Welcome to The Spice Cabinet, where life can be sweet sometimes and a little spicy other times, and sometimes so spicy it makes your eyes water.
This week we will celebrate Mother’s Day and when I think of being a mom I feel like Nutmeg.
•Nutmeg – Sweet and pungent. Great in baked goods, but also adds a warm note to savory dishes.
I guess you could call being a mom “Sweet and Pungent”. It is both wonderful and powerful. I think about what it has meant to me to be a mom, and I have to say “nutmeg” honestly describes it well. I always like to get the negative out of the way first, so let’s just get it over and done with. Nutmeg is described as “Pungent”. Another meaning of “pungent” is “having a sharp and caustic quality”. If you are a mom, you have experienced some not so “savory” moments with your children.
Each stage of motherhood prepares you for the next and can bring many discomforts with it. When you leave the hospital with your precious newborn you usually are given a folder with many instructions. You get instructions on how to nurse properly, how to give your newborn a bath, and how to diaper your baby. The instructions that you do not receive are the ways to handle the many different conflicts that will arise during motherhood. You see, there are no “proper” way to handle any of these conflicts. They will happen along with life. You will not be prepared for them. Even if you work a hundred different scenarios out in your mind before you these problems arise, you will not handle them exactly as you assume you will. All of these different stages of motherhood will bring along with it fear, stress, anger, and hurt, but don’t worry even if you don’t necessarily like your child, and you won’t sometimes, you will continue to love them.
That brings me to the “Sweet” part of motherhood. This is the best part. When you become a mom you will experience a love that you will not realize even existed. When you look at your child, you will experience an explosion of emotion and intoxication that nothing in this would could give you. I don’t think I was ever more in love with anything or anyone than my children. Even after all of the issues I described to you in the above paragraphs have taken place, this love never goes away. You will remember those times. They will linger on in your memories, but the “warm note” you will feel when you look at your child or think about them will overshadow all of those “sharp or caustic” moments.
This mother’s day I want you to look at your children. I want you to remember that the seconds keep ticking away, they turn into minutes, the minutes to hours, the hours to days, and finally the days to years. You will blink and take notice of them at another moment in time and realize that at some moment they got older and you can never get back the moments you might be too busy to notice today. Take time to notice. Savor all of these “Sweet and Pungent” moments.
Happy Mother’s Day….
Homemade Spiced Apple Pie
1/4 tsp. freshly ground nutmeg
1/2tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. ground allspice
3/4 c. sugar
1 tbsp. cornstarch
1.5 lb. Granny Smith apples
1.5 lb. Gala or Fuji apples
1 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
1 pkg. Pillsbury Pie Crust (includes 2 crusts)
1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Line 18- by 12-inch jelly-roll pan with foil.
In small skillet, combine cinnamon, allspice, and nutmeg. Cook on medium 1 to 3 minutes or until spices are fragrant and toasted, stirring occasionally. Transfer to large bowl. Stir in sugar and cornstarch, then add apples and lemon juice. Toss to coat evenly.
2. Lightly butter your pie dish and put in bottom crust. Lightly press to the dish to form the shape of the pie dish. Pour in your apple pie mixture and dot with butter.
3. Place top crust over the pie mixture and flute the edges together. Brush the top of the pie crust with melted butter and sprinkle a pinch of sugar on top. Cut slits in the crust.
4. Place pie on a cookie pan to prevent spillage. Bake pie 45 minutes. Reset oven control to 350 degrees F and bake 30 minutes longer or until apples are tender when pierced with knife through slits in crust. Cool pie on wire rack 3 hours to serve warm. Or cool completely to serve later.