Chia seeds have a pleasant nutty flavour and are incredibly versatile, meaning they can be used in a tremendous amount of ways so you’re bound to discover some delicious and convenient recipes to incorporate them into your lifestyle!
Traditional to Mexico, Chia is still popularly consumed as a drink known as chia fresca, which is made by soaking the chia seeds in water until they turn gelatinous, before adding lemon or lime, and some sugar. It is also often found baked with corn into a dry cake called Iskiate.
Chia can be consumed raw, cooked, and even sprouted. They can be used whole, ground, or as a gel.
To make chia gel:
Place 1/3 cup chia seeds into a sealable container, add 2 cups of water, whisk or stir briskly. Allow the mixture 5-10 minutes to soak before whisking it a second time and placing it into the refrigerator. It will form into a gel which can be kept for up to 3 weeks.
Grinding or blending
This is a fantastic way to create some fabulous recipes; why not throw a few in a smoothie or blend them in with nut butters and sauces for an extra boost? One of my favourite things to do is blend some together with my favourite smoothie ingredients or with greek yogurt and frozen fruit to make an ice-creamy desert with a hint of nuttiness!
If you’re baking bread, cakes or other goodies, you can swap some of the oils or butter for some grounded chia seeds (they can replace half of the usual fat in almost any recipe). This is the perfect way to go if you want to weave some chia goodness into your whole family’s diet without them even noticing!
How about sprouting the seeds and adding them to salads and sandwiches?
The following site has some valuable detailed information and instructions on the best way to sprout your chia seeds.
Chia seed porridge is great alternative to grains. Simply place the seeds in a bowl, pour over double the amount of warm water or milk and leave for several minutes. The chia will absorb the water and expand into a porridge-like texture. Embellish it with any other super tasty ingredients you fancy for added flavour and you’ve got yourself one brilliant breakfast! I’ve often had this in the morning and have found it to noticeably sustain my energy and hunger levels for the entire day! What’s more is that it’s extremely quick and easy to make!
Whole and simple
Of course, if you prefer to keep it even more simple, or you’re active and on the go, why not just sprinkle a few over your salad or stir fry, or add them to some yogurt? You can even just nibble on them on their own for a quick snack, although it may be worth noting that soaking them is said to enhance their nutritional absorption dramatically so it is recommended to take them with liquid or moist food where possible.
If you’re still stuck for ideas, many tried and tested recipes for chia seeds can be found on the internet, or if you’re feeling even more adventurous you can experiment and whip up some of your own!