When I was younger, the summer break felt like forever. It seemed like such an eternity from the ending of one school year to the beginning of the next. But, as the years go on and time passes, life manages to speed up in rather mysterious ways. So here we are, already in the fourth week of July and I ask myself 'where did the time go?'. My eight year old self would have already made numerous forts, gone on many a beach scavenger hunt, found treasure in the forest, and come up with such elaborate tales. But this so called older and wiser version hasn't done much besides some gathering of wild berries.
For that school girl, each day was treated as if it was her last. Each day that passed meant that the inevitability of having to go back to following rules, and structure, and away from what I loved to do, was that much closer. I had to make the most of each of my dwindling days of freedom, and because of this, my days were so full.
Note to self: Live life like your eight again.
The bounty of summer berries are best eaten in their natural state without any tinkering or messing around. Here they are combined with a simple raw nut crumble which adds a nice crunch and helps provide enough energy to keep you going. With the addition of some raw coconut cream or ice-cream, this simple breakfast can become an impressive dessert.
Breakfast - Berry Bliss ParfaitRecipe: (Serves 2)
2 Cups Mixed Berries (Raspberries, Blackberries, Blueberries, Tayberries, Currants, Strawberries, Mulberries)
1/2 Cup Pitted Dates
1/2 Cup Almonds
1 tsp. Chia Seeds
1/2 tsp. Cinnamon
Small Pinch of Sea Salt
Mint for Garnish
1. Pulse the dates, almonds, chia seeds, salt, and cinnamon in a food processor until coarsely ground.
2. Arrange 1/4 of the date mixture in a cup, top with 3/4 cup berries, another 1/4 of the date mixture, and the last remaining 1/4 cup of berries. Garnish with mint.
Chilled soups provide a refreshing and nurturing meal once the weather turns warm. While traditional gazpacho is usually made from stale white bread, you can make a much lighter and healthier version of the classic without compromising the flavour.
Lunch - Garden GazpachoRecipe: Serves 2
1/4 Cup Onion
3 Ripe Tomatoes (about 500g or 1 lb)
2-3 Cloves Garlic
3 Tbsp. Olive Oil
1 Tbsp. Sherry Vinegar
1 tsp. Balsamic Vinegar
1/2 tsp. Paprika
1/2 tsp. Sea Salt
1/2 tsp. Black Pepper
1/2 tsp. Ground Cumin
1 Stick Celery
3/4 Cup to 1 Cup Ice Water
1 Cup Peeled and Cubed Cucumber
1/2 Cup Chopped Red Pepper
1/2 Cup Chopped Cucumber
1/2 Cup Chopped Red Pepper
1/2 Avocado, Diced
Basil or Parsley
1. Combine the onion, tomatoes, garlic, olive oil, sherry, balsamic vinegar, spices, salt, celery, cumber, and red pepper in a blender and puree. Slowly add the water until the desired consistency is reached.
2. Taste and adjust for seasoning. Let the soup mellow in the refrigerator for a couple of hours prior to serving. Garnish with chopped avocado, cucumber, peppers, and fresh herbs.
These rolls are part sushi, part taco, and part spring roll, but all in all they are 100% delish! I like to have a big batch of the sunflower pate on hand so that I can whip out a roll whenever the urge hits.
Dinner - Summer Rolls with Curried PateInspired By Crudessence
Recipe: (makes 8)
3/4 Cup Sunflower Seeds, soaked overnight and drained
1 tsp. Apple Cider Vinegar
1 tsp. Liquid Sweetener
1 tsp. Curry Powder
1 tsp. Turmeric
1 Clove Garlic
1/4 tsp. Sea Salt
A Pinch of Chili Powder
8 or so Chard Leaves
1/2 Mango, cut into match sticks
1/2 Bell Pepper, cut into match sticks
1 Beet, grated
1 Carrot, cut into match sticks
1 Avocado, sliced
Handful of Sprouts (I used sunflower)
1. Begin the right before by soaking the sunflower seeds. The next day drain them and puree along with the spices, garlic, and sweetener until the mixture resembles pate.
2. Arrange a small log of pate on each chard leave and top with assorted veggies. Roll up like a burrito.