HOT COCOA WITH COCONUT, CARDAMOM & SEA SALT

HOT COCOA WITH COCONUT, CARDAMOM & SEA SALT - The First Messpin it!
So I guess drink posts are back! Thank you so much for your kind and encouraging feedback on my Golden Serene Latte post. I think those of us who work in the creative field may be able to agree with this: it’s surprisingly easy to let the critical voices of a small amount of people drown out the positivity of hundreds more. I really enjoy crafting these posts and recipes for you, so I’m going to try my best to keep ’em coming :) Like I used to with Happy Hour posts previously, I’ll include a few links to stuff I’ve been enjoying on a week to week basis. I see this as an opportunity to be a little bit more personal too. When I’m writing about recipes, it’s really hard to transition from potentially heavy/meaningful conversation right on over to “This broccoli will take you straight to Flavortown!” Ridiculous example, but I think you know what I mean. It’s sort of awkward! Anyway, we’re back and I’m coming at this with a greater sense of intention.

A couple weeks ago, I spent a few days with fellow blogger entrepreneur friends (Sasha, Sarah, Renee & Haley) on a retreat of sorts just outside of Portland, Oregon. Between hikes in mossy forests, hanging in the sauna (plus going for intermittent ice cold plunges eep!), and cooking all kinds of plant-based delights, we talked about our careers, how we’re moving forward, what moves we’re making for the upcoming phases of our work, and other big life stuff. The support and advice of these women in such an inspiring natural environment was exactly what I needed. In the interest of transparency, I’ve been creatively and motivationally stuck since my book came out (almost two years ago jeez). I am grateful that my online endeavours provide a comfortable income through sponsorship, ads, and the odd bit of freelance work, don’t get me wrong. After long periods of time though, it’s easy to lose sight of your real purpose and to extract some sense of meaning from it all. Talking this dilemma out with that group of women really crystallized some of my intentions with this work and other projects in a new way. On the plane ride back home, I started to feel some of my creative juice come back, that enthusiasm and conviction that I’m on the right track no matter how meandering.

Most importantly, my gals confirmed that Happy Hour posts are pretty great, so here we are. I love a hot cocoa spiked with cardamom and sea salt. I use spoonfuls of almond and coconut butters blended with hot water to get the “milk” aspect here, along with a soft date for extra creaminess and also some caramel-y sweet notes. Here’s a few links for you to peruse while you sip. Happy weekending :)

We had so much great food over the course of the retreat. Some highlights include these Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies from Sasha and a version of Sarah’s legendary Four Corners Lentil Soup.

I listened to a live recording of Suze Orman’s discussion at the Apollo (via Oprah’s Super Soul Conversations Podcast) a few weeks ago and enjoyed it so much. It’s my honest feeling that women do not talk about money and personal finances enough outside of basic home expenses. Suze preaches that your self worth is indisputably tied to your net worth, and that if you work hard to be strong, smart and secure in your finances, you can do anything and go anywhere you want to in this life. Her closing remarks honestly had me tearing up. You can check out part 1 HERE and part 2 HERE (and also on Apple podcasts, Spotify etc).

An urban farm within a residential development in New York. Can all new and old developments (and neighbourhoods!) be like this? My only comment is that this woman should clearly be paid more.

A piece about the founders of The Skimm, a newsletter that condenses daily news into a 5-10 minute digest with a small dose of humour essentially. It makes it easy (ie no excuses) for anyone to be informed. It’s important to note that these two are in the .05% of startups founded by women. The potential of this tool in this societal climate is powerful and I loved reading their perspective on it all.

Perfect pizza can be traced and formulated scientifically. Also major lols at “If you don’t have a brick pizza oven at home because your landlord has no vision…”

I am making my first ever vision board this weekend after watching this encouraging, instructive (and not too woo woo) video from Mimi Ikonn. Gonna grab some magazines, journal real hard, and bang this thing out. I really can’t wait. Have any of you made a vision board before? Would love to hear about your experiences and approach in the comments. I’m also looking at this between-seasons Dream Casting method from my bud Renee.

I finally found a planner that actually makes me more productive. Typically I look at the list of things I have to do and just knock off the easy items and then further procrastinate on the bigger/possibly harder/possibly more confrontational things. I was a time “time optimist” in other words. The Productivity Planner from Intelligent Change has a whole system of time checks and prioritizing strategies that are really working for me. Love their Five-Minute Journal too!

So inspired by this book from the people of Terrain for outdoor living and decor inspiration! Just in time for the holidays.

I’ve been watching some videos from this YouTube channel in my free time because we’re planning a trip to Disney World next year! Mark and I are basically big kids at heart and also hi, Galaxy’s Edge will finally be open! If you have Disney World recommendations for resorts, vegan options at restaurants/snack stands, experiences, honestly anything, please hit me up in the comments. I’m like a Disney sponge right now and am being so extra with the planning lol.

And a little moment of cuteness/zen.

HOT COCOA WITH COCONUT, CARDAMOM & SEA SALT - The First Messpin it!
HOT COCOA WITH COCONUT, CARDAMOM & SEA SALT
Print the recipe here!
SERVES: 1
NOTES: You could use raw cacao powder if you have it around. Expect a slightly stronger and ever-so-slightly more bitter taste.
-I think 1 Medjool date is sweet enough, but feel free to increase this if you need to.
-If you don’t have/don’t like almond butter, cashew or hazelnut butter or even tahini would also work.

1 ½ tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tablespoon coconut butter
1 tablespoon almond butter
¼ – ½ teaspoon ground cardamom (to taste)
pinch of sea salt
1 soft Medjool date, pitted
10 oz boiling water

In an upright, vented blender, combine the cocoa powder, coconut butter, almond butter, cardamom, sea salt, date, and boiling water. Slowly bring your blender up to high speed and let it run for 30 seconds, or until the date is totally liquified and the drink looks creamy. Pour the cocoa out into a mug that you love, dust with some extra cocoa if you like, and enjoy!

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  • Christina10/11/2018 - 10:25 am

    The DISboards forum is extremely helpful in planning a Disney vacation. You can search for specifics are just watch what’s new.
    https://www.disboards.com/ReplyCancel

  • Lacey10/11/2018 - 11:01 am

    Yes, this looks so cozy! Glad to have the drink posts back. Looking forward to whatever your new inspiration will bring us :)ReplyCancel

  • Bozena10/11/2018 - 1:39 pm

    I just made it. Amazing! Perfect for a cold fall day!ReplyCancel

  • Aimee10/11/2018 - 4:33 pm

    I’m so glad to see drink posts return! I opened up your site because I wanted to use your Vegan White Chocolate with Herbal Coffee recipe but this looks delicious and now I can’t decide which to make.ReplyCancel

  • Shelby10/11/2018 - 5:42 pm

    So happy Happy Hour/ drink posts are back! I intended to also leave some encouraging feedback on the golden serene latte post and I completely forgot, sorry! I’m glad other folks took care of that.ReplyCancel

  • Sasha10/11/2018 - 6:37 pm

    Laura,

    This is just stunning and sounds soooo yummy and cozy. Can’t wait to give it a try. Hot cocoa season is officially on! Also I’m so so glad that the retreat was inspiring for you. I think we all came away with more clarity and motivation to move forward. Can’t wait to see you again soon! XOReplyCancel

  • thefolia10/11/2018 - 6:55 pm

    Cheers…I could drink an endless cup of this. Happy sipping!ReplyCancel

  • Kim H.10/11/2018 - 8:30 pm

    I went to Disney with my husband, kids and sister this past April. My sister, a fanatic of cats, Disney and vegan food, came up with this list of vegan options for us. She is an amazing planner which helps tremendously at Disney. I’m pasting this from a word document so it may affect the formatting. Email me if you would rather me send you the document. You will have SO MUCH FUN! Vegan options are everywhere. Just ask. And the avocado margarita in Mexico at Epcot is delicious. My favorite vegan “food” of the whole vacation.

    DISNEY FOOD OPTIONS

    MAGIC KINGDOM
    TOMORROWLAND- Falafel Burger (without Tzatziki) @ Cosmic Rays Starlight Café
    LIBERTY SQUARE- Vegetarian Chili without crackers
    FRONTIERLAND- Roasted Veggie Rice Bowl (with white rice)
    ADVENTURELAND- Noodle salad, Falafel without dip, Curried Veggie Stew, sorbet @ Jungle Skipper Canteen

    EPCOT
    FUTURE WORLD
    The Land Cart- Hummus with pretzels
    Sunshine Seasons- Korma with Gardein Chicken, Vegan Flatbread Sandwich, Vegan Wrap, Veggie Sushi, Veggie Platter
    WORLD SHOWCASE
    CANADA- sit down VEGAN- Le Cellier (Root veggie gnocchi without sauce)
    CANADA- Cronut- Refreshment Port in between Canada & Mexico
    CANADA- sit down VEGAN- Le Cellier (Root veggie gnocchi without sauce)
    FRANCE- VEGAN- waffle cone with sorbet @ L’Artisan des Glaces
    FRANCE- Gelato Sandwich L’Artisan Des Glaces
    FRANCE Grey Goose Slush @ Champagne & Wine Kiosk
    MOROCCO- VEGAN- Veggie platter @ Tangerine Café
    MOROCCO- sit down VEGAN- Marrakesh (Couscous with Veggies)
    MOROCCO- sit down VEGAN- Spice Road Table (Hummas, olives, rice stuffed grape leaves, veggie plate)
    JAPAN- VEGAN- Kakigori (without sweet milk)/ Edamame- Kabuki Café
    JAPAN- VEGAN- Edamame, steamed rice @ Katsura Grill
    JAPAN- sit down VEGAN- Teppan Edo (fresh grilled veggies, steamed rice, edamame)
    JAPAN- sit down VEGAN- Tokyo Dining (Veggie sushi, seaweed salad, edamame)
    AMERICA- VEGAN- pretzels @ Block & Hans
    AMERICA- VEGAN- Veggie Beyond Meat Burger with Vegan brioche bun @ Liberty Inn
    ITALY- sit down VEGAN- Via Napoli (cheeseless pizza, spaghetti marinara)
    GERMANY- VEGAN- pretzel @ Trinken Beer Cart
    GERMANY- sit down VEGAN- Biergarten (Tomato soup, salads, breads, pickles)
    NORWAY- Sit down VEGAN- Lentils with Veggies @ Akershus Royal Banquet Hall
    NORWAY- School Bread @ Kringla Bakeri og Café
    MEXICO- VEGAN- Guacamole @ Choza De Margarita
    MEXICO- VEGAN- Chips and Guac @ La Cantina de San Angel & La Cave Del Tequila
    MEXICO- Avocado Margarita @ La Cava del Tequila
    HOLLYWOOD STUDIOS
    SUNSET BOULEVARD- VEGAN FOOD- 7 Layer Rice Bowl with vegan chili & allergy rice (without cheese or sour cream) @ Fairfax
    Fare
    ECHO LAKE- Loaded Chili Nachos without cheese or sour cream (made with crumbles)
    ECHO LAKE- Spaghetti Marinara, Brownie Sundae, Milkshakes (Allergy Menu) @ 50’s Prime Time Café
    ECHO LAKE- Build Your Own Pasta, Sautéed Veggies, ice cream @ Hollywood & Vine
    COMMISARY LANE- Garden Burger Malibu Burger @ ABC Commissary
    COMMISARY LANE- tofu & veggies, veggie burger, vegan milkshakes @ Sci-Fi Dine-In Theater
    HOLLYWOOD BLVD- Tofutti Ice Cream @ Hollywood Scoops
    HOLLYWOOD BLVD- Noodle Bowl with Spring Rolls @ Hollywood Brown Derby
    MUPPET COURTYARD- VEGAN FOOD- Allergy Menu pizza with Follow Your Heart vegan cheese
    MUPPET COURTYARD- Spaghetti Marinara, Pizza with Vegan cheese @ Mama Melrose’s

    ANIMAL KINGDOM
    SAFARI AMBER LAGER (Disney’s own beer, only available @ Animal Kingdom
    AFRICA- Harambe Market – Grilled veggie stack (without pesto) with papaya slaw & black-eyed pea salad
    AFRICA- Mahindi- popcorn, nuts
    AFRICA- Tusker House- sautéed veggies, couscous, tabbouleh, tofu with zucchini, samosas
    AFRICA- Dole whip with rum at Tamu Tamu
    ASIA- Caravan Road- Edamame, Asian Noodle Salad
    ASIA- Mr. Kamal’s- Season fries without Tzatziki, hummus, falafel without tzatziki
    ASIA- Yak & Yeti- Veggie Lo Mein with tofu, Miso salmon (swap with tofu), sweet & sour chicken (swap for tofu)
    PANDORA- Satu’li Canteen- Chili Spiced Crispy Fried Tofu Bowl with charred onion, chimichurri, Mixed whole grain and rice,
    romaine & kale salad (no black bean dressing)
    DINOLAND- Dino Bites- pretzels
    DINOLAND- Restaurantosaurus- Gardenburger Malibu Burger
    DISCOVERY ISLAND- Eight Spoon Café & Isle Of Java- pretzels
    DISCOVERY ISLAND- Pizzafari- Vegan Cheese pizza on pita bread
    DISCOVERY ISLAND- Tiffins- roasted market veggie curry, Gobi Manchurin
    DISCOVERY ISLAND- Nomad Lounge- Vegan pad thai
    DISCOVERY ISLAND- Nomad Lounge- NIGHT MONKEY cocktail

    HOTEL FOOD OPTIONS

    POLYNESIAN
    Captain Cook’s- Vegan Waffle, Vegan Tonga Toast,
    Kona Island- Veggie Rainbow Roll
    Pineapple Lanai- Pineapple Dole Whip
    Kona Café- Vegan waffles, Tofu scramble, Vegan Tonga Toast, Vegan pancakes, potatoes, Pan-asian noodles (rice noodles),
    Kona Salad, Veggie Nigiri without sauce
    Trader Sam’s- Veggie Sushi

    CONTEMPORARY
    Contempo Café- Vegan Waffles
    California Grill- Mushroom flatbread, Truffle Tofu Rolls, Coconut- Veggie Curry, Vegan menu available
    Wave…Of Flavor- Veggie Menu Available
    NOTES:
    ALLERGY MENUS AVAILABLE AT MOST RESTAURANTS (that includes Vegan/ Veg)ReplyCancel

  • Anna11/11/2018 - 2:19 pm

    This looks sublime. I have tried and enjoyed many of your recipes; now I’m addicted to my morning coffee + rice or almond milk + almond butter + turmeric + cocoa.
    Your book is also fascinating and poetic. Thank you, you are so inspiring!
    I would like to make an observation, though. In your book you say that Gazpacho has a V8 vibe to you… That’s because you put celery in it!! I am Spanish, from Barcelona… Gazpacho never, ever, carries celery. It’s a question of ripe tomatoes, red bell pepper, garlic, cucumber (not always), onion, and olive oil. Some modern versions include watermelon, strawberries, roast pepper…
    In the summer, must try Ajoblanco (almonds & garlic cold soup) and Salmorejo (tomato, olive oil and breadcrumb paste).ReplyCancel

  • Tiffany11/11/2018 - 4:48 pm

    So excited to see the Happy Hour posts are back! Thank you for sharing your thoughts, ideas, and warm beverages with us!ReplyCancel

  • mckenzie12/11/2018 - 11:20 am

    AHHH freaking LOVE all your links! Open-in-tab on repeat for these posts makes for hours of (mindful??) procrastination at work.ReplyCancel

  • Abby @ Heart of a Baker12/11/2018 - 11:25 am

    I loved the Super Soul episode with Suze, she is SO amazing! I’ve also been considering a Five Min Journal, so BRB going to order that right now :) You are doing amazing my sister and I love these posts, so keep them coming! xoReplyCancel

  • Maegen12/11/2018 - 9:21 pm

    Thank you for bringing the Happy Hour posts back! They are like sitting down to unwind and gain some perspective from a wise friend. There is no doubt that your work is appreciated + inspiring, thank you.ReplyCancel

  • Anna Viehbeck14/11/2018 - 1:38 pm

    Hi Laura!
    My name is Anna.
    A quick word of praise!

    I’ve been discovering and trying North American plant-based cuisine since February this year. Every day I cook meals from scratch, and so far I’ve tried tons of recipes from a number of cookbooks and blogs, both popular and not.
    Recently I’ve got my hands on your book and the blog, and it did stand out to me.
    Both your manner of writing and recipes have a certain aesthetics, not a shiny-glamorous one, but a rustic, organic one. You have a very distinguished style.
    Moreover, all 5 recipes I’ve made from your book so far DID satisfy my palate (which has a hard time getting used to North American flavours).
    So cheers and keep up the good work!ReplyCancel

  • Sondi15/11/2018 - 3:25 am

    Love your happy hour recipes! Please keep ’em coming.ReplyCancel

  • Vancouver reader16/11/2018 - 7:19 pm

    this looks delicious with winter coming-as I’m doing low carb, could the date be replaced with Stevia & if so, any other adjustment?

    thank you-still able to use the veggie recipes on low carb!ReplyCancel

    • Laura17/11/2018 - 8:51 am

      Yep, just replace the date with stevia and you should be good :)
      -LReplyCancel

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