I keep thinking of the snow here in Michigan and how people start to complain about end of January and February that they just can't take it anymore... and spring is really just weeks around the corner... it seems like this August feels like February for me. Just waiting for it to end... for it to cool off. And praying it comes sooner than later. I mean I am not the one to want to complain, but seriously! Does being pregnant mean I can complain a little?! Well, either way, it's been a really hot summer this year and the harvest of fruit and veggies has been different because of it...The cherry season in Michigan was so short because it has been so hot, and the same is going for the apricots, peaches, and now blueberries. Most summers I am still able to pick my biggest bunch of blueberries over Labor Day weekend, but this year is different. It looks like this coming weekend will be the last of the season after just a few weeks of picking. So, I guess that is another reason to make me feel better about not being able to pick my usual 60 pounds.
Something to think about during this hot season is how every season of life brings new challenges and new learning experiences. I think that is why I love eating seasonally so much. Because it isn't about doing the same healthy option every day of the week for the rest of your life...sometimes changes, or the seasons can help us switch it up a bit and really appreciate what is in front of us and living fully present. The challenge is to keep things interesting and not let yourself get discouraged or in a rut.
I have been savoring the fresh fruit we have had... so cooling and delicious after a hot day. So, this dessert still needs to be put in the oven, but after it cools it is perfect with a scoop of coconut ice cream. A summer treat at it's best. I will probably be putting my feet up as well, but first a recipe...
Fresh Fruit Almond Cookie Bars Recipe
1 1/3 cup of almond meal
1/3 cup of white rice flour
1/3 cup of buckwheat flour
2 ts of ground ginger
1/2 ts of sea salt
3-4 TB of sucanat (or powdered sweetener: cane, palm or coconut)
1/2 cup of Spectrum Organic Palm Oil Shortening
1/4 cup of apple juice
Mix all of the above ingredients well and fold with a fork like you would a pie crust. Then with your hands, roll out in a 9x13 pan to press to the bottom of the whole pan. If you want to use a roller, or add a little bit of a crust that is up to you. Then sprinkle the following fruit on top the crust...
Fresh Fruit Sprinkle:
1/2 cup of fresh apricot pieces
1/2 cup of fresh raspberries
1/2 cup of fresh blueberries
Then, drizzle a few TB's of agave nectar or honey and then put in a pre-heated 350 degree oven for 25 minutes. When the fruit is bubbling a bit and baked into the cookie crust, then it is done. Let it cool on the stove so that you don't break the berries up too much when they are super hot. Then after some time of cooling cut the bars into about 12-15 pieces and pull out of the pan. Serve with whipping cream, coconut ice cream, or any other non dairy or fresh dairy ice cream.
It's kinda like a cookie, it's kinda like pie. It's a happy medium summer treat without too many ingredients and too much effort. I hope you enjoy and stay cool over the next few days!