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Secret Ingredient Gluten Free Chocolate Cake

This cake is amazing. Typically, most gluten free dessert recipes I find call for expensive ingredients that require a special trip to Whole Foods, which is simply too much hassle for me! The “secret ingredient” in this chocolate cake is black beans, and though it may sound disgusting, its actually incredibly moist and delicious. My sister made this recipe last year, and her husband (who hates “healthy” desserts), whole heartedly approved! I’ve been craving something chocolatey, and this mouth watering indulgence was perfectly satisfying. It’s very rich, especially with the buttercream frosting, but it doesn’t make me feel bloated or too full (as long as you keep it to one slice!).



Black Bean Chocolate Cake

(Recipe from Pearls Slipping Of A String blog)

1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
5 eggs
1 T vanilla
1/2 t salt
6 T coconut oil or butter
3/4 c sugar
6 T cocoa powder
1 t baking powder
1/2 t baking soda
1 T water
Preheat oven to 350. Grease a 9″ cake pan and dust with cocoa. Place beans, 3 eggs, vanilla, sugar, and salt into food processor or blender. Blend on high until beans are liquified. In small bowl mix together cocoa powder, baking soda, and baking powder. In mixer or large bowl, beat butter until light and fluffy. Add remaining two eggs one at a time, beating well after each one. Pour bean batter into egg mixture and mix. Finally, stir in cocoa powder mixture and water and beat batter on high for one minute until smooth. Pour into prepared pan. Bake for 40-45 minutes. Cake is done when top is rounded and firm to the touch. I used this chocolate buttercream frosting recipe.

Bon Appetit!



Dining Room Table Centerpiece Ideas

I love a bouquet of beautiful flowers on my table, but unfortunately I don’t have the budget for fresh blossoms continuously. A tasteful dining room table centerpiece elevates a room and is welcoming, wether or not you’re planning on guests. Here are three dining room table centerpiece ideas that are easy and budget friendly.

Real or Artificial Fruit/Vegetables


For some reason, I’ve always been obsessed with artichokes. When I got married, my husband thought I was crazy for the artichoke collection I possessed, but I absolutely love the artistic design of this veggie! There are endless possibilities for using fruits as centerpieces: lemons and limes, apples, pomegranates and grapes are a few.


Miniature Vases with Greenery



I love the simplicity of this delicate decoration. Asparagus ferns have always been my favorite, especially this soft variety which grows wild in the Hollywood Hills. I’ve collected miniature glass bottles at thrift and antique stores, which are always very cheap and easy to find. You can use any greenery for this easy idea.


Upside Down Wine Glasses with Flowers


This is a super girly and romantic idea, perfect for an intimate dinner or shower. I used artificial flowers and tea candles, and added a pretty set of bluebirds.


Morning Power Smoothie

Morning Power Smoothie

A few weeks back I posted this pic on Instagram of me drinking a mysterious concoction from my blender. I got tons of inquiries as to what exactly I was consuming, so for today’s Foodie Friday post Laurel-Manette and I are sharing a video from out YouTube channel (SUBSCRIBE) on how to make our favorite Morning Power Smoothie recipe! Keep in mind you can play with the recipe…sometimes instead of berries I go for more tropical fruits like mangos and pineapples. The color of your fruits an how much greenery you add will effect the color of your smoothie, so don’t trip if it varies. We drink one every morning, post workout on an empty stomach for increased energy, glowing skin, and a svelte waistline.


DIY Kimono

I love the breezy femininity of a light kimono, and have been wanting one for my summer wardrobe. After coming across this easy tutorial that was featured on Verily Magazine (one of my favorite fashion resources!), I had to make one myself. I used a printed scarf that was buried in my closet, and it turned out perfectly! The steps are simple, and all you need is:

1 yard of fabric

fabric glue (if you’re like me and not a pro at sewing)

sharp scissors

1. Fold the longest side of fabric in half. Then fold that in half again, in the opposite direction.


2. Lay flat on a hard surface and make sure everything is even. (The fold where Tanya’s right hand is in the picture below will be the shoulder part of the kimono).


3. Cut along the folded edge of the top layer only (we pinned the rest of the fabric down to insure everything was even.



4. Unfold the fabric, and it will look like this. Try it on to make sure everything lines up the way you want, then determine how big you want your armholes. (Yes, I’m in my pajamas!)


5. Use fabric glue or a sewing machine to stitch the sides from the start of your armhole to the bottom hem. Then create a 1/8 to 1/4 inch hem around all your raw edges.


Finished! We styled it from Day to Night…







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