Dear Mother Nature,I need a little spring in my life. Six months of winter is a little much even for a Northern-dwelling, frostbite-resistant me. I know you have a flair for creating frigid temperatures, snowflakes, and winds that rival a hurricane (which, don't get me wrong, I do appreciate so very much), but I could use a little break. A hiatus, if you will. Just a month or two (maybe three?) of a little sun and some non-snowy terrain. I don't think that's asking too much of you.
It's April. I want to see flowers. Green grass. Birds singing. I wouldn't say no to a bit of rain. Even thunderstorms, if you're not finished making enough of this fierce weather. Though, I must admit you were really clever with that thundersnow a week ago. I haven't seen that one before—a little bit of spring and winter at the same time.
I know you're busy wreaking havoc around the world and the desperate pleas of one of its inhabitants probably doesn't mean much to you. I think I've been pretty complacent until now—few complaints, fewer protests. I don't ask for much. I even forgave you for that freak snowstorm in the middle of May a couple years ago. You remember it, don't you? That day I was packing up and moving? You certainly made that day one to remember.
Now, I didn't want to come out and say this but you've left me no choice. I think you've gotten a bit callous and spiteful these past few years. Cold-hearted, even. You're supposed to be Mother Nature, not Tyrant Earth. Have you forgotten your gentle and nurturing instincts? Perhaps you are hanging out on the beaches of sunny Florida without a care in the world, but I'm knee deep in a snowbank and I'm not liking the weatherman's forecast. Another month of winter, Mother Nature? Really? What did I ever do to you?
Your disgruntled friend,
This parfait will bring a bit of much needed spring into your kitchen. The parfait features layers of subtle vanilla yogurt, sweet strawberries, and toasted honey oats. Although this parfait is simple to make, the flavors are complex enough to keep you coming back. This is the perfect breakfast or afternoon snack.
Strawberry Toasted Oat Yogurt Parfait
Yields 1 parfait
1/3 cup old-fashioned oats
1 tablespoon honey
5-6 strawberries, sliced
1 cup vanilla yogurt
Toast the oats by placing them on a baking sheet and baking in the oven at 350 degrees F for 15-20 minutes. Stir occasionally. Remove from the oven and coat in honey.
In a large glass, layer the parfait by starting with a 1/3 cup yogurt. Place 1/3 of the strawberries on top and sprinkle on 1/3 of the toasted oats. Continue layering in this fashion until you have 3 layers. Dig in with a big spoon and enjoy!