Oct 31, 2012

WIAW #62: Halloween Edition!

HAPPY HALLOWEEN!

And happy WIAW. It's that time of the week again!

Peas and Crayons

The time to share some eats, some treats, and some ghoulish fun. I say we do it in that order!


So a recent discovery? Brownies and walnut butter go reallllllly well with roasted kabocha.

Just FYI. And, you know, because I needed another reason to eat brownies. Obviously.

The one in the picture is a Zen Cat Bakery vegan, gluten-free brownie (or rather half of one, since I ate half before coming up with the brilliant walnut butter-kabocha pairing).


And yogurt parfaits never go out of style. Does anyone else like pumpkin seeds better than pumpkin? Anyone?


Freeze dried corn with peanut paste (peanut flour mixed with cashew butter and honey), munched along with a crispy apple = great late night snack.

And, er, it might have been followed by a brownie. Shhhh ;)

Another great late night snack?


Cereal! I never eat mine plain anymore, there's always seeds and dried fruits and cacao nibs, and nut butter and who knows what else mixed in. This bowl as uncooked oats hiding under the raisin brain and granola. And then dried cranberries, dried blueberries, sprouted pumpkin seeds, cacao nibs, and a little sugar over everything. Yummy :)

Even though I don't blog about all of them, since I often repeat types, I still have at least 1 or 2 protein bars a day.


What can I say? I'm addicted.


I'm also very well covered on the protein front, since I love beans - especially sweet beans!

Go figure.

Anyway, I'd love to throw in some more food pics, but this three-component post will get way too long and this next treat is too good to miss!


Has anyone heard of Lily's Sweets? They make dark chocolate bars with fair trade chocolate aaaaaand....

stevia!

It's pretty darn hard to find a chocolate bar (or any kind of sweet treat) that's sweetened with stevia. Correct me if I'm wrong, but they might actually be the only chocolate bar company that makes stevia-sweetened chocolate?

Most companies make chocolate with sugar (which is usually fine unless you're diabetic, since sugar isn't the devil - ahem see that very sugary brownie above?). The ones that offer sugarfree chocolate bars tend to use unhealthy artificial sweeteners that are way less healthy than the sugar would have been - chemicals derived from the same ones that clean your public pool, chemicals that are linked to cancer, developmental issues, obesity, and a host of other problems.

But not Lily's.

The folks behind Lily's, Cynthia and Chuck, worked long and hard to create a healthy 55% dark chocolate bar, made with fair trade chocolate, that you can feel truly good about indulging in, even when it's a daily treat and not a small portion (shhhh). It's 100% sugar-free, natural indulgence!

And not only is it a great product, but it does a great thing. Lily's Dark Chocolate was named in honor of a brave little girl called Lily. During her struggle with an aggressive brain cancer, Lily noticed that there was a shortage of electric wheelchairs at her hospital. When she returned home, seven-year-old (that's how old my little sister is!) Lily worked together with her family to raise $9,000 for an additional chair. I encourage you to read about Lily's inspiring story, and her efforts to raise money for other children with cancer, here!

Anyway, Lily's Sweets doesn't just honor Lily in name, but also in a tangible, helpful way. Lily's donates a portion of their profits from every chocolate bar sale to grass roots non-profits that support childhood cancer survivors and fighters. How many chocolate bars do that?


Here's what's in the bars (the ingredients/stats are just about the same for all of them, but pictured below is for the coconut bar).


Considering the low calories, the less than 1g of sugar, the large serving size (it's not one of those deals where they say it's low calorie because the serving is the size of your pinky finger), and the sometimes bitter taste associated with stevia, I wasn't expecting much.

I was wrong.


There is no bitterness whatsoever here. It's creamy, chocolaty, perfectly sweet, and every bit as decadent as its made-with-sugar counterparts!

Even if these weren't healthy, didn't support childhood cancer survivors and their families, and weren't from an all-around awesome company, I would still buy them. They're just that delicious.

The coconut chocolate bar was coconutty and creamy chocolate, the original was perfect for S'mores (or just straight up), the almond one was loaded with fresh-tasting almonds in silky smooth, creamilicious dark chocolate (but note that they're only 55% dark chocolate, so they're not dark-dark and thus kids will like them, too).

The biggest surprise for me was the Crispy Rice chocolate bar.


It's loaded with crispy brown rice that just pairs so well with the creamy dark chocolate. This is 100% crave-worthy and near-impossible to put down. Three words: yum, yum, yum.

Well, that was delicious. 

Unless you're vegan, there's no reason to buy a bar (or four) right now - find them in a store near you! I promise, there's no way your Halloween candy will be anywhere near as delicious as these, so it's just fine to supplement your stash a little :)

Okay, last but not least, it's time for some ghoulish fun - a this-or-that survey, Halloween style!

Trick or Treat?

Treat! I never did any of the toilet-papering or other Halloween-y pranks. But I trick-or-treated hardcore every year until I started boarding school in ninth grade! These days, I just dress up and buy my own candy/get candy from friendly TFs and holiday-spirited friends :)

Candy or Popcorn Ball?

Candy! Preferably chocolate. I've just never been the hugest fan of popcorn, it just can't compete with a creamy chocolate bar.

Pumpkin carving or pumpkin painting?

I'm not that into either, but I guess I'd go with pumpkin painting. It's less of a mess and not so hard!

Believe in ghosts or don't believe in ghosts?

Don't believe in ghosts. Though when I'm home alone on a dark spooky night and the house is creaking all over, I do believe in scary stuff.

Give out candy or turn off your lights?

Give out candy! The dressing up, and seeing everyone else's costumes, too, is my favorite part of Halloween!

Buy a costume or make a costume?

I've done both, though I usually make a costume. My mom never saw much sense in buying an outfit that I'd only wear once, so we got pretty creative, instead. 

Except that one year when I went as a ghost. Yes, it was a bedsheet with holes in it. But cut us some slack! It was our first Halloween, since they don't (didn't?) have Halloween in South Africa!

Werewolf or Vampire?

Vampire! Does this really need explanation? I mean, who wants all that hair?

Snickers or Smarties?

Snickers, all the way! I'm all about the creamy chocolate. Though now I kind of wish Lily's was an option, too... :)

Bag or pillowcase?

Bag! I almost always used either one of those standard-issue plastic jack-o-lantern ones or a black witch's cauldron one, as I've always thought (and still do) that pillowcases look tacky.

Choose two or three questions and give me your answers! Or, if you decide to do the survey on your blog, please leave the link here so that I can read your answers, too!

And don't forget to enter my giveaway for a chance to win a Ronco Food Dehydrator!

12 comments:

  1. wow, so many yummy treats!! i'm drooling right now, haha. great post! thanks for sharing :)

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  2. Mmmm all looks so yummy! the chocolate looks interesting as well!

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  3. I've never thought to combine frozen corn & peanut paste. Is it really that good?

    Snickers > Smarties
    Pillowcase > bag

    Have a great day xo

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  4. Fist of all that freeze dried corn snack sounds really unique, I am intrigued! Secondly - wow I want to find those chocolate bars!

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  5. That frozen corn in peanut paste sounds really interesting, but I'm sure it's good!

    And I always loved Crunch bars when I was younger, so those rice chocolate bars sound amazing.

    That survey is too fun! I think I need to fill that out for tomorrow. Who cares if Halloween will be over? :)

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  6. I love protein bars too! They're great when I want a more nutrient-dense candy bar. And the keep me full, too!

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  7. Pumpkin seeds are the best, agreed! Everything looks amazing, especially your kabocha and that chocolate!

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  8. Neither bag nor pillowcase. I usually make a candy container that matches my costume - I've even had the bucket or whatever be a part of the costume (the pendulum of my grandfather clock costume).

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  9. I never have cereal plain anymore either, I always throw in some protein powder, chocolate chips, dried fruit and nuts so it ends up being more toppings than cereal! I've seen that chocolate before, but didn't buy it because it's not vegan...booooo! But a stevia sweetened chocolate bar sounds really good. And so does that brownie, yum!

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  10. I love your cereal, I too always jazz up my cereal bowls with fruit, chocolate chips, nuts, nut butter, etc.
    I actually love pumpkin carving! Yesterday when carving with my brother, I carved a kitty face into my pumpkin :)
    I love handing out candy. Actually, I am doing that as I speak(type?)! I dressed up as a mouse with mouse ears and a tail and put a sun visor on my dog because she is a "hot dog" hehe. Although I am just staying in for the night because I have a big work load!

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