Picking blackberries reminds me of my Brownie days where we'd spend many evenings collecting blackberries from around the village. There's something so magical about being able to pick fruit yourself, for free and then cook up something delicious. As soon as autumn comes around I love to go on country walks and pick blackberries from the hedgerows. This year we also have a few large apple trees in our garden, as well as a blackberry bush. So Isabella and I spent an afternoon picking, collecting and cooking with them, the perfect autumnal activity.
In the summer we went raspberry and strawberry picking, which Isabella loved. I think it's really important to show children where food comes from, it helps with their vocabulary and understanding of the world. Instead of children thinking an apple comes from a supermarket or the fruit bowl it allows children to see them on an apple tree, their original source. If you don't have an apple tree maybe a family member or friend might. As with all food you have to be careful that you're picking something that is edible and safe.
I was going to make an apple and blackberry compote for Isabella to have with her porridge in the morning, but changed my mind as we were in need of some more finger food for her. We made these apple and blackberry flapjacks with no refined sugar in, so quick and easy.
What you'll need:
5 small-medium eating apples
1 cup Porridge oats
Small handful of sultanas
1 1/2 tsp Cinnamon
Handful of blackberries, halved
Splash of water
What to do:
1) Preheat the oven to 180'C. Peeled and dice 3 of the apples and place into a saucepan over a medium heat. Add a good splash of water (enough to almost cover the apples), place a lid on a let them cook for 10 minutes.
2) Once the apples are almost soft take the lid off to let most of the water evaporate and add the blackberries and sultanas. Remove from the heat and mush the apples with the back of a spoon.
3) Grate the remaining two apples (don't peel these ones) and add to the saucepan with the oats and cinnamon.
4) Spoon into a mini muffin tray (I use a silicone one so I didn't need mini muffin cases) and bake for 15 minutes or until they're slightly golden.
5) Leave to cool and enjoy as a snack or with some homemade custard as a dessert.
What are your favourite toddler friendly autumn recipes?
Feel free to leave a comment :)