Most of us have already heard of the many health benefits reaped from eating dark chocolate. From antioxidants and nutrients to improved blood circulation and lowering blood pressure. As if we need anymore convincing that we should start eating dark chocolate, a recent study conducted by scientists in Hotchkiss Brain Institute in Calgary found a flavinoid (epicatechin), which they link to long-term memory formation.
Now, don’t get too excited and start over indulging with blocks of chocolate. Eating dark chocolate must be done in moderation and along with a balanced diet. Also, know that most studies have used at least 70% cacao dark chocolate (some dark chocolate candy bars actually only have 50%). Hoping that that has got you craving some dark chocolate, here’s the no-brainer instructions to making simple dark chocolate candy bark.
What you’ll need:
- 1 1/2 cup dark chocolate (chips or bar)
- 1 -2 tbsp nuts and seeds
How to make it:
Melt the chocolate. Over low heat or over a pot of boiling water. As a more convenient option, you can heat it in the microwave (in half the power) in four 30-second bursts for a total of 2 minutes or until melted. Make sure you stir each each 30 seconds.
Pour over parchment paper. Then spread with a spatula to the right thinness.
Add toppings. Sprinkle the nuts and seeds (or any other topping you like). You might have to gently press it in so they don’t fall off (like mine did).
Break into pieces once the chocolate has completely cooled and set.
Variations: For this dark chocolate candy bark I used toasted pumpkin seeds and sunflower seeds. But don’t limit yourself to that. You can add nuts and dried fruit like cranberries, peanut butter chips, etc.
Note: And just in case you were wondering, a study shows melting dark chocolate does not seem to affect it’s antioxidant properties.
Sources and further reading:
- Chocolate may be an ingredient in long-term memory
- Dark Chocolate is healthy chocolate
- Choose Dark Chocolate for Health Benefits