So, here’s the thing.
It’s been a fair while since I have allowed myself the time to reoccupy this space. To sit down at the desk I am currently sitting in, with my
hairy companion little love curled up in my lap. Candles lit, carnelian crystal on one side and kombucha on the other. Covering the walls on my side of this tiny shared office are two manifestation boards, one with photos of the powerhouse women who inspire me, those who I would wish someday to collaborate with. The other is filled with inspirational places, words, phrases and magical symbolism. To the left there’s a drum, handmade by a Native woman with the singing voice reminiscent of the past; it’s drumstick constructed of a lilac branch. There is a poster of the moon phases, a medicine pouch and a perfectly yellowed Gold Finch feather taped to the wall.
It’s been a fair while since I have given myself the permission to sit down and look up at this wall. This inspiration filled area that has been built by me, for me. Now here I am. I suppose it makes sense as I do tend to feel the best time for slowing down is this part of the year. Late autumn. When the cold truly begins to take hold and alas, the last of the wool reemerges from the closet.
When a morning walk looks a little more like this and deserves a far larger mug of tea upon return. This slow time of year when, for me, being outside is dependent on how far below freezing the thermometer has reached and how much daylight remains once the noon hour passes. For me, this time of year is the perfect time for revisiting inspirations, aspirations and embracing all that manifestation magic.
So while the natural world around me gears up for a big wintery slumber, I am taking my own measures to guarantee a slow-down. A recoup. A re-visitation of all the magic that comes with late autumn. I’m ringing in the season, yes, ringing in the season. A celebration of the rhythms, a celebration that shouldn’t be reserved for one little day on the calendar
This of course, requires something warm and chocolaty.
I know, I know – you were wondering when I was going to get to these outrageously fantastic brownies.
Let me just go right ahead and tell you all about them. Let’s see, they are gluten free (oat flour, so make sure you’re source has certified that no gluten containing grains are processed in the facility if you’re celiac or otherwise sensitive like moi). As you can see, they do have eggs so they are not vegan but they are definitely dairy free. They are also almost completely refined sugar free, say whattt. Yeah, you heard me. If I had have been willing to simply not use up the last bar of normal dark organic chocolate I had in the pantry, they would be fully refined sugar free. However, not being one to waste – they do have a bit of cane sugar from the baking chocolate. (Lucky for me & for all future chocolate baking needs, I have discovered Lily’s Sweets. No joke people, this chocolate is so amazing. They make a crispy rice + dark chocolate bar and it’s been rocking my world. Sweetened with stevia and filled with love).
Oh one more thing that I suspect you already know – these babes are spiked with ginger and ancho pepper powder. They aren’t spicy-hot, but they have some flavourful kick that gives them that extra boost of warmth for combating the cold bite settling in outside.
Warming spices such as ginger are incredibly powerful tools for the cooler months. Not only does the spice factor in ginger amp up any other spices present; ginger also provide a long lasting warmth that comes from inside. This very much adds to the belly fire, as is referred to in Chinese Medicine.
All in all, these brownies are exactly what you would hope for in a chocolaty treat. When warm, they’re gooey almost fudge like in the center. Once set and cooled, they are very cake-y and rich. The spice is optional but definitely recommended, another option would be peppermint oil for those who embrace the holiday season with candycanes and minty treats.
- Spend a bit of time reflecting on what the slowness of the season means to you. Where do your priorities lie as nature gears up for hibernation?
- Give yourself permission to return to any items not yet crossed off on your manifestation boards, in your creative or sacred spaces, or anywhere else they might be hiding.
- On the flip side – give yourself permission to not revisit those things not yet crossed off, if they no longer serve you. Just because you were interested in them in the past doesn’t mean they are a requirement for the future. So often we get tied to our lists, our goals. If it doesn’t serve you, you don’t need it.
- Ring in the season, rhythmically things are always moving – why not use that as a constant cause for celebration? Embrace the changes, hold them dear. They’re happening no matter which approach you take so why not make it count!
- When in doubt, make brownies.
- 6oz Dark Chocolate (at least 70%)
- ¾ Cup Coconut Oil
- 1 Cup Coconut Sugar
- 4 Whole Organic Eggs
- 1 Teaspoon Vanilla Powder
- 1 Cup Oat Flour
- ¼ Cup Cacao Powder
- 1 Teaspoon Ancho Pepper Powder
- 1¼ Teaspoon Ginger Powder
- ½ Teaspoon Fresh Ground Black Pepper
- Pinch of Salt
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees
- Chop the chocolate if using a bar, then melt with the coconut oil in a double boiler on medium-low. Try to avoid stirring the chocolate until over half of it has melted. Once it has reached this point, go ahead and mix it - coaxing it slowly to melt the remaining half. Remove from heat once melted.
- While the chocolate is cooling, whisk the eggs and the sugar until smooth
- In a separate bowl, combine the vanilla powder, oat flour, cacao powder, spices and salt.
- Whisk the chocolate into the egg mixture, it should be thick and have a nice trail when you lift the whisk from the middle of the bowl.
- Add the flour mixture to the chocolate, continuing to whisk until combined - there should be no lumps.
- Line a brownie pan with parchment paper, fill the pan and bake in the oven for 20-30 minutes.
- The brownies will puff up as they solidify inside, this is totally fine - try to avoid the brownie top from cracking as once they reach that point they will be overcooked. Feel free to use a toothpick to check the center, however I just tap the batter with my finger to check for firmness on top.
- (It's far better to have slightly fudgey brownies as opposed to over baked little chocolate pucks!)
With Love and Chocolate