I’ve officially entered into a new stage of motherhood: the Huge Diaper Bag Part. For the first four to five months of her life, I gaily traipsed around town carrying only a normal sized shoulder bag and inwardly rolling my eyes at mothers on the subway who were hoiking roller suitcases onto the train with them and rummaging around for grimy sippy cups. Look at me then with my tiny baby nestled in an ergonomic baby carrier and my smallish purse containing only a granola bar, an extra onesie and two extra diapers! Never, I swore to myself, will I carry some massive diaper bag that looks like the back of a family minivan after a four day road trip, with cracker crumbs spilling out the crevices and receipts fluttering out the back end.
Then the peanut turned 6 months old and started getting into everything, and eating all the food and grabbing all the things. She’s developed quite a talent for peeing on herself the second the diaper is off and ruining the back of her onesie and probably my jeans in the process, warranting countless costume changes in a day. Any object fascinates her and must go in the mouth immediately. This is especially true if it is something likely covered in germs, such the edge of a restaurant table. The only way to divert her Gollum-like obsession with my phone is to hand her a poached green bean, or a rattle on the end of a string tied to her high chair, or a disposable kleenex package, or her sunhat, or my index finger to gnaw on, or freaking anything- anything!- so I can have a second to answer a text message.
“She has a fecking death wish, this one does,” the Big Man commented this other day as she rolled vicariously around on the bed, his hand hovering in the air to catch her in case she tipped headfirst over the edge. Keeping an eye on her means being in constant motion, like a coiled spring. I let her do her thing as much as possible while staying all times ready to jump forward and yank a dog leash out of her hand just as she’s raising it to her mouth, or catching her as she starts to roll (purposefully!) towards the stairs. She can’t even crawl yet and I’m already exhausted.
Enter these nuts. They’re the perfect thing to throw in my ginormous diaper bag and eat by the handful, giving me a short burst of energy. Sweet and Salty, they’re easy to throw in the oven while I’m cleaning or making baby food. And they’re a perfect thing to send in the mail to my partner for this month’s Leftover’s Club. This month I got paired up with Elizabeth from Cooking with Milton, who made me some serious badass almond butter thumbprint cookies. Elizabeth cooks with her adorable pup Milton up in Boston, MA (where I’ll be next week!) and I love her no nonsense, straightforward way of cooking. Check out her site!
- 1 cup slivered almonds
- 1/4 cup dark brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon coarse sea salt
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- 2 teaspoons pure maple syrup (don't skimp the quality on this one!)
- Preheat the oven to 350*F. Place the slivered almonds in a large bowl and set aside. In a smaller bowl, combine the sugar, sea salt, cinnamon and ginger and mix well. Toss the almonds with the maple syrup until coated evenly, then add in the sugar mix and toss to coat.
- Spread the almonds on a baking sheet in an even layer, and transfer to the oven. Bake for 10 minutes or until the almonds have browned. Remove from the oven and let cool.
- When cool, break up any crusted sugar and transfer the almonds to an airtight, sealed container for storage. Will keep for up to two weeks in a cool, dry place.