Chocolate Chip Meringue Kisses

3 large egg whites warmed to room temperature
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/8 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa, divided
1/2 cup semisweet chocolate mini chips
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 250 F degrees. Cover a two baking sheets with parchment paper, securing with masking tape if necessary. Combine sugar with cocoa in a small bowl blending together with a whisk.

Place egg whites, cream of tartar and salt in large copper or stainless steel bowl and beat with a mixer at high speed until foamy. Gradually add sugar/cocoa mixture to egg whites, 1 tablespoon at a time beating at medium speed until stiff peaks form. (You know that the meringue has reached the stiff peak stage when you lift the beaters out of the mixture and the egg whites are shinny, firm and stand up.) Gently fold chips and vanilla into meringue.

Spoon mixture into a pastry bag fitted with a 1/2-inch round or star tip. You can also use a large zip top plastic bag with one corner snipped off to form 1/2 -inch opening. Pipe 30 2-inch round mounds at least 1/4 inch apart onto prepared baking sheets.

Bake at 250 F degrees for 1 1/2 hours. Turn oven off and cool meringues in closed oven for 1 hour. Remove from oven and carefully remove cookies from paper. Using a fine sieve, dust cookies evenly with remaining 1 tablespoon cocoa.

Yield: 30 cookies each at approximately 32 calories; 0.7 gram total fat; 6.7 grams carbohydrate; 0 dietary fiber; 0.6 gram protein; 0 cholesterol; 16 milligrams sodium.

High fat version contains 50 calories and 2 grams total fat

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