Gluten Free Salted Caramel Chocolate Mug Cake – aka Cake for the Heartbroken
There seems to be an unfortunate malaise going around with several of my friends these days and I am not talking about the flu (although that seems to be running rampant as well). I’m talking about heartbreak.
I have no idea as to what the contributing factor is to all these broken hearts, maybe the holidays or the start of a new year? But similar to having the flu, does it really matter why? No, what really matters is with a broken heart, just like a sick body, the important thing is to start healing.
When you’re physically ill the doctor will often tell you to get plenty of rest and drink lots of fluids. What I have discovered is that’s pretty much the path my heartbroken friends take as well. The differences being that the rest is accompanied by hour upon hour of romantic comedies or Downton Abbey episodes from Netflix and the fluids consist of red wine or tequila.
I’m no relationship expert, food is more my area. So, I did a little research as well as an informal survey to find out what, if any, relationship exists between food and heartbreak.
Apparently all the things that can happen to a person when they are in the beginning stages of a new love (loss of appetite, thinking about the person constantly, daydreaming, fantasizing…) can happen when someone is going through a break up, only in the former they make us feel all giddy and excited and in the latter they suck. According to my survey, when heartbroken, first we don’t want to eat and then we want comfort food. Apparently, LOTS of comfort food!
Relationship experts will tell you that you should not try to eat your heartbreak away. Instead, you should stop obsessing about your lost love, work out, take up a hobby like learning French or jiu-jitsu, and realize that love, no matter how it ends, is always a blessing. Um, ok. I’m sure that’s great advice. And probably much better than eating a dozen chocolate-covered doughnuts.
In my very non-expert and humble opinion, a little comfort food for the heartbroken can’t hurt. Unless you succumb to the temptation to eat gluten. Let’s face it, your heart hurts enough, let’s not make it worse by damaging your body as well.
I have devised what I consider the perfect recipe for the brokenhearted – Gluten Free Salted Caramel Chocolate Mug Cake – aka Cake for the Heartbroken.
First of all, this recipe makes just one cake – portion control is important right now. Secondly, it contains chocolate. Chocolate has been shown to elevate mood and diminish stress, anxiety, and depression – that’s a no brainer. The cake has brown sugar in it. Heartbreak is a bitter pill to swallow and as Mary Poppins told us, a spoonful of sugar helps the medicine go down. It also has a bit of sea salt in it and if you have been crying your eyes out, you probably need to replenish that lost salt.
The recipe takes very little effort to prepare and is ready in about five minutes, leaving your time and energy free for watching Hugh Grant movies. And there is something so comforting and cozy about eating warm, gooey cake. Finally, it’s cake! Ok, maybe cake doesn’t cure all things, but a little bit now and again sure won’t hurt!
By the way, if you are not heartbroken – first of all, great. Secondly, this is a pretty darn good treat to share with someone you love, even if that someone is yourself!
Recipe Notes: I used my all-purpose gluten free flour blend but any good flour blend will work or just plain sweet rice (also called glutinous rice flour) can be used. I used Wholesome! Organic Light Brown Sugar, dark brown is fine if you prefer. If you don’t have sea salt, kosher salt will do in a pinch (pardon the pun!) To make the recipe dairy free, sub the butter and milk with dairy free and use dairy free caramels such as Cocomels.
In a microwave-safe mug or bowl, melt the butter in the microwave for about 30 seconds. Swirl the melted butter to coat the inside of the mug. Add the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, milk, brown sugar, egg, and vanilla to the mug and whisk until the batter is smooth. Push two of the caramels down into the batter and make sure the batter covers them. Microwave on high power for 90 seconds.
Cut the remaining caramel in half, place on top of the cake and sprinkle with some sea salt. Microwave for another minute or until the cake is firm and the caramel on top has softened and starts to melt.
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