My life has a superb cast but I can't figure out the plot.
~ Ashleigh Brilliant

Friday, June 3, 2011

Chocolate + Moose (+ 4 years of Mehitability!)

First things first. The chocolate!

I made this insanely rich, gooey, crunchy, über-chocolatey dessert the other day when it was cold and raining, and it didn't last beyond the next morning. It's actually a testament to our self-control that it made it into the second day at all! It's not only delicious, it's ridiculously easy, vegan and contains no added fats. We've eaten it warm (okay, scalding hot) from the oven, at room temperature and chilled, but room temp and chilled are our favorites, mostly because it has more flavor at those temps but also because second-degree mouth burns aren't much fun. ;-)

I like to make this in a mint-chocolate version. Another idea is to add some instant coffee to the hot water (or substitute half the hot water with brewed coffee), since coffee enriches the chocolate flavor of the cocoa powder. (Next time I make this I plan to try adding Dandy Blend)...

Chocolate Pudding Cake (with my optional minty twist!)

From: Annice Grinberg
My preferences, additions, and/or substitutions are italicized in parentheses)
1 cup flour (I use organic whole wheat flour)
2 TBSP organic unsweetened applesauce
½ cup water
1/8 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla (¼ tsp vanilla + ¾ tsp peppermint extract)
2 tsp baking powder
⅔ cup brown sugar (Sucanat)
¼ cup cocoa
1¾ cups hot water
Preheat the oven to 350ºF.
Mix the first eight ingredients together.
Pour into a sprayed 8″ square baking pan (I use an ungreased silicone pan).
Mix the brown sugar (or Sucanat) and 1/4 cup cocoa. Sprinkle over the batter. Pour the hot water over the entire top surface.
Bake at 350ºF for about 45 minutes (about 40 minutes in a silicone pan).
The topping sinks through the cake to form a pudding layer at the bottom. This cake tastes so rich it’s hard to believe there’s no fat or eggs in it. We prefer it chilled, but it can be served at room temperature, or even warm, if you can’t wait. It will keep for several days (but not in my house!), but DO NOT FREEZE. If you do, the pudding will turn very watery.
And chocolate without a moose is like a day without, well, chocolate mousse. :-)

We were all in the den early one morning about a week ago when Willow started woofing, so we went to the sliding glass doors to investigate and saw this beauty trotting across our pasture. Naturally I was downstairs and my camera was upstairs, and since a moose's trot is no ambling affair, I missed getting to photograph her in our pasture ~ and most regrettably, also missed getting to film her casually, effortlessly and gracefully stepping over our horse fence! But at least I got her on film as she made tracks up the mountain...

Anyway, what better way to celebrate a blogging anniversary than with "chocolate moose?" :-) My first post on this blog was "Maiden Voyage" on June 4, 2007, which makes Mehitable Days four years old tomorrow!

Many thanks to my friend rift for pestering bullying inspiring me to blog in the first place ;-), and to all of you who visit, follow, and/or take the time to leave your delightful and insightful comments, which I enjoy and appreciate immensely. You all make blogging fun and rewarding!

I'll be celebrating Mehitable Days' anniversary by gathering more blog fodder on our trip to Colorado, enjoying all the beautiful scenery, fun walks/hikes, great microbrews and yummy vegan food that Fort Collins and Boulder have to offer. And celebrating BW's birthday on the 6th! Partay...

Cheers! Enjoy a wonderful weekend!


  1. Thanks for the recipe, thanks for the moose, thanks for blogging and congratulations! Cold and rainy sounds delicious, send some to that down here...please.

  2. Izzy ~ Thank you, Izzy! :-)

    veganelder ~ You're most welcome and thank you! Wish I could have sent you some of that cool and rainy weather, but not only do I lack the power to swap weather systems, we're now in for hot, dry and sunny for the next week or so. I wish I could keep the tornados away from your area!

  3. Happy Bloggaversary!!! I'm so glad rift pestered you into it! Have a great time on your trip! How exciting! Enjoy! And happy B-day to BW!

    Your chocolate cake looks delicious. I always think that I don't have a sweet tooth, but when sweets are around, especially baked ones, I'll devour them...I don't think that cake would have lasted very long here either.

    Love the loping moose. What a beatiful lady!

    Have fun!!! xoxo

  4. Happy anniversary!

    The recipe looks amazing and I just happen to have all of those ingredients right now. AND I'm having a hankering for something chocolately and gooey.......

    Love the moose. Emma would go absolutely bonkers if she saw a moose in our yard!

  5. I made it literally minutes after posting my last comment & man, oh man is it good! It's barely cooled off, but I don't care. I've managed not to burn my mouth, at least. Thanks for sharing this, Laurie!

  6. Laloofah -- First -- happy anniversary -- always enjoy reading your posts from the country of WY!

    Secondly, I'm copying that recipe and saving it for a special occasion of which I have no idea of right now.

    Have a great time on your trip -- barbara

  7. Rose ~ Thank you! (Surprise, we brought our newly repaired old iBook with us after also having a wireless adapter installed!) :-) I'm glad rift pestered me into it too. She even talked me into participating in Blogathon '07 (I created a different blog for it, which I didn't maintain afterward), which involved posting every 30 minutes for 24 straight hours, so I'd say rift is very persuasive. :-)

    I'm the same way about sweets! That first bite of a sweet treat can land me in trouble sometimes.

    We're having a blast so far! I've already gotten lots of great photos and we had a delicious dinner at Tasty Harmony last night. I'm still full as a tick! :-) We're going to hang around Ft Collins today (we're staying right in Old Town, so we can walk and bike almost everywhere - they have complimentary cruiser bikes!), and head to Boulder tomorrow. Tomorrow and Monday are supposed to be in the upper 80's here! (And at home, too!) Yikes.

    Molly ~ Thank you! Well, that was certainly providential timing on that recipe! :-) I'm so happy you had everything on hand to make it and that you guys loved it! Isn't it amazing?!

    I imagine Emma would go bonkers over a moose in your backyard! What do you think Rowan would do?

    Barbara ~ Thank you very much! I'm really glad you enjoy your visits to my blog. :-)

    I hope you have a special occasion soon, so you can enjoy the Chocolate Pudding Cake! You could always just make it, and just having it could be the special occasion! :-)

    I can't wait to blog about our trip, already have fun stuff to share and we've only been here since about 5pm yesterday! LOL

  8. *grins*
    Love and {{{Hugs}}}
    and Happy Birthday to BW!

  9. Oh! I'm almost faint with desire for that cake! How many calories would you say??? Hmmm.... Dare I? Can I not?

    How wonderful to see a moose! And in action, too!

  10. The dessert looks very yummy! I'm going to have to try that. (It will be a big burden! ha!) I love finding out what wildlife is passing through your way. I'd love to see wildlife passing through my yard, but no moose will ever come my way. :)

  11. Happy Anniversary (a bit late) and Happy Birthday to BW! Hope you are enjoying Colorado and I love the chocolate and the moose!

  12. Well, happy birthday to BW and happy blog anniversary to you! Blogging for four years is some big deal — two to three is more usual before burnout. I hope you keep blogging, too, because your blog is so much fun to read!

    It's in the 90s here (I'm in Wisconsin for the summer) and though I claim to love heat, even I can admit it's a little HOT. I think I'm mostly worried about my 19-year-old dog, who is spending her days in the only air-conditioned room in the house. She seems a bit bedraggled, even with the cool air.

    How is the house sale going? Any nibbles? I do intend to try to meet up with you on our way back to Seattle in late July/early August. We're planning our route with a stopover in Sheridan. I sure hope the weather is more hospitable than on our way here. :)

    You're so fortunate to be able to see moose from your house. The last (and only) time I saw one was in Cape Breton Highlands National Park.

  13. It can't be four years, can it!?!? Happy Aniversary!! xoxoxo- Spud

  14. rift ~ <3, {{{Hugs}}} and :-) back atcha!

    Penny ~ Nope, didn't mention calories because I haven't the faintest idea! Speaking of faint, I know a cure for feeling faint with desire for chocolate - eat this stuff! I double dare ya. ;-)

    Even after all this time, it's still really special when we see a moose! (We don't see them as often as we used to).

    Lori ~ Oh I know, trying desserts like this one can be SUCH a chore. All that moaning with pleasure and getting every crumb off the plate and nano-glob of pudding off the fork tines. LOL

    I imagine that a moose passing through your neighborhood might make the national news! It's a shame, I wish we could all co-exist peacefully with the wild critters. Seeing them is such an honor and a thrill (some of them from a safe and respectful distance, of course!) :-)

    Daphne ~ Thank you, and we sure did enjoy our trip to CO! (BW thanks you and everyone else for the birthday wishes, and wants you to know this was his best birthday ever!) :-)

  15. Andrea ~ Thank you on both counts! :-) I know what you mean about suffering blog burnout, and I probably lasted this long because I took a year and a half sabbatical from it just 6 months after I started. I doubt my need for a break was caused by burnout since I didn't blog enough to suffer from that. I think it was a combination of creativity block and feeling discouraged at how few visitors and comments my blog was getting. But after that break, I decided to blog anyway, even if it felt like I was just talking to myself. :-) And though at times I still sometimes hit that blogging block or need a little break, most of my posting pauses are due to lack of time. I'm so happy that you enjoy my blog, because I do enjoy blogging and I really enjoy the results of your blogging efforts, too! (I paid a quick visit to your blog this morning and love your new house! I intend to stop by again later today when I hope to have more time to finish reading it and leave a comment!)

    90's IS hot, especially in WI where I imagine it to be humid as well. I'm glad you have an air-conditioned room for your baby to find some relief! Those kinds of temps can be tough on most of us. Hopefully things are cooling off for you by now.

    I just posted a little update on our own grim housing front, but we're still hopeful and do feel that our own move will happen this summer. Meanwhile, this isn't a bad place to hang out while we wait! Tiring, but not bad. :-) Oh, DO give me a yell before you head this way, I'd be THRILLED to meet you in town for a vegan smoothie! We're bound to have more hospitable weather on tap for your next trip through, if you consider DRY heat to be hospitable. And I can almost guarantee sunshine!

    Cape Breton Highlands NP is on our "To Visit" list! BW hopes to get an opportunity to sail that way someday. We're seriously talking about adopting the cruising life for a year or two after he retires in five, and then settle back out west, Fort Collins being the place that most appeals to us currently. We shall see! Blogging from a boat (when not barfing) would be quite something! :-)

    Spud ~ It can be and it has been, though I can scarcely believe it myself!! Thank you for your happy anniversary wishes, and for your loyal visits and comments through the years! :-)


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  • THE HUMANE GARDENER ~ Nancy Lawson
  • THE WORLD WITHOUT US ~ Alan Weisman

There is still strong in our society the belief
that animals and the natural world have value
only insofar as they can be converted into revenue.
That nature is a commodity.
And that the American dream is one of unlimited consumption.
There are many of us, on the other hand,
who believe that animals and the natural world
have value by virtue of being alive.
That Nature is a community to which we belong
and to which we owe our lives.
And that the deeper American dream is one of unlimited compassion.

~John Robbins, "The Food Revolution"

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