So here I am, three full days before the Illinois Bar Exam and in need of a mini break from all the studying. It’s been a loonnngggg (and yet also extremely fast and short) two months since I decided to put myself through this torture again. One year ago, when I was studying for the New York and New Jersey Bar Exams, I certainly did not think I would be doing it AGAIN a year later. Oh well, what’s done is done and Tuesday will be here before I know it. And then it will be Wednesday and the test will be over and done!!! One of the snacks that has kept me going through these cold snowy night of studying has been this chocolate mug cake. The recipe is from the blog Paleo Grubs, and it is a single portion microwave cake that is perfect for satisfying your chocolate craving. The ingredients are super simple too: almond flour, cocoa powder, almond milk, an egg, vanilla, and honey. I also throw in a pinch of salt and some chocolate chips (for this to be truly paleo I’d have to have the right kind of chocolate chips, but alas such a shopping excursion will have to wait until after the exam). The chocolate chips do sink to the bottom of the batter in the mug, but I don’t mind – it means more melty goodness when I’m finishing up my dessert! I also like to dollop some almond butter right when the cake comes out of the microwave so it melts down into it a bit, and to make it even more delicious I add half of a banana, sliced. I mean, chocolate and bananas go well together, bananas and almond butter are SO good together, and chocolate and nuts are amazing and perfect for that salty-sweet sensation. So I knew I couldn’t go wrong with this combo. OMG so good. I have been in love with this since I first tried it. Funny story, actually, the very first time I accidentally used almond butter instead of almond milk in the mix……it was still good, it was just a really dense cake. And yes, I had to try it again to get it right and ended up with two mug cakes . . . Delicious. Try this, it’s so so good! Oh yeah, and after the bar, more time for blogging!
Archives for February 2015
For the past month I’ve been following a roughly Paleo diet, meaning that snacks that satisfy my sweet tooth are rather limited. I recently stumbled across this recipe for chocolate zucchini muffins from Paleogrubs which looked really simple and quick.
Sure enough, they took me no time at all. After grating a cup of zucchini and combining it with almond butter, coconut flour, eggs, maple syrup, vanilla, salt, baking soda, cooca powder, and apple cider vinegar, I spooned the batter into muffin tins and topped with a few dairy/soy/gluten free chocolate chips.It was so easy to whip up this little treat while hanging around the kitchen with my roommates, and the end result was a super satisfying, no-guilt snack.For anyone with a love of chocolate and an interest in discovering exciting and healthy bites, you can’t go wrong with these zucchini muffins alongside a cup of coffee for breakfast or an afternoon snack!
Recently we had some family friends over for a weekend dinner. The forecast was predicting snow, so I wanted to make something warm, hearty, and comforting – but without going overboard. I am still in study mode, too, so I also knew I couldn’t really spend that much time on prep. Here is the final menu I decided upon:
Stout Braised Short Ribs
Triple Chocolate Mousse
So first the cheese plate. I like to include a variety of tastes and textures when configuring a cheese plate, but as I knew this was to be a low key dinner, I stuck with two different types of cheddar and two types of cured meats.
On the right, you will find a more crumbly sharp Vermont cheddar, and on the left a slightly smoother more mild cheddar. The cured meats included prosciutto, broken into bite sized pieces, and some slices of soppressata.
As for the salad, I stuck with simple and fresh flavors.On top of a spring greens mix, I added some chopped endive leaves, grape tomatoes, and slices of parmesan. Super easy, not a lot of work, and I was pleased that the final product was full of vibrant colors.
You can read more about this delicious entree here.
You can read more about this delectable dessert here.
In my opinion, if you are entertaining, you must have a dessert option. Otherwise, I believe there is a very significant chance your guests will be mildly disappointed (I know I would due), and especially after a meat and potatoes meal you need some kind of palate cleanser. And I love chocolate mousse. Quite honestly, it may be as simple as that.
So there you have it – a relatively simple night of entertaining with some great flavors!
I relish the opportunity to try new desserts. This time around, guests were coming for dinner and I was planning on serving short ribs, so obviously we would need something chocolatey to follow the main course.
I chose this beautiful Triple Chocolate Mousse recipe, partly because I love chocolate mousse and am in search of a go-to recipe, and because I knew I wanted to make a dessert without flour. AND the idea of a layered triple mousse sounded awesome and super impressive if I could pull it off.
After checking the pantry, I found 60% chocolate, white chocolate, and semi-sweet chocolate chips. I wasn’t sure how much of a difference in taste there was between the two chocolates, so I ended up adding some Kahlua liquor to the semi sweet chocolate chips later.
This recipe also used a surprisingly small amount of sugar (2 Tbs for the whole thing), which was great.
Here you can see the custard that served as the base for the mousse.
You may notice a lack of photos midway through the process . . . this is because I had some issues melting the chocolate and so had to improvise a bit to achieve the smooth and glossy texture you are looking for. It was totally a miscalculation on my part, and nothing to do with the recipe though, which means that once the chocolate actually was melted the whole process continued smoothly.
Note to self: next time use shallower glasses so you don’t have to fill ‘er up with so much whipped cream at the end. Ah, whatever, the whipped cream was a nice base for the raspberries.
Chocolate mousse and raspberries are another perfect combination, in my opinion.
Here you can see the layers of the chocolate, which is achieved by allowing each layer to slightly freeze before you add the next layer.
Ah, this was sooooo good, both taste-wise and texturally. I seriously can’t wait to make it again . . . and take better pictures of it . . . sorry, the anticipation level was too high by the time I finally got to try this!