Savor Sister Linda here with you this first weekend in February. I don’t know about you, but these past few weeks have offered a lot of challenges. Opportunities as well. This pie post speaks to the opportunities.
As I’ve been navigating profound water issues at the ranch as extreme drought continues and continues, as well as family health crises, I’ve found that my mental chatter interferes with responding with any level of skillfulness much less elegance. Conversely, freeing myself from even some of that mental chatter, allows for innovative ideas and collaborations to arise — whether they be rethinking a water system or collaboratively caring for a family member.
There is sensual pleasure in creating recipes. The aromas and flavors and work a kind of magic, and as I working/playing with ingredients I often feel more grounded. Added to the mixture is the memory of having picked that orange from the tree, and re-visiting via scent, how the orange smelled as the fruit pulled from the tree – and yet again as I grate its peel. I re-feel the sound and smell of citrus blossoms as the bees visit the flowers and then return to their hives just meters behind me – and honey too goes into the recipe. I think of innumerable hands that have, for 8000 years or so, picked chiltepin, and I am not longer sure whose hands I feel, theirs or mine, as the smooth red fruit separates from the woody plant, the heat of its aroma wafting into my nostrils, a grasshopper hopping off a thin branches to my left, leaving half chewed fruit behind.
Simply naming it Humble Pie had a surprising affect. The “idea” of humble itself set me free of all that mental chatter and it’s too-ing and fro-ing. It reminded methat cycles exist in life and in nature.
It reminded me that humans are a Part of – and not the Measure of – all things.
I decided then and there, as I was scooping gloppy chocolate into the bottom of the pan, intermittently licking the side of my hands, that from here on out I would take my place in the scheme of things. I would still be a food producer; would still interact intimately with winged pollinators, leafy plants, and furry beings. It is just that now I would do it more with the attitude of a Curious Apprentice of Nature.
We’ll delve into what I’ve been uncovering and discovering another time. For now, lets enjoy a humble pie!
Humble Pie – this is a no bake pie, with two layers – a bottom and a top.
The Bottom Layer – place parchment paper at the bottom of an 8″ pie pan. Process the following ingredients into a smooth, thick paste.
2 1/3 cup walnuts
1/12 cups dried dates, pitted
1/4 Bourbon (optional obviously; if you choose not to use it, you might add a bit of the milk of your choice) I used the bourbon for fun, and used a quantity that is subtle. I soaked the dates and walnuts in while I grated the orange peel and prepared the other ingredients to allow the flavors to infuse a bit.
1 ripe medium avocado.
1 teaspoon grated orange peel
1/4 cup cocoa powder
2 teaspoons vanilla exctract
1/4 heaping teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 heaping teaspoon cardamom.
pinch of salt.
The Top Layer
In a food processor, combine the next three ingredients and blend until smooth. Spread this over the bottom layer and place in the fridge for 2-3 hours. Add your chiltepin, or chocolate nibs, more citrus peel, berries, cream ….. to the top and enjoy.
3 ripe, medium-large avocados
1/2 cup of honey
3/4 cup cocoa
Chiltepin to taste – and/or dried cherries for the top.