Thank you all so much for your helpful and courteous comments! I appreciate the feedback so much. I want Millie's Kitchen to be a complete community for anyone interested in health and nutrition. I'm a little obsessed with it all you might say, but I find it all so interesting. After some things I went through with my own health, God eternally changed me and my passion for helping others through nutrition. If that's an obession, I'm glad to claim it!:)
One other obsession I have? CHOCOLATE! I love it and can't get enough of it ! You'll see tons of chocolate posts on here frequently because I enjoy it so much and its such an iconic favorite food of many.
One thing I love to do is carry a Ghiradelli 100% cacao chocolate bar with me wherever I go. Now, you don't want to eat the whole thing, but broken into 1inch by 1 inch squares, you get 1 oz. which is the approximate intake most nutritionists advise people to eat. 100% cacao means that it is PURE chocolate cacao. Chocolate is made from the cacao plant, which produces a bean, known as a cocao bean. The beans are then roasted and processed, heated and melted until you get your chocolate bar:) Many are processed and heat and then mixed with sugar or milkfat, which is what milk chocolate is. It has little percentage of cacao and more sugar and milk solids. The more percentage cacao, the healthier the chocolate. Yes, 100% cacao is pretty stout, but I love it. Its pure chocolate!
Another helpful tip is to buy 100% cacao powder instead of traditional unsweetened cocao when you bake. It's less acidic than the standard chocolate which is helpful if you suffer from acid reflux or heartburn. Its also darker and much richer!:) Its known as Dutch Process cocoa powder. My personal favorite- nothing fancy, just give me my If you're not sure about how healthy your cocoa is, just read the ingredients label. It should say only cocoa or cacao ( the same thing) and not much of anything else.
Many people ask , isn't chocolate fattening? Well, yes, it is, but its sort of like the fat from any other plant or seed- its healthy fat and has little saturated fat and no transfat. It also has no relationship to an unhealthy cholesterol when in 100% cacao form. You can also bake with these bars as well.
Either way you go, chocolate is healthy. It has no sugar if you buy 100% cacao and 9 grams of fiber per 1 oz. square!!! It's also LOADED with anti-aging antioxidants. Think of it as your own personal beauty treatment. Chocolate squares are nice to keep in your purse if you feel the urge for something sweet but need something satisfying.
Why is chocolate so satisfying? It sends seretonin, that feel good chemical in your body, straight to your brain. Smile, and Eat some Chocolate today:)
I sure did!!
Quick CocoA Cookie Recipe
2 1/2 cups rolled oats
1/4 cup Hershey's Dutch Process cocoa powder 100% cacao
1/2 cup almond butter or peanut butter
1/4 cup peanut butter ( natural)
1 can of canned pumpkin or 1 1/2 cups applesauce
1 tbsp. cinnamon
2 tbsp. Stevia sweetener powder or 2 packets ( like Stevia in the Raw or Stevita brand. You may also use Splenda if you wish )
1. Combine the oats, cocoa, cinnamon and stevia. Stir well to combine. Add the almond butter, peanut butter and pumpkin .
2. Shape into 2 inch balls and place on a nonstick cookie pan sprayed with nonstick spray.
Bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes. Remove and YUM!:)
I like to make these and freeze them ahead if I dont want them all right away. Since there are no preservatives, please keep them in an airtight contatiner for 1 day or store in the fridge. I keep mine in the freezer, and simply pull when I want one, let it thaw on the counter for 20 minutes and there ya go! Or, heat in the microwave for 10 seconds on defrost:)