I like it when my house is quiet and I can hear myself think. Opportunities for this kind of silence seem increasingly rare, however. I may be home alone with a sleepy dog and the television off, but I am admittedly never too far away from my phone or computer. Of course there are times when I shut it all down, go for a walk in the woods, meet friends for a meal or cuddle up with a good book. Yet I allow my devices to pull me back. What about you?
I think about the folks who lived before the world of cell phones and personal computers really exploded. What would they think about all of this “noise”?
Didn’t they live full and complete lives without having 24/7 access to information at the touch of a button? Miraculously, they were able to travel from point A to point B without automated guidance! They survived without the knowledge of what others were doing in the privacy of their own homes, while on vacation or even driving in their cars. Books and encyclopedias were used for research, a word that has been replaced with google. And when folks wanted to cook something, they didn’t consult perfectly styled images of food on a screen.
Oh, the good old days. I suppose it’s ironic that I am writing this post that you are only able to access on a device, right? But sometimes I miss the days when an extra long phone cord was the means to a “private” call and screens were a television or the one you watched at the movie theater.
The phone especially has become the necessary evil. It’s so convenient, but because it serves so many functions it is also terribly distracting. When was the last time you made it through a day without a ping, a pong, a ding or a dong calling you or someone you are with to attention? Ironically, my phone has lost its ability to make any sound other than to gleefully strum like a guitar when someone wants to talk. I decided after a few unsuccessful attempts at figuring out why this is the case, to just let it go. It’s a small step toward regaining my power!
Nonetheless, I need to improve my relationship with my devices and would love to hear from you about how you personally manage your time with them. Do you have rules you live by so that you are always the alpha?
Please share your thoughts and strategies!! While we often focus on this as an issue for young people, it’s as much an issue for anyone, at any age who owns a cell phone or computer.
Switching gears, today I am sharing a recipe for a dessert I made last weekend when we had some friends to dinner. It’s a crisp that was born from the simple notion that you can put fruit in a pan, top it with some humble ingredients, bake until your kitchen smells delightful, and serve it for a simple end to a meal. Add some ice cream and eat the leftovers for breakfast.
This particular recipe calls for a little more fruit and a little less crisp, making it a little lighter. If you like tons of crisp with your fruit, you may want to double the topping ingredients which include just almond flour, rolled oats, a pinch of salt and some butter. I like the combination of plums and blueberries and just added a touch of sweetness with some maple syrup.
I approached making the crisp in the fashion that I think our mothers and grandmothers might have because they weren’t distracted by devices. Browse through a few cookbooks, think about how you want your dish to look and taste, and trust yourself because at the end of the day we are talking about fruit, sweeteners and some butter.
I am not sure what season we are in store for this weekend in New England! I think we may be returning to the 70’s again during the daytime. But the evenings should be cool and a warm crisp would suit that nicely.
Don’t forget to please leave a comment about strategies with your devices! And as always, if you make my Plum Blueberry Crisp and have some feedback, please come back to my website and add a comment to this post. I would love to hear from you!
Until next time…
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Three Years Ago: Butternut Squash Risotto
This is the simplest of crisps that can be made entirely gluten free if you use gluten free rolled oats. In this recipe, there is just enough crisp topping to make it delicious without making it too heavy. If you want to have more topping, I would suggest doubling the ingredients (almond flour, oats, salt and butter). Either way, I hope you enjoy it.
- 6 plums, pitted and cut into 6-8 slices
- 1 cup blueberries
- 2 Tablespoons maple syrup
- 1 Tablespoon cornstarch
- 1/2 cup almond flour
- 1/2 cup rolled oats (not quick oats), use gluten-free if you prefer
- pinch of kosher salt
- 4 Tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into chunks
- sanding sugar, optional
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Grease a small cast iron skillet or a 9-inch baking pan with some butter or cooking spray.
- In a bowl, toss the sliced plums, the blueberries, the maple syrup and the cornstarch. Place everything in the greased pan.
- Wipe out the bowl and in it, mix together the almond flour, the oats and the pinch of salt. Add the butter and use your fingers to mix the ingredients together until the butter is completely incorporated into the dry ingredients. Spread the mixture evenly over the fruit and sprinkle the top with some sanding sugar if you are using.
- Bake the crisp until the top is evenly browned and the fruit is bubbling, about 40 minutes.
- Serve with ice cream and enjoy.
This looks delicious! I can’t wait to try this today!