Spring is in the Air

Upon our arrival for soccer practice, the door to the gym was locked and not a soul in sight.  So, with there clearly being no practice, and it also being 15 degrees and sunny out, I decided Little T and I should walk down the street and check-out the local ice-cream shop.

The patio was full of inviting tables and chairs, and with the sun streaming down on all of them, we enjoyed our ice-cream Al fresco.  While in line, I observed two older ladies wearing sunglasses settled in at a table staring into the sun, quietly soaking in the rays.  “Endlich” sighed the one.  “At last”. 

The first really warm spring day is truly magical. Cars drive by with the windows rolled down playing music, the birds are out in full force, and you start to see the neighbour’s tend to their gardens and pull out their patio furniture to get that “extra room” of the house ready.  It’s also the time of year where choosing which coat to wear can be rather challenging.  Even though it is significantly warmer outside, I tend to still gravitate toward my winter jacket “just to be safe”.  Or, maybe my body is still thawing out from the cooler temperatures of winter.

Little T inhaled his scoop of peanut butter ice-cream, while I slowly enjoyed my small scoop of hazelnut with my eyes closed too towards the sun.

“Can’t you finish that in the car?” his little voice demanded.

I just glared back with an “I don’t think so”.

***

After our ice-cream, I couldn’t convince Little T to go for a bike-ride so we ended up enjoying another hour outside in our garden.  (They call backyards “gardens” here, a term I now prefer!).  So for supper, I wanted something with little fuss and opted for Milk Rice with Cherries (Milchreis) which is a meal I was introduced to here in Germany.  Little T was served it at least once a week in Kindergarten and loved it.

I like that it is fairly healthy, very easy to make, and contains ingredients that you would normally have on hand.  The cherries can be substituted for any other fruit you like.  A lot of the milk rice recipes call for sugar, but instead, taking Hubby’s advice,  I sprinkle cinnamon and pour a little maple syrup on top (the real stuff from Canada of course, and speaking of which, we are almost out!).

Milk Rice (for 2 servings)

½ cup milk rice (Arborio or other short grain white rice works)

2 cups milk

Dash of salt

Cherries (jarred are great, as when refrigerated they help cool down the rice)

Cinnamon

Maple Syrup (use real, as it is a tastier and healthier choice!)

Directions:

Slowly bring rice, milk and dash of salt to a boil stirring often. Reduce the heat (I usually put it down to 1 and slide the pot half off the burner) and let it simmer for 20 to 30 minutes stirring often until the mixture becomes thick and gooey.  Remove from heat, sprinkle cinnamon and add some maple syrup (to reach your desired sweetness). 

And, if you’re like me and has a kid that normally doesn’t finish the whole bowl, you’ll have dessert.

6 thoughts on “Spring is in the Air

  1. this picture looks like spring is in full bloom over there…..we just got a dumping of snow today….but I don’t think it will last long….

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    • The picture is actually from May 2009 when my parents and their friends Jean and Cliff came to visit. It was from our visit to a garden park in the Netherlands, near the end of tulip festival. But, the crocus ‘s are in full bloom here. I love how they grow out of the lawns, like dandelions!

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  2. Hi Heather! The rice milk recipe sounds so much like rice pudding. I’m trying to figure out what the difference is, or if there is any difference!!?? BTW – I will bring some maple syrup to Paris for you in May. In another couple of weeks, Elmira will be hosting another year of its famous Maple Syrup Festival.

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    • Hi Mel!
      I just compared the recipes and I think it is similar, minus the butter (and sugar). What’s interesting is that it is served here as a hot meal here as opposed to dessert. But yummy all the same! That would be great if you could bring us some maple syrup! 3 cheers for the Elmira Syrup Festival!!

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