Dive into this Red Wine & Dark Chocolate Pudding and feel good about taking care of your heart! Read more about how you can take care of your heart by cooking and baking with heart-healthy ingredients like oats, red wine, and dark chocolate.
Not only is February a month packed with romance, date nights, and red roses, but it’s also American Heart Month. The same heart we use to love our husbands and wives, is the heart we need to take care of by feeding our bodies correctly, and that’s what today’s post is about. I’ve partnered up with Pacific Foods today to share a heart-healthy recipe showcasing not only two of their non-dairy beverages, hemp and oat, but also some of the most loved and well-known heart-healthy ingredients: dark chocolate and red wine.
First up, let’s chat about red wine and why it’s heart-healthy. Did you know that the antioxidants in red wine are called polyphenols? They may help protect the lining of blood vessels in your heart, specifically one called resveratrol. Resveratrol might be a key ingredient in red wine that helps prevent damage to blood vessels, reduces “bad” cholesterol and prevents blood clots. Some research shows that resveratrol could be linked to a reduced risk of inflammation and blood clotting, both of which can lead to heart disease. (Source: Mayo Clinic)
How about dark chocolate? “A chocolate a day keeps the doctor away.” – why didn’t our mothers tell us this one, rather than an apple (although apples are delicious but let’s be real – not as delicious as dark chocolate)! A big, long-term study in Germany this year found that about a square of dark chocolate a day lowered blood pressure and reduced risk of heart attack and stroke by 39 percent. It’s basically because of flavonoids, who increase the flexibility of our veins and arteries. (Source: Women’s Health Magazine)
And there are these two amazing products, oat and hemp non-dairy beverages. Working with these makes it an even better recipe, since you can serve these to your dairy-free guests and assure them that this creamy pudding is packed with good for them ingredients.
Starting with the oats, we’ve got “antioxidant compounds unique to oats, called avenanthramides, help prevent free radicals from damaging LDL cholesterol, thus reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease, suggests a study conducted at Tufts University and published in The Journal of Nutrition.” Packed with a full serving of whole grains, the oat non-dairy beverage brings not only a natural sweetness to the recipe, but also adds a luscious texture.
Now, have you ever tasted hemp non-dairy beverage? Made from the hemp seed, it’s a great source of plant-based nutrition including Omega 3 and 6 and essential amino acids. It’s also our go-to liquid for smoothies and shakes in our home.
This rich and creamy dark chocolate pudding is swirled with the sweetness of your favorite red wine. In this case, we used Shiraz and instead of adding it at the beginning of cooking, like most alcohol is, we whisked in the wine right at the end of the preparation. This prevents the wine from evaporating, keeping the flavors intact. Make sure to taste your pudding as you go – does it need a pinch more of salt? Go ahead and add it! Want more wine flavor? Splash in some more! This is a very adaptable recipe – just make sure to start with a great base using the non-dairy beverages and cooking the pudding until thickened.
Disclaimer: This post is in collaboration with Pacific Foods and I’ve been compensated for my time. As always, thoughts and opinions are 100% my own (not those of Pacific Foods) and I really mean it when I say you should try these non-dairy beverages! Also, health information here was shared based on online research; always check with your doctor before any changes in diet. Meaning I am NOT a doctor.