Sometimes, in the face of world events, I find it difficult to write a post that is “just” about food. At the same time, I believe that we need a little light, a little encouragement and a little love, especially in times like these. And all of this can bring us good food and the pursuit of it. This week I’ve been reflecting on how we live in a time when events are mostly presented in black or white. I often miss the nuances, what happens in many shades of gray between right and wrong. The “maybe” between the “yes” and the “no”. 2,000 years ago, the philosopher Lao Tse wrote something that keeps coming to my mind: “The pliable conquers the hard, the supple conquers the strong.” A nice thought in a world that seems very hardened and brutal at the moment. For me, softness stands for humanity and closeness. Both qualities that we should not only cultivate in good times, but especially in bad times. What if, instead of letting fear take over, we hold on tight to our love, kindness, and one “maybe” or two?
Softness is often seen as weak, yet it takes great strength to remain soft and flexible. When we’re scared, we involuntarily stiffen our muscles. Often we also stiffen our mind, which can then no longer move freely. It’s hard to stay soft, sensitive, thoughtful in times like these, but it’s so rewarding for our inner and outer climate. Being soft also has to do with being kind. Someone soft is not quick with his judgement, but takes his time, lets the situation breathe and speak to himself. Softness allows the existency of more than just one truth, and is content with that. How healing it can be to meet a soft person in a hard world. We can’t plan it, but sometimes our softness and kindness means the world to another person. A friend once said to me years ago: “You never know what hardship a person is facing. So be good to him, assuming that’s exactly what he needs right now.” The soft can move mountains. The soft makes the world a better place.
MY RECIPE OF THE WEEK
I also follow the path of softness in nutrition. Bans and strictness never worked for me. They can be useful for a short time, if you want to achieve a certain goal. In the long run, however, they require too much strength. The soft finds solutions without having to make prohibitions. For example, I’m always looking for ways we can indulge our cravings without harming our bodies. If we like to eat sweets, but too much sugar is bad for our health, then we can either avoid the sweets or look for sweet alternatives that are better for us. My recipe of the week follows exactly this motif. If you imagine a bar of chocolate with nuts, it consists of 90 percent chocolate and 10 percent nuts. My recipe of the week turns this principle around: it consists mainly of nuts and a small amount of homemade chocolate, with very little sugar and lots of plant proteins and fats that keep the blood sugar level in balance. Nevertheless, they taste like a wonderful sweet treat – and are just secretly good for us. They are quite crunchy and not soft at all. But you don’t have to overdo it with the principles, do you?
And now my question for you: do you have a tip on how to always return to softness and kindness, even when the world around you is upside down? I look forward to your comment under this post!
ROASTED CHOCOLATE NUTS
- 400 g mixed nuts e.g. cashews, blanched almonds and pecans
- 1 tbsp cocoa powder
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 2 tbsp maple syrup grade A or C.
- 20 g coconut oil melted (alternatively: 2 tbsp olive oil)
- 2 tsp coconut blossom sugar
- 2 tsp cocoa powder
- 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper optional
- Preheat the oven to 180 ° C top and bottom heat.
- Put the nuts in a bowl. Mix cocoa powder, cinnamon, salt, maple syrup and coconut oil in a bowl. Spread over the nuts and mix well until the nuts are completely covered.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and spread the nuts evenly on it. Bake for about 10 to 12 minutes until the nuts are lightly browned (as far as you can tell despite the marinade). Check occasionally that the nuts are not burning.
- Take the nuts out of the oven. Mix coconut blossom sugar, cocoa powder and cayenne pepper for sprinkling and sprinkle on the nuts and mix well with a spoon. Let the nuts cool completely.
- The nuts can be kept at room temperature in a closed jar for at least 1 week.