Brownie Points or Epic Failure: No Bake Chocolate Mousse

I thought long and hard about a Valentine’s Day dessert recipe to tout to the twenty something gal who’s smart and savvy, but has little time to spend in the kitchen. The ease of  this chocolate treat made me curious; it is soooo easy to prepare even kids can make it. I’m not talking You, twenty something gals, I’m talking first and second graders, here! I watched them at a local Williams-Somona.  It was a promotion for Jennifer Tyler Lee’s book The 52 New Foods Challenge.  And so, that’s how the story begins, of this Valentine’s Day chocolate recipe…No Bake Chocolate Mousse

Although appealing to me, I must be honest with you, I didn’t score any brownie points with ‘the man’.  He would have been happier with.. ahem… Bobby Flay’s version (which btw takes over one hour and fifteen minutes to prepare). While cleaning up, He (aka the man) challenged me, “Are you altering the recipe for some minor nutritional improvements?” 

So here’s how it break downs, Honey:

Bobby Flay’s Dark Chocolate Mousse recipe  per serving : 450 calories, 33 g fat, 21 g sat’d fat, 97 mg cholesterol, 234 mg sodium, 17 g sugar, 2 g fiber.

Made according to my recipe (posted below) per serving: 227 calories, 14 g fat, 4 g sat’d fat, 1 mg cholesterol, 25 mg sodium, 15 g sugar, 7 g  fiber

Clearly this one was not so minor. That said, if you know your man loves to get jacked up on sugar and prefers milk chocolate to dark chocolate DO NOT ATTEMPT THIS RECIPE. It will fail. Save it instead for a girls night in. But, if he’s from California, you may proceed.No Bake Chocolate Mousse

For the interest of anyone who may be reading,  and asking me (along  with members of my family whose names I will withhold),  the obvious question: Why do you continue to use dark chocolate instead of milk chocolate or avocado instead of heavy cream, if you know,  no one you’re cooking for  will appreciate it (except yourself)? These are some of the internal conflicts a blogger often faces and legitimately described by Regan Jones R.D. in her post How My Blog was Ruining Dinnertime. (If you’re interested in this topic and you haven’t read this, you should.) I have those same blogging issues. And yes, sometimes my family  accuses me of.. gasp.. cooking for the blog. So do I believe I should have made the dessert Bobby Flay’s  way?  No. For whatever it’s worth, I try to follow a give and take. Sometimes making the family favorites, other times pushing the envelope.  I do find that getting individuals to expand their palates is not an overnight process. (Twenty years ago my husband would not touch yogurt with a ten foot pole, now he reminds me when we’re out.) Yes, I said twenty years!!! Don’t give up! I do think it’s important to continue to expose individuals to healthier choices, mixed in with  familiar foods. It’s not perfect, but I’m not trying to be perfect at what I do, just good at it: wife, mother, blogger, and dietitian.

Let me know how you try to introduce new foods to your family? or do you prefer to just play it safe?

No Bake Chocolate MousseNo Bake Chocolate Mousse (serves 2)

(Adapted from Chocolate Avocado Pudding published in The 52 New Foods Challenge)

by Diane Boyd

Ingredients

  • 1 avocado
  • 1 Tablespoon cocoa powder
  • 3/4 ounce dark chocolate, melted
  • 1 pitted date
  • 1/4 cup skim milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 Tablespoons sweetened whipped cream
  • handful of pomegranate seeds for garnish

Instructions

1. Add avocado, cocoa powder, date, skim milk and vanilla to blender or food processor.

2. Process until smooth.

3. Melt dark chocolate in a microwave safe bowl or in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add melted chocolate to mixture in blender and blend again until creamy and smooth.

4. Refrigerate for 10 minutes or up to 24 hours. Serve with whipped topping. Garnish with pomegranate seeds.

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Frozen Chocolate Raisin Pie

Frozen Chocolate Raisin PieDisclosure: By posting this recipe I am entering a recipe contest sponsored by the California Raisin Marketing Board and I am eligible to win prizes associated with the contest. I was not compensated for my time.

Winding down after a long day often means curling up with a good book. Last month I was reading this book. Photo-216Perhaps the 1934 edition of Hershey’s Cookbook wasn’t what you expected? (Yes, I am weird like that; reading a cookbook like a novel. ) Apparently my husband was reading too, because he asked me to make the chocolate raisin pie on page 44. Then the Recipe Redux surprised us with another member opportunity: a holiday recipe contest sponsored by California Raisins. The challenge is to enhance the holidays with delicious foods that fit the category extra nutrition and less indulgence.  Looks like the 1934 Hershey’s Chocolate Raisin Pie is in for a revision!

Say hello to the 21st Century Chocolate Raisin Pie that debut in my house  this Thanksgiving, as a test pie.Frozen Chocolate Raisin Pie

Of the eleven ingredients in the original recipe, I eliminated 6, including the added sugar and unbaked pie shell. Both the chocolate and the natural sweetness of the raisins, make this just sweet enough. The pie gets a contemporary new twist with the addition of silken tofu, a versatile lean protein. I think it’s the perfect ingredient for this creamy dessert because it acts as a sponge and takes on the flavors you pair it with, so you can taste the heros of this dessert:  chocolate and  naturally sweet California Raisins.

Join me in a  healthier, less indulgent approach to the holidays by adding this sun dried fruit to  a myriad of foods from desserts to savory main dishes.   The ingredient list says it all: Raisins. The nutrition label tells this good story: zero fat, no cholesterol, and no added sugar. Plus raisins offer 9% of your daily fiber and potassium, and 6% of your iron.  California raisins will steal the culinary spotlight with  added nutrition and natural sweetness.  Please visit the links at the bottom of this post for delicious and festive ways to include  California raisins in your holiday spread.

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Frozen Chocolate Raisin PieFrozen Chocolate Raisin Pie

(adapted from Hershey’s 1934 Chocolate Raisin Pie)

by Diane Boyd

Ingredients

    for the crust

    • chocolate wafer cookies (3 cups crumbled )
    • 4 Tablespoons melted butter

    for the filling

    • 2 cups California raisins
    • 2 cups water
    • 1 cup semi sweet chocolate chips
    • 24.6 ounces extra firm silken tofu, drained of water
    • 2 teaspoons vanilla
    • 1/4 teaspoon good quality salt such as Himalayan crystal salt
    • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

    Instructions

    for the crust

    1. Process chocolate cookie wafers in a blender or food processor until sandy textured.

    2. Add melted butter and stir. Once combined, take out 4 tablespoons and reserve for topping.

    3.  Press remaining crumb mixture  into bottom of one 9 1/2 inch pie plate (avoiding sides) or two smaller pie tins. Set aside.

    for the filling

    1. Place raisins in a small saucepan. Add enough water to cover. Heat and simmer for  10 minutes. Drain raisins and set aside.

    2. Add chocolate to a small saucepan and melt over low heat.

    3. Add tofu, raisins, melted chocolate, vanilla, salt and cinnamon to a blender and process until smooth. Pour mixture on top of crust. Use remaining cookie crumbs to garnish top. Freeze for 2 hours, then serve. If in the freezer longer than 2 hours, allow to thaw slightly before serving. Serves 12

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