Summer fruit with honey almond sauce

fruit

I am sitting out at the little table in our back garden, under the dappled light of a butterfly bush. I can hear seagulls cawing to each other from the chimney tops. The sound of a bus shifting gears. There is the faint smell of cigarette smoke coming in off the street. It occurred to me yesterday that I will be leaving here in just a few months, and it made me more than ever want to memorize what it feels like to sit out in a tiny back garden on the coast of England. So easy to forget to appreciate things when you still have them.

The past month or so has been strangely difficult. For years I dreamt of having a space where I could sit and do nothing but write this story I’ve had floating around in my mind. It seemed to me that life would feel perfect if I could just have that. To sit each day and venture deep into my own imagination, fill my mind with images and sounds and smells from another time and place, imagine what it would be like to be someone else.  And now of course I am doing just that but life is far from perfect, and my days spent writing are not at all the blissful outpouring of creativity I imagined.

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Writing is tremendously hard. Each day I have to wage battle with all the negative voices in my head, that tell me I can’t do this, I don’t deserve to do this, I’m going to fail.  I wake up in the morning and I am terrified to go back to it again. Sometimes the voices win and I can’t write a word. But when I ask myself if I want to stop, I know that I can’t. I just know, there is this intensity in me to express this thing in myself, and even if no one else cares, if not a single soul ever reads it or likes it or finds something in it that matters, I still have to express it. If I don’t, this spark in me will go out.

So yes, I want to do this, and I want to be here. And therefore I will pay attention to that and open my eyes and look around and remember why I am here, and that I won’t always be.

And I will eat this fruit salad with honey almond sauce every day until the day that I die.

Summer fruit with honey almond sauce

2 normal people or 1 greedy person

This is a casual recipe. I think it turns out better that way because people tend to measure things out to their own tastes when the instructions are flexible. You can sub in whatever berries or fruits you like, or try other nut butters. Use maple instead of honey if you prefer. The world is your oyster.

Ingredients

  • one nectarine or peach, sliced
  • a good handful of strawberries, halved or quartered depending on size
  • a good handful of raspberries
  • For the sauce:
  • 1 heaping spoonful of almond butter
  • a slightly less heaping spoonful of honey
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • a splash of almond milk

Instructions

  1. Arrange the fruit in a small bowl. Make it lovely. Fruit arranging is very relaxing and who doesn't like having sticky berry stained fingers?
  2. Over a very low flame, combine the almond butter and honey in a pan and heat until the honey is soft enough to mix in. If you have very runny honey you can skip this step. Remove from heat and add the almond milk in very cautious splashes, mixing it in with a spoon, until the sauce is thinned to a nice hot fudge like consistency. Two splashes should do it (about 2 teaspoons I reckon). Don't despair if you add to much, just add a little extra almond butter to thicken things back up again. Add the vanilla extract and if your almond butter is unsalted, a tiny pinch of salt.
  3. Generously spoon the sauce over the fruit and enjoy. A handful of granola or toasted oats wouldn't go amiss either. This is equally good as a breakfast, dessert, or snack.

 

Comments

  1. Your almond sauce looks so good. I’ve never considered pairing a nut butter with a bowl of fruit, but it clearly makes sense. Hello peanut butter and jelly sandwich. I like what you’ve said about appreciating moments when you are inhabiting them. I’ll pay closer attention today. Thank you. And…I read this article http://www.bookish.com/articles/elizabeth-gilbert-takes-on-philip-roth about writing a couple of days ago and found it a great piece to read when my writing is feeling especially challenging.

    • Danielle says:

      Peanut butter and jelly – yes! I think I first came across the idea in a middle eastern cookbook, except the sauce was tahini and honey which is also good :) Thank you for the article, it was just what I needed, really. Sometimes we humans take ourselves much to seriously, especially us writerly ones.

  2. Anonymous says:

    listen to your heart and not your head when it pertains to writing. the berries of our life can always be ripe, ready to pick and put into the shape of bowl we like. we are always our own worst critic. I will spoon the sauce over my berries and enjoy………..thank you once again for your insight.

  3. Lucinda says:

    Oh my gosh, I am making this as soon as my hands are free!
    Keep on with your writing, fuelled by snacks like these how could it not be a masterpiece!! :)
    xx

  4. Clara says:

    Yum! And yes, I completely agree with Lucinda, quality writing needs soul food to usher it into being. Such a well timed piece, I’m in the midst of a big writing project and I’m discovering it can be a very foreign landscape, sitting between the intangible imagination and that piece of paper requires believing in that “spark”. Very comforting to read your inner thoughts as they sound very similar to mine! You have so much to say…I have no doubt the writing is unfolding just as it needs to be. Good luck xo

  5. Cathy says:

    My breakfasts this week have been precisely those fruit (and a little apple), which I cut into small pieces and arrange on a pretty plate… I have several to choose from according to my mood! The idea of runny honey is brilliant, and I tried it today… no nut butter to add this time, maybe next time. The honey goes so well with slightly tart berries! I hope the writing gets easier for you soon. I love reading your words and understand the sentiments you expressed today on a different level – my garden is my way of expressing myself, and even if nobody ever sees it or comments on it, I have to create it. Does that sound strange? Thanks for the inspiration, and happy strawberry season!

  6. Rosanna says:

    You’re not alone… the voices in my head are screaming so loudly I haven’t even had the heart to sit down and write the first page of the first draft. I’m sure the voices will tire…someday.

  7. Sara says:

    Lovely lovely lovely! Good luck with your writing, I am sure strawberries like that can only help.