The Vipers Bugloss is in full effect right now, going for broke in Toronto’s waste spaces and fields. I have a particular fondness for this plant and watch its progress every year yet I have never seen so much before, covering such vast areas. While the plant is known for its ability to thrive in poor, dry soils I can only assume that this year’s bloom has been caused by the strange weather and regular rains we’ve been having.
I have to admit that I made this dessert BEFORE realizing that it was red and white, the perfect Canada Day summer treat. Americans can add blueberries for July 4. I came up with the idea ages ago and then waited in anticipation for strawberry season to hit so I could try it out. I had originally intended to cook the strawberries first but we got lazy after a day of work and just wanted to eat the thing already, so fresh strawberries were substituted.
We added a very thin sprinkle of maple sugar to the strawberries and the almond milk came pre-sweetened but no other sweeteners were added. Most of you will find the taste as-is too bland and will want to sweeten it up a bit.
A note about Kanten Flakes (Agar): Kanten flakes are a sea vegetable that can be cooked into juices and other liquids to form a gel, just like gelatin but without the animal bones. Plus, agar is full of vitamins and other good stuff.
- 2 Cups almond milk
- 2 Tbsp Kanten flakes (or according to package directions)
- Pint of strawberries
- Dash of maple sugar
- Optional: agave syrup, maple syrup or some other sweetener can be added to the almond milk and/or the strawberries to taste
- 1. Mix 1 tbsp kanten flakes into 2 cups of almond milk. Bring to a boil and stir until the kanten flakes are dissolved.
2. Pour the warm mix into cups or dessert dishes and refrigerate until cool and firm.
3. Dice fresh strawberries and spoon on top of firmed almond milk. Sweeten with a dash of maple sugar and serve.
Makes approx. 4-5 small dessert cups.
I was all set to post a picture of blue delphiniums until I remembered tomorrow is Canada Day and I should choose a picture that is red and white. Except I couldn’t find anything red and white or red for that matter leaving me with just white, a colour that in and of itself isn’t very Canadian but I suppose is better than blue.
I’m not much of a flag waver — blind patriotism makes me nervous — however I do feel fortunate that my maternal relations, like approximately 64 000 other West Indians were able to enter this country due to immigration reforms made in the late sixties.
I took this photo yesterday afternoon on a short visit to my favourite local public garden to get some practice with a new lens. I’m not sure I’ll ever be able to reveal the location of this favourite spot for fear of disrupting the serenity that currently exists there.
After about an hour of photos I walked for another hour to a garden centre to inquire about the fifty thousand dollar viola (COME ON!!!) and then to the farmer’s market where I socially engaged with swell people and indulged in both a vanilla/maple sheep’s milk ice cream AND a large glass of cool, frothy chocolate beverage.
Good thing I did all that walking!
I don’t know what I did to deserve such a perfect summer afternoon on a weekday, let alone two in a row, but I’m learning to sit back and enjoy these super happy sunshine rainbow experiences without buckets of accompanying guilt.
I think they call that progress. I call that talk therapy in action.
The way they were less than a month ago.