pin it!pin it!
You’ll have to forgive me for paraphrasing on this one. I remember reading this passage when we were away, on the beach in the glorious sun, a few months ago. I can’t for the life of me remember where I first took those words in. I’ve flipped through all of the sand-filled books and print publications that I toted along and simply cannot spot it. Some serious googling or more page flipping wouldn’t be too hard, but my eyes have been watering up and un-focusing involuntarily with some frequency lately. It might be time to step away from any and all screens for the day and spend less time focusing on tiny things. The vibrance of this thrown-together dish (with some outstanding local + hydroponic eggplant), against a grey mid-March backdrop, had me thinking of that lost passage. So here we are.

There is a woman in the back of a cab, somewhere in India. From memory, she is most definitely North American. She is travelling through the country in a way that suggests leisure, waiting for inspiration while cultural immersion takes place and seeming “otherness” surrounds. She notices prayer flags of every hue and condition flying from pointed rooftops, hanging off of farm gates, tangled in the streets, strewn over doorways of run-down homes, whipping in the wind on the tops of mountains and trees. They’re everywhere. She asks her cab driver about the flags, why the everywhere-locales, why the variety in appearance. His response is calm and straightforward, without a trace of glorification or pomp: God loves colour.

pin it!pin it!
crispy eggplant + harissa flatbread recipe
serves: 4-6
notes: I followed a harissa recipe from Food 52 pretty much to the letter (I left out the all spice + nutmeg) and was rather pleased with the results. I do use it sparingly since this Tunisian spice paste is quite fiery. If you make the whole recipe, there’s lots of other things you can do with it. Add a dab to a simple vinaigrette, use it as a marinade for proteins, mash it into some cooked sweet potatoes with a dollop of yogurt, drizzle it onto your avocado toast–many possibilities.

scant 1 lb whole grain pizza dough (I purchased a really great locally made one, but I have a recipe here too)
1/4 cup of harissa (I used this recipe from Food 52)
1 small eggplant
1 shallot
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, divided
2 tbsp raw honey or agave nectar
4 cups baby arugula
big handful of mint leaves
big handful of flat parsley leaves
squeeze of lemon juice
salt + pepper
1 tbsp dukkah spice (optional)

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Rip a piece of parchment big enough to fit the sheet pan you want to use. Lay it on the counter and begin rolling out your dough on top of it. Aim for a 10-11 inch circle, about 1/3 inch thick. Transfer the dough and parchment to your sheet pan. Apply the harissa to the dough evenly.

Trim the ends off of the eggplant and slice it into thin rounds. Arrange the rounds on the dough.

Peel and trim the shallot. Slice it as thin as you can. Scatter slices on top of the eggplant.

Drizzly the top with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Season liberally with salt and pepper. Slide the sheet into the oven and bake for 20 minutes, or until the bottom seems brown and crisp and the eggplant has shrivelled up a bit.

While the flatbread is baking, place the arugula into a medium bowl. Roughly chop the mint and parsley and add to the bowl as well. Drizzle the remaining olive oil onto the greens, add the squeeze of lemon, season with salt and pepper and toss to combine.

Once the flatbread is removed, drizzle with the honey or agave nectar. Cut flatbread into slices. Scatter the greens and herbs on top of the slices and sprinkle dukkah spice all over the greens. Serve warm or at room temperature.

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sweet chili eggplant + arugula toss

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grilled butternut and radicchio pizza + trials

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  • Angela13/03/2013 - 9:22 am

    simple, beautiful and surely delicious:)ReplyCancel

  • thelittleloaf13/03/2013 - 9:39 am

    Absolutely stunning. Simple but perfect and exactly the kind of thing I love to eat :-)ReplyCancel

  • Caitlin13/03/2013 - 10:19 am

    what a beautiful flat bread pizza. i love when non traditional toppings are used and these look so lovely and delicious.ReplyCancel

  • Lauren13/03/2013 - 10:32 am

    This looks BEAUTIFUL! I can’t wait to make this! What a great way to change it up with eggplant… I love eggplant but sometimes I get bored of my regular recipes. Can’t wait to try this!
    ReplyCancel

  • carey13/03/2013 - 10:37 am

    Oh, this speaks to me, in many ways. The dish feels so very similar to the something old, something new winter-meets-spring cravings I’ve been having lately. I’m not quite ready to let go of the earthy, hearty foods, but I will sure as heck brighten them up with lots of greens and fresh herbs. And that passage has inspired me to reconsider the direction in which I had taken my photos for an upcoming post. (:ReplyCancel

  • Nourish Your Roots13/03/2013 - 12:13 pm

    Yum! Looks heavenly. I haven’t seen eggplant in recipes in what seems like ages…so good that they have an appearance here. Reminds me of summer :)ReplyCancel

  • Heather13/03/2013 - 12:41 pm

    Beautiful photos – and color! I am really digging this recipe.ReplyCancel

  • Richa13/03/2013 - 1:51 pm

    gorgeous pictures! i love harissa and everything on this flatbread working beautifully.ReplyCancel

  • Eileen13/03/2013 - 1:56 pm

    So beautiful! And that amazing arugula is really making me crave a visit to the spring farmer’s market. :)ReplyCancel

  • Courtney13/03/2013 - 4:00 pm

    This looks like the perfect end of winter/beginning of spring meal! Now I’m curious about that passage, too :)ReplyCancel

  • Ashley13/03/2013 - 4:40 pm

    This looks outstanding. I am obsessed with your photos + blog. The end.ReplyCancel

  • Kristy13/03/2013 - 5:18 pm

    I’m in love with the photos in this post! And the combination of flavors on this flatbread sound divine! :-)ReplyCancel

  • Shira13/03/2013 - 6:39 pm

    Absolutely stunning Laura! What a healthy and wonderful combo with those fresh greens. Your photos are absolutely gorgeous! xoReplyCancel

  • Natasha13/03/2013 - 10:32 pm

    Gorgeous! Looks so comforting and delicious.ReplyCancel

  • Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar14/03/2013 - 10:22 am

    This is so cool! Love the sounds of this!ReplyCancel

  • sara forte14/03/2013 - 12:36 pm

    yes yes. a light pizza heavy on the greens. I love it. hope your eyes feel better. no fun.ReplyCancel

  • Rosie @ Blueberry Kitchen14/03/2013 - 6:43 pm

    Oh yum, that looks so delicious! I love your photos!ReplyCancel

  • Isabelle @ Crumb15/03/2013 - 8:56 am

    This looks positively lovely – like a hybrid of pizza and salad, and yet something entirely its own. I don’t eat nearly enough eggplant, but this beautiful flatbread could very well change all that. :)ReplyCancel

  • meatballs & milkshakes15/03/2013 - 1:42 pm

    So beautiful! I would love some of this right now! Perfect friday afternoon snack!ReplyCancel

  • Kathryne15/03/2013 - 10:35 pm

    That passage is perfect, Laura, and so is this flatbread. (Spicy sauce with greens? Yes!) I’ve neglected my google reader lately (boyfriend’s place doesn’t have wifi, which is mostly awesome) but have been out of touch with my favorite blogs. I want to stick a fork in all your latest posts! I mean that in a good way, of course. :)ReplyCancel

  • Kathryn17/03/2013 - 12:26 pm

    Oh the colour and light and brightness of this post. Just what I needed to read on this gloomy Sunday. I love how you always offer a new and fresh perspective both here and elsewhere.ReplyCancel

  • kelly17/03/2013 - 9:19 pm

    god loves color! LOVE ITReplyCancel

  • Rosie @ Blueberry Kitchen19/03/2013 - 3:09 pm

    Yum, your flatbread looks so delicious and I just love your photos!ReplyCancel

  • hungryandfrozen20/03/2013 - 4:01 am

    This is a stunner, I feel like I could just reach in and grab it. Possibly because of how gorgeous and huge your photos are.

    I’ve never heard of that passage before, but it’s a nice one. Maybe you dreamed it!ReplyCancel

  • Kasey21/03/2013 - 7:19 pm

    So beautiful (the flatbread and your words). I want a slice. xoxoReplyCancel

  • Adri {Food-N-Thought}26/03/2013 - 11:12 pm

    This eggplant/arugula combination looks amazing!ReplyCancel

  • […] 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, […]ReplyCancel

  • […] crispy eggplant + harissa flatbread with greens […]ReplyCancel

  • […] Crispy Eggplant and Harissa Flatbread with Greens from The First Mess […]ReplyCancel

  • […] Crispy Eggplant and Harissa Flatbread with Greens from The First Mess […]ReplyCancel

spaghetti squash noodle bowl + lime peanut sauce // via @thefirstmesspin it!spaghetti squash noodle bowl + lime peanut sauce // via @thefirstmesspin it!
Defaulting to kindness is this very simple idea that I try, rather mightily, to uphold in my day-to-day endeavours. It’s an easy and graceful thing that applies to relationships, work strategies, food on the table, the methods we choose, self care, and overall personal stillness. Dogma doesn’t muscle its way into such a direct mode of life. I don’t always succeed in this–that much has to be obvious. Inner landscapes are complex in the greatest of beings. I struggle under time constraints, matters of patience, when things go off the rails, disorganized dwellings, in the face of criticism… I become irritable as all hell if we’re being real.

So it’ll come as no surprise that, upon receiving some rather passive aggressive emails/messages of all sorts relating to this blog in the last couple weeks, I got thisclose to meeting those notions of skepticism with something to the tune of “OMG. BUT R U OK?” Hitting the send button was the next step in that absurdly demonstrative reply. Then I thought of kindness (almost begrudgingly), and trying to default to that state. The mere thought didn’t offer instantaneous optimism, but its warm lightbulb glow entered my realm of possibility in a gentle and persistent way. Slowly returning to the center, thank goodness.

I can appreciate having a point of view, dedication to a personal observation, and the confidence to bring it all forward. It’s silly to be dismissive of any and all reactions because… it’s just something that I do on the internet. Considering the point, trying to turn the scene around, saying thank you, having a better life (+ acknowledging that the internet is WAY REAL)–that’s all easy on paper and, as it turns out, easy in practice over time. Feeling much more solid in this space lately (this album on repeat and big cups of vanilla rooibos while sifting through the emails/everything else is helping) and I’m glad that you’re all here.

So in that vein, I thought I’d share more of an every day kindness that I grant myself. This is something you might catch me fixing up for lunch on a normal day. I might pre-roast the whole squash and make up the dressing at the beginning of the week, reheat the strands with some stock in a sauté pan and top it all up as I’ve done here. I never make a dressing or sauce the same way twice, and this peanut lime one is no exception. The list of ingredients seems long, but it’s largely a compilation of pantry items that can be subbed, swapped or chopped altogether. I just kind of throw it all into my Vitamix and taste and re-blend, rinse, repeat :)

Stay kind, in your life endeavours and your lunches, peeps. xo

pin it!pin it!pin it!spaghetti squash noodle bowl + lime peanut sauce // via @thefirstmesspin it!

spaghetti squash noodle bowl + lime peanut sauce recipe
serves:
4
notes: Definitely use the sharpest knife you’ve got for the spaghetti squash. You don’t want to be pulling a stubborn knife out of a half-cut squash, commanding someone nearby to dial 9 + 1 in standby emergency preparation

squash etc ingredients:
1 large spaghetti squash, cut in half lengthwise + seeds scooped out
4-5 kale stalks (7-8 if you’re using lacinato), stems removed
1 shallot, peeled
1/2 cup chopped toasted nuts of your preference (I used cashews)
3 tbsp sesame seeds (toasted, raw, whatevs)
chopped leafy herb if you feel it (cilantro, mint, thai basil etc)
1 bunch of broccoli, cut into florets
salt + pepper

lime peanut sauce ingredients:
1/2 inch fresh ginger, peeled + rough chopped
2 cloves of garlic, peeled + rough chopped
1-2 tsp sriracha (or other hot sauce you like)
2 tbsp peanut butter (or tahini, sunflower seed butter, almond butter etc)
1 lime, peeled + chopped
1 tbsp rice vinegar (or apple cider/white wine vinegar)
2 tsp agave (or honey etc)
1.5 tbsp tamari soy sauce
little scoop of extra virgin coconut oil (optional, but I love the coconut fragrance here)
tiny splash of toasted sesame oil
1/2 cup grapeseed oil

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

Line a baking sheet with parchment and place the squash halves, cut side down, onto the sheet. Bake for about an hour or until the flesh pulls away in easy strands.

While the squash is baking, slice the kale leaves into 1/3 inch-ish ribbons and place in a large bowl. Cut the shallot in half lengthwise, slice the halves into thin half-moons and set aside. Chop up the herbs and toasted nuts as well, set them aside with the shallows.

Once you’ve cut the broccoli, set a medium saucepan with about an inch of water over medium heat. Bring it to a simmer. Place the broccoli florets into a steamer basket and set aside until right before service.

Place all of the sauce ingredients in a blender and bend until fully incorporated. Taste for seasoning and set aside.

When squash is cool enough to handle, place the steamer basket of broccoli into the pot with the simmering water. Put a lid on it and allow broccoli to steam for 3-4 minutes, or desired doneness. While broccoli is steaming, scrape the spaghetti strands out with a fork into the large bowl with the sliced kale. The heat from the squash should wilt the kale slightly. Pour a big splash of the dressing into the bowl, season with salt and pepper and lightly toss the squash and kale.

Remove broccoli from the heat. Portion the squash and kale into 4 bowls. Top each bowl with the steamed broccoli, sliced shallots, chopped nuts, sesame seeds, chopped herbs and extra sauce.

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  • Anouk06/03/2013 - 4:45 am

    Sweetie!! How in the world could people possibly be so cruel as to spam you with unfriendly messages? Sounds like it’s been spinning around in your head – I’d say: “don’t let it get to you”, but hey, we all know that’s easier said than done… You put your heart & soul in this place – inside out – which I find very brave & inspiring. Just remember: you rock! Keep on making my day with your warming words & fabulous food. <>ReplyCancel

  • hungryandfrozen06/03/2013 - 5:13 am

    Passive-aggressive emails? About THIS blog? Worst! Here is a totally non-passive-aggressive, transparent message to say that I love your blog, keep doing what you’re doing and if you can manage to stay positive then go you. I am also super envious of your access to spaghetti squash since they sound pretty fascinating. But at least I can make the dressing which sounds so, so good.ReplyCancel

  • Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar06/03/2013 - 8:14 am

    Looove this! It looks so fabulous!ReplyCancel

  • thelittleloaf06/03/2013 - 9:34 am

    This is the kind of dish I love to eat for lunch, fresh, clean and full of bright, zingy flavours. I’ve never tried substituting spaghetti squash for noodles but it looks lovely – did you say it would keep well for a few days too?ReplyCancel

  • Abby @ The Frosted Vegan06/03/2013 - 9:47 am

    Oh this bowl looks divine! Anytime peanuts and spaghetti squash is involved, I’m so in!ReplyCancel

  • robyn06/03/2013 - 10:38 am

    Where is the Cauli in the ingredient list…I see in the instructions to cook,,,is it for the sauce or as part of the bowl??ReplyCancel

    • Laura Wright06/03/2013 - 10:45 am

      Robyn, that was an error on my part. Should have been “broccoli florets.” Changed it! Thanks for noticing :)
      -LReplyCancel

  • Cassie06/03/2013 - 10:57 am

    Haters always gonna hate! Just know that for as many people who might talk smack about the blog, there are exponentially more who love it! I look at a lot of food blogs and yours is one of my favorites. Your recipes are always spot on and totally creative. I just put spaghetti squash on my shopping list so I can make today’s dish ASAP.ReplyCancel

  • michelle06/03/2013 - 11:45 am

    internet haters are the worst kind of haters. boy does this look delish. i can’t wait to have a second usable hand so i can make it!ReplyCancel

  • Astrid06/03/2013 - 12:21 pm

    Love your blog, and love your creative recipies. Just ignore the silly people who send you hate mail….many more think your great!ReplyCancel

  • Sara06/03/2013 - 12:26 pm

    I’ve been needing some good inspiration for spaghetti squash. This dish looks gorgeous and can only imagine is just as delicious!ReplyCancel

  • Dana @ Vanishing Veggie06/03/2013 - 1:01 pm

    I am a vegan trying to lose weight, and this would be a PERFECT quick dinner. It looks beautiful and tasty!ReplyCancel

  • melissa06/03/2013 - 3:03 pm

    This recipe looks lovely! Thank-you for the inspiration :)ReplyCancel

  • Eileen06/03/2013 - 3:43 pm

    There is definitely not enough spaghetti squash in rotation at our house. :) I love the idea of taking the “noodles” away from the typical marinara sauce and toward the Asian peanut and lime!ReplyCancel

  • Ariel06/03/2013 - 5:04 pm

    Ooh how lucky, I just roasted an enormous spaghetti squash this weekend and have tons of leftovers! I’m a big fan of your blog, and excited to give another one of your recipes a try! :)ReplyCancel

  • Joanne06/03/2013 - 6:34 pm

    It really is appalling the emails that “readers” think they can send bloggers – as if we aren’t real people with feelings!!! I’m so sorry you had to experience that. hopefully this delicious meal helped a bit! I love all things peanut sauce and it’d make just about any day better!ReplyCancel

  • la domestique07/03/2013 - 2:53 am

    Love the colors and textures in this dish! It hurts my heart that someone has been either aggressive or passively aggressive to you. In moments that test my kindness, I think about how when this whole journey of life is done do I want to have to watch a replay of my life and see myself acting like a jerk. No, I do not. So I try to be kind. I try. :)ReplyCancel

  • Nicola Galloway07/03/2013 - 3:12 am

    When I come to an unhappy comment I just try and remember it is not about me but the person who wrote it that is hurting and their words just come out hurtful. Not fun to recieve though.

    Thanks for the yummy bowl inspiration, the sauce sounds fantastic :)ReplyCancel

  • Elenore Bendel Zahn07/03/2013 - 7:45 am

    Whaaaat? I don´t get it – you are like the most loving and sweet person alive! Wierd.. but honey, right approach you have there. Give and receive (plus some vanilla rooibos of course)

    Big hug to you gorgeous lady.ReplyCancel

  • Shira07/03/2013 - 2:26 pm

    A perfect meal if I ever saw one and has literally all my favorite things. Too funny as this has been my “yellow and green vegetable week” as I try to get back to basics for the transition to spring foods – I think you read my mind! Gorgeous Laura!ReplyCancel

  • Larissa07/03/2013 - 2:44 pm

    I just discovered your blog and am totally inspired by it. Making this tonight!ReplyCancel

  • Jasmine07/03/2013 - 5:58 pm

    These all look so delicious. can’t wait to try.ReplyCancel

  • Lauren @ A Nerd Cooks07/03/2013 - 6:14 pm

    Y’know, haters gonna hate… Don’t let them get you down.

    This dish looks insanely good! I can’t wait to make it. Keep doing what you’re doing =)ReplyCancel

  • carey07/03/2013 - 7:27 pm

    Ugh, what is wrong with those jerk people? Sometimes I wonder if I spend too much time wrapped up in the computer/Internet, between working and reading and blogging. And then I remind myself that I’m actually creating things and having an awesome time, and not just some dipstick trolling behind the anonymity of a computer screen, which is THE LAMEST.

    The spaghetti squash is near and dear to my heart, as it was one of the first things I made when I began experimenting with cooking. Consequently, I’ve been stuck on pairing it with alfredo sauce, since that was the sauce I originally made for it as well. (Nostalgic to a fault, that’s me!) I was also never sure what to use in place of it, since tomato sauce + spaghetti squash didn’t quite appeal to me (for whatever reason). But lime peanut sauce sounds so awesome, and much better on so many levels. :)ReplyCancel

  • sara forte07/03/2013 - 9:11 pm

    it always seems lunch is a huge salad of whatever leftovers are around. I get frustrated sometimes ranting to hugh that I just want healthy/light WARM food instead of a hodge podge salad. I love love winter squash but have never tried it with peanut sauce – sounds like perfection. I’m in need of some new sauces, thanks for the idea.ReplyCancel

  • Laura (Blogging Over Thyme)07/03/2013 - 10:06 pm

    This looks amazing! I’ve loved spaghetti squash every time I’ve cooked it in the past (although I paired mine with a traditional tomato sauce and meatballs)–but I need to try this peanut sauce. I’m sure it would be great on so many things, all the flavors sound right up my alley.

    Love the pictures! :)ReplyCancel

  • Liz M08/03/2013 - 10:21 am

    has anyone figured the ww points on this dish?ReplyCancel

  • Ashley08/03/2013 - 1:15 pm

    These photos are stunning and this recipe sounds spectacular! What lens are you using for these? Beautiful all around!ReplyCancel

    • Laura Wright08/03/2013 - 1:49 pm

      Hey Ashley! I shot this post with the Canon EF 24-105mm f/4. Loving that one big time lately. xoReplyCancel

  • mich08/03/2013 - 1:28 pm

    I made this last night for dinner and it was AMAZING! I am thinking of all the other things I can put the dressing on. Thanks!ReplyCancel

  • Mikey F.10/03/2013 - 6:00 pm

    Kindness is such a great gift to give, even to those who upset us. I loved your words, wise and thoughtful. And this recipe, I MUST TRY.

    Lots of love, and light,
    M.ReplyCancel

  • Jilly Inspired11/03/2013 - 8:35 pm

    Hi There, recently I decided to post comments on food blogger sites that I regularly turn to for inspiration. I popped over to your site first and read this post. It’s the perfect time to tell you how much I love your blog. As a food blogger, I can understand how you feel. Your blog is always on my top 10 list. Thanks for the inspiration.ReplyCancel

  • […] the first mess […]ReplyCancel

  • hungryandfrozen12/03/2013 - 3:46 am

    PS: obSESSED with Solange <3ReplyCancel

  • Nat @ The Apple Diaries12/03/2013 - 4:23 am

    That lime peanut sauce looks insanely good! If could also work as a salad dressing.

    Great recipe :)ReplyCancel

  • dashesofawesome12/03/2013 - 1:01 pm

    This is a great gluten-free alternative to pasta, and will likely be dinner one night this week! Thanks for posting!ReplyCancel

  • Andrea13/03/2013 - 2:57 pm

    Defaulting to kindness is a beautiful way to live, keep it up.
    And the food looks delish too :-)ReplyCancel

  • Kathryne15/03/2013 - 10:38 pm

    Sorry to hear about the meanies, Laura. You radiate kindness in real life. Listening to Solange now on spotify, thanks for the head’s up!ReplyCancel

  • Sara17/03/2013 - 8:36 pm

    Just made this tonight for dinner. The lime-peanut sauce is fantastic and really livens up squash (which I’m not always a fan of). I even had the black sesame seeds to sprinkle on top which was a great finishing touch.ReplyCancel

  • Annalise19/03/2013 - 9:38 pm

    Found this recipe from Pinterest, and tried it tonight for dinner. Fabulous! The lime peanut sauce is amazing, definitely something I’ll be making again. I think next time I’ll add some shrimp or chicken.ReplyCancel

  • Robyn20/03/2013 - 5:47 pm

    About how many cups cooked squash would you say you used? I don’t think my squash is “large” so i’m going to cook 2 but don’t wan’t to end up with too much for the sauce.

    THANKS! :)ReplyCancel

    • Laura Wright21/03/2013 - 10:03 am

      Hey Robyn! I would say in the area of 4-5 cups of cooked squash. Hope that helps :)
      -LReplyCancel

  • Bailey20/03/2013 - 8:39 pm

    This was wonderful! I just finished eating it. A great healthy dish for when I’m needing some Thai food. I love spaghetti squash, but only used it with marinara sauce. This is now my new favorite!ReplyCancel

  • Clare27/03/2013 - 10:15 am

    I am definitely trying this! My stomach is grumbling just looking at it!ReplyCancel

  • New Recipes | Angie Eats Peace10/04/2013 - 10:50 am

    […] up is a spaghetti squash noodle bowl + lime peanut sauce from The First Mess. I had a spaghetti squash sitting on my counter for about 2 weeks that I had no […]ReplyCancel

  • J15/04/2013 - 8:30 pm

    Made this tonight and it was delicious!! My husband loved it too and said it could be served in a restaurant! Thanks!ReplyCancel

  • […] concoctions that actually turned out well…woohoo! A few weeks back, my friend Molly and I made this yummy spaghetti squash stir fry and I decided to recreate it with some chicken. I don’t know about you, but I need to figure […]ReplyCancel

  • […] (3) Spaghetti squash. Rekindled my romance with this fun squash. Try it yourself with this recipe. […]ReplyCancel

  • Jessilee22/04/2013 - 8:16 pm

    Hi there! I found this site through Pinterest, and I just wanted to let you know that I made this recipe (with rice noodles because spaghetti squash isn’t in stock anywhere where I live) and it’s delicious. I’ve been looking for a great peanut sauce for quite a while, and this is a keeper. Thank you for sharing!ReplyCancel

  • Sara24/04/2013 - 9:30 am

    Reporting back–made this and it’s delicious! The sauce really brings it together. I have nigella seeds and I loved using them on top, not just for visual but also for their taste. Thanks.ReplyCancel

  • […] opinion: ginger, garlic, sriracha, lime and peanut butter. The trick – which I discovered on this blog and slightly adapted – is blitzing everything together in a food processor (including the lime […]ReplyCancel

  • […] Broccoli and Spaghetti Squash Noodle Bowl Adapted from The First Mess […]ReplyCancel

  • janet @ the taste space02/05/2013 - 6:53 am

    I made a different sauce but loved your inspiration. It was a delicious bowl with the spaghetti squash, chickpeas and broccoli. :)

    This is my version: http://tastespace.wordpress.com/2013/05/02/broccoli-and-spaghetti-squash-noodle-bowl-with-a-peanut-miso-sauce/ReplyCancel

  • Jenny R02/05/2013 - 7:14 pm

    This sounds so good! I like to cook spaghetti squash whole in the slow cooker. No sharp knife needed! 5-6 hours on Low with a couple tablespoons of water in the bottom to keep the skin from sticking. You really can’t overcook it with this method. When it’s done, cut it in half and scrape out the seeds/goo and you are good to go. You don’t get any roasty brown bits, but for a dish like this it probably doesn’t matter. Just buy a squash that fits whole into your slow cooker pot.ReplyCancel

  • […] This recipe made the rounds on my Pinterest recently, and I couldn’t wait to try it; the Male Compatriot loves the peanut sauce at a local Thai restaurant and I had yet to be able to recreate it at home for cheaper/with better ingredients. I made this and had to make more twice that evening — everyone who passed by wanted some to put on something. […]ReplyCancel

  • Debbie15/05/2013 - 7:18 pm

    This looks delish! Put your spaghetti squash into microwave for 5-8 minutes depending on its size and it softens the tough skin enough to make it easy to cut through.ReplyCancel

  • […] Faves: Rhubarb Fool with Coconut Whipped Cream and Pistachios, Spaghetti Squash Noodle Bowl with Lime Peanut Sauce, Spaghetti Squash Noodle Bowl with Lime Peanut […]ReplyCancel

  • […] often start with a combo of onion, ginger and garlic. I added a heaping two teaspoons when cooking these amazing noodles this week and both my boys ate them up heartily. That’s a win win for […]ReplyCancel

  • […] Broccoli and Spaghetti Squash Noodle Bowl Adapted from The First Mess […]ReplyCancel

  • Cass Fitness | Never Give Up18/06/2013 - 6:01 pm

    […] noodle bowl lime peanut […]ReplyCancel

  • Jennifer S14/07/2013 - 7:37 pm

    I just made this, and it is amazing! and so incredibly easy! I added a whole bunch of mushrooms to mine too (shiitake and button) and it was great match with it!

    well done, i will definitely make this for my friends.ReplyCancel

  • […] made an utterly mouthwatering dinner today based on a recipe on The First Mess (spaghetti squash noodle bowl with lime peanut sauce), although I swopped out the squash for what […]ReplyCancel

  • Renata01/08/2013 - 11:32 am

    I just saw this picture and my stomach already started to smile!!! I just love noodles and brocoli!!! My new favourite dish!
    Excelente blog…!! Keep going!
    Hugs from Viña del Mar – ChileReplyCancel

  • Kati22/08/2013 - 8:48 pm

    Just a tip about cutting spaghetti squash (or any squash), because it is tough. Just poke some holes in the sucker and throw it in the oven whole in a baking dish. Cover with tin foil if you like. It’s much easier to cut when it’s cooked.
    Just about to make this. Looks delicious!ReplyCancel

    • Laura Wright25/08/2013 - 9:02 am

      Love this tip, Kati! Totally using it when the spaghetti squashes in my garden are ready :)ReplyCancel

  • Bretty28/08/2013 - 2:30 am

    The peanut sauce is fantastic! Thanks for sharing xReplyCancel

  • Sarah29/08/2013 - 12:51 am

    Just made this.. Sooooo good! I wish there was a way to make it paleo… I swapped out the peanut butter with almond butter, looking for a replacement for the soy sauce- any ideas? Anyway, aside from the struggles of opening the squash, this recipe was easy and delicious! Thanks!ReplyCancel

  • Gwen03/09/2013 - 10:03 am

    Thanks for including a note about making the meal ahead of time! Since I’m cooking for one, I’m always curious about recipes that can be reheated throughout the week, as the squash noddles can be. Can’t wait to try it! :)ReplyCancel

  • Amanda Olson08/09/2013 - 8:52 pm

    This looks positively delicious, I can’t wait to try it!
    It is amazing, isn’t it how people can be so cruel and ridiculous behind the mask of the Internet… You handled that beautifully, and I agree, what on earth could someone possibly have to say negative about this site?ReplyCancel

  • Dawn10/09/2013 - 7:35 pm

    Hey, you go girl! Love the recipe. I eat a LOT of spaghetti squash, and I have gotten so lazy about it that I just throw the whole washed thing right into the oven on a baking tray. MUCH easier to cut afterwards, n if it seems hard, cook it some more. Just be careful taking it out of the oven; usually doesn’t roll by then, but you never know.ReplyCancel

  • […] Spaghetti Squash Noodle Bowl & Lime Peanut Sauce  by The First Mess […]ReplyCancel

  • Melissa18/09/2013 - 3:48 pm

    Chowing down on this now and loving it! Thanks!ReplyCancel

  • […] Spaghetti Squash Noodle Bowl with Lime Peanut Sauce | The First […]ReplyCancel

  • Deeny O'Connor24/09/2013 - 10:53 pm

    Hi Miss Laura,

    Stumbled onto your blog when searching for new ways to fix my fave squash for my daughter and her fussy eatin’ 4 y/o step-daughter who will eat anything slathered with my basil pesto btw. Go figure.

    Anyway I have a bumper crop of spaghetti squash for I seem to have an issue with gluten these days so grew a bunch to dehydrate to enjoy over the winter/spring, but when I saw your recipe I decided I must prepare this asap (like day after tomorrow)for my husband, daughter, and myself who love oriental flavors.

    Thank you for sharing your knowledge. I’ll be back for more inspiration.

    D. O’C.

    P.S. Don’t sweat the small stuff which includes small minds.ReplyCancel

  • Amy26/09/2013 - 1:02 pm

    Made this last night and LOVED it! I’ve never been a big fan of spaghetti squash because I always served it with marinara sauce. I am now a serious convert– your peanut sauce has made me a believer! I sautéed the shallot and kale a little bit and also added a bit of roasted butternut squash. I’m having the leftovers for lunch — can’t wait!ReplyCancel

  • Linda29/09/2013 - 10:18 am

    This is so perfect – blog and recipe – you’ll never know how much :)ReplyCancel

  • hana01/10/2013 - 2:19 pm

    Has anyone calculated the calories per serving? Sounds so deee-lish, I can’t wait to try it!ReplyCancel

  • […] Spaghetti Squash Noodle Bowl + Lime Peanut Sauce from The First […]ReplyCancel

  • Golubka Kitchen15/10/2013 - 12:11 am

    […] prepare to be amazed. You will be drawn into the world of vibrant colours, fresh and seasonal food, unique and simple recipes and engaging writing. The First Mess makes me smile with every new post, and I often run straight […]ReplyCancel

  • […] Spaghetti Squash Noodle Bowl with Lime Peanut Sauce […]ReplyCancel

  • Dina27/10/2013 - 3:57 pm

    I was looking for an asian inspired recipe for spaghetti squash as a side dish for my pork belly lettuce wraps. Your recipe was the one that stood out for me. The peanut sauce is delicious and I can’t wait for dinner tonight. I never thought of making asian dishes with spaghetti squash but I’m now hooked. I will try pad Thai next Thank you so much for taking the time and sharing such wonderful goodies with all of us.ReplyCancel

  • Liz27/10/2013 - 8:39 pm

    Thank you for the nice recipe.ReplyCancel

  • […] Spaghetti Squash Noodle Bowl with Lime Peanut Sauce […]ReplyCancel

  • Jessica14/11/2013 - 10:14 pm

    I really wish it hadn’t taken me so long to make this recipe, it’s amazing!! I could go back for 2nds, 3rd and 4rths. Thank you!!ReplyCancel

  • […] November 11th: Spaghetti Squash Noodle Bowl with Lime Peanut Sauce, recipe from The First Mess Broiled Shrimp (in Asian […]ReplyCancel

  • […] Spaghetti Squash Noodle Bowl–a great way to use your broccoli, beans, and even a few torn lettuce leaves.  This is accompanied by a peanut lime sauce…YUM! […]ReplyCancel

  • […] took inspiration from these recipes.  For mine, I threw together spaghetti squash, steamed broccoli and kale, and raw grated carrot, […]ReplyCancel

  • Jodie29/12/2013 - 9:45 pm

    This is without a doubt once of the livliest and flavorful dishes I have ever made. I did a few things differently to expedite the cooking process. I cooked the squash in the microwave, bought steam in bag broccoli and sautéed 3 shallots with the kale. I used cilantro and basil with the Chefs recommendation of cashews. Thank you for this recipe!!ReplyCancel

  • […] Spaghetti Squash Noodle Bowl with Lime Peanut Sauce […]ReplyCancel

  • Eatin’ Time | The Alibi19/01/2014 - 2:47 pm

    […] Spaghetti Squash Noodle Bowl w/ Lime Peanut Sauce & Broccoli (and I love that blog, […]ReplyCancel

  • […] Corn Chowder with Cilantro Cream from My New Roots Spaghetti Squash Noodle Bowl with Lime Peanut Sauce from The First Mess Pumpkin Brown Butter Pecan Pancakes from Naturally Ella Poppy Seed Crusted […]ReplyCancel

  • Ange08/02/2014 - 8:04 pm

    Made this for dinner tonight. So good. My sauce was a little vinegar-y so next time I may just put a tsp instead of a tbsp but other than that it was delish!ReplyCancel

  • […] Spaghetti Squash Noodle Bowl with Lime Peanut Sauce […]ReplyCancel

  • […] Spaghetti Squash with Lime Peanut Sauce – Here was a recipe that fit my vegetarian sensibilities. I had to tweak it so that it met Whole 30 requirements, but boy was this delicious. Instead of siracha, I used a spicy chili garlic sauce. Instead of soy sauce, I added a bit more salt. I used raw peanut butter, to avoid added sugar, and I also just completely skipped the agave sweetener. […]ReplyCancel

  • TWEAK your THAI! | PoundFit14/03/2014 - 5:13 pm

    […] were lucky enough to find this outstanding recipe on The First Mess. Make sure you check them out for more incredible eats n’ […]ReplyCancel

  • 15 Lean and Green Meals26/03/2014 - 8:47 pm

    […] Recipe & Photo credit to thefirstmess.com […]ReplyCancel

  • […] Adapted from The First Mess […]ReplyCancel

  • […] can check out the entire recipe here, but first let’s have a little chat about spaghetti squash. I’m shocked at hearing how […]ReplyCancel

  • […] a low-calorie spin on spaghetti, consider this squash noodle bowl recipe, which calls for kale, broccoli, and sesame seeds. Top off your creation with a homemade lime […]ReplyCancel

  • […] afterward craving something with tons of texture and flavor, but with a plant-forward twist. The First Mess’ gorgeous spaghetti squash bowl crossed my mind, so here’s my (streamlined, Paleo-friendly) take on her recipe plus a little […]ReplyCancel

  • […] South Carolina but you can’t take South Carolina… well, you know the story. Inspired by TheFirstMess.com I tweaked this recipe a little to make it totally Ageless Diet approved and delicious. I add a […]ReplyCancel

  • Sandy07/05/2014 - 8:09 pm

    Oh my, this was delish! I forgot to buy kale but still yummy without it, the dressing is so so so good! Thank you for the recipe!ReplyCancel

  • Lindsay21/07/2014 - 5:08 pm

    This looks delicious! I’m going back on my low-carb diet and I found this on Pinterest. Thanks for sharing! I can’t wait to eat it for dinner tonight!ReplyCancel

  • […] I love, those starchy, starchy things. I stumbled on vegan recipes like this one, and this one, and this one. While not all of those are a replacement for the love of my life, starch (Just kidding, Chris! I […]ReplyCancel

  • Amalia19/08/2014 - 6:29 pm

    Hello Laura,
    I am trying to creatively think of what I could replace the hot sauce with as I’m intolerant to hot anything it seems these days? Thank you for your great recipes!
    AmaliaReplyCancel

  • […] Lunch – Spaghetti Squash Noodle Bowl with Lime Peanut Sauce […]ReplyCancel

  • […] Quinoa Stuffed Acorn Squash 2.) Coconut Curried Lentils 3.) Spaghetti Squash “Noodle” Bowl with Spicy Peanut Sauce 4.) Sweet and Sour Tofu  5.) Creamy Lemon Asparagus […]ReplyCancel

  • Foodie Friday | loree in lace24/10/2014 - 10:41 pm

    […] Spaghetti Squash Noodle Bowl with Lime Peanut Sauce […]ReplyCancel

  • 50 Delicious Low Carb Meals -27/10/2014 - 3:56 pm

    […] Spaghetti Squash Noodle Bowl + Lime Peanut Sauce: This is a great recipe if you’re getting bored of your’re everyday lunches! (via The First Mess) […]ReplyCancel

  • Laurel31/10/2014 - 1:10 pm

    I made this last night and it was delicious!!! I didn’t have any shallot so I caramelized half a sweet onion instead. I used basil but I put a little too much because it was a little too strong of a flavor (I think I chopped up 7 or 8 leaves). Thank you!! :)ReplyCancel

  • New Recipes - Angie Eats Peace11/11/2014 - 9:27 pm

    […] up is a spaghetti squash noodle bowl + lime peanut sauce from The First Mess. I had a spaghetti squash sitting on my counter for about 2 weeks that I had no […]ReplyCancel

  • Heather @ HeatherOMade13/11/2014 - 12:40 pm

    i need this in my belly!ReplyCancel

  • Lindsay Sandberg18/11/2014 - 10:32 pm

    This was so delicious! I made it tonight and loved every bite. The only thing I did differently was to sauté a few mushrooms and shredded carrots in olive oil and add them to the mix because I am a major mushroom fan. Thanks for posting this recipe!ReplyCancel

  • Heather15/12/2014 - 3:06 am

    You can cut the spaghetti squash the opposite way and it works as well. This looks DELICIOUS. I’ve done spaghetti squash with red sauce and spaghetti squash with browned butter alfredo and Kale, but I never thought to go with an Asian influence. Definitely going to make it into the rotation!ReplyCancel

  • Pinterest Tried and True25/01/2015 - 11:09 am

    […] This was SO good and a great way to get the Thai flavor with out the rice noodles. Ingredients and instructions here. […]ReplyCancel

  • […] Spaghetti Squash Noodle Bowl + Lime Peanut Sauce By: The First Mess […]ReplyCancel

  • […] Roasted Vegetable + Quinoa Bowl Spaghetti Squash Bowl with Lime Peanut […]ReplyCancel

  • J.S. @ Sun Diego Eats26/02/2015 - 9:03 pm

    We made this for dinner the other night and it was delicious. It was my first time trying spaghetti squash and the recipe works wonderfully with it. I think sometimes people try to sub it in for pasta in dishes where it doesn’t exactly go….but here it was perfect, noodles were not missed at all.ReplyCancel

  • Kathryn04/03/2015 - 10:33 pm

    Loved this recipe. To save time, I poked holes all over the squash and microwaved it for 12 minutes. Ingredient alterations: no grape seed oil, but a little coconut oil. It came out. AMAZING. Thank you for a happy dinner! I look forward to trying more of your recipes :0)ReplyCancel

  • julie13/03/2015 - 6:46 pm

    this is a wonderful dish! loved the sauce and i plan on using it for other dishes as well. so fulfilling. thank you for sharing :)ReplyCancel

  • alwaysmovingeverstill16/03/2015 - 10:01 am

    […] 16: Spaghetti Squash Bowls. This meal comes from Laura at The First Mess (this is her photo too, it was super beautiful so I […]ReplyCancel

  • […] the table: Laura Wright’s spaghetti squash noodle bowl with lime peanut “special” sauce, scallion pancakes, roasted chicken breast,  toasted […]ReplyCancel

  • Zida Borcich16/04/2015 - 7:57 pm

    I love your blog very much. I just made this peanut sauce and it’s by far the best best best I have EVER tasted. The spaghetti squash is just cooling off now, and will top with avocados (I must) and the rest of your suggestions. Looking forward to dinner! I took your turmeric chickpeas with sunflower seed sauce (I made it into a topping for a salad of finely-cut, lightly dressed raw chard) to a potluck and people were dying over it. I must have given five people your URL. Thank you so much.ReplyCancel

  • […] Spaghetti Squash Noodle Bowl with Lime-Peanut Sauce […]ReplyCancel

pin it!pin it!pin it!

These sweet little cakes are full blown TREAT. YO. SELF. territory. They take a bit of time, the ingredients are decidedly luxe, they’re individual, there’s a fresh coconut and some dehydrating involved (although I’m super-confident that you could bake the batter in an oven at low temperature)… You have to dredge up the will and gumption to make raw food, high-vibe magic happen here. It was my birthday this week and dang if I wasn’t gonna make something delicious that made me feel so good. Also, tea + cake is one of my most loved breakfast combinations ever, so there’s that to consider.

We had a cozy weekend in the city to celebrate another year of being right here with lots of tasty eats + drinks. February tends to be kind of blah across the board, but there have been glimmers and sparks of great things to come to keep our lives a little more vibrant. I’m excited for it all, big and little.

And these cakes! I’m generally crushing on individual desserts at all times, so I went in that direction here. I enjoyed an earl grey and chocolate milkshake as part of a dessert trio at a tiny restaurant a long time ago that has sadly closed its doors since. The combination certainly latched itself onto my memory. I just had to find a most fitting dessert and well, here we are. My morning beverage of choice all fancied up with plenty of chocolate. Good life.

The cake portion is comprised of walnuts, very fine almond meal, maple syrup, vanilla + raw cacao. I dehydrated the cake (in my incredibly budget, entry-level dehydrator from the local hardware store) and was so pleased with the results. Exactly like a rich and dense brownie and heavy with deep chocolate flavour. I imagine the cake could be made in the oven as well. Put the temperature as low as you can and keep an eye on it to see how quickly it dries out. The mousse is all cashews and fresh coconut meat with strong earl grey tea, vanilla, more cacao and extra virgin coconut oil. It was my first time working with a fresh, young coconut so I was rather anxious to lay a knife into the thing and go wild. When I pried its natural lid off, I saw some pretty pink flesh inside and freaked out a bit. A little googling revealed that the pigmentation was a sign of extreme young-ness in the fruit (and good luck apparently!). All sighs of relief and lots of tasty, mega-hydrating coconut water to drink. The mousse turned out so rich and airy with subtle citrus + floral notes from the tea.

In terms of serving it up: I don’t need to tell you that cake + ice cream is a birthday staple, so there’s that. I also put a little bit of nature’s sprinkles on top in the form of pomegranate seeds. They served as a wonderfully tart respite from all of the heavy richness going on. While they’re still somewhat plentiful, I would highly recommend it.

Partyin’ down over here and all of my big hugs, friends :)

pin it!pin it!pin it!pin it!pin it!

raw chocolate cake + earl grey chocolate mousse
barely adapted from Sarma Melngailis’s recipe in Living Raw Food
serves: 4 – 6, depending on how you cut the cake
notes: I sifted the almond flour to get it super fine. This is really important in terms of the cake’s texture. I would recommend purchasing a finer ground almond meal/flour if it’s available. Also, here’s a video (link) to help you with cracking open a young coconut! I would recommend NOT using a super-cherished knife for this, just go for a sharp one with some good heft, an old beater of sorts.

raw chocolate cake:
1 cup raw walnut pieces, soaked 2 hours or longer + strained
3/4 cup maple syrup
1/2 cup filtered water
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup raw cacao powder (or cocoa powder is fine too), sifted
1.5 cups very fine almond flour
1/2 tsp fine sea salt

earl grey chocolate mousse:
1 1/4 cups raw cashews, soaked 2 hours or more
1/4-1/3 cup young coconut meat (this is what I yielded from 1 coconut)
2 tbsp raw cacao powder (or cocoa powder)
1.5 tsp vanilla extract
pinch of fine sea salt
1/2 cup maple syrup
heaped 3/4 cup strong-brewed earl grey tea (or water!)
3/4 cup liquid extra virgin coconut oil

chocolate sauce/shell:
1.5 tbsp melted extra virgin coconut oil
2 tbsp maple syrup
2 tbsp raw cacao powder
splash of vanilla extract

for serving:
pomegranate seeds/other fruit of choice
vanilla ice cream of choice (I like Luna & Larry’s Coconut Bliss)

Make the cake: combine the soaked walnuts, maple syrup, water and vanilla extract in the pitcher of a blender. Gradually bring the blender speed to high and blend until walnuts are fully liquified/incorporated into the liquid. Set aside. In a large bowl, stir together the sifted cacao powder, fine almond flour and sea salt. Add the maple and walnut mixture to the bowl. Stir with a spatula until fully combined. Spread the batter onto a parchment lined dehydrator tray (an offset spatula is very helpful here). It should be about 1/2 inch thickness. Smooth out the top as much as you can.

Dehydrate the cake at 115 degrees F for around 24 hours. You want the cake to be firm and dry on the top. The parchment should peel away with little effort. Wrap the cake in cling film and set aside in the refrigerator  until ready to use. I had mine wrapped and stowed away for 2 whole days and it was fine.

Make the mousse: combine the cashews, coconut meat, cacao powder, vanilla extract, sea salt, maple syrup and earl grey tea in the pitcher of a blender. Gradually bring the speed of the blender to high. Blend until cashews are thoroughly puréed and the mix is homogenous. With the motor of the blender on low, remove the lid and slowly pour in the melted coconut oil. This step emulsifies the filling like a salad dressing and evenly distributes the oil. Once you’ve poured it all in and the mix is homogenous, turn the blender off and scrape the mousse into a medium bowl. Cover the bowl with saran, pressing it onto the top to prevent a skin from forming. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours.

Assemble: cut  12 rounds out of the sheet of cake. I used a 1.5 inch round cookie cutter, but you could also just cut out some squares with a sharp knife. Line a small baking sheet with parchment and place 4 of the rounds onto the sheet with a bit of space around each. Spoon a fat dollop of the chocolate mousse on top of each round. Place the sheet pan in the freezer for 10 minutes. Remove the sheet pan and place another cake round and dollop of mousse on each. Place the tray in the freezer for another 10 minutes, remove it and place the final cake round on each mini cake. Store cakes in the freezer, covered in cling film, until ready to serve.

Make the chocolate sauce: whisk together all of the ingredients right before service.

To serve: put one of the cakes on each plate. Top with a spoonful of chocolate sauce, pomegranate seeds + serve a scoop of ice cream on the side.

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  • Caitlin27/02/2013 - 7:50 am

    happy birthday, laura! the cake looks absolutely fabulous!ReplyCancel

  • thelittleloaf27/02/2013 - 9:24 am

    I absolutely love baking with breakfast tea – it gives such a wonderful flavour and works so well with chocolate. As for this cake – amazingly impressive – now I just need to get myself a dehydrator…ReplyCancel

  • Winnie27/02/2013 - 9:40 am

    I am always drawn to raw food desserts like this but just don’t have the patience to make them (and also, I tried a few times but wasn’t successful with the whole coconut cracking business…wrong knife, I know). This cake is so so beautiful, though, and really inspiring…maybe I will give it a go sometime. Happy Birthday :)ReplyCancel

  • Kathryn27/02/2013 - 9:42 am

    The happiest of birthday weeks Laura! Cake is a very excellent way to celebrate.ReplyCancel

  • carey27/02/2013 - 9:54 am

    These little cakes look absolutely divine. I’m a big fan of tea-infused sweets, and I’m loving the idea of chocolate + earl grey. And with all those other flavors, bundled up into an individual cake and sprinkled with pomegranate seeds — total awesomeness. (:

    I hope you had a wonderful birthday, Laura!ReplyCancel

  • Ashley27/02/2013 - 11:10 am

    Wow!! Happy happy birthday!! This is amazing and super impressive. I love that you tried dehydrating it and it worked! Looks completely delicious. Fabulous photos. Love the sound of that chocolate sauce/shell. Treat yo’ self, indeed.ReplyCancel

  • Jessica27/02/2013 - 11:31 am

    Does anyone know how long to bake at lowest temp if we don’t have a dehydrator, my oven goes to 175 degrees….ReplyCancel

    • Laura Wright27/02/2013 - 11:36 am

      Hey Jessica,
      I would put your oven to the 175 degrees and leave the door open just a bit so that air can circulate/it doesn’t get too hot. Alternatively, if you have a fan in your oven you can just turn it on and leave the door closed. My estimation is that this cake would take 5-6 hours to bake with your oven set up at 175. I would put it in during a time where you can keep your eye on it though. As long as it lifts from the parchment paper and springs back a bit when you press your finger on it, you’re good. Hope this helps you.
      -LReplyCancel

  • Stephanie @ Girl Versus Dough27/02/2013 - 11:48 am

    Happiest birthday wishes to you, Laura! These cakes sound like the best kind of treat yo self-age. :)ReplyCancel

  • Julia27/02/2013 - 12:28 pm

    Happy Birthday Laura!!! This cake looks DEVINE :)ReplyCancel

  • Mandy27/02/2013 - 1:19 pm

    Love you site and all your recipes! Just wanted to let you know that all the “good luck” stuff surrounding the pink coconut is a myth! Coconuts should have bright white flesh (no matter how young they are). A pink or grey coconut is BAD and may give you a stomach ache. Next time, take that puppy back and get yourself a fresh one :)ReplyCancel

    • Laura Wright27/02/2013 - 1:25 pm

      Hey Mandy,
      I ate the dessert and drank the water with no stomach aches at all! Is that weird? Maybe it was good luck in some strange way ;) Thanks for your note though. Hopefully my next one is more typical.
      -LReplyCancel

  • Christine27/02/2013 - 1:52 pm

    Happy birthday Laura! This looks fantastic!ReplyCancel

  • Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar27/02/2013 - 2:43 pm

    I absolutely love this! Yum!ReplyCancel

  • Alanna27/02/2013 - 2:57 pm

    Oh my! This looks absolutely incredible! I think my gluten-intolerant, earl grey-swilling, chocophiliac sister would DIE if I made this cake for her birthday. I’ll have to find out. ;) Earl grey chocolate shakes sound amazing, too. “Nature’s sprinkles” = brilliant! And I’m glad to learn that pink coconut flesh is a good thing – I’ve been sketched out by it, too. Stunning photos, as always.ReplyCancel

  • Kristy27/02/2013 - 3:09 pm

    Happy birthday, lady! This cake looks wonderful and has me eyeballing my kitchen trying to figure out where I could possibly put a dehydrator… ;-)ReplyCancel

  • Courtney27/02/2013 - 3:42 pm

    Treat yo’ self indeed! These little cakes look so amazing and I love that your paired earl grey with a bit of chocolate. Happy Birthday!ReplyCancel

  • Erin27/02/2013 - 4:13 pm

    You’ve outdone yourself- these cakes are just gorgeous! Happy {belated} birthday and here’s to a wonderful next year! XOReplyCancel

  • Melissa // The Fauxmartha27/02/2013 - 4:37 pm

    Crazy, crazy beautiful! And the happiest of birthdays to you my friend!ReplyCancel

  • Kris27/02/2013 - 7:52 pm

    The happiest of birthdays to you, Laura! I hope this year is filled with many more glimmers and sparks. The cake is gorg!ReplyCancel

  • Claire27/02/2013 - 8:40 pm

    Simply mouthwatering. Happy birthday!!ReplyCancel

  • Shira28/02/2013 - 12:36 am

    OH. MY. This is looking unbelievable! I cannot get the thought of that chocolate & earl grey milkshake out of my mind…I must try this! Happy Birthday Laura – sounds like you made it a special one!ReplyCancel

  • marissa @ the boot28/02/2013 - 3:04 am

    wow…i am so impressed! a very happy birthday to you and what a cake to celebrate with!ReplyCancel

  • Becs @ Lay the table28/02/2013 - 9:31 am

    Happy birthday, looks incredible!ReplyCancel

  • la domestique28/02/2013 - 1:32 pm

    Happy Birthday to YOU! The cakes look like a real treat.ReplyCancel

  • Ashlae28/02/2013 - 1:48 pm

    Happy belated birthday, sweet lady! These cakes look divine and make me wish I had never returned that fancy dehydrator I ordered last year. Might just have to make them in the oven. Or get your budget friendly dehydrator ;) Stunning photos, too – you’re knocking my socks off.

    Also, when is your road trip through ‘Merica? Fingers crossed I’m still around so you + Kels + me can unite powers in the kitchen and make a killer feast.ReplyCancel

  • Nat @ The Apple Diaries28/02/2013 - 10:30 pm

    You had me at earl grey chocolate mousse! I love the addition of the coconut meat and cashews as well.

    Great recipe :)ReplyCancel

  • Hannah01/03/2013 - 9:35 am

    Happy birthday Laura! beautiful cake.ReplyCancel

  • SARA FORTE03/03/2013 - 2:26 am

    how pretty! happy birthday, sweet girl. I hope you felt celebrated and loved. Every birthday girl deserves her own personal sized cake and I can’t say I’m surprised that you made one so creative and beautiful. Cheers to a fabulous year ahead.ReplyCancel

  • Liren04/03/2013 - 1:38 am

    A belated (but hearty) happy birthday, Laura! I’m so glad you had a delicious celebration – these individual cakes are brilliant and gorgeous. So worth the labor of love and absolutely worthy of a celebration.ReplyCancel

  • hungryandfrozen04/03/2013 - 4:11 pm

    I can’t believe how utterly do-able this sounds. Although I think I’d struggle to make it to the actual assembly stage – I’d be sitting on the floor eating all the batter. Happy birthday!ReplyCancel

  • Rosie @ Blueberry Kitchen04/03/2013 - 4:49 pm

    Wow this looks absolutely amazing! I love the ingredients list too :) Hope you had a great birthday!ReplyCancel

  • dervla @ the curator05/03/2013 - 1:40 am

    Happy birthday! The light in these shots is incredible!ReplyCancel

  • SouthernSpoonBelle06/03/2013 - 5:58 am

    You share a bday with one of my favorite friends back home– a good day, indeed. Hope you had a fab day, and thanks for sharing this beautiful recipe! Any raw brownie-style treats I’ve made are always so dense (not a bad thing), I look forward to trying this more cake-like creation.ReplyCancel

  • sandra07/03/2013 - 2:30 pm

    this is so amazing. the perfect completion to your perfect day! and all vegan. I love it!! will definitely be making this at some point – when I can get enough time on my hands… Thanks!ReplyCancel

  • 50+ Best Dessert Mousse Recipes28/03/2013 - 10:40 pm

    […] Raw Chocolate Cake + Earl Grey Chocolate Mousse […]ReplyCancel

  • Emma Galloway12/04/2013 - 9:39 am

    Yum, I LOVE the look and sound of these!xxReplyCancel

  • katecrackpot21/04/2013 - 12:21 pm

    I discovered your inspiring blog when I was looking for a raw choclate cake recipe!
    I tried this one yesterday and I had to stop my bf from eating it just before I had the chance to put it into the oven.

    I just have to try it again because we both couldn’t wait for 24h, so we ate it all right away :D

    I will definitely try some other recipes you have published! Thanks for inspiration and adorable food-photos!ReplyCancel

  • […] Raw chocolate cake with lavender mousse from The First Mess […]ReplyCancel