19th May 2013: As I crossed the finish line of my first ever half-marathon, I gulped down some Gatorade and grabbed myself a goodie bag. Its treasures included the weekend newspaper, an apple, a sports drink, a deodorant (were they trying to tell me something?!?) and a packet of tiny black seeds the size of pinheads. That was my first encounter with chia seeds. I dutifully sprinkled some over our cereal the next day – and that was the end of that.
Until this week…
You know how we’re always looking for something different to eat for brekkie in our house? This week, we gave chia seeds a whirl. B and I ate bowls of my Chia Pudding, Caitlyn tried my Chia and Strawberry Jam on toast and Caleb, being Caleb, stuck to his ‘Healthy Nutella’ – he doesn’t do jam!
Now I’m not one to jump onto the “chia seeds are a superfood” bandwagon. For me, it’s all about eating everything in moderation. But just so you know, nutritionists have said that chia seeds are gluten-free, rich in Omega-3 and super-high in fibre. Soak them in any liquid like milk or juice and they will absorb it all, bulging up ten-fold in the process.
Unfortunately, my kids found their gelatinous texture “icky-sticky”.
Truth be told, they remind me so much of the sabja (basil) seeds used in falooda we used to have back in India. As a child, I refused to eat/drink falooda precisely due to the slimy seeds! See the similarity?
Of late, I’ve seen chia seed concoctions all over the place – health food cafes, farmers’ markets and even on my favourite food blog Not Quite Nigella.
So here are two easy-peasy breakfast recipes using chia seeds and strawberries.
Chia Seed Pudding or Porridge
This recipe requires no cooking. Double Yay!
2 tbsp chia seeds (black or white)
2 cups milk
Seasonal fruit, chopped
2 tbsp yoghurt
2 tbsp honey
Nuts, chopped (optional)
Soak the chia seeds in your choice of milk – regular/coconut/almond overnight.
By the next morning, your chia seeds will have drunk every drop of milk – magic!
Give the chia seeds a good stir to break up any lumps. Add more milk, if required.
Add honey and yoghurt, according to taste.
Chop up some fruit (whatever’s in season). I tried it with bananas and berries and can’t wait for mangoes.
Garnish with chopped nuts if you like. Grab a spoon!
Chia Seeds and Strawberry Jam
This jam is dead-set easy to make (‘set’ being the operative word) because it does not require pectin as a setting agent. The chia seeds do the trick for you! Better yet, they give your jam some added fibre.
1 punnet strawberries (250g), washed and hulled
1/4 cup sweetener of your choice (honey, maple syrup, agave or just plain old sugar)
1 tbsp chia seeds
Quarter your cleaned strawberries and add to a saucepan on medium heat.
Add sugar/honey/sweetener of your choice and bring this to a boil.
Reduce heat and mash with a potato masher or fork.
Cook until your jam turns mushy, tasting to see if you want to add more sweetness.
Add your chia seeds and turn off the heat. Leave uncovered.
Within 15 minutes, your jam will have set thanks to the chia seeds.
Spoon into a clean jam jar and keep refrigerated.
Caitlyn gave it two thumbs’ up! 🙂
So tell me, have you tried chia seeds? Or any of these new “superfoods”? What do you usually eat for breakfast?