Erika has recently taken up hiking. She sends me selfies on a biweekly basis from places I’ve never been way above the clouds. She has trekking poles, hiking shoes, and a bag full of adventurer gear I currently don’t have names for. She’s also become remarkably good at reading a map. (I’d feel semi-okay lost in the woods with her.)
Me on the other hand, I consider myself more of the impromptu hike type; incredibly ill-prepared yet Pollyannish about the idea of it. While I can *usually* get to the top, there is blood always, and I’m 10 for 10 at forgetting something important like everything I’m responsible for (including my own sneakers). So when Erika suggested we go for a 6-hour hike in the White Mountains while I was back east last month visiting family — “It will be fun!” — I naively agreed.
Because I clearly have no authority on the subject, here she is with her expert words, brilliant advice, and go-to hiking fuel. (Self: take note.)
Initially, I didn’t think hiking was my cup of tea. The dirt, the burning sensation in my legs, the blisters, the not knowing where the hell I was going or how much longer until I reached the safety and comfort of my car wasn’t exactly my kind of fun. (I much prefer Netflix.) But there’s something about those few hours on the mountain, in the middle of nowhere, that feels like complete serenity. Although it’s taken me a minute to realize, hiking has become my most loved method of self-care. Just the drive alone, away from the fast moving city and into the slower pace of nature has become completely meditative.
While I wouldn’t consider myself incredibly well-versed in the hiking realm (I’m nowhere near pro), I have learned a thing or two along the way. First, hiking is one (very large) part mental — a tip from my cousin Matt, an actual mountaineer — and second, be prepared. Know where you’re going, dress according to weather conditions, bring plenty of water, and always pack something to eat.
When I first stepped onto the hiking scene, I was clueless about what I should bring. Packing a full lunch was way too heavy on my digestion (and my backpack!) and light snacks like fruit or a handful of nuts do not hold me over. When you’re in the woods or IDK, hanging from the edge of a cliff!, you need something fast, easy to eat, and actually energizing, ideally loaded with complex carbs, easy to absorb nutrients, and good fat to keep you going, like these no-bake hippie bites I made for my last trek. I think they’re perfect. You be the judge.
HIPPIE FOOD FOR YOUR NEXT HIKE
Great for long hikes, long hauls, on-the-go, and any other time you’re nowhere near civilization. (Non-hiker approved.) Earthy-crunchy, energizing, easy to eat, and obviously, delicious.
[no bake, vegan, soy-free, gluten free & refined sugar free]
Yields: about 22 golf ball sized balls
2 cups raw unsalted almonds (can substitute any nuts, cashews, walnuts, pecans, etc.)
2 cups old fashioned oats (make sure to use certified gluten free if you're sensitive to gluten)
8 medjool dates (soaked & pitted)
1/2 cup raisins (soaked)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
1/4 cup pumpkin seeds
1/4 cup sunflower seeds
1/4 cup chia seeds
1/2 cup cacao nibs or chocolate chips
about 1/2 cup liquid (water, or nondairy milk of choice)
pinch himalayan sea salt
Grind almonds and oats in food processor until they form a coarse flour. Add: dates, raisins, vanilla, coconut, and a pinch of sea salt. Process again and add about 1/2 cup liquid until a dough forms. Pulse remaining ingredients until combined. Shape into golf ball size balls. Coat with unsweetened coconut, crushed nuts or both, and refrigerate until firm (we left ours naked). Store in refrigerator or freezer.
NOTES FOR THE NON-CHEF
-Dates and raisins should be soaked in water for at least 2 hours.
-If mixture is too dry to roll into balls, add additional liquid 1 tablespoon at a time until mixture becomes soft enough to shape.
Tell us! Comment below. This space is yours! And one more thing, show us your creations! Upload a pic of your high vibe hippy bites to Instagram and tag us at @thedailyalchemy so we can like your photo. Bonus points for using the hashtag #spiritednutrition.
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