CHOCOLATE: Chocolate Pieces & Dried Apricots with Fresh Rosemary

Recipe #1: CHOCOLATE PIECES AND DRIED APRICOTS WITH FRESH ROSEMARY

Ingredients

  • 16 whole dried apricots

I used Trader Joe’s dried Turkish apricots because they’re a good size, very pliable, and a nice orange color. However, to preserve the color, apricots (and other dried fruit) are treated with sulfur dioxide. Some people are allergic to sulfur dioxide. For those people it’s definitely not safe; for the rest of us, it’s OK. For more on sulfur dioxide’s safety (and the safety of many other additives and preservatives in our food, see: http://www.cspinet.org/reports/chemcuisine.htm .

  • Enough sprigs of fresh rosemary to yield 48 rosemary needles
  • 1 tin Trader Joe’s Dark Chocolate Wedges (70% cocoa), 3.5 ounces

Each 3.5-ounce tin contains 16 small wedges of delicious dark chocolate. In two wedges, there are only 70 calories, 4.5 grams of fat and 3 grams of saturated fat. There are 6 grams of carbohydrate and 3 grams of sugar. So it’s not high in sugar.

  • for garnish: a few sprig of fresh rosemary (with needles on them) and a dozen or more fresh blueberries

Directions

  • Slit each apricot down the center, leaving both halves attached, and spread the apricot halves out (so it looks like 2 discs attached in the center).
  • On one half of each spread open apricot, place 3 rosemary needles ; close the apricot so it looks like a whole apricot with a few green needles peeking out.
  • Assemble the dessert platter by alternating the stuffed apricots and the small wedges of dark chocolate.
  • Scatter a few sprigs of fresh rosemary and some blueberries around the plate

I think you’ll agree this is a delicious and sophisticated dessert. It’s a great dish to take to a potluck!!!!

Recipe #2: DRIED APRICOTS STUFFED WITH FRESH ROSEMARY AND SHAVED CHOCOLATE

After returning from watching the new movie, Julia & Julia, I came home a little hungry and decided to indulge in a little healthy snack with what I had on hand: some apricots, rosemary and chocolate. But I made the recipe slightly differently this time.  So here’s Recipe #2 — which my husband and I actually prefer over recipe #1. You can easily try both recipes and see which one you like better!

Ingredients

  • 16 whole dried apricots
  • Enough sprigs of fresh rosemary to yield 48 rosemary needles
  • 1 tin Trader Joe’s Dark Chocolate Wedges (70% cocoa), 3.5 ounces

Why Cocoa? How does cocoa help your body prevent cancer? Which cocoa is the best kind? How can you be sure to get all the benefits from the cocoa you consume?

  • for garnish: a few sprig of fresh rosemary (with needles on them) and a dozen or more fresh blueberries

Directions

  • Slit each apricot down the center, leaving both halves attached, and spread the apricot halves out (so it looks like 2 discs attached in the center). Set aside.
  • Use a small sharp (but not serrated) knife to make chocolate shavings out of 6 of the wedges of chocolate. This is really easy. Just slide the knife down the long end of the chocolate wedge and you’ll get long slivers of chocolate — shavings.
  • On one half of each spread open apricot, put 3 rosemary needles and chocolate shavings equal to about 1/3 of a wedge of the chocolate.  Close the apricot so it looks like a whole apricot with a few green needles peeking out.
  • Assemble the dessert platter by alternating the stuffed apricots with the remaining small wedges of dark chocolate.
  • Scatter a few sprigs of fresh rosemary and some blueberries around the plate.

I’ll be taking this dish to a potluck soon!!!!

Enjoy and be healthy,

Leni

P.S. Rosemary is an anti-cancer powerhouse in its own right. More on rosemary another day…

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