For Love of Chocolate.
Almost everyone loves chocolate. In a recent study conducted by Chocolate Manufacturers Association, chocolate was ranked as America's favorite flavor. Of course, love of chocolate is not unique to modern society. As far back as 2000 years ago, Mayans created a drink from crushed cocoa beans and referred to chocolate as "food of gods."
Chocolate might even be good for us! Some medical studies have indicated some health benefits associated with eating chocolate. According to Larry Graham, president of American Cocoa Research Institute (ACRI), chocolate is very high in antioxidants. In fact, it contains one of highest levels of antioxidant compounds that can be found in any food and may reduce risk for coronary heart disease. Subjects in a study conducted at Pennsylvania State University experience higher HDL, "good," cholesterol levels when they included small amounts of chocolate in their diets. Experts have concluded that eating chocolate might increase endorphins, "feel-good" chemicals in our brains, and lift our moods. Chocolate also contains several important minerals and is a major source of copper in our diet.
So go ahead, indulge that craving. Enjoying chocolate in moderation, as part of a sensible diet, is not only tasty, it's good for you too.
Here are some recipes to help you get your chocolate fix:
1 cup (2 sticks) butter or margarine 2 cups sugar 2 teaspoons vanilla extract 4 eggs 3/4 cup cocoa 1 cup all-purpose flour 1/2 teaspoon baking powder 1/4 teaspoon salt 1 cup milk chocolate chips 1 cup chopped nuts (optional) Heat oven to 350°F. Grease 13x9x2-inch baking pan.