Chocolate cake

Today I have a nice recipe to share with you again. I made it the first time last weekend – and the second time the day before yesterday… Hmm, maybe I should rethink my diet. ;P

The cake is dangerously chocolatey, super easy and fast to make and absolutely addictive. Especially for chocolate lovers like me. ❀

Sometimes I have to laugh at my own peculiarities. A few days ago, I was in my university town once more to hand over my room. Afterwards I went to one really nice store there because where I live now, we don’t have such a nice one. At the cash point, I saw someone from my Master’s program (and someone I do like!) and what did I strange, HSPy, impossible to understand person do? I turned around and lingered about in the store for a little while until I could be sure he would be gone. And why? Don’t ask me. I think I’m just a really solitary kind of a person and if I go meet people I need to be prepared for it. If I meet someone just by chance, I’m often overwhelmed and somewhat unwilling to interact. It’s strange, I know… Maybe in this particular case, it also had to do with me wanting to leave this Master’s thing behind and this, I guess, also requires to not have too much contact with my former batchmates forΒ  a while. Whatever, when it happened I just tried to analyze myself and couldn’t really come up with a good explanation for my behavior. And I will be honest, this has happened many times before in my life. I just hope he hasn’t seen me, otherwise I don’t want to know what he must have been thinking. πŸ˜€

Now I finally start feeling free and self-determined again, and it’s been three weeks since I came back home for good. This rather short time has already been like balm for my soul and I am glad that it’s in my hands to decide how long and in which way this will continue. These last days were especially awesome: all the trees are greening now and the weather is amazing. Wearing shorts and a sleeveless shirt is not exactly normal for April in my place. πŸ™‚

Fine, let’s come to the actual topic of this post – chocolate cake!DSCF2014[1]

Sponge cake:

480 g wheat flour

200 g cane sugar

60 g cocoa powder

15 g baking powder

pinch of vanilla powder

pinch of salt

120 g vegetable oil

450 g sparkling water

Mix the dry ingredients thoroughly, then add oil and water and stir as little as possible until you achieve a nice batter. Put in a 26 cm springform pan, lined with parchment paper if necessary, and bake at 180 Β°C for about 45-50 min. Check with a toothpick if it’s done. Let the cake cool in the pan for a while, then remove the ring and let cool completely.

“Butter” cream:

500 g almond milk

35 g corn starch

2 tbsp cane sugar

1/2 tsp vanilla powder

Take 100 g of the almond milk and stir in the starch, sugar and vanilla powder. In the meantime, bring the remaining milk to a boil, once boiling stir in the milk mixture and keep stirring until thick and smooth. Let the pudding cool to room temperature before proceeding.

250 g vegan margarine/buttery spread, at room temperature (for Germans: I use Alsan)

30 g cacao

60 g cane sugar

1 jar (250 g) thick jam, e.g. peach, plum, etc.

Beat the margarine until fluffy and add the pudding spoon for spoon while beating. Once it’s all mixed and a nice cream, divide it: take 200 g into a separate bowl, which leaves you with about 550 g in the first one.

To the big part, add the cacao and cane sugar and beat until it’s a nice chocolatey cream.

To the smaller part, add 2-3 tbsp (heaped) of jam and a little sugar if the jam is not so sweet. Beat to combine. If it gets curdled, add a little coconut flour.

Now slice the cake into three layers and put the bottom one on a plate. Cover it with a thin layer of jam and spread a bit more than a third of the chocolate cream on top. Put the middle layer on top and cover it with a thin layer of jam again. Now put on the jam-cream and add the third layer. Cover the whole cake with chocolate cream and decorate as desired. Now store the cake in the fridge and eat within 4-5 days. My opinion: It tastes best when eaten the next day or later.

Maybe this sounds a bit complicated or long, but it actually isn’t. I’ve made much more time-consuming cakes before, so just give it a try. It’s worth it. πŸ˜‰

Have a nice day, and bye for now!



It’s spring!

I’m back!

Although I am very lazy these days, because I finally escaped from my Master’s thesis schedule and only now realize how exhausted I actually am. It’s so nice to just sleep as long as I want and not have to worry about deadlines anymore. It will take a while until I’ll be ready to start thinking about my future, I guess. And that’s totally okay, the last two years were not fun.

I hope you all had a great Easter (for those celebrating Easter, that is πŸ™‚ ) and a relaxing time with your families. Mine was great, I baked a lot and although (as expected) my grandfather didn’t touch much because it was vegan (and he actually isn’t so well these days), everyone else was happy.

Yesterday I got my internet connection here at home and realized that I didn’t crave it as much as I had expected. Guess that’s a good thing, I always pity the people that feel the need to be online 24/7. What kind of life is that? Go outside and enjoy the beautiful nature!

Today was an awesome day, for the first time it was really warm outside and I felt that I could have actually worn a sleeveless shirt for my walk if I had dared. Awesome! And the birds were chirping like crazy, everywhere the first flowers are blossoming and even trees start greening. Oh yes, how I am looking forward to that. Spring is my favorite time of the year, when everything comes back to life. It feels like a miracle every year again.

I hope you all had a great spring day as well.

Bye for now,

Ayumi ❀

A beautiful place

Today I felt like sharing some photos with you that I took during a vacation in Croatia, this is at the Plitvice Lakes National Park. It’s been nearly three years ago now, but I still love looking at these pictures – it was amazing to be there. The colors are really this intense, although it’s already hard for me to believe it myself. If you ever get the chance to visit this place – I highly recommend it! πŸ™‚

I love photography, but I still need to get a good camera. Maybe I’ll do it as a treat for myself for having completed my Master’s. Actually I like that idea – finally came up with a good excuse why I can have one now. I’ve been waiting for too long already, it’s about time. πŸ™‚






I think I really am in vacation mood… Hope you fell in love a little with this beautiful place now, too! πŸ˜‰


Time for myself


These days I don’t seem to have time for anything. I’m wrapping up my Master’s thesis period, have to start clearing my apartment, I have a sick friend to take care of and then there is this super exciting new blog world I have just entered. Seriously, I start going through manuals on how to deal with certain website things, check interesting blogs and basically don’t do much at all – and all of a sudden two, three hours have just passed by. It’s scary. Where does all the time go?

It’s a common saying that time passes very quickly when one’s having fun, right? I wish this wasn’t true, but for me it is exactly like this. Especially when it is my daily “off” time, where I just do what I feel like doing (which has been exploring the blog world, recently πŸ˜‰ ), I usually feel somewhat betrayed because the time appears to be soooo short. Then again, it is probably also related to the fact that at the moment I really don’t have much of this off time to begin with. It will get better very soon, and I’m so looking forward to it.

Most HSPs (except for the rare very extrovert ones, maybe) need more of this time for themselves, I think. Well, I don’t know so many personally, but the ones I do know are like this too. One needs a lot of peace and quiet to calm down from this hectic world so rich with impressions. When I get home in the evenings, I am usually finished. Luckily, though, I have a routine of cooking dinner freshly every day, which is like a real therapy to me. I get home, throw my stuff in some corner and start preparing my food. This helps me get into a calm and relaxed mood and slowly get back to my real self. Usually I don’t make anything fancy, but even if it’s just some pasta and veggies, it means so much to me. Sitting down to eat the food I prepared just for me is like appreciating myself and taking care of the fragile sensitive being inside. Really, breakfast and dinner are kind of my days’ highlights. Although these times are also gone too fast, I at least try to eat slowly and mindful and enjoy every minute.

What is it like for you? Do you also try to find little moments in daily life for recollecting and enjoying yourselves? Or can you just go through a day being amongst people 24/7?

Personally, I am very happy to not have to face anyone right now. Well, I mean in real life. Of course I am more than happy for everyone who reads what stirs me – thank you so much for taking the time! ❀

Love, Ayumi