I was happy to hear that so many of you share my love of injera and I do hope to give the process a try at home soon.
In the meantime, I’m going to continue with my theme for this week of Vegan MoFo – creating community with food. I’ve shared my experiences of gleaning pears, decorating chocolate skulls and serving up the spongy injera. All of those culinary adventures included meeting new people and learning about the traditions of other cultures. Today, I want to talk about the importance of food in our most intimate relationships – with our family.
When I say “family” I mean it in the broadest sense – the people we love most.
Generally I’m pretty good at expressing my admiration to people – I am a hugger and I use the “L” word all over the place. But I have my moments, when I find myself being more tolerant and understanding with my acquaintances than those who have stood by me through life’s long, long, uphill hikes. I know it happens to us all.
In the past couple of years, I have come to really understand the importance of rituals or traditions in the development of attachements, relationships and culture. My family does not have a lot of traditions that we feel committed to but one of my favourites is a trip to the apple orchard to celebrate my birthday.
There is a practical benefit to this ritual – many hands make quick work of picking AND they bring wagons.
Over the years I’ve been able to share my passion for apples with my niece and nephews. They can easily recognize JonaGolds (above) and Mutsu/Crispin (below) and know the “eye to the sky” technique for gently picking each piece of fruit without harming the tree.
Although I am jealous of people who live in places where mangoes grow in their yards and papaya is fresh and fragrant, i am also grateful live in a city where apples thrive. We have heritage varieties like maiden’s blush, ribston pippin and northern spy.
Callie gets almost as excited as I do at the sight of an apple the size of her head.
X loved that these dwarf trees make apples accessible to pint-size pickers.
After collecting our beautiful bounty it was time to pass on another tradition.
My favourite birthday treat – apple crisp. I never ask for cake. I just prefer the sweet, apple cinnamon combination.
The recipe below is perfect for my celebration as it is both vegan and raw. When you have great ingredients you really don’t want to mess with them.
P. S. I don’t call adding Vanilla Coconut Bliss messing with anything.
I first tasted this raw version of my favourite treat when Nicole
made a cake for our Harvest Brunch. Although I have loved the cooked version for years, this recipe reigned supreme.
Raw Apple Crisp
1 cup almonds
1/2 cup walnuts
3 TBSP medjool dates, pitted
In a food processor, pulse the ingredients until they form a coarse meal. Press half of the mixture into single serving ramekins, mini pie plates or spring form pans. Reserve the remaining crumble.
3 medium apples, cored and coarsely chopped
1/4 cup medjool dates
2 TBSP raisins
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground ginger
In a food processor, puree one apple and the remaining ingredients until smooth. Add the two remaining apples in the food processor and pulse until they break down into small pieces. Do not over blend – you want some apple bits. Pour the filling onto the prepared crust. Sprinkle the reserved crumble mixture on top. You can enjoy the crisp right away, chill it in the fridge or warm it in your oven or dehydrator.
It is super simple, full of flavour and nutrition – and a great addition to any fall tradition.
So, we’ve made it to day 4 of vegan MoFo if you’re interested in subscribing to all the participating blogs in Google Reader or another blog reader check out the Vegan MoFo bundle link here
What is your favourite food tradition?