You’ve gotta love a cookbook that makes you smile—even laugh—as you read it. Rebecca Katz’s The Cancer-Fighting Kitchen is food for the soul.
I picked it up a few weeks ago on the recommendation of some other Bauman College grads. I don’t have cancer or know anyone close to me who does, but that doesn’t matter in the least. Rebecca’s recipes for delicious, nourishing fare are perfect for anyone seeking to eat healthfully and support their immune system—whether they have cancer or not.
Along with the tasty recipes and sensational photographs in the book, Rebecca’s writing is a delight to read. Riddled with humorous stories and plenty of culinary and kitchen tips, The Cancer-Fighting Kitchen presents healthful cuisine in an engaging and “easily digestable” package. While the book caters to the physical needs of those undergoing cancer treatment or recovery, the recipes will tickle the tastebuds of foodies both ill and healthy alike.
I’m particularly eager to try the Thai It Up Chicken Soup, Middle Eastern Chickpea Burgers, and Mediterranean Lentil Salad. Before I get to any of these, however, I want to share with you an adaptation I made of Rebecca’s Anytime Bars.
In the headnotes of the recipe, Rebecca writes:
“The great thing about this recipe is that you can change the ingredients to fit your taste preferences. You can even split the batter and make half with currants and cranberries and the other half with walnuts or whatever you’d like.”
I took her advice and shook up the recipe a little bit to my tastes, including making them gluten-free. The results are scrumptious—er, were scrumptious. They’re long gone already…and it won’t be long before I’m making another batch.
Hallie’s Energy Bars
(Inspired by the Anytime Bars found in The Cancer-Fighting Kitchen)
1/4 cup millet flour
2 tbs. flaxseed meal
Pinch of sea salt
1/8 tsp. baking powder*
1/8 tsp. baking soda*
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 cup raw, whole almonds
3/4 cup raw pecan halves
1/4 cup raw sunflower seeds
1/4 cup raw pumpkin seeds
1/4 cup quinoa flakes or gluten-free old-fashioned rolled oats
1/2 cup (loosely packed) medjool dates, pitted and roughly chopped
1 cup (loosely packed) dried Turkish apricots, roughly chopped
3 tbs. honey or maple syrup
In a food processor fitted with the S-blade, process the millet flour, flaxseed meal, salt, baking powder and soda, and cinnamon until combined. Add almonds, pecans, and seeds and pulse 5-6 times to chop coarsely. Add quinoa flakes, dates, and apricots and pulse 10-15 times until everything is chopped and incorporated. (Mixture should still be fairly coarse.)
In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the egg and honey. Stir in the nut and fruit mixture until evenly moistened. Press into an even layer in the prepared 9×9 baking dish. Bake at 325-degrees for 20-25 minutes until set and lightly golden brown on top. Cool completely in pan, then cut into 20 squares.
Bars will keep at room temperature for up to 4 days or refrigerated for 5-7 days.
*Note: I do not have an eighth-teaspoon measuring utensil—I don’t even know if they make those! So I just used half of a quarter-teaspoon and it worked perfectly.