I wish I was someone who found the vegan or healthy option appealing, but I’m really not. Butter is King in my opinion and a life without it is a life not worth living. HOWEVER, these vegan tahini bars from No. 9 Cafe in Lunenburg were unbelievable. Cass and I sheltered there one morning whilst Hurricane Dorian was passing through. It was the only place in town that was open, which is fortuitous because it’s also the best place.
There was no power at No. 9, so they could only provide iced coffee, cakes and wine. A couple of guys at the counter had chosen the latter option, I went for the more sensible option and chose cold coffee and the vegan bar; seeing as our hosts Cloe and Mustafa were both Muslim I didn’t think turning up drunk at their house would have gone down well.
Unfortunately, this vegan bar recipe is not the exact one from No. 9 – I have tried emailing them and scouring Instagram for any way to get the original recipe, but no joy. In trying to recreate the recipe I turned to all the other bloggers out there, and have ended up with a bar resembling something between Sweet Peas and Saffrons’, Well-fed Soul’s, and my own creation. To my astonishment, it still tastes good despite there being no sugar or butter involved.
The other good thing about these storm bars is that they don’t need to be cooked, which makes them perfect for a blackout. Mustafa had already told me about ‘storm chips’, which are *SPOILER ALERT!*, just chips (A.K.A crisps), that you eat in a storm. As we headed into the supermarket the evening before, Mustafa told me to go and check the crisp aisle. Low and behold, it was completely empty! So in homage to the Lunenbergers and their penchant for panic buying storm chips, these bars are named after them.
Vegan Storm Bars
4-5 tbsp coconut oil
250g ground almonds
250g rolled oats
Soften the dates in warm water for about 5 minutes. Strain the water then blitz them in the food processor along with the coconut oil and ground almonds.
In a frying pan lightly toast the porridge oats.
Add the porridge oats to the food processor along with the other ingredients. Add a little water to help bind the mixture,or coconut oil if you prefer.
Place the mixture into a lined roasting tray and press it down well so that it sticks together and doesn’t become a crumbly mess when eating it later. Place the tray in the freezer.
Melt the dark chocolate in a bain marie, stirring until the chocolate is all melted. Add a little more coconut oil.
Pour the melted chocolate over the compressed tahini/date/almond/oat base. Make sure the chocolate is evenly covered. Sprinkle on top some sesame seeds and some sea salt.