Guilt-less Desserts & Treats for your Family
5 yo H has been at school for 3 weeks now. That’s 3 weeks of packed lunches, readers, and the morning rush. It’s been 2 weeks of new friends, new experiences and lots of rhyming words. 1 week of tears, guilt and separation anxiety – from both of us!!
It’s been an interesting transition period as H has started primary school. He was so exited and ready to move up in the world and I was so sure that settling in would be a breeze for him; which is why it broke my heart when he didn’t want to stay at school. My confident, imaginative little man was reduced to tears and leaving him there, amidst his inconsolable pleas for me to stay, was one of my hardest mummy moments.
Being a mum is tough. Your gut instinct is always to protect your kids, keep them safe and happy, but sometimes you need to let them go a little bit. You need to trust that you have raised them with enough common sense and resilience to weather the storm… even at age 5. As H stood there, restrained by his teacher, screaming for me to not leave him I knew that rushing to ‘save him’ would not help him. He was safe in a protected environment and I knew he would be OK, eventually. So I had to walk away. Then I cried.
I cried because my baby was in pain and for the first time in his life I wasn’t able to kiss it better.
I cried because I felt that I had abandoned him in his time of need and not been a good mother.
I cried because my little man was growing up and didn’t need me any more.
I cried and I knew in 5 minutes he would be ok, but would I?
Our drop offs are getting easier and H is getting “braver” he informs me. He is still a bit timid to leave me in the morning but the tears have stopped. My favourite part of the day is now pick up time. The moment when he runs out of the classroom door, a huge smile across his face, eagerly looking for me to tell me all the exciting things he has done that day. That’s when I know he is ok, and that my decision to leave him hasn’t scarred him and I made the right mummy decision.
With school comes lunch boxes and Sunday has become our preparation day. I freeze some for later in the week and get everything ready so the morning rush is a bit easier. An easy option for a filling snack is Banana Bread. I love a good twist on Banana Bread. Last week it was Jamaican Spice Bread, this week it’s Apple and Pecan Bread. This loaf gets it pecan-ness from using home made Pecan Meal. Making Pecan Meal uses the same process as making Almond Meal, but beware. Pecans are a much oiler and softer nut and will turn into a butter quickly and start to ooze oil; if this starts to happen you have processed your nuts too much to make a fine meal. If you think this sounds too hard, replace the pecan meal with almond meal.
Sweet Bread recipes are very simple to make and can be eaten for breakfast, for a snack or even served with cream for dessert. It’s also a great way to get the family to increase their fruit intake with hidden banana.
- 2 Apples, cored and diced
- 1 Tablespoon Maple Syrup
- 1/4 Cup Maple Syrup
- 1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
- 270 grams Banana (approximately 2 1/-2 to 3 Bananas) or 170 grams Bananas and 100 grams Apple Sauce
- 3 Eggs
- 1/2 Cup Coconut Flour
- 3/4 Cup Pecan Meal (take 1 cup of walnut pieces and process until fine crumbs form. Be careful not to over process as the pecans will turn into an oily paste very quickly. Measure 3/4 of meal after processing the nuts as it will usually yield a little more than required).
- 1/4 Cup Arrowroot Flour
- 3 teaspoons Baking Powder
- 2 teaspoon Cinnamon
- dash of Salt
- 2 Tablespoons Milk (Coconut, Almond etc)
- Preheat the oven to 175C/350F
- Grease and line a 20cm (8 inch) x 10cm (4 inch) loaf tin.
- Place 1 Tablespoon of Maple Syrup in a small saucepan and add the apple pieces. Stir over low/medium heat until the maple syrup coats the apple pieces and they have softened slightly. Put in the fridge to cool.
- Place the eggs into the bowl of a kitchen stand mixer and beat on medium until fluffy.
- Add the maple syrup and continue to beat on medium. Add the vanilla extract.
- Add the bananas to the blender and pulse (alternatively do this with a masher or fork). I like to have mine mainly gooey with a few chunks left in.
- Add the bananas to the mixing bowl and beat on medium until well combined.
- In a separate bowl sift the dry ingredients together.
- Fold the dry ingredients into the mixing bowl, being careful not to over mix.
- Add the milk and stir through gently.
- Add the apple pieces and gently fold thru the mixture.
- Pour the mixture into the prepared tin.
- Bake for 55 minutes, or until cooked through. Check the loaf at 40 minutes. If it is starting to brown too much in top cover the loaf with foil and continue and bake.
- Allow to cool in the tin before slicing.