Tuesday, 28 October 2008

Red dragons and the woodland walk

Red dragon pie was on our menu for tonight. For the last few months, I've been doing a menu plan, partly to help me budget but its really helped to see what we all eat over the course of a week, to check its balancing out ok vitamin wise.

In the last week or so there's been a turing point in Rohan and Luca's eating. Its as if they've really identified the meals that they like, and got used to them. I am so happy, they both ate really well, red dragon pie, and broccoli ('little trees' to them!). We had it with cherry tomatoes and the pie was with vegan gravy granules. The intro to the recipe in the book alludes to the Chinese name for aduki beans being ‘red dragon’ or ‘red wonder’ beans as they've been noted as so nutritionally beneficial.. . but its when Sarah Brown suggests 'Maybe you will have the power of the dragon after eating it!' that made me realise its potential pulling power for two toddler boys. They are now two little red dragons!

The pie is a from a Sarah Brown cookbook from 1984- 'Vegetarian Kitchen'. The copy is my mum's, she bought it when I must've been about ten around the time I became properly veggie. I saw this recipe, though, when flicking through the book for inspiration about a year ago. I was so happy on seeing this recipe! Mit and I ate this once in a lovely Glastonbury cafe called 'Spiral Gate'. It was Autumn, we'd just been for a long walk and ended up at the cafe at dusk and had this with an amazing salad and chips, with a mug of warm ginger cordial. It was about five years ago and we remember thinking, this is real vegetarian food, really wholesome and hearty and filled with flavour. Its topped with potato as in shepherds pie, but is much more gorgeous, texture wise and flavourwise...

We are not mixing much this week whilst chicken pox is on the way out, and took off on our own to Sevenoaks on the train, a little place very reachable where we had never been. The boys loved the train and digger spotting, whilst I felt my head clear as we approached the hills and the stops became smaller villages. Had to look at least twice at one village name- 'Bat and Ball'!

Coffee Republic here was large, in a great setting, we stopped for soya capuccino and fruit smoothies. I asked another mum at the next table about playgrounds and she told us about a nearby playground which the boys loved. We found it next to a really sweet woodland walk, where leaves were collected. Met some friendly families, a lovely town, very, very leafy so suits Autumn perfectly. Unfortunately my camera battery was 'exhausted' and I just managed the one picture before its exhaustion gave way. Its a very affluent town though. The houses were stunning, and very large, we saw as we walked up the hill. Took some apples from outside a house which were left with a sign 'Windfalls, please help yourself'. Brilliant! Apple crumble tomorrow. Funny though, how its hard to accept things for free. I felt a bit like I was stealing even though the sign gave permission, so put a little change below some of the remaining apples, just in case another sign with a suggested fee had been there but blown away!

On my mind a lot are lots of new little arrival of family and friends' babies : ) Because of the pox we can't visit in a hurry. I might have to pop down to sussex on my own for part of next saturday to meet my new little nephew : )

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