I spent last weekend in Boston + area for a wedding in Mark’s family (and some general exploring). We were driving into a completely charming small town for the ceremony and I caught myself settling into a familiar thought process. Whenever we travel, on day trips, weekends, whatever, I always slip into the “I could definitely live here” mode. Everywhere we go, it just happens. I get all the little ducks in a row in my mind and imagine the possible benefits and drawbacks. I could probably get a job, it’s near the coast-this is important for like, swimming and stuff, I would need to obtain citizenship somehow…eeenh I’m sure that’s super easy, they have a Trader Joe’s and a Whole Foods IN THE SAME PLAZA!?!! etc.
This tendency points to a few things. I’m generally comfortable wherever I go, slipping into adaptation mode. I don’t seem to get the itch to go back home ever. I do love my town and my family and everyone here, certainly. But I would be perfectly happy to set up a cozy nest and start something new just about anywhere, for however long. Call it unsettled, call it adventurous or irresponsible; doesn’t matter. I used to think it was too late to entertain this sort of mindset, but lately I just want to drop everything and go everywhere all at the same time. And it feels possible. So possible.
I do love Niagara in the summer. The air is temperate, the local abundance is ripe, plenty of exciting goings-on, the frequency of cold wine and beers outdoors is envigorating, smiling faces everywhere… but I’ve been imagining even greater things. Travel, projects, adventures, getting it done! It feels good.
What feels equally good? A cozy, luxurious and healthy breakfast at home with all of my favourite things. Grainy, seedy sourdough bread soaked in a fresh blueberry and almond batter that’s spiked with orange juice and warm vanilla. Oh and maple syrup, juicy peaches and tart yogurt all on top. Whoa. It’s enough to make me want to stay at home forever (and ever).
blueberry + almond buttered french toast with peaches
special equipment: a blender/food processor
notes: Have everything ready before you make the batter to dip the bread in. If you let the blueberry mixture sit, it begins to separate a bit. Be ready to dip right after you blend!
1 cup almond milk (not sweetened)
1/4 cup almond butter
1 tsp flax seeds
juice from half an orange (or a couple tablespoons)
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 cup fresh blueberries (or thawed frozen ones)
12 thick slices of good, grainy bread (preferably a day old)
1 tbsp melted coconut oil
evaporated cane juice (natural sugar) for sprinkling
3 ripe peaches, sliced
yogurt of your favourite persuasion (coconut milk, soy, goat milk, cow etc)
Start preheating a large nonstick skillet (or cast iron) to medium.
Combine all batter ingredients in a blender pitcher. Blend on medium-high speed until completely liquified, about 1 minute. Pour batter into a medium-sized, shallow dish.
Place coconut oil into the heated pan and swirl it around to melt. If the pan seems to hot, keep it off the heat for a minute or two while you soak the bread. Start to soak slices of bread in blueberry batter. Scrape off excess and place in the pan with the melted coconut oil. Sprinkle a little evaporated cane juice on top of the bread in the pan (the non-cooked side) to promote caramelization when you flip. Cook until slightly browned, about a 1.5 minutes, and flip over. Cook for another minute and remove from the pan.
Wipe the pan out with a bit of paper towel and repeat cooking process with remaining bread and batter.
Serve warm with maple syrup, peaches, blueberries, yogurt and nuts.
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