Guilt-free sweets: Giada's fig bites, smoothies, crumble

Satisfy your sweet tooth with great desserts that you can enjoy while staying healthy. Here, Giada de Laurentiis makes chocolate fig bites, peach and blueberry crumble, fruit spring rolls, and a ginger, spinach and apple smoothie.

Peach and blueberry crumble
Servings:

Makes 8 servings

Ingredients

  • For filling:

    • 1 pound frozen peaches, thawed, or 3 large peaches, pitted and thinly sliced
    • 1 pound frozen blueberries, thawed and drained, or 1 1/2 cups fresh blueberries
    • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
    • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
    • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
    • Grated zest of 1 large lemon
    • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
    • 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • For topping:

    • 3/4 cup sliced almonds
    • 1/2 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
    • 2 tablespoons honey
    • 1 tablespoon safflower or grapeseed oil
    • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Preparation

Baking Directions:

Position an oven rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 375 degrees. For the filling: In a medium bowl, combine the peaches, blueberries, maple syrup, vanilla, cinnamon, lemon zest, lemon juice, and salt. Pour into a baking dish.For the topping: In a medium bowl, combine the almonds, oats, honey, safflower oil, and cinnamon. Stir until well to combined. Sprinkle the topping evenly over the filling. Bake until the topping is browned and the filling is bubbling, 30 to 35 minutes.Let cool for at least 30 minutes before serving.

Chocolate fig bites
Servings:

Makes 28 fig bites

Ingredients

    • 14 ounces dried Mission figs, stemmed and coarsely chopped
    • 2 tablespoon creamy unsalted almond butter
    • 2 tablespoon water
    • 1 cup dark (53% cacao) chocolate chips
    • 2 teaspoon coconut or grape seed oil
    • Seas salt, for garnish, optional

Preparation

Baking Directions:

Line a small baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.In a food processor, combine the figs, almond butter and water. Blend until smooth, scraping down the side of the bowl, as needed, with a rubber spatula. Using a 1-teaspoon measure, scoop the fig mixture and roll into 1-inch balls. Place the fig balls on the prepared baking sheet.Place the chocolate chips and oil in a medium bowl. Place the bowl over a small saucepan of barely simmering water and stir until the chocolate is melted and smooth, about 2 to 3 minutes.Using a fork, dip the fig balls in the melted chocolate to coat evenly, allowing any excess chocolate to drip back into the bowl. Return the fig bites to the baking sheet and sprinkle with salt, if using. Refrigerate for 30 minutes until the chocolate has set.

Spinach, ginger and apple smoothie
Servings:

Makes 2 servings

Ingredients

    • 1/2 cup water
    • 1 medium apple, such as Fuji or Honey Crisp, peeled, cored, and cut into1/2-inch pieces
    • 1 celery stalk, coarsely chopped
    • 1 (1-inch) piece of fresh ginger, peeled and coarsely chopped
    • 1 packed cup baby spinach leaves
    • 1/3 cup packed fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves
    • 1/4 cup gin, such as Hendricks
    • Ice to serve

Preparation

Baking Directions:

Combine the water, apple, celery, ginger, spinach, parsley and gin in the blender and blend on high speed until smooth. Pour into glasses over ice and serve.

Serving Directions:

Special equipment: a high powered blender, such as a Vitamix

Fruit spring rolls
Servings:

Makes 4 to 6 servings

Ingredients

  • For rolls:

    • 1 1/2 cups cooked Pad Thai noodles, cooled and drained*
    • 1/4 cup honey
    • 1/4 packed cup fresh mint leaves, finely chopped
    • 6 (8-inch) rice paper rounds
    • 6 medium strawberries, stemmed
    • 1 mango, seeded, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch thick slices
    • 6 tablespoons sliced almonds, toasted (see tips)
  • For dipping sauce:

    • 1/4 cup packed fresh mint leaves, finely chopped
    • 1/4 cup honey
    • 1/4 cup fresh lime juice (about 2 to 3 large limes)

Preparation

Baking Directions:

For the rolls: Place the noodles in a medium bowl. Add the honey and mint. Using 2 forks, toss the ingredients until the noodles are coated. Lay a damp kitchen or paper towel on a work surface. Soak a rice paper round in warm water for 20 to 30 seconds until softened. Place the rice paper on the damp towel. Place 1/4 cup of the noodle mixture in the center of the rice paper and form into a 3-by-2-inch rectangle. Using a paring knife, slice a strawberry lengthwise into 1/4-inch slices. Arrange the slices over the noodle mixture. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon almonds on top. Arrange 2 to 3 mango slices on top of the almonds. Roll the rice paper around the filling and seal the ends with a little water. Repeat with the remaining ingredients. Wrap the finished spring rolls in damp paper towels and store in the refrigerator.For the dipping sauce: In a small bowl, combine the mint, honey and lime juice. Pour into a serving bowl.Arrange the spring rolls on a platter and serve with the dipping sauce.

Tips:

Cook's Note: To toast the almonds, arrange in a single layer on a baking sheet. Bake in a preheated 350 degrees F oven for 6 to 8 minutes until lightly toasted. Cool completely before using.

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