“This being human is a guest house. Every morning a new arrival, a joy, a depression, a measness, some momentary awareness comes as an unexpected visitor. Welcome and entertain them all, even if they are a crowd of sorrows who violently sweep your house empty of its furniture. Still treat each guest honorably, he may be cleaning you out for some new delight.” – Rumi
I struggled about whether or not to write about this here. I wasn’t sure that there was space for it, it’s a little boring and too real-life-truthy to merit words here. But alas, it’s been taking up far too much of our time + energy lately that I couldn’t really think of anything else to talk about. I’ll spare you the administrative details but we’ve been struggling for years to get Matt a visa for Canada, and a few weeks ago we got word that the process is far from being over. My heart broke a little when we opened the letter and there were moments of tears, a few sleepless nights and many much needed hugs. All is not lost, but sometimes you don’t realize how much you want something until it is almost taken away from you. Home. I want to build a life in Canada with Matt with by side. I want a home of our own. I know somewhere, there is a small cabin the in the woods with our name on it. One day, it’s Sunday, and there is a fire warming our feet and pancakes on the go and we have no reason to change out of our pjs. I want this day, and all the others in between. Our life plan got turned around a little bit, and I’m sure it will get turned around a few more times in the next year. I guess that’s what life plans are for. But we ‘re not giving up.
Instead of feeling discouraged and run down, we’re eating raw chocolate mousse on the couch and chatting about our dreams for the future. We just know that the best things in life are always worth the fight. The odds have been against us from the very beginning, but in all this crazy world the only thing I know for certain to be true is always, and again, love. There are new delights in the days to come.
RAW CHOCOLATE MOUSSE + MARINATED ORANGES
3 ways to my heart – Buy me chocolate. Feed me chocolate. Be chocolate.
You can usually find me nibbling on a few pieces of extra dark chocolate most nights after dinner, but this here dessert is how I like to step it up from time to time. Marinated oranges are my go-to winter pleaser for last minute guests, and the raw chocolate mousse just completes them as a final course. Both are so simple and quick to make, and the flavor combinations are endless. The oranges marinate well with whole cinnamon sticks, split vanilla beans, or cardamom pods. Star anise or cloves would be nice around the holidays. Orange blossom water or even a herbal tea bag can round out the flavors nicely. The recipe below is what I went with this time, adjust to your liking. Go wild guys.
Below is the base recipe that I always start with, but if my avocados are on the larger side I end up adding a bit more cacao and maple syrup. Best to blend, then taste and adjust at the end if needed. I like to serve this on top of the marinated oranges, the fresh juicy oranges cut through the richness of the mousse. Matt prefers his on the side. Your choice, your delight. Much love x
Vegan + Gluten Free. Serves 4-6.
2 small ripe avocados
8 medjool dates
3 tablepsoons melted coconut oil
3 tablespoons pure maple syrup or raw unpasteurized honey
Pinch sea salt
1/4 cup raw cacao powder
Cacao nibs and/or orange zest to decorate
2-3 larges oranges
1/4 teaspoon orange blossom water
4 green cardamom pods
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Blend avocado, dates + melted coconut oil in food processor until smooth. Blend in the remaining ingredients until well combined. Taste, add more maple and/or cacao powder if necessary. Place in the fridge to chill for 30 minutes or until ready to serve. Serve on top of marinated oranges in small glasses or on the side. Dust with cacao powder + nibs.
To make marinated oranges, simply slice whole oranges into rounds and then cut off the rind and skin. Reserve one half orange, and place all other rounds in a bowl. Squeeze over the juice of half an orange and sprinkle with spices. Toss and set in the fridge to marinate. Enjoy!
Let me in on your kitchen creations – tag your photos #happyheartedkitchen and share the love!