Southern Charm

I’m finding that these posts are getting harder and harder to maintain.  It’s partly because I have a tendency to juggle the same favorite meals from day to day, but it’s also because I have a non-nap-taking toddler on my hands these days!

However, I mentioned the themed potlucks we’ve been having with the neighbors, and I promised some updates.  I only wish I was able to take photos of the food!

This week’s Southern-themed garden dinner consisted of the following from our neighbors:  okra fritters/pancakes, polenta with veggies (to represent grits), homemade kombucha (to represent iced tea), and a watermelon salad (cubed watermelon with white corn and cilantro, salt and pepper!  so delicious!).  I brought my own tasty treats to the party:  baked beans, Jiffy mini corn muffins (using a flax egg), and some blackberry cobbler, inspired by this.  In my version, I added ground flax instead of flour in the fruit, I skipped the juice and coconut milk, instead using rice milk and water, and I added some leftover chopped pears to my berries.  I will very likely play with the recipe soon to either reduce or eliminate the sugar in it, so I can enjoy it for breakfast.  I’ve been really indulging in the sugar lately, and it’s definitely left me feeling fatigued.

This might have been my favorite meal with my neighbors to date, maybe because it feels like I’m finally home, after two long years of struggling to find an identity on this island!  It’s hard to complain much in the midst of this paradise, but it’s also pretty easy to feel isolated as a stay-at-home mom with no family or close friends nearby, so I feel really blessed to have had these two families move in and instantly become part of our ‘ohana, or extended family.

Over the weekend, we all ate together for an informal, non-themed meal, and the highlight of that meal was definitely NOT my attempt at sushi balls.  I tried making sticky rice balls with chopped carrots, peas, and chopped nori for Seba to eat easily, and they were okay-tasting, but nothing exceptional.  In fact, they fell apart, so that was a failure.  Then there were some tasty chopped veggies with homemade hummus, and our neighbor made some easy, delicious curried carrot soup.  Carrots, onions, curry powder, (maybe some garlic?), and coconut milk, blended to perfection.  I could seriously have slurped down the entire thing.  I will never remember that simpler is better.  Less really is more.

In running news, Saturday was a 6.75-mile day!  I’m debating on whether or not I should register for my half marathon, scheduled in November.  Six long miles felt good, but like an eternity at some points along the trail.  :/

Breakfast:  leftovers (beans, cobbler, and a few bites of Seba’s avocado sandwich from yesterday)
Lunch:  falafel salad with tahini and nutritional yeast, some carrot and celery sticks, and a little oatmeal with almonds and cinnamon
Dinner:  scrambled tofu, more baked beans, and a bowl of blueberries

See you later!

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