To honour Nature and her Birds of February, we turned to seeds today for a new recipe and to share this story of St. Valentine’s Day.
The below excerpt, in burgundy, is from here. (They also have text about the origin of exchanging cards/”valentine’s.”) I came across this reference in a gardening book, and I had to find out more. After all, our life and company is all about true, miraculous love and respecting nature.
Chaucer’s Love Birds
It was not until the 14th century that this Christian feast day became definitively associated with love. According to UCLA medieval scholar Henry Ansgar Kelly, author of Chaucer and the Cult of Saint Valentine, it was Chaucer who first linked St. Valentine’s Day with romance.
In 1381, Chaucer composed a poem in honor of the engagement between England’s Richard II and Anne of Bohemia. As was the poetic tradition, Chaucer associated the occasion with a feast day. In “The Parliament of Fowls,” the royal engagement, the mating season of birds, and St. Valentine’s Day are linked:
“For this was on St. Valentine’s Day,
When every fowl cometh there to choose his mate.”
Apple Tart with a Toasted Sunflower & Anise Seed Crust (sugarless & flourless)
Layers of cozy, toasted sunflower & anise seeds, cinnamon, nutmeg, vanilla, and apples wrap your home and senses in a warm blanket as the snow falls in sheets from the roof outside the window. So sweetly scented is our home during the baking of this Heavenly dish. Little paws reach up for tastes & treats.
Non-GMO, organic, local, free range, grass-fed ingredients:
Toast 1 1/4 C Sunflower Seed and 1 tsp Anise Seed in a large pan on the lowest temperature. Stir until most seeds are golden brown. Let cool. Blend until meal is fine. (Your hands will be sweetly scented and softened with the seed oils.) Add the meal to a medium-sized bowl with 14 tbsp cold butter cut up into tbsp’s. (Optional: Add a pinch of pink Himalayan salt.) Use clean hands to combine. Press the dough into a pie tart dish. Set bowl aside to use again.
If you have babies and children helping you, now is a good time to give them a taste of the unsalted butter and some apple slices/dices. (Young babies over 6M need small, inner pieces without skin.) We have lots of “mmmmmmm”s being expressed here as these apples are particularly delicious. (This apple is called Nicola. There are so many types of apples. You must try this one.)
Slice up apples thinly, using as much of the apple as you can, and add to the same bowl. (Save the seeds and grow a plant!) The apples will stick to any meal left in the bowl. Add 1/4 C oatmeal, a tsp of cinnamon, 1/4 tsp nutmeg, 1 tsp vanilla, and 1 tsp anise seed (crush in fingers a little before adding to infuse scent and flavour). Mix with hands and arrange apples over the crust in the tart dish. Dot with butter, and place the dish in the oven at 350 degrees until apples are soft and tender, about 30-40 minutes. The butter will be foamy and aromatic.
We allow birds to find their food in nature. We delight in baking with these beautiful & powerful seeds of life. A seed is completely magical. How does such a small thing (to us) contain a world for growing new life. Just ask ourselves. All of nature is born from a tiny seed of some kind. Life is so precious and amazing, we praise and nurture it, allowing every seed of goodness we see bloom naturally and fill us with joy and awe.
Growing sprouts takes a week, and then you eat! Simple, cost-effective, and fun for all ages to participate in the growing stages. Use soil or a clean container to grow seeds in. Both work well.
For Babies or Anyone with jaw/eating challenges:
If a baby is new to eating, blend up the sprouts, and for older babies, add the whole sprouts to something easy to eat, like scrambled eggs. This makes a colourful baby-and-me breakfast, lunch, or snack. Children and babies love helping water the plants, especially when grown from seed. Each day they grow together, taking care of one another, and seeing that there are all kinds of babies in their world.
No matter the origin of a holiday or the evolution, remove the negative, build on the positive, and have yourself a lovely February 14th! Love yourself the way you dream of being loved.
Universal Love, Amor Milagre