Mother’s Day – There’s a reason

As a woman who was childless into my thirties while school friends had children MUCH earlier, I often struggled with Mother’s Day. As a single woman I hated the day – selfishly of course – I loved and appreciated my own mother but grieved for what I never thought would be mine. Could be mine.

Today though, those thoughts have changed. Damn it, we have Mothers Day for a reason! Today I have a mountain of work to get through before I travel overseas later in the week. I have meals to prepare, food to buy, washing to do, cleaning to accomplish, paid work to be faithful to, a Thermomix demonstration, packing, appointments to make and keep, millions of hugs to give, complaints to listen to, needs to understand and on top of that all… my two kid free days have VANISHED due to sickness and needing to have children home. Honestly – Mother’s Day is a day to acknowledge the trenches many of us are in. Mother’s Day is to recognise what our own mothers went through. We may grieve, especially if they’re no longer alive, but we acknowledge.

Today I’m a bit angry that I took away from yesterday the acknowledgement of what I do because I was so concerned about others and their journey. One day, one day to go “ok, this is hard/beautiful/passionate/burdensome/intense but it’s my lot now for great and terrible – thank you for seeing that”.

FYI, yesterday was pretty great. I knitted a scarf for my own mother 🙂 My daughter kind of ruined the mood though by saying “Dee Dee (my mom) is super old – I’ll be sad when she dies soon.” Thanks for the reality check Adventure Girl!

 

 

Outstanding Orange Cake: Gluten and Dairy free

I love simplicity in ingredients. Those recipes you look at and they immediately give comfort and warmth by the ease of making and the delicious outcomes. This is one of those cakes. What makes it better is that it’s the perfect gluten and dairy free “event” cake that you can stack. I make it for all sorts of reasons: A friend’s 70th birthday where a GF Celebration cake was needed – Double layered and slathered in ganache with a fancy cake topper (as pictured) – outstanding; a meeting where GF food is needed; and the reason for today’s incarnation, a childhood friend’s funeral. Her mother tasted this cake at a meeting I made it for, promptly asked for the recipe and has made it 3 times since. One of those times she shared it with her daughter whose funeral is tomorrow. Today I made it in honour of both of them, the daughter for memories of being able to enjoy good food, the mother in hope that this “soul food” which she enjoys might be something she feels like eating on what must be one of the worst days of her life. It looks a lot less fancy today, cut up on a paper plate ready for the morning-tea… but I trust it will do the job.

Flourless Orange Cake

From Cooking Under the Influence: Food to Drink to  by Ben Canaider and Greg Duncan Powell

Ingredients:

  • 2 Oranges
  • 250gr Almond Meal
  • 250gr Castor Sugar
  • 6 Eggs
  • 1 tsp Baking Powder

Method

  1. Simmer the oranges for 1.5 hours until they’re soft (this can be done in advance)
  2. Heat the oven to 180 degrees C.
  3. Beat the sugar and eggs together until they’re pale and thick
  4. In a food processor blend the almond meal, cooked oranges (remove pips and cut in half) and baking powder
  5. Fold the almond and orange mix into the egg and sugar mixture
  6. pour into a 23cm cake tin (lined in making paper/greased) and cook for an hour.

Notes:

  • To make this really special you could drizzle an orange syrup over it
  • I personally, if not making it for someone who’s dairy free, love to ice it in a dark chocolate ganache.

 

 

 

Can I take her with me?

I fly out tonight for a wedding without Mr Incredible and without Adventure Girl… and I’m struggling because of how much I want to take them with me. For the past 15 months (longer if you include pregnancy), Adventure Girl and I have slept under the same roof, and if I tally the time away from her, I doubt in all those 15 months if I’ve been absent from her for more than 60 hours. So much of my life has become wrapped around her, so much of my identity and purpose – keep her alive, keep her thriving where possible, keep her nourished always. Oh how I will miss her, even though I know Mr Incredible will do an outstanding job. I’m sure I’ll bore all the other wedding guests and the friends who I meet with stories about my little Adventure Girl. I hope in the process of being apart for 2 days though, I’ll be able to reconnect with a part of me I haven’t been able to find since she’s come along, the part that doesn’t need to think about a meal in advance, can be more spontaneous and can travel without constantly looking out for someone else… I’m sure I will though, and each time I turn around to see she’s not there, will miss her all over again. Big hugs await on Monday morning!