We have been eating like kings around here lately. Along with time spent on preparing great meals, I have been reading a ton. Last week I read “The River of Doubt- Theodore Roosevelt’s Darkest Journey.” I always assumed that I knew everything about Teddy Roosevelt, but how wrong I was. He could just be my new favorite President and that’s saying a lot because I have an on-going fascination with Jefferson and Jackson.
Was I the only person who didn’t know about his trip into the heart of the Amazon jungle, his near-death illness, and his obsession with adventure? This book was a face-paced, keep-you-on-the-edge-of-your-seat kind of book. Well written and chock full of gruesome details about life in the jungle. Termites that literally ate through clothing, uncivilized natives shooting poison darts, insects x 100, death and disease.
I read with my iPhone in hand, pausing every few pages to do quick research about carnivorous fish, murderous Nhambiquara Indians, and maps of all sorts. I learned stuff like this: back in 1542, Spanish explorers noticed that certain native women went about naked, carrying huge bows and arrows. They could out fight 10 men. The Spaniards named these ladies “Amazons” after ancient Greek women who were said to have removed their right breasts to be able to shoot arrows better. A-mazos: meaning no breast and hence the name Amazon.
A Polish explorer wrote this after spending months in the Amazon: “Something began to go wrong in us. Coming daily into such close contact with the virgin forest we found that its grotesque forms and brilliant colors got on our nerves like a nightmare. It was stifling us; the whole exotic jungle became one gigantic cauldron of hatred and brutality.”
Hatred and brutality….. I love stuff like this!
I also loved these waffles from Rip Esselstyn. Extra hearty and no sugar-rush I normally get after eating regular waffles. These are ridiculously filling - plan on serving only two small waffles per person. If you are not used to eating flaxseed, then you'll be surprised how quickly it fills the tummy.
2 ½ C old-fashioned rolled oats
¾ finely chopped walnuts
¼ C flaxseed meal
Zest of ½ orange
½ - ¾ t cinnamon
1 medium banana, smashed
1 – 1 ½ C almond milk
Mix the oats, nuts, flaxseed, zest and cinnamon. Place two-thirds of this dry mixture in a high speed blender or food processor and process until a fine consistency. Return this to the remaining dry mixture. If you prefer a less-chunky waffle, process all of the dry ingredients, but a little chunkiness was perfect.
Add the banana and milk and mix well. Add more milk if you want thinner waffles. Use the back of a spoon to spread the batter on the iron. Cook on a hot waffle iron according to manufacturer’s instructions. I served mine with fresh raspberries and a raspberry-maple syrup. Delish!