I LOVE raspberries, like really, really, love them. In fact when I was a kid I would steal them from the neighbors bushes. I would pick a handful, make sure there were no little bugs or stems attached,and eat them up on the side of their house. One day I got caught, my mom was told, and being the great mom that she is she taught me that even taking fruit from someones yard was considered stealing and that we should never take something that is not ours. After being busted I think my love of them only increased.
Growing up we were always financially strapped, but both my parents worked really hard to make ends meet and provide the necessities. When my dad left, things were even tighter and we learned to savor the little things even more. My uncle knew of our struggles and wanted to break things up for us a bit so he invited us to go to a farmers market a few hours from our home, a tradition his family has done for years. The leaves had been changing and the ride out was a beautiful one. I remember walking around the market enjoying all the beautiful ways the farmers set up their products and all the vivid colors. I then came to a booth that sold raspberries. They looked SO delicious! I remember we had been living on food storage and fresh fruit and vegetables were somewhat of a luxury. I told my mom how much I wanted raspberries. I know she wanted to get them for me, that she knew it would lift my spirits, but if the money is not there its not there. We went on our way and I was disappointed that raspberries were not purchased, so disappointed that I remember on the ride home I was kind of mad I had even gone, leaving without some yummy raspberries in the end made me more angry, and angry that we had no money for something so simple.
A few days passed and we got a knock at the door. A lady in our neighborhood who we honestly did not have a lot of interaction with as she lived 4 or 5 blocks away was at the door. She knew nothing about my dad and our situation as we kept things to ourselves for a long, long, time. In her hand she had a container of raspberries. Raspberries!!! She said that she had felt for some reason that she should bring over some raspberries to us. To me, this was a beautiful experience. When hard things happen it is so easy to ask why, to wonder if life is worth it, wonder if there is a God and if He is aware of us and our struggles. Some will say it was just a coincidence, but for me it was a tender mercy from Heavenly Father. He knew something so small and simple would mean a lot to me and my family and help us feel love in a hard time. I am thankful for this lady acting on a simple thought – this has stuck with me for so many years. When you think a kind thing, act on it. You may never know how much it means to someone else or how it will help them. So any time I eat things with raspberries I am reminded of this experience and the love I felt from a simple kind action of another.
This bread base came from “Cocinemos con Kristy” – a cookbook my father in law brought back from Ecuador for me recently. I changed it up quite a bit as it was actually an apple cake recipe, and it turned out so yummy!
You will mix the dry ingredients together in one bowl, then the sugar, butter, and eggs in another. You will slowly add the flour mixture in a bit at a time as you mix them together, this will help your bread be super soft and moist.
I used some slivered almonds and broke them up with my hands to make them slightly smaller. 1 cup of thawed berries and lightly fold them in by hand so you don’t break up the berries too much.
I made a type of topping with 1/2 cup of berries, some lemon juice and sugar and spread it over the top. Bake and you have a yummy sweet bread you can serve at breakfast, brunch, or with some hot chocolate for a yummy treat. We all loved it! Add some fresh berries on top and it was amazing!
Act on the kind thoughts you have! You never know what it will mean to someone else.
See the Happy!