Friday, January 10, 2014

Chia Seeds

I decided to buy these after seeing a recipe for a chocolate dessert on Pinterst, almost discouraged by their price at R89 for the small pack 200g and R220 for the bigger one, I though they better be good... well they definitely are good for you. Labelled a super food which means the most nutrients are packed into such a small seed, comprising mainly of seed based Omega 3 (ALA). Originating from the mint family native to Mexico.

Known to boost energy, aid digestion and lowering cholesterol. They also contain calcium, phosphorus, manganese and fibre. They may be eaten raw, milled or soaked and have very little flavour so may be added without affecting the dish and actually have a thickening effect which could be used in soups and pie fillings.

My main meals of the day are breakfast and dinner, being lactose intolerant I get bored of my options sometimes and am also in a hurry. This first dish is a great breakfast option and with a few changes works great as a dessert too. Dairy and wheat free you will be addicted.

Chia Seed, coconut and fruit pudding / porridge
Serves 2 - 3

1 tin coconut milk / almond milk
4 tbsp chia seeds
honey / agave to taste
cubed fruits of your choice

Soak the chia seeds in the coconut milk / almond milk for about an hour or over night, stirring to loosen the seeds.
Add honey to taste and then go wild with the flavours.
1. I added chopped peach, orange segments and chopped chickpea fudge
2. Blend a banana into the coconut milk then soak and add chopped coconut and passion fruit.
3. Raw cocoa 
4. Vanilla and nuts
5. Savoury style lemon grass, chilli, ginger and lime
6.Use them in cocktails

This was delicious and so simple to make and reminded me of the street drinks in Vietnam or bubble tea as once swollen they have a tapioca texture.

I also as shown below made a salad of rocket, cucumber, tomato, rotisserie chicken, mustard and anchovy mayonnaise, topped with chia seeds and parsley. The dressing is just mayonnaise, mustard, anchovy, lemon juice and olive oil blended and seasoned to taste Also really good.

The other reason I wanted to try them was for their benefits when it comes to running which is my newish passion at the moment, apparently making you run longer and faster and with a nickname "the running food" I wanted to look into using them on my next race. The Aztecs mixed it just with water for hydration but they are being used in plenty of energy bars now. The ALA (alpha linoleic acid) also helps keep energy levels high and will assist with inflammation. I will report back once I have tested it but in the meantime I am going to enjoy trying a few recipes.

I bought mine from Wellness Warehouse but I am sure they are available at ant health shop.

Pictures and recipe copyright by Tamsyn Wells.

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