Bitter chocolate and Brazil nut roast
Even if you are not a vegetarian, it is a good idea to incorporate veggie dishes at least once a week. This dish is perfect for an easy mid-week meal when you feel you need a boost in mood.
Scientific studies have actually proved that chocolate makes you feel good because it’s full of a mix of mood-elevating chemicals, including caffeine, theobromine, tyrosine and tryptophan. It’s important to use dark chocolate with a high cocoa solid content as it offers more health benefits than milk chocolate, it is also lower in fat and contains antioxidants. Brazil nuts are one of the best sources of the mineral selenium.
Studies have shown increased depression, irritability, anxiety and tiredness in people with low selenium levels – so by just eating a few Brazil nuts a couple of times a week might help to improve your mood.
Ingredients (Serves Serves 6-8)
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 6 shallots, finely sliced
- 3 garlic cloves, finely sliced
- A few sprigs of thyme, leaves picked
- 1 tsp nigella seeds
- 1 tsp of dried chilli flakes
- 50g dark chocolate (high cocoa solid content), grated
- 500g mushrooms, chopped
- 1-2 tbsp of masala
- 5 slices of seeded bread
- 150g chestnuts, chopped
- 200g Brazil nuts, chopped
Preheat the oven to 180C/gas 4. Place a frying pan on a medium heat and drizzle in a little oil. Fry the shallots till soft, add the garlic, thyme, nigella and chilli. Reduce the heat and sauté the veg for 10 minutes until sticky. Turn up the heat, add a little more oil and the mushrooms. Fry till mushroom edges are golden, add a splash of masala and sauté until the liquid has cooked away.
Blitz the bread into crumbs in a food processor. Add half the mushroom mix and blend to a purée. Add half the nuts and pulse. Add the remaining mushrooms and pulse until it just comes together but is still rough. Stir in most of the remaining nuts and the grated chocolate. Press into a greased 150ml dish; top with leftover nuts. Drizzle with olive oil and bake for 35-40 minutes.