Editor’s Note: May 6-12, 2013 is the Canadian Mental Health Association’s “Mental Health Week”. To add to the conversation, Chef Patricia Muzzi has decided to share a recipe that supports brain health.
Did you know…
- Our brain is made up of WATER, FAT (good fats!) & PROTEIN
- We need to replenish the brain with all three of these components, in addition to essential vitamins and minerals found in food!!
Do you want your brain smoothly revving up like the engine of a Ferrari? Of course! We want to have a clear mind to focus on our daily tasks. We want to have lots of energy, feel calm and content, possess a sharp memory, and effectively tap into our creativity!
Here’s one of our most popular recipes that will give your brain a mood-boosting tune up! Would you believe that every ingredient in this recipe has benefits for both the brain and body? For a detailed summary of the benefits of each ingredient, please email us: firstname.lastname@example.org
This recipe for Spiced Zucchini with Quinoa, and Brazil Nut Pesto, is great for your brain! Here are some reasons why:
- Zucchini’s high water content will hydrate your brain preventing you from burning out and feeling irritable.
- Quinoa, a complete protein source, contains amino acids that help your brain release feel-good chemicals that boost your mood.
- Brazil nuts are a powerful source of selenium. Just 2 to 3 Brazil nuts provide a full daily dose of selenium, which not only reduces cancer risk, but also improves brain function, memory and boost your mood!
- 6 medium sized zucchini
- 1 cup cooked Quinoa (prepare as per package directions)
- 1 leek, minced
- 2-3tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 small red bell pepper, minced
- 3 large cloves fresh garlic, minced
- 1tsp red chili pepper flakes
- 3-4tbsp pickled capers
- ½ cup Brazil nuts, coarsely chopped
- 1 bunch fresh basil (handful), roughly chopped
- 2 cups fresh flat leaf parsley, roughly chopped
- 1 large garlic clove, roughly chopped
- Extra virgin olive oil (up to . cup)
- Pinch of Himalayan salt & freshly ground black pepper
- Preheat oven to 375F.
- Using a mortar and pestle or electric processor, blend Brazil nuts with the fresh basil, parsley & garlic and a pinch of salt and pepper. Slowly add few tablespoons or more of olive oil until mixture is creamy and well blended. Set aside.
- Wash and towel dry zucchini. Cut off stems and slice in half, lengthwise. Using a small carving knife & spoon, remove some of the pulp (reserving it for the stuffing) from each slice. Drizzle some olive oil, salt, pepper over each zucchini slice.
- Place zucchini slices on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and bake for 15 minutes or until just tender (slightly al dente). Do not overcook.
- Dice zucchini pulp on a cutting board. Heat olive oil over medium heat. Add zucchini pulp, bell pepper, garlic, leeks, chili pepper flakes, pinch of salt and pepper. Sauté over medium heat for 2-3 minutes.
- Add quinoa and capers, incorporating well. Remove from heat.
- Set oven to Broil at temperature of 400F.
- Place few tablespoons of Quinoa mixture into each zucchini slice and top with pesto.
- Broil for 2 minutes or until mixture is sizzling. Delicious served hot or cold!
- Tip: Serve zucchini warm on small bunch of watercress or kale dressed with fresh lemon juice & extra virgin olive oil
Find this recipe along with many others in the upcoming Moodie Foodie Guidebook! Available in e-version & paperback.
EDIT 14-01/2014: I am happy to share that The Mood Foodie Guidebook has finally become available this week. An order form is being set up on the website along with some ‘sneak peek’ images of the inside of the book. For now, orders are being taken by email or in person and they will send you an invoice via PayPal. The e-version is being formatted and will be available within the next few weeks.
An informative and ultra-delicious introduction to good mood foods!
What you’ll learn:
- Basic brain function as it relates to food (easier to follow than science class … we promise not to put you to sleep!)
- Identifying mood foods – the good, the bad & the ugly! (with more focus on the good ones … thinking positive!)
- Why you need to be a mood-foodie by feeding your brain for optimum health! (this is not about fad dieting! Mood-foodies only play with colourful, nutrient dense foods that are delicious beyond belief!)
- Mindful shopping & cooking tips (tips are not rules! … we share helpful reminders that keep you on the alert
- Compilation of our most popular mood-boosting recipes!
- Free access to a half-hour consultation where we help you create Your Healthy Living Blueprint™
Editor’s Note: Brazil Nuts and Himalayan Salt can be found at Whole Foods.
Original article and recipe belongs to Patricia Muzzi and Mood Food Culinary. Published with permission.
Photos belong to Shareba & the In Search Of Yummy-ness blog.
This is not a sponsored post.