Unexpected Gifts

Last week, I was busy dealing with the appearance of normalcy. Trying to go about my daily routines and quickly patch up any cracks in my faultless (cough, cough) veneer with scotch tape, twine, Uhu glue and band-aids, lest the world I’ve so carefully constructed start to come unravelled. Or worse: deflate like a balloon pricked with an unnecessarily sharp object. Because what good is a popped balloon, dried and shriveled up, tossed in the garbage.

But  thank goodness, somewhere in the depths of my reserves I found a particularly strong duct tape ready to patch up any escaping air. It was like an unexpected gift. A Burberry trench coat when you’re expecting nothing. A hand-made card and a hug from a friend to let you know she’s thinking of you. Flowers from your Mom when the day should be all about her, not you. A simple phone call from a friend offering a beach cruiser ride who you know is tired and busy.

My daily life and the surprises it can so gracefully offer: sometimes the surprises throw me off course. Other times, the surprises are joyous presents to be treasured like this recipe I came across for strawberries roasted with balsamic vinegar. Huh… strawberries with vinegar? Thankfully, I didn’t toss the recipe in the trash. Instead, I hunted down a good quality balsamic vinegar, picked the freshest strawberries, and was rewarded with a heavenly confection.

An unexpected gift.

Balsamic Roasted Strawberries

Adapted from Shutterbean

  • 3-4 C strawberries, roughly cut in half, or to any size you want
  • 3 Tbsp maple syrup
  • 2 Tbsp good quality balsamic vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp port
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • Preheat your oven to 350 and line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • In a small bowl, mix together the maple syrup, balsamic vinegar and sea salt.
  • Place the strawberries in a large mixing bowl. Pour the balsamic mixture over top and mix until all the berries are coated.
  • Spread the berries on the baking sheet. Pour over any balsamic mixture remaining in the bowl.
  • Roast for 40 to 45 minutes.
  • Serve the berries warm (Over ice-cream. Yummy creamy goodness!) or cool. They should keep in the fridge for up to one week.
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