On the evening of the fifth anniversary of my father’s death in mid-June, Luc and I wandered over to the bench which bears a memorial plaque for him. I, naturally, was feeling mournful, but it was a beautiful evening and we decided to sit down for a bit. As we sat down, in perfect unison, the bench groaned and creaked, before squeaking and crying out in pain and finally disintegrating beneath us. All in slow motion. We ended up on our backs, feet in the air with looks of vague alarm on our faces. The alarm morphed quickly into hysterical laughter, and I felt as though my father and his legendary sense of humour had reappeared and were laughing with us; he would have absolutely loved it and, although unplanned and random, it was a wonderful way to remember him!
Yesterday I found a little bird perched on a bookcase upstairs; I showed him the open window, but he returned resolutely to his adoptive bookcase. When he was still there several hours later, no doubt ensconced in a gripping page-turner, I slid a baking tray under him and took him downstairs. He still seemed to lack the resolve to fly away, so I offered him a cup of coffee (in reality it was water before anyone reports me to the RSPB), and I we had a little chat, which obviously bored him enough to inspire him to take wing. It was another very sweet moment.
These coconut slices make ideal energy bar, without being too sweet. They’re very transportable so I use them when I know I might be in a situation when I need to eat a little something on the move. The almonds and coconut are good sources of protein, and also calcium, copper, iron, potassium, sodium, manganese, B vitamins, zinc, copper, and iron.
Recipe for chocolate coconut slices (makes 20)
- 2 eggs
- 75g cane sugar
- 125g coconut oil, melted
- Chopped almonds
- 100g raisins
- 125g flour (I used spelt flour)
- Pinch of salt
- 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
- 50g dessicated coconut
- 2 tablespoons rum (optional)
- Vanilla essence
Preheat the oven to 180°C. Prepare a baking tray by covering with greaseproof paper. Beat the eggs and sugar together until pale, and gradually add the coconut oil at the end. Combine the almonds, raisins, flour, salt, cocoa powder and coconut in a separate bowl and gradually add to the egg/sugar/oil mixture to obtain a thick paste. Finally stir in the rum and vanilla essence. Spread over the greaseproof paper on the baking tray and bake for 30 minutes. Cut into squares while still warm. Keeps in an airtight tin for several weeks, or may be frozen.