Since becoming a mum, I’ve noticed a real shift in my priorities.
I guess you could say that was to be expected. Emilia is and always will be my number one priority.
However it goes deeper than this.
Becoming a mum has given me clarity about what is important in life.
It’s encouraged me to get out of my comfort zone whether that is in social situations or within the kitchen. All for Emilia’s sake.
Previously I would have described myself as an introvert. One who aimed to appease others. Whom was always concerned with what others would think.
That’s not me any more. Emilia has given me the confidence to be myself and not care (too much) about what others think.
Who would have thought that this little lady, at the age of 4.5 months could give me so much confidence?
Becoming a mum has made me realise the importance of the simple things in life.
Good food, good friends, good support networks and of course quality time with family.
I’ve stepped away from the materialistic world upon which I have lived in for the last 27 years. I’m now focused on being present in the moment (albeit difficult in this social media focused world). I’m focused on not wasting a single thing. Be that time, food or memories. I’m learning that it’s ok to say “I can’t do this”. It’s ok to not adhere to plans and instead take the day slowly. It’s what Emilia and I need.
I’ve decided that I don’t just want Emilia to fit into life the way that I’ve always known it. I want my life to change to adapt to what she wants and needs. I’m more than happy for her to tell me how she wants to take her days. Given she’s only 4.5 months – this is often non verbal, but trust me, our little babe is exceptionally articulate at telling us what she needs and or wants in life.
I’m also learning that in order to be the best mum I can be, that I need time to nurture myself too. As one who has always put others first, this has been a difficult concept to grasp. However as I feel I’m stumbling out of the fog that is new parenthood, I’m beginning to understand why this is so important. I’ve decided the way to do this is through spending time in the kitchen. It’s amazing the shift I have seen in my cooking and my attitude towards food and my body since becoming a mum.
I’m constantly in awe of how I made human life. How I continue to nourish my babe on a day to day basis. How I watch her thrive in life, all from what my body creates. It’s a pretty mind blowing thing, the human body.
Therefore, I’ve done away with labels. I’m nourishing my body and taking care of it, because that’s what both Emilia and I deserve. I’m getting back to basics in the kitchen. Being careful to utilise all of our ingredients to minimise food waste. To make the most of what we have.
So on to the persimmons.
We were gifted them from Alex’s uncle’s tree. I think there is something so special about eating produce which has been grown with love by family. All food deserves to be treated with respect, but there’s something just that bit more special about these gifts.
Having never eaten persimmon’s before, I was stumped. I could eat these fresh. Boy were they delicious. However I wanted to create a memorable dish with them. Indeed I came up with a few.
I stumbled across this recipe for persimmon and gingerbread muffins. However, I didn’t quite have all of the ingredients so I ad-libbed quite extensively.
It’s simpler if I list the ingredients which I used and the adaptations to the method:
Persimmon, date, dark chocolate, spiced muffins:
Makes 10-12 muffins
- 100g wholemeal spelt flour
- 50g almond meal (I made this myself using my ever trusty thermomix)
- 1.5 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp nutmeg
- 1/2 tsp allspice
- Pinch of cloves
- 1/2 cup dates
- 2 ripe persimmons, chopped
- 65g maple syrup (honey would work perfectly here as well)
- 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil (you could substitute this for melted coconut oil)
- 180g of plain greek yoghurt
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 -1/3 cup roughly chopped dark chocolate chips
- 1 persimmon chopped to garnish
- Essentially the same as mentioned here, however I omitted the step with the figs and substituted dates instead. Just place dates in with the wet mixture and blend.
- Fold in dark chocolate chips once wet and dry mixtures are combined
- Bake for approximately 25-30 minutes or until skewer comes out clean.
I still had 3 persimmons left alongside a bunch of rhubarb. So it was only natural that I made:
Stewed rhubarb, persimmon and citrus:
- 1 bunch of rhubarb, chopped into 2 cm cubes
- Zest & juice of 1 lemon (this could easily be substituted for orange/lime)
- 3 persimmons, roughly chopped
- 1 mandarin segmented, pips removed and chopped
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp nutmeg
- 1 tsp vanilla essence (vanilla bean would be divine if you have it!)
- 2 tbsp coconut sugar (this can be substituted for regular sugar – note this mixture is quite tart, please sweeten to your own flavour preference)
- 3/4 -1 cup of water (I used 1 cup but feel like I could have used slightly less, just use your judgement)
- Place all ingredients in a saucepan over medium-high heat
- Bring to a boil (takes approximately 5 minutes)
- Reduce heat and simmer for a further 5 minutes, stirring occasionally
- Place lid on saucepan and simmer for a further 5-10 minutes until desired consistency achieved
- Serve with greek yoghurt, custard or in porridge! (see recipe below)
I just couldn’t wait for breakfast. I felt so inspired to use this tart rhubarb mixture in porridge. The result was hearty, tart and oh so delicious.
Rhubarb, persimmon & coconut porridge:
- 1/3 cup oats
- 1/2 cup coconut milk (I used this as I had an open can in my fridge however any form of milk – regular/almond/soy etc would work I presume)
- Hearty dash of cinnamon
- 2-3 tbsp of stewed rhubarb mixture (see recipe above)
- 1/4 cup water
- Toasted coconut, pepitas and sunflower seeds to serve
- Drizzle of maple syrup to serve
- Combine oats, milk, cinnamon and rhubarb mixture in a small saucepan. Leave to soak whilst you get ready for the day. The longer these soak the better (tip from the porridge queen Heidi).
- Over medium to high-heat bring porridge to boil
- Once bubbling, add 1/4 cup of water, reduce heat and simmer for approximately 3-5 minutes (until porridge reaches desired consistency) – remember to stir continuously!
- Meanwhile in a small frypan, toast a handful of pepitas, sunflower seeds and coconut until golden and crispy
- Top porridge with crispy bits and a drizzle of maple syrup to cut through the tartness of the stewed fruit.
Love Tess xxx