Valentine’s Day is all about romance. But it’s also a big industry. A guy can’t afford NOT to buy flowers, choose expensive designer chocolates, and RSVP a table for two in a classy restaurant (which incidentally jacks up the rates for the special Valentine’s menu). And a gal needs to reciprocate, with a lovely gift as well.
So we show our love with money. Hey, it’s the American way.
But how about spending another currency?
Time. And culinary effort.
So why don’t you show your love today by coming home from work a bit earlier. Warm your significant other’s heart by heating up the stovetop and cooking something special. Or by just cooking (for those who usually just microwave a packaged food).
We have a suggestion for dessert:
Not to stray too far from the chocolaty tradition, here is an interesting twist on the classic brownie recipe. This recipe, courtesy of celebrity chef Amanda Freitag and nutritionist Julie Barto employs… black beans. Beans are a low calorie, protein and fiber packed ingredient we could all consume more of. Here is an opportunity to enjoy beans for dessert.
Black Bean Brownies
1 15-oz can black beans, rinsed and drained very well
3 Tbsp canola oil
½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
Pinch of salt
½ tsp baking powder
1 tsp vanilla extract
2/3 cup brown sugar, packed or ¾ cup white granulated sugar
½ cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, divided
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Spray an 8” x 8” baking pan with cooking spray.
- In food processor, process black beans until smooth.
- Add the eggs, oil, cocoa powder, salt, baking powder, vanilla extract, and sugar, and process until smooth.
- Add ½ of the chocolate chips, and pulse a few times or stir, so that the chips are mixed in.
- Transfer the batter to the baking pan, and sprinkle the remaining chips on top of the brownies.
- Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted at the center comes out clean.
Note: the recipe originally appeared on MS Active Wellness.