Festival of the Trees

Freida and I celebrated this lovely little holiday by reaping some early-spring garden-bounty, and planting some little seeds. At the Mommy & Me session this morning, Freida got to play around with the textures of seeds and soil while potting some dill and parsley. She never held little seeds before and she seemed to find it rather intriguing…

Later that day, we stopped into Freida’s Bubby’s backyard to pluck some of the ripened Meyer Lemons from one of her trees. I would have never thought this fruit would grow so ripe this early in the year! In a few months from now these sweet and fragrant fruits will be sold by the (way-overpriced!) case-full at the Farmer’s Market; I thought I’d take advantage of this early spring bounty!! Plus, was a perfect little lesson for Freida on Tu B’Shvat (not to mention we could make a legitimate Shehecheyanu blessing on them)… There’s something so significant about the way children respond to seeing fruit on trees – her expression always amazes me. Taking children fruit-picking is one of the very important ways we can help to improve the way the future generation will relate to food – we are teaching them it is not just something that comes in bulk from the shelves at Costco, but rather something that is planted, cultivated, and reaped – by man working the earth and God making it grow. They should know that food comes from someplace much more special than the grocery store…!

(She even found a lone little pomegranate – either a left-over or an early-bloomer – from the neighboring tree!)

Later that afternoon (after a good long nap for her and lots of errands for me), we put the lemon-y treasures to use by making little meyer lemon pies. I had ripped out the recipe from an old Cookie magazine, and never got around to actually trying it. It was basically little graham-cracker crusts (baked), with a filling made of blended firm tofu (I used Mori-Nu), lemon zest and juice, and confectioners sugar. I guess it’s meant to be like a little cheese-less cheesecake (all that protein-rich tofu in the filling made me think this would be great as a super-healthy dessert). While Freida was most definitely fond of licking up the filling, I personally wasn’t so keen on the outcome… but it is supposed to set fully overnight, so I can let ya’ll know in the morning. Maybe we’ll attempt a Tofu-Meyer-Lemon-Pie breakfast! :)

Here’s the recipe, in case you want to give it a go… but I’d probably just add the zest and juice to a basic cheesecake instead. Chag Sameach!!

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