I went grocery shopping at home the other day and met a teacher of mine while waiting in line. I was amazed that she still knew my name – but, then again, her daughter was in the same class as my brother, so I figure it wasn’t such a big deal. And, honestly, if I think of my own pupils I’ve had so far (granted there aren’t quite as many as a full-time teacher would have), I doubt I’ll forget their names any time soon.
Besides sharing the recipe for my all-time favorite remake of a snack, I also want to give you a quick update as to where I’m at in my life. I have no idea how many of you actually find this interesting, but I haven’t shared in a while, so here it goes.
At the beginning of this school year, I was super excited to start my new job, to start my “real life” after years and years of studying. And what I had hoped for came true: I am absolutely, irrevocably, 100% sure that I am a teacher. I no longer only want to be one, I am one, even if I am still in training. And I dare say that I am pretty good at it, too, which is kind’a like icing on the cake.
One thing that makes me so sure that being a teacher is who I am is the fact that I get excited when students understand something. Be it in English while explaining the grammar for needless, stupid rules like “be said to” or “passive progressive”, or in Religion, if I feel like something “happened” on an emotional, dare I say spiritual level during a lesson. I love teaching. I love my students. I love getting up in the morning knowing my purpose.
I HATE TEACHER’S TRAINING.
Seriously, guys. I am not kidding. I feel like after half a school year, I just wanna be left alone to do my own stuff. Sure, a little input or feedback here and there would be alright, but I am so sick and tired of being evaluated (or more like, feeling like I’m being evaluated) EVERY SECOND OF THE DAY. It’s not that I don’t like the people at school, or that there have actually been incidents that have given me major reason for feeling this way, but I think it’s the state of being that’s catching up with me right now that is making me feel a lot less positive.
Which is anything but uncommon. I know for a fact that any teacher will readily tell you how horrible their years of teacher’s training were. And I am pretty sure that in most cases, the students and mentors were rarely the reason they felt that way. At least not exclusively. I mean, you start working as a teacher in training with your mind more than prepared for the evaluation, for what you think is going to come. You KNOW it will be hard. But there’s a huge difference between knowing and feeling.
There’s not a bone in my body that’s doubting whether or not being a teacher is right for me. And there’s nothing that is really getting me to doubt if I’ll make it through those two years of teacher’s training. But when you feel exhausted and evaluated and burnt out and are still somehow churning out seemingly brilliant ideas for lessons that are evaluated AGAIN and AGAIN and AGAIN…there is that point where you can’t help yourself and have to say: “I don’t know how to survive this.”
It’s very similar to how I felt while I was studying for my exams at the end of my studies. Nobody could help me, and while the situation and stress levels can’t really be compared on the surface, the essence of how I felt then and how I feel now is similar. The only way to conquer it all, to win at this sick game is TO GET THROUGH IT.
Boy, am I looking forward to a time when there is nothing I have to get through. When I am allowed to just be, to just exist, when it’s not about proving yourself to anybody but yourself, and even that only happens on occasion. I am looking forward to being established at a school, being known amongst the students for, well, whatever “my thing” is going to be, to being able to plan my life for longer than half a year. I am looking forward to being done with “learning”, at least for a while. I am sure I will get bored with that situation sooner or later, but right now boring honestly seems very achieve-worthy (looking for a word there that I can’t seem to find).
Vegan Twix Bars. I absolutely love twix, it has always been my favorite candy bar. Probably because a) caramel is involved and who doesn’t love sticky sweet stuff and b) twix bars are both chocolate and cookie. It’s like you don’t have to decide which you’d rather want, you are having both but it’s still just 1 treat. Yes, twix bars are awesome, but due to my wheat-gluten- and dairy-intolerances, enjoying tiwx bars has become less enjoyable for me. And, even more importantly, I rarely snack on processed sweets anymore, mostly because I’ve involuntarily weaned myself off of sugar, so twix bars are actually too sweet for me. Don’t hate me for saying that.
So, I’ve come up with my own version of the goodies. I have made them both as flat bars as shown in the pictures in this post, as well as thicker bars; however I haven’t been able to make the thicker bars pretty to look at, so the flat ones it is for now.
The bars are no-bake, vegan, glutenfree, and taste heavenly. Seriously, my brother inhaled these, and he’s usually very sceptical of my clean, vegan cooking. I already shared the recipe for the mango coconut yogurt bliss balls shown in the picture.
No-bake Vegan Twix bars
for the base:
- 1 cup almond meal
- 2 Tbs. coconut oil
- 1 Tbs. agave
for the caramel layer:
- 5 dates
- 1/2 Tbs. coconut oil, molten
- 1/2 Tbs. peanutbutter (or sunflowerseedbutter)
for the chocolate layer:
- vegan chocolate (I used 55%)
- In a bowl, mix together the almond meal, coconut oil and agave until you have a doughy consistency. Spread this dough out neatly in any tubberware form that you have lined with tin foil or a baking sheet. Place in the freezer for 15 minutes.
- During this time, make the caramel layer by processing the ingredients until smooth. Add as much water as you need until you have a thick and creamy (but not runny) caramel.
- Take out the base and spread the caramel on top. Place back in the freezer for 1 hour.
- Melt some chocolate over a water bath. Depending on if you want a complete coating or a drizzle like I did, you’ll need to adjust the amount. For the drizzle, I used about 50g of chocolate.
- Take the bars out of the freezer and cut into bars, using an extremely sharp knife. To make this easier, you can warm the knife up a little under warm water. Place the bars on a baking sheet and drizzle with the molten chocolate.
- Place back in the freezer for at least 10 minutes. If you’ve kept the bars in the freezer for longer, allow to thaw for a few minutes before serving.
The trick is to really get the dough flat, that way you will have nice and thin bars. Same goes for the date caramel.
Of course, if you wanna skip the chocolate and would rather add a rapberry-sauce layer, go for it. In fact, you could then add a peanutbutter drizzle on top. Ooooooh, I’m getting some awesome ideas right now.
Isn’t that just the best image ever?
Since your bars are pretty much frozen by the time you add the chocolate drizzle, the chocolate will firm up fairly quickly. In fact, you may need to “break” the bars apart because the chocolate drizzle hardens to form one big web after you place them back in the freezer. But that’s pretty fun, so don’t worry about it.
Alright, as I don’t want to make this post any longer than it already is, let me just leave you all with a piece of advice: Getting through your studies/apprenticeships/training is 100% easier to deal with if you make these twix bars. Trust me on this.