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Mexican Chocolate Cream Pie
For Crust:
• 1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs (about 10 cookie sheets), divided
• 2 tablespoons sugar
• 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
• 1/8 teaspoon salt
• 2 tablespoons egg white
• 2 tablespoons butter, melted
• Cooking spray
• Filling:
• 1/2 cup sugar
• 2 tablespoons cornstarch
• 1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa
• 1/4 teaspoon instant espresso powder
• 1/8 teaspoon salt
• 1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
• 1 large egg
• 1 large egg yolk
• 1 3/4 cups 2% reduced-fat milk
• 2 ounces dark chocolate, chopped
• 1 1/2 cups frozen reduced-calorie whipped topping, thawed
Preparation
1. Preheat oven to 375°.
2. To prepare the crust, reserve 1 tablespoon crumbs for topping. Combine the remaining crumbs, 2 tablespoons sugar, cinnamon, and 1/8 teaspoon salt in a bowl, stirring well. Stir in egg white and butter. Press crumb mixture into bottom and up sides of a 9-inch pie plate coated with cooking spray. Bake at 375° for 9 minutes or until lightly toasted; cool completely on a wire rack.
3. To prepare filling, combine 1/2 cup sugar and the next 7 ingredients (through egg yolk) in a bowl, stirring well with a whisk. Place the milk in a medium, heavy saucepan over medium-high heat; cook until milk reaches 180° or until tiny bubbles form around edge (do not boil). Gradually add hot milk to egg mixture, stirring constantly with a whisk. Return milk mixture to pan; cook over medium heat 10 minutes or until thick and bubbly, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Add chocolate; stir until smooth.

4. Place pan in a large ice-filled bowl for 10 minutes or until mixture cools, stirring occasionally. Spoon filling into crust, and cover surface of filling with plastic wrap. Chill for 3 hours or until set; remove plastic wrap. Spread the whipped topping over filling; sprinkle with reserved cracker crumbs.

Nutritional Information
Amount per serving
• Calories: 278
• Fat: 10.3g
• Saturated fat: 5.8g
• Monounsaturated fat: 2.8g
• Polyunsaturated fat: 1g
• Protein: 5g
• Carbohydrate: 42.1g
• Fiber: 1.3g
• Cholesterol: 57mg
• Iron: 1.5mg
• Sodium: 231mg
• Calcium: 81mg

Grilled Dark Chocolate Sandwiches

Both simpler and more decadent than a chocolate croissant, a grilled chocolate sandwich is a marriage of bread and chocolate in which the two components are evenly matched.
Ingredients
• 1/4 cup fat-free evaporated milk
• 3 ounces bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
• 1 1/2 tablespoons butter, softened
• 8 slices thin whole-wheat or white sandwich bread
• 3 tablespoons bittersweet or semisweet chocolate chips
• 2 tablespoons chopped toasted hazelnuts, (optional)
Preparation
1. Heat evaporated milk just until boiling. Add chocolate, let stand for 1 minute, then whisk until smooth. Let cool slightly.
2. Spread butter on one side of each slice of bread. Divide the chocolate mixture on the unbuttered side of 4 slices, leaving a little border. Press chocolate chips and nuts, if using, into the chocolate. Cover with the remaining slices of bread, buttered-side up, and press lightly.
3. Cook the sandwiches in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat for 1 to 2 minutes. Turn over, press with a spatula, and cook until nicely browned and the chocolate is barely melted, 30 seconds to 1 minute. Serve warm.
Servings: 8

Nutrition Analysis Per serving: 151 calories; 7 g fat ( 4 g sat , 1 g mono ); 6 mg cholesterol; 21 g carbohydrates; 4 g protein; 2 g fiber; 131 mg sodium; 28 mg potassium.
Carbohydrate Servings: 1 ½ CHO Choices

Chocolate Dipped Bananas

Ingredients
• 4 large ripe bananas, peeled and cut into thirds crosswise
• 3/4 cup semisweet or bittersweet chocolate chips, melted (see Tip)
• 1/4 cup shredded coconut or chopped pistachios

Preparation
Peel 4 large ripe bananas, cut in thirds and insert a popsicle stick into the cut end of each piece. Melt ¾ cup semisweet or bittersweet chocolate chips. Cover each piece of banana with melted chocolate and sprinkle with coconut. (Reheat chocolate, as needed, to keep it melted.) Place the bananas on a baking sheet lined with parchment or wax paper and freeze until frozen, about 2 hours.

Tips & Notes

Make Ahead Tip: Store airtight in the freezer for up to 1 week. | Equipment: 12 wooden popsicle sticks
Tip: To melt chocolate, microwave on Medium for 1 minute. Stir, then continue microwaving on Medium, stirring every 20 seconds, until melted. Or place chocolate in the top of a double boiler over hot, but not boiling, water. Stir until melted.

Servings 12:
Nutrition Analysis Per serving:

100 calories; 4 g fat ( 3 g sat , 1 g mono ); 4 mg cholesterol; 6 g carbohydrates; 6 g added sugars; 1 g protein; 2 g fiber; 7 mg sodium; 207 mg potassium.

Source of recipes Eating Well website

For more heart healthy recipes and to find a healthy cooking class go to: www.mercyhealthmuskegon.com and click on Healthy Living

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