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s.a.d. no more! trounce winter’s dark and chill with mini-parties by Katy Balcer | 1 2 3
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old-fashioned slumber party
You’re never too old. What could be more cozy and comforting than a few friends, a row of sleeping bags (points to whoever brings one from his/her youth), and no sleep ‘till Brooklyn? (I’m not saying you must listen to the Beastie Boys at your party, though nostalgic musical choices are certainly encouraged.) Plans can be open-ended; what favorite activity of your youth do you not get enough of today? Pull out Hungry Hungry Hippos or Perfection, play truth or dare, bake cookies. Puzzles are fair game, as are art projects, hide and seek, or old-school video games. Don’t forget to make time to look into the darkened mirror and call out for Bloody Mary!

When your friends are lounging about in pj’s and fuzzy slippers, wow them with the ultimate comfort food – Heavenly Hash Cake. I’ve become addicted to this chocolate monstrosity, and whenever I serve it, the praise it gets is usually expressed only in rapturous moans. It can be made with or without the nuts. But milk is the only accompaniment.

o o o

So, that may get you through ‘till April Fool’s Day or so. Nothing bad at all about hibernation, as long as you know how to do it right.



heavenly hash cake 
2 small or 1 large package of semi-sweet chocolate chips
4 eggs, separated
˝ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 teaspoons sugar
1 pint whipping cream
(and ˝ pint more if you want to use some to frost)
1 cup chopped nuts
(walnuts are good)
1 angel food cake
(store-bought is fine)

1 Beat the 1 pint of whipping cream and put aside. Break up the cake into bite-sized pieces and put aside.
2 Melt the chocolate chips on low heat. Beat egg yolks and add ‘em into the chocolate – stir it up.
3 Beat egg whites until stiff, adding the sugar in.
4 Add the egg whites into the chocolate & egg mixture. Fold them in.
5 Add nuts, vanilla and salt as well. Stir.
6 Fold (very important to fold!) in the whipped cream last.
7 Layer pieces of angel food cake with the chocolate goop until everything is used up. (I use an angel food cake mold, but it can also be layered in a casserole dish).
8 Refrigerate. Frost with additional whipped cream if you want to.

Katy Balcer sometimes finds it hard to think outside the box, 'cause she works in a cube. She's an editor, writer and resident of Ferndale, MI. 

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