As long as I can remember I've known how to skate. I come from a skating family - a family that spent most of the winter at the ice rink. What else was there to do in Hensall in the dead of winter? If you were a boy, you played hockey. Everyone else went to the rink on a Saturday afternoon and skated around and around for an hour before the buzzer rang telling us it was time to leave the ice. I was always grateful to get off the ice so I could get off those skates my dad always seemed to tie just a little too tightly. It always felt so good to put my feet back into regular boots, to get full circulation back into my toes. And of course each visit to the arena ended with a visit to the concession stand where I could blow my 10 cents on a pack of rain-blo bubble gum - I always saved the red one for last.
G doesn't come from a skating family - he never really learned how to skate. So it is never really something we have taken up as a family. I've tried to teach my kids how to skate but they've never really liked it. But we certainly couldn't pass on the invitation to join my sister and her family for an afternoon skating party on a local pond. My kids love this place, and if it meant strapping their feet into skate, they were all over it! A funny thing happened, though. I seemingly forgot how to skate...or lost my confidence in my ability to skate! While I did manage one shaky ringer around the pond, I was just as happy to take off those tightly-tied skates in favour of my warm winter boots that give my toes lots of room to breathe. But those boys of mine, while a bit wobbly and prone to wiping out, spent the entire afternoon sliding back and forth between the ice and the fire for toasty snacks!
Of course every good skating party ends with a great Sunday dinner together for which I brought a classic grasshopper pie, made to suit the many changing dietary needs of those I love.
Vegan Grasshopper Pie
1 can coconut milk
1/3 C honey
1 tsp lemon
2 tsp pure mint extract
1/3 C dark chocolate chips melted for drizzling on top
Combine coconut milk and honey in a pot and boil at medium-high for about 1 minutes. Let cool before pouring into food processor with avocado, lemon juice and mint extract. Process until smooth. Pour into a pie crust - I used this grain-free recipe and added 1/4 C cocoa powder to the mixture. Top with drizzled melted chocolate and refrigerate until firm.