We have been getting up early in our new house. Really early. And not by choice. Our soon-to-be three-year-old (aka The Tiger) has decided he is a morning person in the most yawn-inducing way. He’s now sharing a room with his older sister, so we can’t just send him back in to play or chat to himself like we used to in our old house. One of us has to get up. At 5am.

I’ve discovered that after the initial shock and rubbing of heavy eyelids, I’m quite an early morning person. Helps that it’s summer and all the days he’s chosen to wake us up have been blue sky, golden light mornings. But even as I grouse about the lack of sleep and how exhausted I am by 9pm, I’m enjoying the still, quiet mornings.

Our new house is a ten minute walk from the beach and the other day The Tiger and I wandered down there–he exclaiming at every car that drove past (colour and size being the most important details). The sea looked almost motionless and the air was salty and sharp with the smell of seaweed. A few ducks drifted across the glassy water. Down the beach, a woman did yoga beside her sunbathing dog. Gulls called.

It was exactly where I was glad to be.



And the same happened at lunch a few days later, when I overcooked some white beans and couldn’t use them for their original purpose. I tossed them with roast veg and made a dressing based on this one I wrote about, and it was the best warm salad I’ve had in years. The kids ate carrot sticks and cheese and crackers and I devoured a bowl and a half of accidental greatness. Below is the recipe, which isn’t much more than a combining of things already made, but here you go.


Roasted Vegetable and White Bean Salad


About two cookie sheets’ worth of cut roast vegetables (I used carrots, green beans, onion, beets and cauliflower)

2 1/2 cups cooked white (navy) beans

1 recipe basil viniagrette (I didn’t have enough basil so subbed half chives and it was delicious)


Combine everything in a large bowl while the roast veg and beans are still warm (but not hot). Toss to coat with the dressing. Serve at room temperature or warmer.




Early wake-ups, unexpected recipes–these things happen. I’m so glad they do.