THE ISLAND OF CHOCOLATE PARADISE
CHOCOLATE CRAVING AND WILD IMAGINATION CONSPIRE TO CREATE ESCAPE TO “THE ISLAND OF CHOCOLATE PARADISE”
I’ve had a chocolate jones for days.
Recently, after a delicious dinner out with family, I was hoping the restaurant would have the ultimate fix: flourless chocolate cake.
I first tasted this mind-blowingly delicious chocolate extravaganza while dining with the actor Billy Dee Williams at a beautiful Italian restaurant in Beverly Hills, as we discussed Twilight, the romantic thriller we wrote together.
From the first bite, I couldn’t believe how delicious it was! My taste buds ascended to heaven as they danced under that thick, cold, rich, dark chocolate “cake” that’s really more like fudge.
It’s so decadent, you just close your eyes, moan, and ignore everyone and everything around you while you savor the sweet, creamy sensations.
The best flourless chocolate cake that I ever had was years later, on the Odyssey yacht in Chicago last summer during my birthday dinner celebration with one of my favorite people on the planet. The strawberry-adorned slice came with a single candle illuminating the joyous occasion; and the wish that I made on it is manifesting in the very happy year that I am now enjoying. Every bite was divine, literally the icing on the cake of an amazing evening that included a sunset cruise and fireworks over Lake Michigan.
Another decadent flourless chocolate cake dream occurred as a surprise at Saginaw Valley State University, when my mother was the guest speaker in February, and the staff served it to me. I was in heaven with every bite!
See, I’m allergic to gluten (giving it up 20 years ago, way before it was vogue or even a household word, cured the asthma that had plagued me as a child, teen, and adult). Abstaining from all wheat products really limits dessert choices in restaurants. So I usually get a bowl of berries.
But if a restaurant has flourless chocolate cake, I’m in!
And when I’m having a chocolate craving, it is the ultimate satisfaction guarantee.
However, none of the places I visited during my three-day chocolate craving offered it on their menus, and that just jacked my jones up to an obsession.
I just had to have some chocolate!
I started calling every bakery and restaurant around town that might have it.
The conversations around me in the car failed to register in my mind. The passing scenes around us were a blur.
Then I remembered Whole Foods. Surely they would have a gluten-free option.
As I waited on the phone while they transferred me to the bakery, my overwhelming craving conspired with my wild imagination.
Suddenly I envision the lush landscape of Chocolate Paradise. A thick, creamy sea of melted chocolate ripples to the horizon and beckons for me to dive in. So I do. My entire being becomes coated in the thick, creamy, confection.
I float in this sweet, warm sea, basking in the endorphin-inducing delight, inhaling the rich scent, and sucking in mouthfuls of pure chocolate.
Then the warm waves wash me up onto a moist, dark-brown beach made of flourless chocolate cake, where I grab handfuls of the fudgy delight, and raise them to my watering mouth as melted chocolate drips between my fingers grasping the dense delight. The waves of warm chocolate soak into the cake, and I marvel at the texture of crystalline darkness and glistening moistness.
I am dizzy with the pleasure of tasting this decadent indulgence.
I take small bites, savoring the sensory extravaganza sparkling through my entire being, as the giant cake beach beneath me cradles my body, and the sweet-scented breeze tickles my cheeks.
I never want to leave the Island of Chocolate Paradise. I want to sit here forever with a spoon, scooping up servings and sending them to everyone I know and love.
“Ma’am,” someone on the phone said. “We have gluten-free brownies that are pretty close to what you’re describing.”
I snapped back into the 3D reality of a Sunday afternoon, in a car, blocks from Whole Foods. I hurried in, thanked the excellent bakery staff, and a short time later, savored a gluten-free brownie.
It was delicious.
But my flourless chocolate cake quest continues…
Until it’s satisfied, I am going to allow my imagination to journey into the decadent delights of Chocolate Paradise. It’s so luscious there, I just had to share a snapshot with you…
And thankfully, the fantasy has zero calories.