The World is Your Bliss Ball

Recently I attended an essential oils workshop.

For those not in the know, an essential oils workshop is like a modern day tupperware party.

It goes like this:

Your friend starts selling tupperware. She invites a bunch of you and your friends around to teach you about the tupperware. You're not very interested in tupperware but you go along. You know. Support.

Cupcakes and tea are served.  People talk. You learn about the tupperware's myriad uses. You buy a tupperware container. You weren't forced, per se. No one stole your credit card. There is just a strong feeling of expectation; you eat the cupcakes, you buy the tupperware.

For this reason, I was initially hesitant to attend the aforementioned essential oils workshop. But then I decided: I am a strong and powerful individual! No one can pressure me into doing something I don't want! I can attend a workshop and not be guilted into making a purchase!

I bought the Ice Blue Essential Oil.

Buyer's Remorse
Even when I actually like something, I regret buying it if I purchase too quickly. It's a strange phenomenon. I like to spend a lot of time uhmming and ahhing about the potential benefits of a product, going away to do some laundry, coming back and mulling them over some more. Currently contemplating a pair of red jeans. Think I will get.

BUT. Unlike with my usual purchases, I have not been dying of buyer's remorse. It's like Reverse Regret. I want MORE. Like why didn't I buy the lemon? And the peppermint? I could be eating minty cacao bliss balls right now if only I'd been more forward-thinking.

Why am I so into them? And with such minimal research and exposure?

Essentially (haHA), the oils have powers (bare with me) that other products just don't. They're natural, easy to use and smell lovely.

If you'd like to skip straight to the recipe, then scroll, scroll, scroll.

bliss balls.jpg
bliss ball himalayan salt.jpg

 

Current Essential Oils wish list:

  • Peppermint oil
    Add a drop to boiling water and BAM! Peppermint tea. No tea bags required. To be honest, my main reason for wanting peppermint oil is so I can make the peppermint cacao bliss balls that were served at the workshop. So delish.
  • Lemon oil
    You know how it's super trendy to detoxify with lemon and water? I've never done this because the lemon is acidic and erodes the enamel in your teeth. Since the lemon oil is extracted from the rind, the acidity in the oil isn't of major concern. You get all the benefits without the damaged teeth! You can also sip through a straw but who has time for that?
    Other uses for lemon oil, aside from incredible dessert flavouring are: Cleaning, air freshener, ingesting for respiratory discomfort.
  • Tea tree oil
    How did I not know this before? Tea tree oil is great for break outs. Lauryn Evarts writes all about tea tree oil for spot treatment here. Other uses: haircare, cleaning make up brushes, nails and sunburn.
  • On guard oil
    Due to the environment I work in, a flu shot has been recommended. I'm not totally convinced. The doTERRA On Guard oil supports immune function and protects against environmental threats, so I will probably end up getting it.
    You can soak apple slices in it to eat, add a few drops to coconut oil for a hand cleanser or use it as a surface cleaner. I find the costs a bit prohibitive but I at least feel safe ordering from doTERRA because of the guaranteed purity of the oils and the locations they source the ingredients from.
  • Clove oil
    Did you know cloves have an ORAC number* of 290,000 compared to blueberries' 4,700? Surely this makes them a superfood. Apparently the reason they aren't a topic of popular conversation is because cloves aren't sexy. Well you know what? I think cloves ARE sexy.
    I used to use this clove shampoo from Aveda (re-ordering as we speak) and my hair always smelt amazing after. Cloves FTW! Aveda is a pretty cool brand - they're cruelty free, use organic ingredients and eco-friendly sourcing methods. Also, clove shampoo was the first formula Aveda created (in a kitchen sink in Minneapolis).
    You can use Clove Oil in your toothpaste, cooking, as a massage oil or in a diffuser. You can use almost all the oils in a diffuser. To me, this is the least exciting of all the potential uses.
    *Antioxidant power measurement

Essential oils for food

A lot of people don't realise you can ingest essential oils. Not all of them. But a large percentage. IF they are certified therapeutic grade. I wouldn't recommend eating the ones you buy at the chemist. That is why they make an excellent flavour addition to bliss balls. The following recipe is a take on the one provided by my workshop host, Emily.

orange cacao bliss balls.jpg

 

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup cashews
  • 12 dates
  • 1/3 cup cacao
  • Flavour
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp water
  • 1/2 tsp honey

Method: Blend all ingredients for about 40 seconds in a food processor.  Roll into balls. Refrigerate.

Flavour: This could be a teaspoon of peanut butter, a sprinkling of rock salt, a drop of peppermint oil or wild orange oil in the case of my latest batch.

himalayan rock salt.jpg

 

Really, the world is your bliss ball. You can add goji berries, cranberries, passionfruit seeds, vanilla essence, mixed spice, roll them in coconut or dip them in dark chocolate.  If anyone makes these with tahini, please REPORT BACK.

You can definitely make these without honey, probably without oil and maybe even without water (if you pre-soaked the dates). Emily didn't use oil, water or pre-soak and her bliss balls were lovely. I don't know - some people are magic! For my recipe, liquid is... (wait for it) essential! Before I added the oil and water, the consistency was breadcrumbs. Must. Add. Liquid.

 Breadcrumbs and a teeny tiny Wild Orange sample.

Breadcrumbs and a teeny tiny Wild Orange sample.

Olive oil

Coconut oil is king at the moment. It's in every healthy recipe. People rave about its multitude of uses (skin, hair, teethlube).

I prefer to use olive oil, which has less saturated fat than coconut oil. But if I'm being real, it's not because I care that much about the saturated fat. I can't stand the taste of coconut oil. Does anyone actually like it? HOW.

When you cook olive oil, if you heat beyond its smoke point, the smoke will be toxic. There are a lot of alarmist headlines about the dangers of heating olive oil. I am still investigating. It seems like heating most oils to a certain point causes issues. Basically, don't deep-fry with olive oil and you should be alright.

Serving size

Supposedly, you're meant to only have 1-2 bliss balls in a serve. They're high in (good) fats and sugar.

"I'll just have a bliss ball with my peppermint tea. That will keep me going in the afternoon."

I don't know who said that. But their self-restraint is off the charts.

I don't stop at two squares of chocolate and I don't stop at two bliss balls. They are pretty filling and sickening but they also taste really good.

My only helpful trick is pre-determined portion sizes: If I pack only two bliss balls for work, then I have no choice but to eat only two!

...And then head to the 7/11 for another coffee. Because two bliss balls? Really?!

Have you used essential oils? Or been to a workshop and bought something you didn't want? I'd love to hear. ESPECIALLY if you've used tahini.

xx