The off-season is the only time of year when pro triathletes have a second to spare. It's also our small window to make up for all those family gatherings missed while we were off chasing podiums. To set things right, I usually go over-the-top with Christmas dinner, bringing out the silver and the china, and serving a formal, candlelit three course meal. Think Downtown Abbey (without the staff).
But this year with baby #2’s arrival approaching, I’ve decided to host a holiday lunch party, two weeks before Christmas and three weeks before my due date. Not looking to spend hours in the kitchen when I’m supposed to be off my feet, the menu consists of festive and healthy snacks that require little or no cooking (see recipe links and details above ). The star of the spread is sure to be the vegan minty chocolate pots. Skeptical of their nutritional value? Check out the ingredient list for a surprise hit of protein.
Athlete Food Healthy Holiday Snacks
Minty Chocolate Pots (below)
Minty Chocolate Pots
For the pudding:
1 14 ounce package tofu, drained (we prefer medium or firm)
1 bag semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/2 teaspoon mint extract
For the topping:
crushed candy cane pieces
fresh whipped cream (or whipped coconut cream**)
Get out your food processor, set it up, and fill it with the tofu.
Melt the chocolate. You can do this in a double boiler, if you have one, or in the microwave. If you use the microwave, check on, and stir, the chocolate every 30 seconds. It shouldn’t take more than a few minutes total.
Add the melted chocolate to the food processor and process until the mixture is completely smooth - no lumps! This should take about 3-4 minutes and you will need to stop the machine every minute or so to scrape down the sides. Add the mint extract and process for an additional 30 seconds. If you use firm tofu, the mixture will be stiff. Medium or soft will yield more of a mousse-like consistency.
Using a rubber spatula, transfer the mixture to 6-8 miniature jam jars or ramekins and chill in the refrigerator until ready to serve. We prefer jars because they come with lids. Covering the pudding is essential because you don’t want the tofu to take on any extra flavors in the refrigerator. It also makes them easily transportable to dinner parties.
To serve, top each pot with a scoop of cream and a sprinkle of crushed candy canes and/or cocoa nibs.
**Whip the coconut cream as you would regular cream, except start with a can of chilled Coconut Cream.