This week I packed my things, namely piles of textbooks & notebooks and a few warm sweaters and made for the tranquility of the countryside. My grandparents own a hobby farm along the escarpment with a yellow pine house my grandfather constructed, flower gardens, trails, and my favourite of course; vegetable gardens(!) all blanketed under the winter’s snow.
Every new year I find my way here for a couple of days to recharge. It is a time to retreat into the expanse and solitude of their property, to work a few hours with warm tea and spend the evenings chopping salads in my grandparents’ kitchen, hiking the back trails, burying myself in the snow and learning to make a fire to keep warm while teaching my grandfather how to culture sauerkraut. And in the midst of it all was a surplus of fresh produce from their garden, chopped for salads or sliced with nutbutters and a whole slew of delicious food to spoil their guest. If there’s one thing you can rely on with grandparents, it’s that you will never go hungry! And here is a taste of what became of our plates:
- Each morning we awoke as the sun broke across the horizon of naked trees. The fire having long died out in the night lied peacefully of ash. We first set the kettle to enjoy warm lemon water as we waited for our oats to cook over the stove top. We had set these out the night before to soak which makes them easier to digest and makes the nutrients more available to the body. We topped this with a blend of ground seeds (pumpkin, flax, chia) and spices (cayenne, turmeric, curry, ginger etc.), a splash of flax oil and basmati brown rice milk and this, to my request, was the breakfast to energize us each morning.
- While my grandparents were out at Tai Chi or chiropractic appointments, I would get hungry and scour their kitchen for food, of which there is plenty! Nuts and seeds, vegetables and sprouts, it’s a holistic foodies haven!
- nuts and seeds
- crackers slathered with coconut oil and nutbutter
- Raw superfood clusters
There is no exact recipe, simply mix ingredients until desired:
- Almond butter
- Apple sauce (for sweetness)
- Coconut oil (to make them solid)
- Pinch of sea salt
Mix together almond butter, apple sauce and oil until the coconut oil is well mixed in. Then add the bulk ingredients to form clusters. You can use any nuts or seeds here, I used:
- Unsalted, raw Pumpkin seeds (which we dried out ourselves)
- Sprouts (my grandfather had sprouted mung beans and green lentils)
Once in little clusters, pop them in the freezer to harden, then enjoy! The healthy fats help to stabilize blood sugar, provide a fantastic source of energy and will assist in keeping you satiated to lunchtime.
- Poached eggs
- Sardines (my favourite! A treat we picked up when my grandmother brought me on a special trip for my first time to Goodness Me)
- Gluten free, dairy free, sugar-free pancakes topped with nutbutters, apple sauce, red currants and a little maple syrup (high quality)
- Raw nuts and seeds
- Dates with nutbutter
- Pop corn (my better than butter popcorn recipe that was featured here: https://lifeofeden.com/2015/01/08/your-holistic-guide-to-healthy-snacking-at-the-theatre-my-chocolate-cashew-drizzled-popcorn/ )
- We usually made salads of my grandparents’ vegetables. The root veggies we had were harvested in October and stored to eat through the winter as they do not spoil when kept properly. We shredded these finely which aids digestion and used olive oil and apple cider vinegar as a dressing, topped with sprouts and served with the rest of the meal:
- Chicken two days
- One day we ate lightly steamed veggies with rosemary & humus as we sat around the fire
- Green tea which was brewed continuously throughout the day
- Chia seed cereal pudding from Earthly Choice
- a small dried fruit platter
I was sent home with dried apples juuuust in case I should find myself feeling a bit famished on the voyage home and was greeted with a warm hug from mom and a furry little animal (Aussie) who shared a dried apple or two with me before bed. My road trip playlist? A mix of Eddie Vedder and Matthew Good! Though I infinitely love the peace, tranquility, and rather more primitive life of the countryside, it has been wonderful to be reunited with my family, Aussie and my Vitamix once more!
Blending an end to another delicious week,