Sunday, June 30, 2013

Happiness and Chocolate Lava Cake

chocolatelavacake001My husband is both hard to please and easy to please. If he doesn't like something, there is absolutely no convincing him that he will like it (change, vinegar, painful comedy, and dark chocolate), but if he does like it, he will stay unconditionally true to it (me, Hawaii, and milk chocolate). 

Jake and I have been talking more about things that we don't like. We’re frustrated with certain elements of our lives and are being more daring in our possible plans, most of which involve leaving Hawaii, the place we've made our lives together. I’ve been looking forward to how some of our ideas would play out and the feeling of change in the air.

Immediately after having these thoughts, we had a string of gorgeous, heart of the watermelon kind of days. Days that only could have happened in Hawaii. Suddenly, everywhere I look, Hawaii is the most amazing place on the planet. I've had this feeling before, but honestly, what am I thinking? Why would I ever want to leave this?

hawaii june2I I know some people are thinking, “Oh, you. You would have great experiences in other places too.” I’ve thought long and hard about this very claim. I don’t think it’s as true, for us. 

We have so much and we have been blessed with so many advantages. Jake heard a podcast recently about happiness, and according to these researchers, people that invested in experiences rather than material items seemed to be happier. Well, this is certainly our investment. So right now I'm trying to shift my thinking to figure out how I can make what we have, work even better.


I'm willing to eat the crusts of life, if there's a promise of dessert.

Part of me thinks, “Duh, you obviously knew this.” But that’s the funny thing about being happy. You have to keep remembering. You have to keep being reminded. You have to keep saying, “Duh, I knew this.” Otherwise you think how you feel in a moment is how you’ve felt the whole time. This principle has had many applications in my life.

Despite his supposed hatred of dark chocolate, or however fancy I get with my Momofuku cakes, he’ll always come back to requesting a chocolate lava cake for special occasions. I've pretty much got the recipe down pat, it’s easier than easy, and this is the best one out there. I love the flowing lava the first day, and I really like the dense truffle cake out of the fridge the next day just as much. It improves with time.


As long as he keeps liking chocolate lava cake I think we’ll be ok. He wrote me a note today and he said, “It’s amazing we still have things to talk about after all this time, and hey! I still like you.”

Yes. I do. I would say it as quickly today as I did then, and 32 is way smarter than 20.

Here's to 12 times 12 more years (and more) of married life with this guy and being happy wherever we are.


Chocolate Lava Cake (makes many, depending on your ramekin size)

  • 8 oz dark or semisweet chocolate chips (or good quality dark chocolate is better)
  • 12 Tbsp unsalted butter (extra for ramekins)
  • 1 Cup plus 2 Tbsp sugar
  • 6 Tbsp all purpose flour
  • 4 eggs
  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Butter the whole inside of 6-8 ramekins. The number you use will depend on the size. I have 4 oz and 6 oz ramekins, I used 3 of each. Don’t be shy with the butter.
  2. Put the chocolate chips into a microwave safe bowl with the butter. Microwave for 1 minute, stirring after thirty seconds. After 1 minute stir and make sure it is completely melted. Microwave 20 seconds more if needed. Stir and stir. It may appear to be not melted and then suddenly meld together. Let cool while preparing the rest of the batter.
  3. In a separate bowl, mix up the sugar, eggs, and flour until uniform
  4. Stir the chocolate into the eggs and incorporate completely.
  5. Pour the batter into the ramekins until about 2/3 the way full. Put into the oven and bake for about 12 minutes. Check the doneness. The thickness of the ramekin walls can change this. The edges should be drip, the middle should have just the slight appearance of wetness but should seem a bit thicker. Bake for a minute or two more if it is too liquid. Pull them out and let sit for a few minutes. 
  6. Use a sharp knife to release the edges from the sides of the ramekin, and invert very quickly onto a plate. You can also eat it straight from the ramekin. If you want to have it the next day, you can eat it cold or heat it in the microwave for 30 seconds.




Kurk said...

So true! You captured the feelings of my heart so well. But I would take having you closer...

Masayuki said...

Hey, you could move to Japan. Then you'd have hot muggy days... and... Cold winters... But cute Japanese things! And Japanese bakeries! Great post.

Anonymous said...

But how can I mail you those Meyers lemons if you went far away !!!!hope you are good. Shar

Damaris @Kitchen Corners said...

Good post and good positive thinking. I think investing on experiences is the way to go for sure.

Ellie said...

I agree that Hawaii is the best place on the planet. Although there are several inconveniences, it's definitely paradise.
That lava cakes looks so delicious! I want to make some for myself.

WizzyTheStick said...

I don't live there but I can't imagine wanting to live anywhere other than Hawaii! You are living my dream:-)

Nippon Nin said...

Nice post! Pictures are wonderful! About moving somewhere're both young and do something different is worth the effort. It would be very hard to change if you're much older I think. I would like to have a opportunity to move to Australia,Paris or Japan for several years. Change is actually a good thing. New experience bring new perspective too.You know what I'm saying?

Rebecca @ It's Not Easy Eating Green said...

This was our dessert tonight for our seven year anniversary. Your recipe made the dinner! It was D-E-L-I-S-H! I made only a half recipe because I was afraid I would eat all of it. It was so insanely easy that my four year old did everything except melt the chocolate and pour it into the ramekins. I have a feeling it will be the go-to recipe when I want to make a dessert I know Hubby will like. Thanks!

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