Thursday, May 14, 2015

Readiness, life & quinoa muffins

One of the most crucial gifts parenting has given me, is a profound respect for the process. My son’s process. Other people’s process. My own. How did I miss it all the years before?

Before and still too often now, I would get caught up with milestones to be reached, things that needed to happen at a certain time. Things that weren't where or how they were supposed to be. Whether it was for my child or for my own life. Then I read this:

“Readiness is when it happens.”

So simple it might trigger a “duh” chuckle inside.
Yet, this brought a shift in my whole outlook in life.

To suddenly be completely open. To what is here. With no judgement or specific expectation. With curiosity and kindness.

Often it’s hard, uncomfortable. Yet it always feels right. It has led me to more (self-)understanding, (self-)compassion, (self-)acceptance, connection... Anyway, that’s the path I’m on, and it feels like a good path.

Why am I telling you this? Because I have struggled with the fact that I haven’t posted here in five months and 12 days. Not what it was supposed to be.

But I guess this is the time I needed to be ready to be back.

Like my garden carrots I was so proud of, there's been growing underneath the surface. And today's harvest day.

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times”.  Charles Dickens
How did I never see that this was the shortest most accurate description of life, plain and simple?

These past months, I have been blessed with opportunities to travel, to share time with loved ones, with celebrations and birthdays, and small moments of every day joy. 

There’s also been broken bones, transitions and turmoil, torturous decisions. 

This is the stuff of life. Sometimes I get so busy being in it, I can’t also record it, photograph it, write about it. Then, inexorably, I feel the quiet urge to do so.

Today, I want to share a lovely recipe from Aran Goyoaga’s SmallPlates and Sweet Treats. These gluten-free muffins (we often make it as a loaf too) are so delicious, plain, or with good butter. For dessert or teatime, or along with a few crunchy radishes. They’re always a big favorite at parties, potlucks and picnics. They never fail to start a food conversation, my favorite kind! "What is in those muffins, they're so delicious?" "Oh really? Can you send me the recipe?"

Connection and bonding over food. Now that is my happy place. 

Banana, carrot & quinoa muffins

From Small Plates and Sweet Treats by Aran Goyoaga

Yields about 18 muffins

Prep time: 15 min
Cook time: 20 min (50 for the loaf)

Age for babies: 12 months +, being careful about the pieces of pecan. 

3 ripe bananas
3 eggs from happy chickens
3/4 cup natural cane sugar
3/4 cup olive oil
2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup quinoa flour
1/2 cup brown rice flour
1/2 cup almond flour
3 tbsp tapioca starch
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/2 cup chopped pecans
3/4 cup grated carrots (about 2 or 3 carrots)

Preheat the oven at 350F.

Puree the bananas in a bowl (the potato masher works well for me). Add the eggs, sugar, olive oil and vanilla extract.

In a larger bowl, whisk together quinoa flour, brown rice flour, almond flour, tapioca starch, salt, baking soda and cinnamon.

Add the wet ingredients to the dry and mix well. Stir in the pecans and grated carrots. 

Grease your muffin pan if need be unless you're using muffin liners. Bake for about 15-20 minutes, until a skewer comes out clean. (If you're making a loaf, cook about 50 minutes, make sure middle is cooked through. I usually line a loaf pan with parchment paper and pour the batter in. That way it's easy to remove from pan with the paper and bring to a party or picnic). 

Let cool, and enjoy!

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