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Chocolate Extravaganza: Cocoa Barbecue Sauce, Salad Dressing and More

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Healthful, unique and delicious ways to enjoy this favorite food

Chocolate tastes great—and it’s good for you, too. Its antioxidant flavonols may improve blood flow, blood pressure, skin and brain health. For these light recipes, use unsweetened cocoa powder (not Dutch process, which has fewer flavonols). It provides chocolaty flavor for only about 25 calories per tablespoon.

COCOA BARBECUE SAUCE

  • 3 Tbsp dark brown sugar
  • 4 tsp chili powder
  • ½ cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 cup bottled barbecue sauce
  • 1 ¾ cups vegetable stock
  • ¼ tsp ground cumin
  • ¼ tsp ground cinnamon
  • ¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 Tbsp chopped fresh cilantro

In a small saucepan, combine first 7 ingredients. Bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 30 minutes. In last 5 minutes of simmer, gradually add cocoa, stirring until dissolved. Stir in cilantro. Remove sauce from heat. Use as a marinade or serve over cooked beef, chicken, fish or pork. Makes about 2 cups or 6 servings.¹

COCOA CURRY SALAD DRESSING

  • 1 Tbsp minced garlic
  • ¾ tsp brown sugar
  • ¼ tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 ¾ tsp yellow curry paste
  • 5 tsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • ¼ cup orange juice
  • ¼ cup rice vinegar
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 tsp chopped fresh chives
  • 2 tsp chopped fresh parsley

In a medium-size bowl, mix garlic, sugar and mustard. In a separate bowl, mix curry, cocoa, orange juice and vinegar to make a paste. Stir paste into first bowl. Whisk oil into mixture until fully combined. Stir in seasonings and herbs. Drizzle over salad greens. Makes 8 servings.¹

AIRY CHOCOLATE DELIGHT

  • ½ cup cold water
  • 2 envelopes unflavored gelatin
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 113 cups nonfat dry milk powder
  • 13 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla extract
  • Dash of salt
  • 5 Tbsp sugar or sugar substitute*
  • 8 large ice cubes

Pour cold water into a blender, sprinkle gelatin on top and let stand 4 minutes. Stir well. Add boiling water. Cover and blend until gelatin dissolves. Add milk powder, cocoa, vanilla and salt, and blend on medium speed until well mixed. Add sugar or sugar substitute and ice cubes, and blend on high speed until smooth. Pour into 8 small bowls, swirling tops. Cover each with tented foil. Refrigerate for 4 hours or until firm. Makes 8 servings.²

*Use a heat-stable sugar substitute that measures like sugar, such as Splenda Granulated.

Recipes: ¹Chef Ken Gladysz, Hotel Hershey … ²Hershey Kitchens.

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Source:
Sources: Shara Aaron, RD, and Monica Bearden, RD, co-owners of NutCom Nutrition Communications. They are authors of Chocolate—A Healthy Passion, which won a Gourmand World Cookbook Award and from which three of the above recipes are adapted. They write and lecture nationally on nutrition, health and wellness. www.nut-com.com
 

Date: November 1, 2009 Publication: Bottom Line Health
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