Let’s get controversial, shall we? Today I’m going to take a step up onto my soap box while simultaneously baking a berry-licious dessert. Today in Disney Movie Project news I watched The Adventures of Huck Finn based on the classic Mark Twain novel Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. There are those that find the novel, and I’m certain the Disney film, controversial and offensive. Many say the character of Jim is an offensive caricature of a slave back in the 1800’s and how dare someone depict such a disgusting and embarrassing past of our country. I say: ignoring the problem and being modernly politically correct isn’t always the answer. Would we really be depicting a part of history accurately if we pretended that piece of American culture didn’t exist? Does showing a piece of accurate history mean we agree with the principles of that time period? Absolutely not! Just because you tell the truth, doesn’t mean you have to agree with it.
If you’ve actually watched the film or read the book, the story is a heartwarming look at a controversial topic. It tastefully addresses a harsh reality of the American past, and bares a topic to the viewer that we still deal with today. History repeats itself over, and over, and over again. You’d think we’d learn, but what I have come to realize is that everyone needs to be a part of the drama and everyone needs to be offended by something. The friendship between Huck and Jim, a white child and a black man, during American Slave trade shows us the true meaning of family, friendship, and that we aren’t born with the inclination to be racist, judgmental, or oppressive of gender or cultural rights. In the film, Huck knows the laws of the land and that Jim is a runaway slave, but much like any child, only know that’s the way it is, but can’t say why. Children are taught to follow rules and to adopt certain morals and values, and as they grow older, they will either adopt their own, modify the ones they have, or continue to uphold “tradition”.
“Just because you’re taught something’s right, and everybody believes its right, don’t make it right.” –Jim
We like to think we’ve come a long way since America’s dark days, but have we really? I think we’re still in them! I think we innately sing the same song to a different tune over, and over, and over again. No matter what community we seem to be fighting for equality, the fact that we define people into “communities” is still segregating. We have black, white, Hispanic, LGBT, feminist, vegan, gluten free, etc. True we’ve made leaps and bounds, but if we have separated ourselves into communities to fight for our equal rights, doesn’t that defeat the purpose? Shouldn’t we all be ONE community of humans? If a child doesn’t understand the difference in all of these “communities” until they are older, when and why do we continue to separate and segregate? I am not LGBT, nor am I vegan, but does that mean that I can’t have something in common with and understand someone who is? Perhaps someone in the LGBT or vegan community also appreciates a good Disney movie or a delicious Blackberry Bar. Can’t we bond over the things that make us individuals rather than our skin color, sexual preference, or dietary needs? I don’t agree with or bond with every straight person because I’m straight and I don’t get along with every carnivorous person because we share a mutual love of steak. I get along with people that make me laugh, have kind hearts, and don’t mind my Disney obsession.
I am supportive of any and all “communities” fighting for equal rights. It is not anyone’s business but our own on how we live our lives. So why does society feel it is their responsibility to make someone’s rights and lifestyle their business? Quite frankly that is incredibly nosey and rude. I’m not saying I’ve solved the problem, but from my perspective, and my own morals and beliefs, I think if the human race started looking at themselves as one whole community rather than millions of segregated ones, fighting for equal rights wouldn’t be something we’d even have to consider doing because they would already be there. I as a human am of equal right and privilege as another human. Maybe someday we will see the world that way…Until then, everyone gets a fair and equal opportunity to show me their person, rather than just their community.
Ok. Stepping of my soap box now. My recipe that goes along with the film of the day/week is Blackberry Pie Bars. Believe me, I searched for Huckleberry recipes first because…well…what would be more appropriate for a Huckleberry Finn movie than a Huckleberry recipe? Unfortunately, at this stage in my Disney Movie Project, huckleberries just aren’t in season. So instead I found a delicious blackberry bar recipe from Tracy’s Culinary Adventures that I’m pretty sure can be substituted for huckleberries.
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 3/4 cups (1 1/2 sticks) cold unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
- 2 large eggs
- 1 cups sugar
- 1/2 cup sour cream (low fat is fine)
- 1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons flour
- zest of 1/2 lemon
- 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
- 16 oz fresh blackberries
Preheat the oven to 350 F. Spray an 8×8-inch pan with nonstick cooking spray.(I used a 9×9 and it worked just fine!)
- Add the flour, sugar, and salt to the bowl of your food processor and pulse a few times to combine.
- Add the butter and continue pulsing until the pieces of butter are very small (like pebbles) and the mixture is crumbly. (I ended up just using a mixer and my hands because I have a crappy food processor. I think it had the same affect.)
- Transfer 3/4 cup of this mixture to a small bowl and set aside to use for the topping.
- Dump the remainder of the mixture into the prepared pan and press into an even layer to form the crust.
- Bake for 12-15 minutes, or until golden and set. Remove the pan to a wire rack and allow to cool for at least 10 minutes.
- in a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, sugar, sour cream, flour, salt, lemon zest, and almond extract until well combined.
- Use a rubber spatula to gently fold in the blackberries.
- Spread the filling over the crust (distributing the berries evenly).
- Top the filling with the reserved crust mixture – I like to squeeze in my hand to form clumps then sprinkle over the top so the pieces vary in size.
Bake for 40-50 minutes, or until the bars are set (the topping won’t really brown much). Transfer the pan to a wire rack and allow the bars to cool completely in the pan. To more easily cut them into squares, refrigerate briefly before serving. (I actually liked these best after an hour in the fridge!)
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Days Left: 527