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Cloud 9 Icebox Chocolate Pie March 21, 2012

Cloud 9: Who knew tofu and chocolate would pair so well?

Cloud 9 Icebox Chocolate Pie
with creamy tofu & almond crumble crust

No one will guess your secret ingredient to lighten up this slice of chocolate indulgence–at least no one who hasn’t already used this secret ingredient in her own kitchen: tofu.

Ingredients
Pie Filling
–   1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
Vegan chocolate chips if  going dairy-free. Carob is a different flavor but not healthier–just different.

–   1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
–   1 teaspoon real vanilla extract
–   1 package tofu (calcium-fortified, organic)
–   1/4 cup almond milk

Crust
–   1 & 1/3 cup almond meal
–   2 tbsp olive or canola oil
–   2 tbsp brown sugar
–   2-3 tbsp warm water (more if needed)

**Nut-Free Version: Use a whole-wheat or spelt frozen pie crust and soy or regular milk instead of almond milk in the filling to go nut-free (instead of dairy or gluten-free). The frozen or ready-made whole-wheat pie crusts can serve as a quick , healthy version if you are not serving to gluten-free guests.

Method
Almond Crumble Crust
1) Preheat oven to 350°F.
2) Mix almond meal, oil,and sugar in medium bowl or right in the pie pan. Add water 1 spoonful at a time, as needed, until mixture becomes slightly moist but not watery.
3) Smooth mixture to form thin crust, covering bottom and sides of pie pan.
4) Bake for about 15 minutes at 350°F and set aside to cool. To speed up cooling process you can place baked almond crust in the freezer or fridge while you make the filling.

Icebox Chocolate Pie Filling
1) Melt chocolate chips in a microwave-safe ceramic bowl for about 1 minute and 30 seconds at power 80% in the microwave or in a saucepan on your stove top, stirring frequently.
2) Combine ingredients, including melted chocolate, in a blender or food processor and blend until smooth.
3) Pour well-blended filling into pie crust and allow to sit and “form” in fridge for a least an hour before serving. Store in fridge.

Soy Side Note: While I do think that tofu is often way overused as a go-to vegetarian, vegan, and dairy-free ingredient, I can’t deny that it serves this recipe beautifully. (For a vegan protein fix, try pairing complementary proteins instead of using soy daily. Yes, tofu is made out of soy.)

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Healthy Dessert 2: Hot Banana with Dark Chocolate & Cocoa October 27, 2010

A little bit of dark chocolate goes a long way, making this dessert taste wonderful and indulgent but weigh in at barely 200 calories!

Healthy Dessert: Hot Banana with Dark Chocolate and Cocoa

This delicious hot dessert combines a fresh banana, dark chocolate (60% cocoa or higher), and unsweetened cocoa powder.

Try it at Home:

Place one medium sized banana on a microwave-safe plate. Slice down the middle and sprinkle in about 1 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder. Add a few small pieces of dark chocolate. (A little bit of chocolate goes a long way once the dessert is melted. I used about 1/16 or 1 square of a chocolate bar here). Pop in the microwave for 45 seconds on high. Grab a fork and enjoy!

Nutrition Highlights:

If you follow the directions above, your treat will be about 200 calories. The banana is a good source of potassium, manganese, fiber and vitamin C and an excellent source of vitamin B6. The unsweetened cocoa powder is naturally fat-free and provides fiber and a good source of copper and manganese.

Other great toppings to add: Chopped nuts (such as pecans or walnuts), wheat germ, dried oats.  The amounts and types of toppings you use will change the calories and nutrients.

 

Chocolate Walking Tour October 11, 2010

Filed under: Food Adventures — thegreatplate @ 9:11 am
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I was excited to find yet another wonderful thing to do in Boston this morning: a Chocolate Walking Tour.

Participants get to take a 2.5 hour guided tour (one of which is lead in nearby Central Square) in which they are given samples from Boston’s “paramount chocolatiers and boutiques” while learning about the history of chocolate in Boston.

Tempted? I am. Especially because today’s Boston Groupon gets buyers in for $20 (the tour and treats are normally $40).  Learn more here: chocolate walking tour.