Molten Chocolate Lava – A low carb dessert!

Molten Chocolate Lava - A low carb dessert!
Molten Chocolate Lava – A low carb dessert!

Just one square of dark chocolate is all you need for a fabulous dessert — if you melt the chocolate and serve it warm — mixed with nuts or liqueur, or both.

On a low carbohydrate diet? No problem! When made with just chocolate and nuts, Molten Chocolate Lava has less than 10 grams of carbs per serving! Why not have some tonight?!

Ingredients per serving

  • 1/2 ounce (15 g) of 60% or higher dark chocolate bar
  • Optional: 1 teaspoon chopped nuts (e.g., macadamia, almond, or pistachio)
  • Optional: a few drops of an after-dinner liqueur (e.g., a coffee, almond, or fruit flavored liqueur)

Equipment

  • Microwaveable mini cup(s) or glass bowl(s), e.g., a cup for espresso or sake
  • 1 pair of rubber dishwashing gloves
  • 1 glass bowl with a flat bottom that’s large enough to hold all the cups
  • 1 microwaveable plate large enough to stick out from under the bowl

Steps

  • Place the mini cup(s) into a  glass bowl with a flat bottom.
  • Fill the bowl with tap water, but only up to 3/4 inch from the rims of the cups.
  • Add 1/2 ounce (15 g) of dark chocolate  to each cup.
Chocolate in water bath
Chocolate in water bath
  • Place the bowl with the cups of chocolate onto a plate and then into the microwave oven.  The plate will give you something that’s not burning hot to grasp onto when you remove the bowl from the microwave!
  • Microwave the chocolate in the water bath on high until the water in the bowl starts to boil. When the water starts to boil, the chocolate will probably be almost melted. (When I tested this, in one microwave it took 3 minutes but in another it took 4 minutes to almost melt the chocolate in the photo.)
  • When the chocolate is almost but not completely melted,  grasp the plate under the bowl and remove it from the microwave.
  • Gently stir the chocolate in each cup.
  • So as not to burn yourself, let the chocolate cool down slightly before you remove the cups from the water bath.  But if you’re in a hurry, you can put on a pair of rubber dishwashing gloves to protect your hands and then remove the hot little cups from the water bath.
  • If desired, top with nuts and/or liqueur (or maple syrup)
    • Here are some mix-ins to try:
      • Creme de Menthe with a small sprig of fresh mint to garnish.
      • Coffee liqueur and chopped macadamia nuts.
      • Orange liqueur and orange zest.
      • Amaretto and chopped almonds.
      • Shredded coconut and ginger (dry powder)
      • Real maple syrup and  chopped pistachios.
      • And…please share your ideas for great flavor combinations by leaving a comment below!

Food products

  • Dark chocolate bar – I really like Trader Joe’s 72% Pound Plus bar.  It’s delicious and not expensive. But it’s hard to break into squares. I used to use a chef’s knife to do that, but that’s a lot of work. Recently, I found an easier way to break the bar into squares. Here’s how:  Remove the wrapper and place the chocolate bar on a piece of parchment (or wax) paper in the microwave. Microwave until the bar is warm but has not started to melt. This should take about 20 – 30 seconds (but time will vary depending on the microwave oven.) Then, using your hands, break the bar into squares. If it doesn’t break easily, place the bar against the edge of the counter and give it a whack!

Health and Nutrition notes

Enjoy and be healthy!
~Leni

 

Cucumber Avocado Cilantro Soup or Smoothie

Cucumber Avocado Cilantro - A Cold Soup or Smoothie
Cucumber Avocado Cilantro – A Cold Soup or Smoothie

I love this Cucumber Avocado Cilantro concoction! It’s great as a smoothie for breakfast, or a chilled soup for dinner, or a simple snack anytime.

Makes 3 cups

Ingredients

2 cups Cilantro Garlic Broth
1/2 hothouse cucumber, sliced into rounds about 1/4-inch thick
1/2 cup plain (full fat) yogurt
1/2 ripe avocado
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
1/8 teaspoon salt

Steps

Put all of the ingredients into a blender and blend to desired consistency. Serve chilled! 

Ingredient Notes

Cucumber – I prefer use the long hothouse cucumber as it’s not waxed, has a thin skin, and is seedless.  If you use a regular cucumber, you may need to peel it if it’s waxed and remove some of the seeds, if numerous and large.

Yogurt - I especially like the Seven Stars Farm Organic Yogurt (full fat) Original Plain. Of course, there are other quality yogurts to choose from. Or you could make your own!

Salt - I like the flavor of Celtic Sea Salt and used the fine ground version for this recipe.

Enjoy and be healthy!
~Leni

Cilantro Garlic Broth. Spring in a Pot!

Cilantro Garlic Broth - Springtime Soup - from monamifood.wordpress.com
What do you do with leftover cilantro stems? How about making a delicious vegetable broth? Just toss cilantro stems, garlic, and water into a pot — and 15 minutes later you can be sipping a light and delicious Cilantro Garlic Broth! And of course, you can use this broth to make many different soups and smoothies, including this delicious Cucumber Avocado Cilantro creation.

Ingredients

  • Cilantro stems from 2 bunches of fresh cilantro
  • Garlic cloves from 1/2 a head of garlic (cut large cloves in half)
  • 4 – 5 cups filtered cold water

Steps

  1. Place the cilantro stems, garlic cloves, and  water into a pot.
  2. Heat to boiling. Cover and boil gently for 5 minutes.
  3. Turn off the heat and let the mixture steep for at least 10 minutes.
  4. To make a clear broth: Use a strainer to remove the solids.
  5. To make a pureed broth: Use an immersion hand blender to puree the contents of the pot.
  6. Refrigerate  the broth in glass containers. It keeps for a few weeks!

Equipment notes

Cilantro Garlic Broth in Mason Jars

Ingredient notes

  • If you love this broth as I do, then suddenly you’ll find yourself with extra cilantro! So what can you make with the extra cilantro? My favorite recipe is Cilantro Chutney (a pesto). It’s amazing!

Recipes made with this broth

  • I’ll post some recipes using this broth soon! And sorry about not posting recipes with chicken broth yet. It is finally spring here and I just had to cook up something green and spring-like instead.

Thank you

Enjoy and be healthy!
~Leni