My sister recently sent me an email looking for advice on a gift for her soon-to-be 16 year old. My reply? Uh, we’re not that big on birthdays.
Oh my goodness! I recognize that this easily casts me into the Scrooge stratum with most of the readers here but please, understand, we are a blessed family. My kids have what they need and when they also get what they want, regardless of of the calendar, I’m content to say, “Happy Birthday!”
Don’t get me wrong. I love a celebration and today is my husband’s birthday. It’s a Monday and a school day and so we’re constrained in our options. I love that he chose a local Thai restaurant for dinner since the kids never want to go there. Today, it’s his choice.
As my children are entering the teenaged years, fixing meals is becoming more difficult. I have one fast-growing, elite-athlete with enormous protein requirements and a second son nipping at the heels of that growth. All three kids enjoy meat but readily volunteer that they couldn’t hunt it themselves and they’re perfectly content with meatless meals.
My husband adores the grill and roaster but recognizes that our bodies change as we age and that something has to give. He’d like to move to more of a plant based diet and we know he’ll notice the difference in the way he feels. Here’s our gift to him:
Almost Raw Sweet Potato Pie
- 1 1/2 cups pecans (let dry a bit on a paper towel)
- 4 cups peeled and chopped sweet potatoes
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/2 cup dates, soaked for about 20 minutes
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon vanilla (this is not a raw product)
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 cup raw honey (could probably use maple syrup here to make it vegan)
Place sweet potatoes, 1/2 cup pecans, dates, cinnamon and vanilla in a food processor and puree until smooth. Spoon into a casserole dish. In another bowl, mix the remaining 1 cup nuts with salt and honey, and sprinkle over the potato mixture. I put it into the fridge and can’t tell you how it is until later.
Happy Birthday Sweetie!