I haven’t answered your email because… / and a dairy-free chocolate mousse

According to Forbes magazine, most of us are spending more than one-quarter of our working week just answering or dealing with email. And that’s just email. Then there are the text messages, the telephone calls, and the time spent on social media sites like Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, YouTube, and LinkedIn…

Given how much time we spend online, it’s a wonder anyone gets anything else done at all. Add children, a relationship, a dog, a job, laundry, cooking, cleaning, paying bills, filling up the car, grocery shopping, filing, blogging, a hobby, exercising, spending time with friends and family, and trying to find some time to read a book into the equation and truly, it’s no wonder we are all fried and frazzled. And unproductive.

A friend of mine recently brought up the topic of over-communication – that is – the business of people emailing, then re-emailing to find out why you haven’t answered within twenty minutes, then texting, then sending a message on Facebook or leaving a telephone message – all about the same thing.

We’ve all been the victim of this kind of behaviour. But my friend has five children and she owns a busy six-day-a-week business. Imagine her life. Imagine the volume of email involved in running your own full-time business with hundreds of clients, a stack of staff, and dozens of suppliers. And then factor in five children. And then imagine people emailing to ask why they don’t have an answer to a question they asked twenty minutes previously. Over-communication – the new bane of our existence.

If you’re not careful half a day goes by and all you’ve done is answer and sort emails. It makes no sense. We are all over-communicating all the time and because of that, we’re not accomplishing much more important meaningful things. The same Forbes article that states that we are spending at least 28% of our work week on email – also suggests nine email productivity tips to get your life back. These include unsubscribing from everything unnecessary (not this blog, of course!), answering only the emails that require an answer, allocating a set amount of time for reading and answering emails, and using filters, etc. If you want to see the whole article click here. I’d like to add two more things – don’t give out your email address unless you need to (why do stores keep asking me for my email address?) and keep your email answers as short and polite as possible.

So it only seems fair, given the time we’re all spending online, that I stop talking, and fill you in on this gorgeous, incredibly fast dairy-free, gluten-free, vegan mousse that my eldest daughter recently made for a family dinner. It’s healthy, tasty, and suitable for almost any dietary restriction. It’s also a breeze to make. If you want to go crazy – pour Kahlua on top. And ignore your email. Do something meaningful instead.

Dairy-free chocolate mousse

  • 2 cans coconut milk, well-chilled for several hours or preferably longer
  • 6 tbsp cocoa
  • 3-4 tbsp honey
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla essence
  • fresh raspberries, white chocolate pieces, grated chocolate, etc. to serve

Open the cans of coconut milk and scoop the thickened coconut cream off the top into a large bowl. (Save the remainder for making something else like a Thai curry – you can freeze this quite successfully.)

On medium or low-speed, whip the coconut cream, adding in the cocoa, honey, and vanilla extract. Once the ingredients are well mixed, whip on high-speed until the mixture resembles stiffly whipped whipping cream.

Spoon into glasses and garnish as desired.


14 thoughts on “I haven’t answered your email because… / and a dairy-free chocolate mousse

  1. You struck a cord here Lindy. Just yesterday I had a moment to really get into my email and ended up deleting hundreds of unnecessary emails. I sat and went through countless emails “unsubscribing”. And this is an email account I try to protect from this type of thing. Ah well, what’s really important is this dairy free chocolate mousse. I’m picking up 2 cans of coconut milk this morning and hopefully they’ll be chilled before dinner tonight because I must make this for my family. My poor son keeps asking for dessert and I promised him I would make him something tonight. This is perfect. He’ll love it and so will we!

    1. Seana – you are the best! Isn’t the email thing crazy? Out of control. And consumes way too much time even sorting.
      Hope you (and more importantly – your son!) love the mousse. The recipe halves neatly. On the other hand – growing boys – they can manage doubles of dessert without any trouble whatsoever. 😉 xo

      1. We had your mousse Lindy and it was absolutely fantastic! I was worried the cream wasn’t going to stiffen up enough and then suddenly, after several minutes it did. It was so light and although rich it wasn’t “leave you feeling sick” rich. We love it. I ended up making it a few days beyond my plan because even though I brought the canned coconut milk home I forgot and didn’t refrigerate it for two days. Where’s my mind? Enjoy the weekend! xx Seana

  2. Thats really a simple healthful dessert. I need to make it, the ingredients are something we all most likely have in our pantry Love it. My business is based on communication via, mobile phone and computer. I am definitely one of those that spend way way too much time answering emails, between the personal and work related I feel overwhelmed at times.

    1. Me too Suzanne. I write for a living so I feel like I never leave my computer and sometimes one simple freelance article will require upwards of 20 emails – introducing myself, scheduling interviews, fact checking, talking to the editor, invoicing, chasing the invoices(!), etc. I don’t download email onto my phone anymore or take my phone with me when I walk my dog. And I allocate two separate hours a day for being online. Though I am not always successful at that….
      The food is getting hastier and hastier! 😉

      1. I also don’t bring my phone with me when I am outside with Nando. I have to have my email on the phone though I am out a lot and have to have access. What I ask myself is how did business get done before this technology, successful businesses ran efficiently, business was conducted. Sometimes I feel we are too connected.

  3. That’s what I was doing, for my shortbread/sort of recipe last year. But the coconut milk I can only buy now won’t separate. Additives! Darn ‘n drat. It’s such a good ingredient to have access to. And probably quite healthy I would’ve thought. And delicious – especially mixed with cocoa. 🙂

    1. Seriously – that’s nasty. And even when you refrigerate the coconut milk overnight? Makes you wonder what they are putting in there. Must be a stabilizer of some sort. Why must they tamper with food so much?
      As for healthy – remember when we weren’t to eat coconut fat – it was a no go zone. Now it’s the new superfood. A cure for everything. Even supposed to whiten your teeth.

      1. Hah, I didn’t know that about whitening teeth. Nor did I realise it had been a no go zone. I’ve always loved the stuff, including its smell, so I probably wouldn’t have listened to supposed ‘experts’. And yes, I tried keeping the can in the fridge. Absolutely no difference. The added ingredients are to stop it separating – which is what it says on the tin. Darn, it works!

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