Day 4: Date Bran Jingle Balls

My Mom keeps an impeccable house. And I don’t mean like oh it’s nice but if you move something there is still dust. No. You could move the 300 lb dresser and lick the floor behind it and your tongue would probably be cleaner for doing it. I am not my Mom. I am not dirty, but I am messy and when you open some closets or cabinets in my house…you are smart to open them slowly to save yourself from the crap that may fall out on top of you. But I have gotten better with time. Not great, but better.

Recently I was fighting off some funky cold and accidentally mixed up my pills and took the daytime pills at 11 at night. And I learned that when you mix Pseudophedrine and the bottle glass of wine I drank earlier, it will cause you to become someone else entirely. For starters, I wanted nothing to do with the last cookie that was sitting on the kitchen counter, which is definitely nothing like my normal self. Instead all I could think about was going through my closets and cabinets. And so I did…and I didn’t go to sleep until 9:30 am. It was like the Spring Cleaning Miracle from hell that happens in December and only when you mix two over the counter drugs and a bottle of wine. This sounds like a wonderful thing, but I did run into a problem…I threw away 3 trash bags worth of stuff, and donated 5 bags worth of stuff, because I used my mother’s rule of “If you haven’t used it in 6 months, it goes.”. I did this with all of my stuff and all of Jorge’s stuff as well. So for the past few days we have been playing a new game called “Where’s My ____”.

Jorge: Where’s my work papers?
Me: Uhh I dunno? Did you put them in your filing box thingy?

Jorge: Where’s my special mug from PASS?
Me: Uhhh in the dishwasher.

Jorge: Where’s my favorite scarf that I have had since I was 6, that my puppy that died of cancer used to sleep on?
Me: I didn’t know you had a puppy that died of cancer…
Jorge: Yes, it was terrible and I comfort myself to sleep with that scarf.
Me: Oh…well I think it’s in the washer.
Jorge: Oh good, because my favorite teacher, from 1st grade, knitted it for me before she was in a horrifying accident that left her unable to knit anymore.
Me: Ahh, ok well it will be good as new as soon as it finishes drying. ::sprints to the store to find another fugly orange scarf::

Ok, maybe I am exaggerating. But seriously…there is a new rule in the house that I am not allowed to donate things unless they have been approved. Oopsie.

These cookies are what came about when I was cleaning out the pantry/fridge. I had about an ounce of brandy, a tiny bit of cream cheese, and a half a crate of pitted dates (that I will not eat when they are not actually in something because they look so nasty). And thanks to Google, I found these little babies. I am pretty sure they are not exactly a cookie, but we are still using them for the 12 Days of Ass Friendly Christmas Cookies because they were so delicious and under 100 calories…and really, that’s all that matters.



Date Bran Jingle Balls


2 cups bran flakes cereal
3/4 cup whole pitted dates
1/2 cup pecans, toasted
3 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons cream cheese, softened
2 teaspoons brandy, orange liqueur or orange juice
1/2 cup finely chopped nuts, date sugar, coconut or toasted wheat germ


Place cereal, dates and pecans in a food processor and process until finely chopped. Add honey, cream cheese and brandy and pulse until a stiff dough forms.

Scoop a large teaspoon-size portion and shape with greased hands into balls. Roll each ball in chopped pecans. Place on wax paper. Let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes before serving or storing. Store in an airtight container, separating balls with layers of wax paper, in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

Each ball is 70 calories

Originally from: Good Housekeeping