Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Raw Cacao Cadies

Not much to say about these little candies, except that I love chocolate, didn't have any chocolate, so I figured I would use the opportunity to finally experiment with raw chocolates.

They came out pretty tasty, if I do say so myself ☺

2/3 C coconut oil
1/2 C cacao nibs
1 Tbsp carob powder
1 Tbsp maca powder
1 Tbsp maple syrup
1/4 C hemp seeds

Melt the coconut oil and add the cacao nibs, stirring well.
Add the remaining ingredients an mix well.
Pour onto some parchment paper and chill in the fridge.
Once chilled, break 'em up into bite sized squares.

Simple, right?
These made the perfect Valentine's day gift to myself ;)

Sunday, February 12, 2012

An Open Letter to the Catholic Church

Controversial legislations are nothing new. It's impossible to please everyone, and often, those everyones who disagree are a large enough group that they will protest whatever it is they are against.

Religious groups are one of these everyones. With the Obama administration including sterilization, contraceptives, and abortifacients in health care insurance provided by institutions, it's no surprise the Catholic church is up in arms.

Claiming that being forced to pay insurance for someting that is "morally evil", the Catholic church finds the PPACA a violation of conscience.
I can sympathize. Being an animal lover and welfarist, I will never feel ethical that my taxes will go to studies using animal testing. Activists against the PPACA say it is a violation of the First Amendment, which ensures freedom of religion. If contraceptives are a thing people disagree with for religious reasons, then why should that person be forced to pay into such a thing?

I do feel that the Obama administration should be more considerate towards those who really are against this (although, I'm curious how many Catholics have used contraceptives). However, how can the Catholic church justify this opposition when they, and other religious fanatics, so often fight other things that are constitutional rights?

If a woman is not religious, then why do religious fanatics fight to make abortion more and more difficult for that woman to do? She is not Christian, she does not see anything wrong with getting an abortion.
Or what about gay marriage? Religious fanatics say it is evil, unnatural, and disgusting. If gays, lesbians, or transgenders do not share the same beliefs as their opponents, then why should they not be granted the freedom to marry or receive sex changes? Or even just be open in public without risking their safety?

How is it fair that we put up with the constant violations of Separation of Church and State when religious groups move to push us back into the 19th century, but as soon as something is done that upsets the Catholic church, they stomp their feet and complain?

If Catholics are going to want an exemption from this bill, then I think it's tme they leave women and gays alone.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Reflections On The Modern Woman

I’m a feminist at heart. I love reading feminist novels, I am very passionate about the rights of women, if asked who my favorite feminist is, I would not be able to give a single answer. Instead, I would say that my favorite European feminist is Mary Wollstonecraft, why Cady Stanton and Victoria Woodhull are tied for 19th century U.S, say that for 20th century it would of course be Betty Friedan, and modern day would be Eva Ensler, but I also love Lissa Rankin and her raunchy, assertive style.
It’s hard to imagine that women haven’t even had the right to vote in thic country for one hundred years yet. We’ve come a long way from the turn of the 20th century, but the battle is far from won.
I remember not too long ago, sitting in school, over hearing a group of girls talk about how they wish they could be skinny, despite all being healthy weights and attractive. It’s no news to hear that there’s such a problem with girls, but it’s so sad to hear it in real life.
I’m always so disturbed at those women who walk around with their faces buried under chemical-based pastes and powders. With high heels that stiffen calves and Achilles tendons, cause bunions and nerve damage, and put pressure on the knees and back. Or those women who go get waxed because body hair is a no-no. Plucking eye brows, fad dieting… Why do we do this?
Do we, as women in the Westernized world, feel we are inadequate if we do not live up the standardized women the media idealizes? Is going out in shorts with legs that haven’t been shaved in a couple days that awful? Or hitting the town sans make-up?
There are so many women who rise above this idea. Women who care more about personal pleasure than personal appearance. Women who value intelligence and life more than attention and conformity. These are real women. But it scares me to see the mainstream at my school, the girls who will be the future's women. Will they mature and realize life isn't all about looks and drama?
With attacks on our rights left and right by the G.O.P., are we falling back into the Gilded Age where a woman’s worth is her husband and children, not herself as a person?
I have worn make-up once in my entire life, and it was for only a short amount of time 4 years ago. I have shaved maybe twice in the past year. I suppose I’m to secure in my femininity to succumb to all of those ridiculous societal expectations. Do I, as a young woman, deserve to be treated less because of my choices to embrace my natural body?
Breast implants and genital alterations ("elected mutilation") have become all too common. Just as every woman is unique, every pair of breasts will be made so, and every vulva will be one of a kind. Why do we feel the need to change what is made for us to be more sexually appealing? Is that all we stand for?
Women are still struggling for full equality, but it seems like too many feel it is already won.
Still, working women do three fold the amount of housework men do, we statistically earn less, and we experience far too much sexual abuse. We are all sisters, we cannot lose our personalities and ambitions in our desire to be more physically appealing.
I am Woman, and I am proud. I love my breasts, I love my vulva, I love my leg hair. I will live my life the way I feel I should, not the way society has laid out for me. If I will be criticized for my choices, then it is a sad reflection on this society.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Ah, chocolate cups!

It's amazing how many times I can lose something.
I had two camera cords, yet I managed to lose both of them.
Then I lose my camera...

Oh well, what can be lost can be found, right?

Well, I finally found my camera cord so now I can finally upload pictures and artwork. It just took me a couple weeks of searching!

York Mints were always a favorite of mine. They, and Reese's, were definitely my favorite part about going to the grocery store with my parents. Of course, I would never eat them now, but luckily, making homemade mint patties isn't that hard to do.
They're a little bit more goopy, and the rice syrup may make them not as pure white, but I thought these turned out delicious!

Peppermint Patties:
1 C quinoa
3/4 t peppermint extract
1/4 t vanilla extract
pinch salt
pinch cinnamon
pinchi nutmeg
2/3 C almond milk (plain, unsweetened)
1/4 C Rice Syrup

1. Bring the quinoa with 2 C water to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Let it cook for 11 minutes. Remove from heat.
2. Once cool enough, blend the quinoa with the rest of the ingredients in a blender. It's okay if it's not perfectly smooth.

Tahini-Ginger Filling
1/2 C tahini
1 t cinnamon
2 Tbsp maple syrup
ginger root, to taste
1/4 C peanut butter
Dash cayenne pepper

Toss everything in the food processor and blend.

To make the chocolate cups:
In a double boiler, melt chocolate (Use at least 1 C and add more as you need to. The amount of chocolate will depend on how much you use per cup and how many cups you're making).
Line a cupcake pan with cupcake holders (I like If You Care brand ☺), and spoon in enough melted chocolate to cover the bottom of each holder. Place in a spoonful of the filling inside, making sure you can see a ring of chocolate on the outside (the filling should not be touching the holder). About 1 1/2 Tbsp is a good amount, but it all depends on what you like.
Spoon on some more chocolate over the filling, enough to cover it and leave a more or less flat top.

Allow to cool.

Enjoy! :)