Breakfast Cookies

October 30, 2015

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Last Friday was my brother’s birthday. October 23rd. My family have now gathered for seven birthdays without my brother. This year he would have turned 33. 33 years ago my mum became a mum. As I hold my two month old babe in my arms and type this post, the reality of what my mother and father have gone through since losing their baby boy at age 25 cuts me. I’m struck by our loss in a new way. In a way I cannot bring myself to fully think on. Losing a child.

I couldn’t type anything else after that sentence. I sat here for ten minutes, tears on my cheeks trying to think of something to write. All I could come up with was F***. So we’re moving on to a cookie recipe because cookies are easy to talk about. And because that’s what I do each year for David, I bake for him.

This year it’s breakfast cookies, because I needed another breastfeeding snack ready for midnight munchies. It’s a selfish choice, he’d certainly not have needed these cookies. But he loved me and would have wanted his sister to be supremely nourished for his niece. His niece he’ll never get to know, but who will always know and love her Uncle David. My brother would have been beside himself with joy at baby Joan’s arrival. He’d be the most doting Uncle, more than anyone, a fact my younger brother would heartily agree upon. He was a big love ball, my brother. At the heart of it all, our fights as teenagers and frustrations with each other, he was a sweet, sensitive, talented guy who loved to love. He never lost his childlike wonder, forever remaining the protective, proud, silly, loving older brother who welcomed me into his life as his little “Buddy”. And we miss him, now more than we have in a while. He should be here, holding his niece and marvelling at her. He should be here.

 

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I’m finding it hard to end this post. I want to keep writing about him but at the same time I can’t bear to write about him. The reality of it all is too much. So, cookies.

I made these chewy breakfast cookies based on the ingredients I had in the pantry and a method which would not disturb baby Joan while she slept on my chest in the Ergo carrier. I then stocked the freezer and gifted one each to my family. One for them, 11 for me. Well, it’s for baby Joan, really.

Feel free to play around with the seed and almond components here. Chopped walnuts would be wonderful, and you could swap the cinnamon for ground cardamom or ginger. I also think a big spoonful of natural nut butter, chopped dates or cacao nibs would be swell additions. Know that the cookies will be very moist when forming and that is ok. The fridge time helps them to form easier so it’s no big deal.

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I miss you. I wish you could see our baby. See and hold and kiss and love her. Joan has your piano-player fingers and looks just like me when I was a newborn. On sunny days, she wears the hat you wore as a baby and when it’s cold we dress her in the booties you picked out for me when I was born. She’ll always know and love you, her Uncle David.

Love, Bud.

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Breakfast Cookies

Makes 16

Ingredients
2 small-medium bananas, mashed (skin off weight total ~185g)
1 egg
1/4 cup honey
20g extra virgin coconut oil, melted
2 cups rolled oats
1/3 cup spelt flour
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
2 tablespoons sunflower seeds
1 tablespoon pepitas
1 heaping tablespoon flaked almonds
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
pinch of sea salt

Method
1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius and line a large baking tray with baking paper.
2.Toast the sunflower seeds, pepitas and almond flakes lightly in a pan until just toasted.
3. Crack the egg into large mixing bowl and whisk with a fork. Mash the banana into the egg and add the honey and coconut oil.
4. Add the rolled oats, baking powder, cinnamon and salt to the wet mixture and stir to combine.
5. Add the spelt flour and toasted seeds/nuts and fold until just combined.
6. Put the mixture in the fridge for 30 minutes to firm up. This will make forming the cookies easier.
7. Roll heaped tablespoon portions of the mixture into balls and place them on the lined baking tray 5cm apart. Don’t flatten the balls, they will rise into the shape photographed above. If you like flatter cookies, you can press down on the balls once on the tray using a fork, just keep in mind you’ll need to space them further apart. The cooking time doesn’t tend to change due too much but you may want to bring the flatter cookies out earlier. Bake in the oven for ~15 minutes (rotating the pan two thirds of the way through cooking) until lightly golden on top and golden brown on the bottom. Leave the cookies to cool on the tray for 5 minutes (this will allow them to brown further on the bottom) before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely.

Heidi xo

 

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  • Michelle October 30, 2015 at 9:14 am

    A beautiful post and tribute to your brother Heidi. Our eldest, another David, was 3 on the 23rd. Can’t imagine what it would be like to lose a child or a sibling. Thinking of you and your family xo

  • Yasmeen October 30, 2015 at 9:45 am

    He’d be so proud of you, Heidi x

  • Lindsey October 30, 2015 at 10:10 am

    Love it. “Love, Bud”. Always, always. xoxo

  • Kate @mindfoodly October 30, 2015 at 11:33 am

    This is a beautiful post. I am praying for you and your family during this hard time x

  • Samantha October 30, 2015 at 12:03 pm

    This is absolutely beautiful. Thank you for sharing. There’s a lot to be said for the connection between souls, love, family, spirit – Joan will FEEL those things, hear those stories, and experience a connection to her uncle in a very real way.

  • Emma October 30, 2015 at 2:19 pm

    Oh Heidi, I’m in tears. Lots of love to you xxx

  • Sian Therese October 30, 2015 at 6:58 pm

    Oh Heidi, such a touching raw and beautiful post. He would be so proud of you and that gorgeous baby Joan of yours. I can’t imagine how difficult it must be for you and your family. Baking for him is a beautiful tradition. I’m going to bake your I miss him cookies and post them to a dear friend’s family very soon. My dear friend passed away after an accident just over a year ago and he’s sister recently had a sweet babe, my heart aches for both of you. Here’s a big hug for you and your sweet family xx

  • jac October 30, 2015 at 8:02 pm

    Your posts about your brother always make me cry. You so eloquently express what it is like to lose someone and miss them every day. I am sure he is smiling down on you and your beautiful baby.

  • Hannah October 30, 2015 at 8:18 pm

    You beautiful, courageous, ever loving, ever caring, shining woman. Through your words, you make us all feel like we were lucky enough to know David too, and in this exact same way (but moreso) Joan will know David and love him, too. xoxo

  • Kate October 31, 2015 at 1:16 am

    This is such a touching post. I’m sure your brother would be so proud of you and I can imagine wherever he is he’s smiling at the thought of beautiful baby Joan (those little legs!) and wishing he could reach down and snatch one of these cookies 🙂 xoxoxo

  • Imogen October 31, 2015 at 9:32 am

    Thinking of you and your family during this difficult time x

  • laurasmess November 3, 2015 at 2:13 pm

    I re-read your article in Alphabet journal the other day. So achingly raw but yet so peaceful, resilient, soft and strong. You (and your family) are amazing. Your journey in the post, talking about new life and those who have gone before in the same breath, makes me feel like David is smiling down upon you and his newest ‘Little Buddy’. She will know David, through your words, your eyes, your stories of his loving heart. I never ‘knew’ my mother’s older brother (he passed away when she was young) but he exists to me in this exact same way. Sending you so much banana-stuffed cookie love xox