Do mealtimes with fussy kids stress you out? Do you go blank when trying to work out what to feed the kids next? Do you feel guilty, anxious or have a short temper when it comes to feeding time?
As much as we’d love to paint a rosy picture of parenthood, it’s not always smooth sailing. There is pressure to meet our own and our perceived expectations of our inner circle and society in general. Sometimes we find some expectations are totally unrealistic. Sometimes there are bigger blocks and challenges in our way. Sometimes we start on a downward spiral of negative thoughts. There are so many resources available to help you with any mental health concerns that you have. If you feel like talking to me about mealtime stress, I’m all ears! As with everything I do and say – I don’t believe there is a one size fits all approach to life! This includes finding the key to unlock stress, anxiety and other poor mental health symptoms. I always recommend looking for the root cause.
Today, I want to let you know about a national day for recognising and raising funds for research into mental illness. Hat Day is an initiative of Australian Rotary Health, one of the largest non-government funders of mental illness research in Australia. Hat Day coincides with World Mental Health Day, the second Friday in October. 100% of the money raised for Hat Day goes to research into helping those affected by depression, anxiety, schizophrenia and many other illnesses. It is easy to participate in this event … wear a hat … and donate to research! Visit www.hatday.com.au for more information.
For me, the family meal is my happy place. However, sometimes I just feel like a “break” from it. Over the weekend I used a rare nap-time to mostly ignore the house work and make this ricotta stack. It was nice to prepare something just for me for a change.
- ⅓ cup Quinoa Flakes
- ⅓ cup Rolled Oats
- 2 tbsp Coconut Oil
- 1 tbsp Brown Sugar
- 1 tbsp Honey
- 100g Ricotta
- Lemon Juice
- Additional Honey
- Preheat your oven to 180oC. In a blender, whizz the quinoa flakes and rolled oats to make a course flour (it doesn't have to be too fine). Add the coconut oil, 1 tbsp honey and brown sugar and blend again to make a dough. Make 6 balls out of the resulting dough. Roll each ball into flat discs on a grease-proof paper lined baking tray. They may need a little flour to help you roll the discs, if it is too sticky. Bake the discs in the oven for 12 minutes. Remove from the oven and leave them to cool. They will get harder as they cool.
- In the meantime, mix the ricotta, lemon juice and honey to your liking in a small bowl with a spoon. I added 2 tbsp extra milk to my mixture as my ricotta was firm packed. You want your ricotta mixture to be spreadable but not runny. You can add other flavours/textures here too like cinnamon, sultanas, maple syrup etc.
- Once the biscuits are hard, crumble up two of the biscuits to use as topping. Match up the remaining 4 biscuits in relatively similar sizes to make the two stacks. On top of the one biscuit layer the ricotta mixture, a dollop of honey, another biscuit and some more ricotta before adding fruits of your choice and the biscuit crumbs.
- Find a quiet space and enjoy the food moment!
- The biscuits will last for up to 48 hours at ambient temperature in an airtight container. It's best to make the ricotta mixture just before serving.
What do you do for “me time”? Does food improve your mood?
Here are links to some of my easy “go to” family meals that help when I am feeling overwhelmed: