Black bean brownies

Beans and pulses count as one of your five-a-day (although however many you eat they only count as one). Beans also contain lots of lovely protein, and that along with the fact that these are also gluten free, not to mention delicious, makes them one of my favourite sneaky veg bakes so far.

They were an absolute triumph - popular with both kids, with me and my husband, and with my gluten-free mum.

Ingredients
200g/7oz dark chocolate, broken into small pieces
140g/5oz unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
1 tbsp cocoa powder
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 x 400g tin of black beans or 250g/9oz soaked and cooked black beans
3 eggs
85g/3oz chopped walnuts (almonds, pecans or pistachios would be just as good)
200g/7oz caster sugar

Pre-heat the oven to 180°C/ gas mark 4. Grease and line a 24cm square cake tin.

Melt the chocolate and butter together either in the microwave, or by placing them in a large bowl over a pan of simmering water. Leave to cool a little and add the cocoa and vanilla. Stir well.

Blend the beans with one of the eggs until it is very smooth. Gradually stir this, along with the nuts, into the chocolate.

Beat the remaining eggs with the sugar until light and creamy and fold this into the brownie mixture. Pour it into the tin and bake for 25-30 minutes until set.

Leave to cool completely in the tin before cutting into squares - if it's too gooey still to do this then put them in the fridge for half an hour.

This recipe is from Pulse by Jenny Chandler, which is a lovely cookbook full of veggie and non-veggie recipes using pulses and beans. When I made it I made a half portion (because I found at the last minute that I actually only had 100g of chocolate) but I decided to include the original proportions here so as not to inflict measuring out half an egg upon you!