One thing about myself that I’m always trying to improve is being able to live in the moment.
There’s always always some kind of work to do (that’s the nature of life!), and I’m often so consumed by it that I don’t take time for life’s little pleasures.
Like taking 30 minutes in the evening to write in my journal.
Or making a new recipe just to enjoy with my family instead of obsessing that it’s been tested/retested/written up/photographed/etc. (An occupational hazard, I’m afraid.)
And enjoying winter for one of my favorite things about it: the fact that a snow-dusted landscape is just so pretty to look at.
The other day we got an inch of snow and my niece had a snow day (which is admittedly a little strange! As a native Buffalonian, the DC area's interpretation of a "snow storm" is a bit different than what I'm used to). It was unexpected, but instead of looking at it as an inconvenience, I took it as an unexpected blessing. Life is too short not to take the opportunity to spend time just enjoying our loved ones.
Thinking of my own snow day memories as a child, I told her that no snow day is complete without hot chocolate.
This version is thick and luxurious, almost like drinkable chocolate custard, and reminds me of Parisian-style hot chocolate. But this version is also rich with protein from cashews and an egg yolk, and is the perfect fuel for a kid or a kid-at-heart spending an afternoon playing in the snow.
- 4 tablespoons whole raw cashews
- ½ cup (120 ml) canned unsweetened, full-fat coconut milk
- 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
- 2 tablespoon pure maple syrup
- ¾ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- ⅛ teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1 large egg yolk
- Rinse the cashews in a colander under cold running water. Place them in a bowl and add enough water to cover them by 2 to 3 inches. Cover the bowl and let the nuts soak for 8 hours (or overnight); drain.
- Add the soaked cashews and all other ingredients to a blender or food processor and process until smooth and creamy, scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary. (Please note that you’ll get the best results using a high-speed blender.)
- Pour the mixture into a small saucepan over low heat and cook until steaming hot, stirring constantly.