After two weeks of settling into life in Maryland, we’re back upstate. I signed the girls up for camp here before I found the apartment, and so we returned a little earlier than I would’ve preferred. We all seem to be finding our footing up here again, and are eager to go back to sowing the seeds we began planting in Bethesda. I have some theories about this, but since clarity is a commodity I’m still in search of, I’ll continue to mull them over for the time being.
We did come back just in time to reap the benefits Mother Nature’s hard work. The car rolled into to the driveway just after sunset on Monday night, but I spied the ruby red raspberries scattered amongst the bushes alongside the house. After dropping the kids at camp on Tuesday, I picked a whole pounds’ worth. The question was what to do with them? Eating them as-is didn’t feel special enough for this small bounty from my own yard. I want something I could savor a little longer. Putting up a pot of jam was incredibly tempting, but something new is what I was craving.
And speaking of cravings, I started Weight Watchers this past Tuesday. Yes, I know. It seems impossible for what I do professionally, and is not at all aligned with my love of baking. I’m not sure where, or how far, I’ll go with this. Nonetheless, I’m decided to see it through for the one month to which I subscribed. I had a lot of success with Weight Watchers 12 years ago, after Isabella was born. I took eating for two very seriously, thinking I wasn’t having any more children.
I’m talking very seriously.
A few years later, I was walking with one of my best friends, our girls a few steps ahead of us. They were three and four at the time. I looked at Vania, and said “do you realize it’s as if I ate our children with my pregnancy?”. That’s what 65 pounds looked like—a three and four year old child combined.
In less than four months I got back on track, eating sensible portions. That was mainly the key for me. I scaled back, literally and figuratively. Exercise wasn’t a focus since I was already pretty active. I worked in a restaurant, which always had me on the go. Plus, I lived in Brooklyn, and walked almost everywhere. And, oh, I was 29.
Flash forward 12 years later. Can you teach an old dog new tricks? Is it true that it’s harder to shed those extra pounds when you get older due to factors like metabolism and plain old fatigue? Or is time to embrace that while I can certainly get myself a bit more fit, I can’t really get back the same body I had a mere seven years ago? With Isabella it took me a full four years to lose all of the baby weight. And then I got pregnant again. My body never quite went back afterwards.
I’ve been doing a lot of thinking (and talking to myself) since starting this new eating lifestyle 48 hours ago. There is so much to say on the subjects of eating healthy, feeling good about one’s own body image, and not comparing yourself to other women’s bodies are a few good places to start. I don’t have all the answers, but I do have an obligation to find a better balance within myself.
My girls watch and listen to everything I say and do. Until recently, I was always cautious to keep my thoughts on my own body to myself. The last few months, I realized I was slipping a bit, muttering things aloud. A few people have asked why I want to lose weight. They think I look fine.
The answer is pretty simple: I feel like a stranger in my own body. Perhaps I’ll never see that size four figure I had when I was 23, but the size 12 I’ve quietly slipped into is not one I’m comfortable inhabiting. I want to be back somewhere in the middle.
Five Years Ago: Cold-Brewed Coffee
Four Years Ago: Homemade Maraschino Cherries
Three Years Ago: Rustic Lemon Cake
Two Years Ago: Raspberry & Chocolate Mint S’mores
One Year Ago: Mixed Berry Muffins
Makes two pints
Music Pairing: Roadmovies by Bettie Serveert
Next time I make this, I’m going to try it with honey. From a point perspective honey is half the amount of sugar, even granulated natural cane sugar. It’s the difference between it being a 3 point treat, and a 2 point treat (I can’t stand that WW rounds up!). That said, I love the flavor here, and think it’s just enough sugar to tame the tartness of the raspberries without being overly sweet. It’s quite the refresher after a meal especially if you’re serving it with some smoky BBQ for July 4th.
I added some cashew milk to give the sorbet an ever-so-creamy edge to it. It’s not traditional, but I like the texture it provides. You can use any nut milk or soy milk of your choosing (or cow’s milk, too).
3/4 cup (150 grams) Sugar in the Raw Turbinado Sugar, Natural Cane
1/2 kilo raspberries (about 2 1/2 pints)
1 tablespoon (15 ml) fresh squeezed lemon juice (from about 1/2 a lemon)
1/2 cup (120 ml) unsweetened cashew milk
1. Make sure the freezer bowl of your ice cream maker has been in the freezer for at least 24 hours.
2. Add the sugar to a small pot along with 3/4 cup (187 ml) water. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Continue to cook until the sugar is completely dissolved, about 2 minutes. Remove from the heat, and let sit for at least 30 minutes, to cool slightly (you can do this step up to three days in advance; store the simple syrup in a jar in the fridge).
3. Add the remaining ingredients along with the simple syrup to a blender. Blend until smooth. You can pour the puree through a sieve or cheesecloth set over a bowl, if you like, strain out the seeds.
4. Pour the mixture into the prepared freezer bowl (see step one). Churn until the sorbet thickens into a soft-serve consistency, about 30 minutes. May be served immediately, or transferred to a container, then covered and frozen until firm (six hours, or overnight).
Weight Watchers: 1/4 cup serving equals 3 points – 1/2 cup equals 5 points.
Some more ideas to get you going this 4th of July weekend! #SummerSoiree
Feed Me Phoebe: Red Beet Hummus Recipe with Lemony Yogurt
The Heritage Cook: Tangy Caprese Salad with Pickled Cherries (Gluten-Free)
Creative Culinary: July 4th Red, White and Blue Patriotic Poke Cake
Weelicious: Blue Corn Chip Crusted Fish Sticks with Red Pepper Coulis
The Lemon Bowl: 3 Steps to Perfectly Cooked Sweet Corn
Bacon and Souffle: Red, White and Blue Bark
Healthy Eats: 5 Frozen Treats for a Sweet Fourth
Taste with the Eyes: Dessert for the 4th of July: Elderflower Berry Pavlova
Napa Farmhouse 1885: Best Ever Elk Burgers For The 4th of July
Red or Green: Roasted Sweet Pepper Salad
Elephants and the Coconut Trees: Heirloom Tomato Pie
In Jennie’s Kitchen: Summer Raspberry Sorbet
Homemade Delish: 4th of July Cheesecake
FN Dish: Portable Picks to Make and Take on July 4th