Last night as my daughter was walking off to bed she turned as she often does and asked her Dad to come in and sing her a lullaby. It dawned on me that our daughter has reached an age where she is creating memories.
I wandered off to get myself ready for bed and thought about my own memories and how precious they are to me.
I do not remember the gifts I received at Christmas despite knowing that my parents would have done all they could to tick items off our wish list and our Grandparents spoilt us. I do not remember birthday parties although my Mum assures me that we had them more often than not. I do not remember the holidays we took even though I know I always enjoyed them.
What I remember is learning the heel and toe polka in the kitchen with Mum and singing at the top of our voices as we travelled home from an all-day shopping spree. I remember sitting on Dad’s knee in the driver seat of his rusty old ute as we played our favourite tunes and bounced along the old dirt track. I remember Gran holding my hand and reading me story after story and Grandma sitting by my side patiently playing Little Letters. I remember my neighbours door that was always open and our old dog whose tail would wag at the sight of us.
I remember the nightmares I had and how Mum always welcomed me into her bed, despite my restlessness, and with her arms around me my mind was at ease. I remember my Dad reading The Faraway Tree to me and sneaking dried apricots into my room on the nights when I didn’t eat all of my dinner.
I remember my Mum taking me away from the very cranky dentist and off for a milkshake when I refused to open my mouth. Not a cross word was spoken, just a promise to never take me back. I remember my Dad and I taking our dog out for early morning walks with me still in my PJ’s and him being as crazy as ever and making me giggle until my stomach hurt. I remember lying on the couch at night, all of us in our usual spots, and all of us laughing together.
I know there were other moments and harder times but these are the only bits I want to remember, these are the bits that remind me just how lucky I am, that I was loved, that I am loved. That it all works out in the end. These are the bits that make me a little more mindful of how I am with my own children, of how I want their memories to make them feel. These are the bits that demonstrate to me exactly what it is that matters.
Little Lemon Tarts
1 cup almond meal*
1/2 cup ground flax
1 tablespoon maple syrup
1 tablespoon coconut oil
1/2 teaspoon concentrated natural vanilla extract
Pinch of salt
Preheat your oven to 175°C or 350°F
Whisk the syrup and coconut oil together until smooth. Whisk in the egg. Stir in the remaining ingredients.
Press the mixture into your mini pie cases (you may need to grease them). The base of mine measures 7.5cm and the top is 10cm. This was enough mixture to make three cases, mine were quite thick as you can see in the image above. We filled two of the three cases with the lemon curd, but they were generously filled.
Bake the cases for 10 – 12 minutes, I opt for the latter but I know many of your ovens run hotter then mine. Leave the cases in the tin for five minutes before placing onto a cooling rack. Allow to cool as you make the simple and delicious Lemon Curd.
4 egg yolks
3 tablespoons maple syrup
2 tablespoons coconut oil
juice and zest of 1 large lemon
Whisk the eggs and syrup together until combined. Pour the mixture into a small saucepan, add the remaining ingredients and continually stir the mixture over a medium heat for 1 minute (the mixture should, at all times, be smooth and becoming thick. If at any point it looks a tad lumpy remove it from the heat and continue to stir). Reduce the heat to low and continue stirring for another 4 minutes. Pour the mixture into a small heat proof bowl and allow to cool.
This is the quantity I used to very well fill two medium sized tarts. We had four serves from the two tarts because my family is a big fan of ‘going halves’.
*For a nut free version use this base recipe
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