I promised the girls that I’d make an apple crisp this week. It’s likely I said it during a Sunday afternoon napping haze but I said it. Ally, you won’t be surprised to learn, loves the gooey fall dessert. But then the week got busy. She asked about it on Monday. Then Tuesday. Then Wednesday.
Parents tell their kids a lot of things. We tell them we love them, of course. That they can do anything. That they can tell us anything.
But we also tell them little things. That we’ll take them to the park. That they should pick up their clothes. Or finish their broccoli. Or that you’ll make an apple crisp this week.
It seems like an easy thing to say at the time, a small promise, but the small ones are just important as the big ones. If you conveniently forget a small promise, how can they trust your word when it really counts? The small ones build trust. As we inch closer to the teenage hinterlands, I think I’m going to need to stockpile all the trust I can.
So I made the apple crisp. And it was good. And this mean my kids will never miss curfew and stay out of reform school, right?
Who doesn’t want a little more whole grains in their diet? Whole grains are high in nutrients and fiber, can help reduce the risk of heart disease, support better digestion, and reduce inflammation. I’ve talked about adding whole grains to pizza dough, but what about baked goods such as cookies? Adding more whole grains into your baking is a simple and easy but there are a couple things to watch out for when you bake with whole grains.
The main summer season CSA is winding down to its final weeks and while we made it through the dense thicket of zucchini, we now find ourselves awash in many different varieties of squash. We’ve roasted most of that squash into submission but it still persists.
What to do? How to get the kids to eat it?
Make cookies, of course.
One the few recipes I was disappointed with in either of the Run Fast cookbooks was the banana coconut cookies. I love cookies, especially ones that I’ve been give permission to eat at breakfast. What’s better than starting the day with coffee and a cookie and maybe a run?
The first attempt at the recipe wasn’t a total fail but I wasn’t in a rush to try them again. Turns out a probably should have made a decision based on the actual recipe as written not one I had blithely changed. Turns out not all flour is created equal. Just assuming that I could sub in splelt for coconut wasn’t the best decision and likely contributed to the funky texture of the final product.
Thanks to a kindly reader suggestion, I went back and tried the recipe again, this time with the coconut flour and following all the proportions exactly. Except for adding the chocolate chips. I always add chocolate to a recipe when I can get away with it.
You can probably guess what happened…
It’s on. I flipped the switch at lunchtime on Friday. Time for some holiday parenting. A little less stern Dad and more friendly Uncle. A little more relaxed. A little less math review, a little less structure.
We won’t be abandoning all structure. Things tend to go smoother when Dad has at least a pencil sketch of a plan. So, they’ll still need to sleep occasionally and brush their teeth after their 37th cookie. There will be some organization and expectations. I won’t be throwing out the rules completely, but…it’s supposed to be happy holidays and I can’t drink wine and scotch from sunrise to sunset without at least a three hour nap in the middle of the day and that’s not really fair to Michelle.
Hopefully this will all lead to a little less stress and a little more happiness.
Worst case, it leads to Michelle and I eating more Christmas cookies with red wine at lunch.
At the end of the year Spotify compiles a personalized Top Songs playlist. We are regular Spotify users, but we don’t use Spotify’s family plan. All of our annual listening is mashed together in one giant jukebox and it’s a wonderful mess. Neutered KidzBop pop songs sit knee to elbow with (so many) Broadway showtunes and they in turn jostle for space with The National and Lorde.
This music milkshake did annoy me for a while, but I’ve come to like it. Getting older means increasingly getting caught in your own tastes and feeding a constant echo chamber. Seeking out, finding, and giving yourself the time and space to experience new things is hard. Escaping the algorithms and getting a cold recommendation takes effort.
Or, you could just let a bunch of kids freeload on your music subscription. I would have never learned the strangely hypnotic power of Tobu’s Candyland after 567th playing without them.
UPDATE: Thanks to a reader suggestion, I tried these again with coconut flour (as the recipe calls for) rather than spelt. Much better result.
Alas, last week’s banana bread didn’t quite use up all the dark, dark bananas haunting my fruit basket. In a quest to clear the counter and avoid an impending fruit fly convention, I tried the banana coconut cookie recipe from the Run Fast. Cook Fast. Eat Slow. to use up the remaining fruit.
I’ve made many recipes at this point from both Run Fast cookbooks and while they all haven’t come out perfectly they all were pretty tasty and worth making again. This one, however, was the first dud for me, even with chocolate chips thrown in. I’m going to have to make it again if only to see if it’s really the recipe or if it’s me.