My pantry

The black lung and cranberry pistachio shortbread for what ails you.

September 5, 2013

cranberry and pistachio shortbread ingredientsThe first day of your toddler’s illness is actually kind of nice. I realise that this will not be a popular statement but hear me out.

Our lives are so busy, always pushing to get the kids ready and get out the door. Lunches and snacks to prepare, parks to terrorise, kindy to get to before you’re the last person to do drop off for the day and various ‘busy’ activities to do. We barely have a day at home, just chilling.
I admit it’s a tad sad that I need my kid to be under the weather for me to take it easy, but sometimes it’s a nice excuse to just play quietly at home…. which is where my initial statement comes into play.

A toddler does not want to play quietly at home.

A toddler wants to tear around, leaving a path of destruction. Perhaps you have a quiet, content child, who is happy to play quietly, or read books or watch a movie.

I do not. I have the Tasmanian Devil wrapped up in a blond angelic looking boy.

eating shortbread

more soft focus than an episode of Moonlighting.

So the first day of sick is a breath of fresh air. Kids get sick, it’s an important part of their development, acquiring their immune system. I try to roll with it.

The second day? Not as great. There’s usually been an incredibly shitty night or two’s sleep in there by now, and you’re beginning to think that, really, they should be on the up now as 24 hours has passed and most innocuous illnesses are done with the truly hairy bit by now.

The thing is, boy had a terrible cough, but we’ve kind of had coughs on and off all winter. Kiki has had one for 5 months. Ironically, I had taken her to the doctor a few days prior to this thinking she may have had pneumonia…. ’twas not she, you see. ‘Twas the little stinker sitting next to her badgering the doctor for lollies.

By the time I took him to the doctor, on day 4, he was really sick, busting fevers higher than my thermometer has ever been before and when the doctor pronounced pneumonia I admit my bottom lip got all a’quiver.

I think, although he was definitely very sick, and 100 years ago he may have died from it, pneumonia actually sounds scarier than it really is. I’m no longer afraid of illnesses that have a silent P at the front.

It’s been a long week. Thank god for modern medicine as just a few days of antibiotics and my Tassie Devil is back whipping his sister into hysterics and driving his mother up the wall.

I’m tying to keep him quiet, but I’m failing miserably.

Hadn’t been shopping and needed a little treat so I whipped up some shortbread dinosaurs for him and a wheel of shortbread for me.

No dinosaurs were harmed in the making of these cranberry and pistachio treats.

No dinosaurs were harmed in the making of these cranberry and pistachio treats.

This is a simple and delicious shortbread recipe and you can add or subtract extras at whim. I like a hint of rosewater, elderflower essence or choc chips too. Whatever takes your fancy pants.

I often make this as a tightarse gift at Christmas… cos that’s how I roll.

cranberry and pistachio shortbreadYield : 2 wheels or 1 wheel and 12 cookies

What you will need :

250g butter, softened

1/2 castor sugar

2 1/3 plain flour (I used spelt)

2 tablespoons rice flour

1/4 cup cranberries

1/4 cup pistachio nuts, chopped roughly

What you will need to do :

Preheat oven to 180C

Line 2 trays, or round cake tins with baking paper, or grease with butter.

Beat butter in a small bowl with an electric beater (cos I’m old fashioned like that, no KitchenAid or Thermomix in sight….. cos I’m povo), then add sugar gradually, beating until light and fluffy.

Work in flours gradually to form dough. Knead for 5 minutes until smooth and buttery.

Divide in 1/2 and pat one into a round, and roll the other and cut shapes with cookie cutters. Place shapes onto tray.

Make the round into an 18cm circle, and pinch the edges. Stab all over with a fork and then mark wedges with a knife without cutting all the way through.

Bake for 10 minutes then reduce to 150C for 40 minutes for the round, and pull the cookies out ofter about another 5-10 minutes, when they are golden.

When cool, dust with icing sugar.

Seriously makes you feel so much better, especially consume with a cup of tea (or a martini).

it's not easy to take food shots under these conditions

it’s not easy to take food shots under these conditions

cranberry pistachio shortbread

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8 Comments

  • Reply maxabella September 5, 2013 at 4:19 pm

    Yum and yes – I agree that sometimes it’s actually kinda nice when the kids are a little bit sick and sleepy and cocoony. I get it. x

  • Reply Have a laugh on me September 5, 2013 at 7:15 pm

    What is it with sick toddlers, esp those ones that WON’T SIT STILL! I noticed the dino in the first image and was waiting for the link – BOOM! I hope the index page going well – can’t wait to hear more book details. I hope your boy is on the mend, my mum got P quite unexpectedly about 15 years ago – used to be a killer. Can I just add that I ADORE when my middle, nearly 4-year-old is sick, he just watches TV and moans (which I block out) and doesn’t pull his pants down and moon me as much 🙂 xx

    • Reply Keeping Up With The Holsbys September 5, 2013 at 7:19 pm

      Ha, it’s nice to know I’m not alone in enjoying the peace. We’re not up to mooning yet, but it’s on my horizon! Decided to do recipe index instead of ingredients index, for 2 reasons…. 1 kinda ran out of pages, and 2 farking hard work!!

      Sent from my iPhone

      On 05/09/2013, at 7:15 PM, Keeping Up With The Holsbys

  • Reply Nina September 6, 2013 at 12:42 am

    So glad to hear that D-man is feeling better, Danielle (and yes, not dying from silent-P illnesses)! My kiddo is also more relaxed and actually wants to sit and hug for a long time when he’s sick, so there are definitely perks to feeling under the weather. Why can’t they hug and want to just cuddle when they’re well?!

  • Reply Janet Rörschåch September 6, 2013 at 11:53 pm

    “No dinosaurs were harmed….” HA! Oh, but the little one’s imagination could make it so. Good recipe and glad that the house is on the mend. May it be a illness-free winter.

    • Reply Keeping Up With The Holsbys September 7, 2013 at 7:08 am

      That was the very tail end of winter… We’ve hit spring! The sun is warm, the flowers are out and everyone is feeling better!!

  • Reply mummyflyingsolo September 10, 2013 at 2:41 pm

    i agree with that first statement – I welcome the calm day at home sometimes!

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