes sense. Some of the vegans I met seemed to have lost sight of the reasons they first started eating a plant-based diet because of the strict rules they forced themselves to follow.

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