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About these No-Bake Healthy Vegan Brownies:
I shouldn’t be left alone with them. They fall along the lines of healthy-ish chocolate caramels crossed with a brownie, made from dates, dark cocoa, ground pecans, unsweetened coconut, and a bit of maple syrup. Whirled in a food processor until ground to a paste, until glossy…. They have the perfect chew, and hold their shape beautifully.
The dark chocolate drizzle is a must, taking them from plain jane to a little bit fancy. I did something similar with these caramels! I love the extra decadence it gives, but most importantly, something for the pecan dust to adhere to.
And they just happen to have a superfood boost from maca.
Maca what? It’s an adaptogen and a member of the cruciferous family, like broccoli and cabbage, but due to its unique properties, it’s considered one of the world’s natural “super foods.” Grown high in the mountains of Peru, the pleasant tasting root is ground down after harvesting. It has a positive effect on hormone balance and energy levels. *I used Megafood’s Daily Maca Powder powder which also includes Chaste Tree Berry, Black Cohosh and other herbs to help maintain a healthy hormonal balance and manage that unpleasant time around your period, as well as menopause if you’re in that stage.* I honestly never knew that I could be using something natural instead of relying on ibuprofen. Let alone add it to healthy vegan caramels. Double win.
Mid-afternoon snack, cookie platter (nobody will turn these down!), dessert, or even a last resort bite as you’re running out the door in the morning, I think they’ll fit into your repertoire.
About life lately, as an Adult Child of Divorce:
As I drove back from Thanksgiving, home being a few hours away in southern Minnesota, tears shed down my face. I was alone, except for the open country road, harvested fields, and abandoned farmhouses. Brian was with his dad’s family, as he should have been, and I visited my mom and family at the house I grew up in, and then headed to my dad’s relatives. It was great to see everyone. Lots of chatter, discussion, and smiles. Lots to be thankful for…. people who love me, health, and food on the table.
The tears were not meant to be sad ones. But they were. My parents divorced when I was 25 (seven years ago now), after being married for 25 years. It was a good thing. They weren’t meant to be together, and that was evident from a young age. We lived a “perfect on the outside, deep issues on the inside” family life, which was very hard, and had effects that I still carry with me.
When the day came that my parents finally split, I did not choose sides, although some who looked at the situation said I was crazy for not blaming my father because of infidelity. As an adult, I was supposed to rationalize what happened, and put myself in mom’s shoes. Which I did. I cannot imagine the heartbreak, the void. But for me it wasn’t about what finally caused the split….. and I didn’t want to lose either parent because of it. . I needed both of them in my life, and my one wish for them was to be happy, and I felt that being set free would be the beginning of that.
I would argue that having parents divorce as an adult is harder than being a child. Few talk about the different and additional layers this adds to an already complicated situation. Unlike a child, who is innocent and unknowing when divorce happens, as an adult you become an active participant. I fell into an awkward position of having to provide emotional support for both of them, and help them through the process. They may not have intended for this, nor do i blame them, but it happened.
Both are in happy relationships with other people now, and have started new paths, for which I am grateful for.
But holidays are hard. Those tears that dripped off my cheek like big raindrops were because I have this vision of a family picture of us each year as we continue to grow older, and watch the years across all of our faces. Those were frustration tears, for always having to decide where to spend the holidays. Those tears were for not having a family unit. Those tears were for wanting to have traditions that were just ours.
So maybe I need to start my own traditions, with Brian. Or find a different solution that brings me happiness, that fills me up. It is no one’s fault….. just a part of life as an adult child of divorce that I need to figure out.
Disclosure: This healthy vegan brownies recipe was sponsored by MegaFood as part of my participation in their Ambassador program. I am a strong believer in their farm to tablet philosophy. All thoughts and opinions are my own. *These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration, and this product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.