Pump up the jam…bites. Anyone? Here’s a link to what I’m talking about – go 90’s!
Anyway, there are actually a variety of reasons why these delicious little bites are “pumped up.” They are made from teff and oats, which are both whole grains that pack a big nutritional punch. Teff flour is very high in protein, iron, and calcium – in fact, its iron and calcium content is much higher than that of whole wheat flour. Oat flour is protein rich as well, and also happens to be the winner of the soluble fiber contest: it has the most of any grain, ever! If you’re not familiar with soluble fiber, it has a wide range of benefits, from helping you digest all the insoluble fiber you may be eating (and if you’re vegetarian like me, you are probably eating a lot!) to lowering your cholesterol levels, to…well, a whole lot more. Additionally, these guys have no refined sugar (if you use a fruit-sweetened jam like my favorite brand Fiordifrutta) and are also completely dairy-free. So pump it up!
Okay, but enough about all the health benefits. Let’s get to the taste! And in that respect as well, these little jam bites are totally awesome, in my humble opinion. If you eat them still warm from the oven, they are soft, tender, decadent, and seriously sticky! (The jam will not stay inside these little guys when they are still warm, but will instead ooze out in the most delightful – if messy – way, covering the entire bottom layer with a heavenly fruity finish.) Once they’ve cooled down, they are more akin to a Nutrigrain bar– the outer layer will take on the slightly drier texture of a cereal bar and the jam will stay inside. So you’re really getting two delicious bites from only one recipe! How’s that for pumping it up? (How many times can I reference this song, you guys? Is once per paragraph too much? :p )