Get Your Game on With Chocolate Halva Balls

In honor of the World Cup – and for those of you, Beautiful People, who call it soccer, it’s FOOTBALL! – with all its surprising results and insane scores, we made chocolate halva balls at our Lasting Joy Club get-together – watch the videos here.

Sunset on cobblestone with soccer ball

Actually, according to, the word itself came from an abbreviation assoc. (Association of Football), although I fail to see the connection.

Image result for ancient romans sports images

The same source claims that the Romans played a ball game called naprastum, where referees would wave a handkerchief to control players and fans.

I suppose those ancient Romans were a lot calmer and more reserved, than today’s fans, even with a surprise win like this one! In any case, the Roman game looks more like volleyball to me, so let’s forget that story.

There is also a version that traces the origins of the most popular game in the world to China, ruled by Han Dynasty about 2200 years ago. The first ball was a cut off head of a criminal. Too gory; let’s forget about this one as well.

Related image

Enter a man whose name became synonymous with womanising, although “he was not immune to the attraction of his own sex either” (, Giacomo Casanova. What he really entered was the infamous Newgate Prison in London, where he spent some quite upleasant time at the end of 18th century, having been ostensibly accused of bigamy, but in truth for moonlighting as a spy for his native Venice. Casanova spent his whirlwind of a life hobnobbing with royalty and running from law in every European country, as a “cleric, theatre violinist, army officer, gambler, diplomat and spy, go-between and ‘fixer’, financier and lottery promoter, Freemason and occultist, prolific author and translator of the Iliad” (ibid.) 

This gravure of the Newgate exercise yard was made by Gustave Dore a hundred years after Casanova’s release, after some prison reforms had been instituted, so you can actually see prisoners’ hands, tied behind their backs. According to some sources, Casanova, held in the “Masters’ Ward” for privileged, might have been able to observe the invention of a new game, called foot ball, played by prisoners whose hands had been cut off for robbery and such offenses. He was far from horrified, but perhaps felt lucky that some of his escapades were not classified as robberies, such as taking “the credulous elderly Madame d’Urfe for a million francs while staging magical operations for her to be reincarnated as a baby boy” (ibid.)

Enough of those dismembered images of heads and limbs! Here is a World Cup 2022 wall chart for you, and you can fill it out on your own. Let’s play ball in the kitchen!

Choc halva 1.jpg

I grew up with a choice of three different kinds of halva: tahini, pistachio, or sunflower. We are making tahini, or sesame seeds halva, and to make it naturally sweet, as well as softer and more pliable, we”ll use one of my favorite ingredients, Medjool dates, soaked in rum. You can soak them in water, if you wish, but why not have some fun?

Choc halva 2

While the dates are soaking, we line up the rest of ingredients, which aren’t many: sesame seeds, unsweetened cocoa powder to make it chocolate, agave – in case you prefer more sweetness, and a splash of vanilla extract for flavoring. Various sprinkles, as well as finely shredded coconut and roasted cashew powder, are there to roll your balls in.

Choc halva 3

Pulse your sesame seeds until they come together in a mass, then add the rest of the ingredients, including dates and whatever liquid you had them soaking in. Pulse it some more until it all blends throughly and splendidly. Don’t forget to keep scraping the sides of the bowl, and give it a taste test for desired sweetness.

Choc halva 4

Grab a spoonful of this delicious substance and roll it in whatever topping you prefer, or a mix of all them. This is one dessert that doesn’t need to be refrigerated, if it lasts more than a few minutes. Let’s play ball – even my Swarovski cats do!


  • 2 cups raw sesame seeds
  • 1 cup pitted Medjool dates
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • Agave to taste
  • A splash of vanilla extract
  • Toppings of your choice


  • Cover dates with water or rum, soak for 10 – 15 minutes.
  • Pulse sesame seeds in food processor until mass forms. Add the rest of ingredients, blend thoroughly.
  • Form balls, roll in toppings.


23 Comments Add yours

  1. A snack fit for anyone in the world!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much, dear Mimi, for your kind comment.


  2. An amusing stream of consciousness. I think you know by now that unsweetened cocoa powder suits me fine.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I am glad it does, Derrick. Thank you so much.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. GP says:

    Uh, oh, you are determined to keep me fat, aren’t you, Dolly!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Come on, GP, this is a dietetic, non-fattening dessert!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. GP says:

        Okay then…. 😉

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Yeah, go for it! 😻

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Tasty and healthy nibbles. Great snack! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much, dear Ronit!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Rohvannyn says:

    Wonderful! I have to try that. I absolutely LOVE Halva.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you so much, darling – enjoy!

      Liked by 2 people

  6. lghiggins says:

    Sounds wonderful–after all, it’s chocolate.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much, dear Linda. Chocolate rules!

      Liked by 2 people

  7. Chaplin: “Hmm, we are also black and white, and we can make people fall down by getting underfoot and tripping them.”
    Java Bean: “What about teaching them to get up?”
    Charlee: “Why would we want to do that? Once they’re on the ground, we can curl up on top of them and go to sleep.”

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Beba: “I am also wearing a tuxedo, guys, just like you. We are elegant! I make people stumble by tripping them, but I won’t do it to Mama now until she recovers from her silly accident. I am good! I only curl up on her injured foot because I want to make her feel better.”


  8. I’m too young to write this, but those are balls I would enjoy….


    Liked by 1 person

    1. LOL I like your sense of humor, Arthur

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Americaoncoffee says:

    Elegant and yummy looking!🔔☕️☕️

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much, darling; I am so glad you like them. 😻

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Americaoncoffee says:

        One day I seriously hope to Halva Ball! I will make every effort to do so.❤️❤️❤️❤️

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Good luck, darling! 😻


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