I’m only just at the age where I know any new parents; it still blows my mind to realise that whole new lives and actual human beings have been created in what seems like just a millisecond of knowing the strong, beautiful women who make up my friendship group. I thought I’d nailed the whole ‘gifts for a new mum’ thing, but when it comes to people I know this well, a pack of babygros and a box saying ‘congrats’ from Hotel Chocolat just doesn’t seem to cut it. Of course, my fallback for what to give a new parent is now, something homemade.
I asked around the various parents I know for some ideas of what treats a frazzled new parent would enjoy, and the following absolute categories came up:
- Something that gives you energy
- Something you can eat with one hand
- Something that doesn’t require a plate, thought or any cooking
After consulting a few books from the kings and queens of teatime snacks (Sweden, folks, obviously it’s Sweden), I alighted on the perfect solution. These went down a treat, and they literally took minutes to make.
Swedish Energy Balls
This isn’t my recipe, but then I haven’t followed any particular recipe to the letter, so I’m going to outline the ingredients below:
- Rolled oats (I had about 200g)
- 50g butter (or use solid coconut oil if you want to make them vegan)
- 30g soft brown sugar
- 30g cocoa powder
- 2 tablespoons of crunchy peanut butter (I use Meridian, because it doesn’t contain palm oil)
- About 50g of something to roll them in – I used dessicated coconut, but you could use whizzed up cashews, hazels or pistachios if you’re visiting a nut fiend
- A teeny pinch of salt
- If your oats aren’t very fine, give them a couple of blasts in the food processor so they’re grainy
- Mix together the butter, peanut butter and sugar
- Add the cocoa powder, salt and oats and stir until thoroughly combined
- Wet your hands, and roll the mixture into 10-12 walnut-sized balls
- Roll each one in the nuts or coconut
- Chill until solid, the transport in an airtight container
- Enjoy extra snugs with the new baby while your friend tucks in to these moreish little mouthfuls
Sorry it’s been a while since I’ve posted. A mad summer in Edinburgh puts everything to the back of the queue, but I’ll be doing better over the coming months. Let me know what you’ve been cooking, eating and drinking in the comments, or come and say hello on Twitter.