As I was on my cell this evening with a friend, I had to get off as Sagie שגיא was taking off this Friday evening to hang out with his friends. I just had to be present in that moment and time, and although he is all grown up and could have just waved me goodbye, these small moments of being present mean a lot. I scramble to bake and cook his favorites and then come up with some new ones when he asks for healthy dishes. As an athlete he is hyper aware when is comes to nutrition. In two weeks he will be off again for his second year in college and I want to be present, these moments are so precious.
Sagie שגיא goes to his summer class at a university nearby, then might come home or go out for lunch. He'll text me to ask, if on his way back, I want him to bring me some Panera. Gym with Jonathan, a daddy and son time on some evenings, on weekend sometimes biking, Sundays religiously the two watch True Blood. Many soccer practices and trainings, occasional jobs in between, moments before he is off to meet up with his friends, with a smile on his face, he will call them to tell them he is being hijacked and held hostage by me for dinner with the family. Late night conversations with me, we laugh hysterically, trying to contain ourselves and not wake Jonathan up. I catch him late at night when his defenses are down (heehee) and we have a heart to heart. We are very close but not close enough for him to unbanish me as his friend on Facebook. I'll miss him when he is back in college, but am excited for him to take off into the world again, there is an entire world and many sensations for him yet to experience.
His freshman year flew by. He came back home more mature, more of a man, still a kid at heart but he is in a good place after a turbulent time post his injury in his senior year in high school. Healthy, happy and confident and even before he took off into the world and figured out what he wants to do with his life, he is a tremendous success, first as a human. Trials and turbulence I faced left me jaded, and despite the trials and turbulance he faces and faced he stays an optimist, always wants to see the positive in people even when terribly disappointing. He is the better person. I am humbled he is mine. I say he is my reward in life.
Speaking of healthy I wanted to change things around from the Snowy Day Granola I make often and always in a jar, or super fluffy and dellicious Rolled Oats Pancakes. When Sagie asked me for a healthy recipe I came up with this super easy one and tweaked it recently. I am pretty finicky about fruit desserts, fruit tart with pastry cream and strawberries and cream cake are both desserts I love, but am speaking of cooked fruit desserts. Much to my delight, my experiment was successful where as in the first recipe, the consistency was more of a bread pudding, after tweaking it a bit I came up with the cake one.
I say for a super healthy recipe use only 1/3 cup of Sugar in the Raw, dessert will be sweet enough at 1/2 cup and not over the top sweet at 3/4 of a cup. If health awareness is on top of your chart by all means use 1/3 cup sugar and skim milk or lite coocnut milk, you can even reduce to 1 egg. That's the beauty of this recipe you can't really mess it up much, it's flexible, though the consistency will change somewhat. The only thing I insist on is the in season cherry and cardamon, a killer pairing. Somehow the nutty oats, whole wheat flour, cardamon and cherries lend themselves to be meld together, blend and complement each other in perfect harmony.
I am pretty lax about entering cooking clubs, mingles and mac tweets and boy you cannot imagine how much I would love to participate, but before I know it deadline has come and gone and I just happened to post a relevant post for the challenge. This time just in the nick of time I realized I still qualify for my friends Sukaina Sips and Spoons and Meeta What's For Lunch Honey? fantastic Stone Fruit monthly mingle. So happy to enter my first mingle!!
Rolled Oats, Cardamon Cherries Mock Bread Pudding
3/4 cup rolled oats
3/4 cup whole wheat flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4-1/3 teaspoon cardamon powder
1/2-3/4 cup Sugar in the Raw (can even go lower to 1/3 cup for super healthy. Taste the batter and adjust)
Pinch of salt
1 cup milk
1/3 cup oil
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups pitted fresh cherries
Some butter to grease the loaf pan
Preheat oven to a 350F and grease a 12X4X3 inch loaf pan or line it with parchment paper it and grease. A round cake pan can work as well. I lined it with parchment paper and greased under and on top of the parchment.
In one bowl whisk eggs, add oil, milk and vanilla and mix. In a second bowl add all dry ingredients, flour, oats, sugar (1/3 or 1/2 cups first), baking powder, cardamon and salt and mix. Pour dry ingredients over wet ones, pour pitted cherries on top of dry ingredients and mix into a batter. Taste for sugar and adjust. Bake for 30-40 minutes. Let cool and turn upside down. Slice and serve. I keep this cake refrigerated.