The Harvest: Eating vs Dining

Hello all, Patricia here! Each month we will be focusing on a particular topic with stories, research and recipes.  For November, we’ve chosen to focus on the Harvest.

As I’m writing this and gazing upon our snow-covered yard, I admit we’re sneaking this topic in through a rapidly closing door in our Northern neck of the woods.  What group of passionate foodies, however, could possibly resist writing about the harvest?  The thought of it made us all giddy with excitement, lunging for our chef’s knives and tasting spoons, searching for any amber-hued foodstuff in our path.  Essentially, it was an absolute no-brainer to kick start our collective food writing endeavors with a focus on gleaning what has grown for the months which lay ahead.  It’s important to note that the concept of the harvest, depending on who is blogging at the moment, is metaphorical in nature.  In this year’s harvest, our family is gathering our favorite recipes, memories and thoughts to share with you in getting ready for the long winter, as well as the moments which lay ahead without each other.  Before we begin sharing our family’s personal stories, hopes, dreams, quirks and assorted neuroses which anchor our culinary pursuits; allow me first to tell you a bit more about ourselves, specifically how we forage, cook, and eat.

It was vital for me as a mom, that elevenses function in a manner which supports the growth of my children’s own foodie “voices.”  This intention helps me to realize that it would be appropriate role modelling for me to do the same by creating my own “Elevenses Manifesto.”  Continually evolving and intensely personal, this template of how we experience the world of food will hopefully help us gain a better understanding of why the next meal is so important to us – to the point of (COC) culinary obsessive compulsiveness.  So, I would like to offer you the first chapter of our Manifesto, as it relates to our focus of the Harvest. More installments to follow in the near future.

1. There is eating, and then there is DINING.

Everyone eats.  Meal time with our growing family over the years has taken on many forms: table-side bassinets, high chairs, booster chairs, and, for a few years, no chairs (!). This was to accommodate Hunter when he was especially excited to engage in his world. We could never get him to sit down because he was too busy acting out his day’s activities for us, table side, through interpretive dance.  As Jacqui and Hunter grew older, the magic at our dinner table continued in ways that reflected their ages and stages.

Even during what Jacqui described as “the fog of adolescent hormones and angst” hung thick in the air, making the most basic communication challenging, there was always a reliable ceasefire at supper.  Mealtime became sacred time, where we explored a variety of world cuisines alongside of our stories.  Before we knew it, our weeknight meals were hours in duration and even then, the kids would linger over tea, dark chocolate and share just a few more parting thoughts before they disappeared back into their own private lives.  Looking back, I would say these moments were the glue that helped bond us together over time.  That was not just eating, my friends, it was dining.  What we partook in was more then the consumption of food, it was the beginning of an experience called “dining” that filled our hearts as well as our bellies.

It all sounds sweet, to the point of tooth decay doesn’t it?  Truth be told, this “glue” of cooking and dining together has helped our family through some fairly intense transitions lately. Personal losses in the form of divorce, relatives and friends passing, and growing pains of the soul, that no human can escape regardless of age.  As Jacqui and Hunter took on increasing interest and responsibilities in meal preparation, these tasks took on new meaning and intensity because, they worked on many levels.  “Do no harm,” was adopted both as culinary mantra and a personal mandate in our kitchen.   Meal preparation became our time to be in the moment, and to focus on techniques that would yield consistent results when executed with care and precision. This is more than what we can sometimes expect from our daily lives.  Children grow and move away (and if we play our cards right, they lovingly return for varied periods of time). Close friends sometimes change beyond recognition before our eyes.  People we love pass on.  The only thing that we’ve found we can rely on lately, is change.

Nonetheless, I find comfort that Jacqui and I can combine and reduce red curry paste, ginger, lemongrass and coconut milk to produce a fairly accurate representation of nirvana, in Hunter’s skill for roasting a sirloin tip to approximately 135 degrees for a reliable experience in Alberta Beef Heaven, and of course, in the moments we dine together. 

This, my friends, is comfort; in knowing that there are certain elements we can control that will ensure things will turn out ok…either by culinary technique, or by gnosis* – and hopefully we are able to share these fruits of  labour with the ones we love, while we can.  This, in my opinion, is the Ultimate Harvest.

*Gnosis is a feminine Greek noun, which means “knowledge”.[2] It is often used for personal knowledge compared with intellectual knowledge (eidein), as with the French connaitre compared with savoir, or the German kennen rather than wissen.[3]

 And now, bring on the food!

A word or two about how we eat in our home:

We are, essentially, a gluten free kitchen due to both health issues and personal preference.  Jacqui and Hunter will be offering greater explanations as to the why’s and health benefits of gluten free eating, however, as the socio-cultural writer on the elevenses team, I will be focusing on the joy I’ve found in eating this way.  I will also offer advice on how to do this yourself, if this is the way you choose to go.  Since I have been suffering from “gut issues” for the last few years, I chose to adopt varying degrees of the Paleo and GAPS diets.  These changes have certainly been helpful, and not to mention DELICIOUS.  Having said that, I use Paleo and GAPS as guidelines, and do not adhere to them strictly, so the recipes I offer will reflect this.  As a longtime baker and classically trained cook, I appreciate and adore cooking with mainstream ingredients.  That said, part of all this is adapting what I know, so my family can partake in the dishes, and I will not hesitate to cook outside of this box when the mood, or need, strikes.

On that note, I would like to offer you my recipe contribution for this month!

Cardinal Harvest Bread
Serves 6
This recipe was adapted from one of my favourite Paleo blogs, Elena’s Pantry. Elena strictly adheres to a Paleo diet for health reasons and offers delicious recipes based on her love and talent for the use of almond flour. Not too sweet and gorgeous to behold, I prepared these loaves to be enjoyed recently for the first course of Hunter’s birthday dinner; our Harvest loaf/ double cream brie baked with thyme and sauvignon blanc/ fresh apples and pears/ fig butter. This bread is dense, benefits from cooling for several hours before being sliced, and provides a sturdy canvas to the rich, wine-soaked, thyme- infused brie. It’s also lovely toasted the next day and slathered with butter, coconut oil or for sandwiches (Think roasted turkey or chicken with fruit chutney and sprouts….Anyone? Anyone?). Do give our Harvest Bread a try, even if you’re not Paleo. It's a beautiful addition to any Fall Harvest menu!
Write a review
Print
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
45 min
Total Time
1 hr
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
45 min
Total Time
1 hr
Ingredients
  1. ¾ cup creamy roasted almond butter
  2. 2 tablespoons melted coconut oil
  3. 3 large eggs
  4. ¼ cup arrowroot powder
  5. ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
  6. ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  7. ¼ cup small diced (1/4 inch) dried apricots
  8. ½ cup dried cranberries
  9. ¼ cup sesame seeds
  10. ¼ cup sunflower seeds (I used roasted and salted)
  11. ¼ cup pumpkin seeds
  12. * 2 mini loaf pans (I used 5.75 X 3 inches)
  13. * parchment paper roughly cut to fit the bottom of the loaf pans (ensures loaf will pop out beautifully)
  14. * additional coconut oil for greasing
Instructions
  1. Grease loaf pans with additional coconut oil. (This can be done easily by taking a folded piece of paper toweling smeared with a bit of solid coconut oil and rubbing it on the interior of each pan.) Place parchment pieces in bottom of pans.
  2. In a medium bowl, combine arrowroot powder, salt and baking soda.
  3. In a large bowl, blend almond butter, olive oil and eggs with a whisk or hand blender until smooth.
  4. Blend arrowroot mixture into wet ingredients until thoroughly combined.
  5. Fold in apricots, cranberries, seeds and sliced almonds
  6. Transfer batter into prepared loaf pans. Sprinkle a few additional assorted nuts/seeds of your choosing on top if you wish!
  7. Bake at 350° for 40-50 minutes until a knife inserted into center comes out clean
  8. Let bread cool in pan for ten minutes before unmoulding. Allow to cool at least 1 hour, then serve.
Notes
  1. Paleo
  2. Grain Free
  3. Refined Sugar Free
Adapted from Elena's Pantry
Adapted from Elena's Pantry
Elevenses http://www.elevenses.ca/

Hello all, Patricia here! Each month we will be focusing on a particular topic with stories, research and recipes.  For November, we’ve chosen to focus on the Harvest.

As I’m writing this and gazing upon our snow-covered yard, I admit we’re sneaking this topic in through a rapidly closing door in our Northern neck of the woods.  What group of passionate foodies, however, could possibly resist writing about the harvest?  The thought of it made us all giddy with excitement, lunging for our chef’s knives and tasting spoons, searching for any amber-hued foodstuff in our path.  Essentially, it was an absolute no-brainer to kick start our collective food writing endeavors with a focus on gleaning what has grown for the months which lay ahead.  It’s important to note that the concept of the harvest, depending on who is blogging at the moment, is metaphorical in nature.  In this year’s harvest, our family is gathering our favorite recipes, memories and thoughts to share with you in getting ready for the long winter, as well as the moments which lay ahead without each other.  Before we begin sharing our family’s personal stories, hopes, dreams, quirks and assorted neuroses which anchor our culinary pursuits; allow me first to tell you a bit more about ourselves, specifically how we forage, cook, and eat.

It was vital for me as a mom, that elevenses function in a manner which supports the growth of my children’s own foodie “voices.”  This intention helps me to realize that it would be appropriate role modelling for me to do the same by creating my own “Elevenses Manifesto.”  Continually evolving and intensely personal, this template of how we experience the world of food will hopefully help us gain a better understanding of why the next meal is so important to us – to the point of (COC) culinary obsessive compulsiveness.  So, I would like to offer you the first chapter of our Manifesto, as it relates to our focus of the Harvest. More installments to follow in the near future.

1. There is eating, and then there is DINING.

Everyone eats.  Meal time with our growing family over the years has taken on many forms: table-side bassinets, high chairs, booster chairs, and, for a few years, no chairs (!). This was to accommodate Hunter when he was especially excited to engage in his world. We could never get him to sit down because he was too busy acting out his day’s activities for us, table side, through interpretive dance.  As Jacqui and Hunter grew older, the magic at our dinner table continued in ways that reflected their ages and stages.

Even during what Jacqui described as “the fog of adolescent hormones and angst” hung thick in the air, making the most basic communication challenging, there was always a reliable ceasefire at supper.  Mealtime became sacred time, where we explored a variety of world cuisines alongside of our stories.  Before we knew it, our weeknight meals were hours in duration and even then, the kids would linger over tea, dark chocolate and share just a few more parting thoughts before they disappeared back into their own private lives.  Looking back, I would say these moments were the glue that helped bond us together over time.  That was not just eating, my friends, it was dining.  What we partook in was more then the consumption of food, it was the beginning of an experience called “dining” that filled our hearts as well as our bellies.

It all sounds sweet, to the point of tooth decay doesn’t it?  Truth be told, this “glue” of cooking and dining together has helped our family through some fairly intense transitions lately. Personal losses in the form of divorce, relatives and friends passing, and growing pains of the soul, that no human can escape regardless of age.  As Jacqui and Hunter took on increasing interest and responsibilities in meal preparation, these tasks took on new meaning and intensity because, they worked on many levels.  “Do no harm,” was adopted both as culinary mantra and a personal mandate in our kitchen.   Meal preparation became our time to be in the moment, and to focus on techniques that would yield consistent results when executed with care and precision. This is more than what we can sometimes expect from our daily lives.  Children grow and move away (and if we play our cards right, they lovingly return for varied periods of time). Close friends sometimes change beyond recognition before our eyes.  People we love pass on.  The only thing that we’ve found we can rely on lately, is change.

Nonetheless, I find comfort that Jacqui and I can combine and reduce red curry paste, ginger, lemongrass and coconut milk to produce a fairly accurate representation of nirvana, in Hunter’s skill for roasting a sirloin tip to approximately 135 degrees for a reliable experience in Alberta Beef Heaven, and of course, in the moments we dine together. 

This, my friends, is comfort; in knowing that there are certain elements we can control that will ensure things will turn out ok…either by culinary technique, or by gnosis* – and hopefully we are able to share these fruits of  labour with the ones we love, while we can.  This, in my opinion, is the Ultimate Harvest.

*Gnosis is a feminine Greek noun, which means “knowledge”.[2] It is often used for personal knowledge compared with intellectual knowledge (eidein), as with the French connaitre compared with savoir, or the German kennen rather than wissen.[3]

 And now, bring on the food!

A word or two about how we eat in our home:

We are, essentially, a gluten free kitchen due to both health issues and personal preference.  Jacqui and Hunter will be offering greater explanations as to the why’s and health benefits of gluten free eating, however, as the socio-cultural writer on the elevenses team, I will be focusing on the joy I’ve found in eating this way.  I will also offer advice on how to do this yourself, if this is the way you choose to go.  Since I have been suffering from “gut issues” for the last few years, I chose to adopt varying degrees of the Paleo and GAPS diets.  These changes have certainly been helpful, and not to mention DELICIOUS.  Having said that, I use Paleo and GAPS as guidelines, and do not adhere to them strictly, so the recipes I offer will reflect this.  As a longtime baker and classically trained cook, I appreciate and adore cooking with mainstream ingredients.  That said, part of all this is adapting what I know, so my family can partake in the dishes, and I will not hesitate to cook outside of this box when the mood, or need, strikes.

On that note, I would like to offer you my recipe contribution for this month!

Cardinal Harvest Bread
Serves 6
This recipe was adapted from one of my favourite Paleo blogs, Elena’s Pantry. Elena strictly adheres to a Paleo diet for health reasons and offers delicious recipes based on her love and talent for the use of almond flour. Not too sweet and gorgeous to behold, I prepared these loaves to be enjoyed recently for the first course of Hunter’s birthday dinner; our Harvest loaf/ double cream brie baked with thyme and sauvignon blanc/ fresh apples and pears/ fig butter. This bread is dense, benefits from cooling for several hours before being sliced, and provides a sturdy canvas to the rich, wine-soaked, thyme- infused brie. It’s also lovely toasted the next day and slathered with butter, coconut oil or for sandwiches (Think roasted turkey or chicken with fruit chutney and sprouts….Anyone? Anyone?). Do give our Harvest Bread a try, even if you’re not Paleo. It's a beautiful addition to any Fall Harvest menu!
Write a review
Print
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
45 min
Total Time
1 hr
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
45 min
Total Time
1 hr
Ingredients
  1. ¾ cup creamy roasted almond butter
  2. 2 tablespoons melted coconut oil
  3. 3 large eggs
  4. ¼ cup arrowroot powder
  5. ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
  6. ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  7. ¼ cup small diced (1/4 inch) dried apricots
  8. ½ cup dried cranberries
  9. ¼ cup sesame seeds
  10. ¼ cup sunflower seeds (I used roasted and salted)
  11. ¼ cup pumpkin seeds
  12. * 2 mini loaf pans (I used 5.75 X 3 inches)
  13. * parchment paper roughly cut to fit the bottom of the loaf pans (ensures loaf will pop out beautifully)
  14. * additional coconut oil for greasing
Instructions
  1. Grease loaf pans with additional coconut oil. (This can be done easily by taking a folded piece of paper toweling smeared with a bit of solid coconut oil and rubbing it on the interior of each pan.) Place parchment pieces in bottom of pans.
  2. In a medium bowl, combine arrowroot powder, salt and baking soda.
  3. In a large bowl, blend almond butter, olive oil and eggs with a whisk or hand blender until smooth.
  4. Blend arrowroot mixture into wet ingredients until thoroughly combined.
  5. Fold in apricots, cranberries, seeds and sliced almonds
  6. Transfer batter into prepared loaf pans. Sprinkle a few additional assorted nuts/seeds of your choosing on top if you wish!
  7. Bake at 350° for 40-50 minutes until a knife inserted into center comes out clean
  8. Let bread cool in pan for ten minutes before unmoulding. Allow to cool at least 1 hour, then serve.
Notes
  1. Paleo
  2. Grain Free
  3. Refined Sugar Free
Adapted from Elena's Pantry
Adapted from Elena's Pantry
Elevenses http://www.elevenses.ca/

Share It :

More

About the author

Related posts

9 Comments on “The Harvest: Eating vs Dining

  1. Natalie

    Yum! Looks good! Will give it a try over the winter break!

    Reply
    1. Thank you, Natalie, and let us know how it goes! Happy baking to you:)

      Reply
  2. That looks/sounds so good!

    I wonder if you will find that the intention of writing actually changes your habits of cooking and eating to be even more mindful.

    Reply
    1. Thank you, Louise, and what an astute comment. I am truly counting on this to be the case. Engaging in a process such as writing is incredibly helpful in synthesizing the world around us, and I’m finding this to be true already with only a few posts under our belt. Growing mindfulness in how we prepare and consume is such a gift, and I hope it’s one that we will experience as time goes on with our posts;) Do let us know how we’re doing and thank you again!

      Reply
  3. Perfect! Can’t wait to try this recipe, Patricia! We <3 coconut oil and dig the paleo diet. Cheers!

    Reply
    1. Thank you, Lovely Lady and fellow coconut oil lover! Let us know how it goes and hugs to you across the miles;)

      Reply
  4. Byron Sinclair

    Hey guys, this looks amazing, this recipe is going to be on the top of my list of things to do when i get back home. I’ve been looking for ways to eat healthy and get back into shape, and during my time here in Cambodia I’ve been motivated more and more to clean up my diet and lifestyle. This just adds to my motivation as it adds new dimensions to my gradual life style changes. Now I get to learn new awesome recipes while catching up my you guys! Its great to hear from you, and I can’t wait to see whats next!

    Reply
    1. Byron! Cambodia! Oh my goodness! Good for you for traveling and for seeking out awesome ways to care for yourself through food:) So much more to share with you when you return, sounds like we need to all do some cooking together. Stay well, Byron, and thanks for your kind words!

      Reply
  5. Elaine Robbins

    I can’t wait to sink my teeth into that yummy Harvest Bread. It looks too good to be true. I would love to try it with you real soon:) If this is a taste of what is ahead for us, keep serving up more, I’m ready and can’t wait for the next blog. Your thoughtful guidance is comforting and inspiring. You are Mother Earth! So proud.Xoxoxoxo

    Reply

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *