(Life List #2: Zip line through a forest canopy)
Last week we got away and took a cruise to the Caribbean to celebrate my niece’s graduation, and my birthday happened to fall during the trip – not too shabby! The week was just what we needed – no thinking required, fun and relaxing. And it was exciting because I was able to check something off my life list: zip line through a forest canopy. It’s otherwise known as a bucket list, which sounds so depressing to me. These are things that I want to do during my life to enhance and enrich it, not just when I am older. There are over 30 things scribbled in my little book so far and new things will be added along the way.
We signed up for a zip line in Ocho Rios, Jamaica and a hike up Dunn’s River Falls with our niece, Sara (we are so proud that she just graduated from Brandeis University, summa cum laude with highest honors!).
It was a thrill to experience it and rewarding to check off my list (pictures right, and below: the walk back after the zip line). Something else exciting was diving in Grand Cayman where I conquered my lingering fear/hesitation with the sport. After all, with about 30 dives logged so far I have a lot to be proud of, and have gazed upon some beautiful sights underwater. Next goal: log 50 dives. As you can see, there is a lot to celebrate and chocolate is just the thing. On board the cruise ship, we had the Chocolate Melting Cake every night after dinner – sometimes one to ourselves, and on other nights one for the table to share. And we always ordered it with a scoop of ice cream, usually vanilla.
We were lucky enough to get the recipe for the Chocolate Melting Cake during a “behind the scenes” ship tour for the guys, which was an unexpected treat! The cake is pure chocolate, with a warm and gooey center that coats your spoon as you dig in the middle. Scoops of your favorite ice cream create a sublime finish – any flavor will do, really. I used Häagen Daz Caramel Cone and Mint Chip. For two people (3 servings) I cut the recipe in half, which is perfect for us. It’s easy to make and cooks in about 10 minutes. Any leftover cake is great the next day after a 20 second warm up in the microwave.
Do you have a list? Have you checked anything off recently? I would love to hear about it. Cheers to having adventures in life, and lots of chocolate to celebrate! And a huge thanks to Beth, Steve and Sara for inviting us along for the ride, we had a blast!
Eat well and share the love!
Chocolate Melting Cake (print recipe)
Recipe: Adapted from Carnival Cruise Lines, June 2012
Melissa Schenker/Foodie for Two
Prep Time: 7 minutes; Cooking time: 12 minutes / Total cooking time: about 19 minutes
3 ounces unsalted butter (5 tablespoons), plus ½
tablespoon, softened, for greasing ramekins
3 ounces chocolate: 2 ounces 60% cacao chips and 1 ounce
semi-sweet chocolate chips (about ½ cup total)
2 large eggs, at room temperature
3 ounces sugar (about 1/3 cup)
1 ounce flour (about 6 tablespoons)
Pre-heat oven to 390º and grease 3 ramekins with soft butter, set aside.
Add 5 tablespoons butter to a small saucepan and turn heat to medium-low. When the butter is half melted, stir in the chocolate chips and continue stirring until the chocolate has just melted. Turn off heat and remove pan from heat; let cool slightly.
In a separate bowl, add the eggs and whisk vigorously for 30 seconds. Add the sugar and mix well for 1 minute. Add the flour and whisk well until all the flour is completely mixed in. Add the melted chocolate mixture to the egg mixture and mix until it is smooth and incorporated.
Pour the batter evenly into the three greased ramekins, about ¼ inch from the top. Cook for 12 to 12½ minutes until the top of the cake is just firm and the cake still has a slight jiggle.
Remove ramekins from oven and let cool slightly. Serve with small scoops of your favorite ice cream or gelato.