Friday, April 02, 2010
World Autism Awareness Day
As someone in a family that lives with autism, it's great to have an awareness day as autism isn't always well understood. With the rate of those with an autism spectrum disorder around 1 in 160, there's no doubt that you know of someone or a family with an affected member.
It's a condition that manifests itself in a myriad of ways, from those unable to look after themselves to others who manage to make an incredibly useful contribution to society, like Bill Gates of Microsoft fame or Temple Grandin and the advances she made for the cattle industry.
One of the most cogent writers on autism is MOM-Not Otherwise Specified, sharing stories of life with her son Bud. In beautifully crafted posts, part of the nature of autism is revealed in a way which leaves you glad.
I would like to point you to a post summary that acts like an FAQ on autism from when mom-nos wrote about a visit to her son's school to explain the condition and answer questions from Bud's fellow students.
If you would like to see why the autism community thinks awareness is vital, this post contains insight in to what it's like being a parent of an autistic child and dealing with the reactions of people who are unaware of the condition and the practicalities it involves.
One of those practicalities is teaching our children how to eat right, pretty much a minefield for all parents, but formidably challenging when autistic traits are thrown in. It's not uncommon for autistics to eat food of one single colour and no other, which seemed like an idea for an awareness theme.
Hope you enjoy some of the ideas presented by other food bloggers.
Do you think food blogs are always about the photo? Kitchen hand of What I cooked last night doesn't and I agree, his beautiful narrative never needs gilding.
Lydia Walshin, from the Perfect Pantry, has posted this evocative coriander and carrot soup on her Soup Chick blog. A Moroccan influenced gem.
Kalyn from Kalyn's Kitchen has produced a riff on Colcannon, basing her dish on cabbage and cauliflower, in the most delicate shade of green you could imagine. The Irish would be most proud.
Johanna from Green Giraffe Gourmet had a long, hard think about the colours and nutrition of food and I'm sure glad she did, producing excellent vegetarian orange burgers.
Tanna from My Kitchen In Half Cups has come up with an easy peasy green dip and a little autism history lesson. Love the vivid green and the ease with which this can be made.
Dara from Cookin' Canuck has brought along dessert, bless her heart. What's life without a treat every now and then? A gorgeous blueberry coconut icecream that is both gluten and dairy free, two areas which some autistics can have sensitivities to.
Honestly, isn't the world a better place with mac & cheese in it? One of the all time greatest comfort foods and firm family favourite over at Andrea's Recipes. I so identify with this dish, our daughter loves it too!
Anh from A Food Lover's Journey has created something very in season and something very soothing, a beautiful creamy chestnut soup, though there was some pain along the way, the pain of peeling chestnuts!
My wife decided to cook a typical Polish dish, barszcz zabielany (creamy beetroot soup), and one that our daughter happily eats, bold colour and all. It contains beetroot, potato, meat stock, vinegar and cream.
I was trying for a fun white theme here with scallops resting on a bed of garlic scented potato and parsnip mash, coated with a bechamel sauce flavoured with smoked cod's roe with a crunchy white salad of cucumber, fennel and apple, dressed with lemon juice and olive oil.
With the time difference between hemispheres there will be more posts to come, so check back to see what I've added.
Thanks to everyone who contributed, your support means more than you know. For anyone wondering what practical thing to do, the words, 'Can I help', mean more than you could ever imagine.
Labels: World Autism Awareness Day