Happy Saturday!

Meeting with cool clients? Check. Grocery shopping? Check. House cleaning/floor mopping? Check. Lunch with my wonderful cousin, who’s in town for the weekend? Check. Editing? Check. Plans to hang with a dear friend tonight? Check. Beautiful, sunny weather? Check.

In spite of a long week, this day has been a joy from start to finish. Not least because I got to play around with a cool new breakfast. During the week, when I’m rushing around and transporting breakfast to the office, I tend to stick to the tried and true. Raw options include fresh green juice from the juice bar near my office; avocado pudding (with or without sprouted bread); bananas with nut butter; or dehydrated buckwheat with almond milk. Cooked staples are my beloved oats or oat bran; leftover grains, reheated with nut milk; baked yams; and sprouted grain bread with nut butter. Simple, easy. (For more of my fave brekkies, check out this post).

On the weekends, when I have a more time and access to my juicer, blender, and stores of culinary creativity, I like to mix it up. I’ll often throw together a smoothie I’ve been meaning to try, a new juice combo, or something altogether new.

Today, I decided to try a blended chia pudding. I’ve shared some recipes for regular chia pudding with you all before; the idea this time was to blend the pudding, rather than leaving the chia seeds whole, which creates that tapioca effect you see below:

My game plan was simple: blend 1 oz chia seeds (this is about 3 tbsp) with 3/4 cup nutmilk and 2 tbsp of carob powder in my Vitamix. I quickly realized I was out of nutmilk, so I whipped up a hazelnut milk like so:

Hazelnut Milk (Yields at least 4 cups)

1 cup hazelnuts
4 cups water
1 tbsp coconut oil (an idea stolen from Sarma’s recipe for Brazil nut milk; helps to emulsify)
4 pitted dates
1 tsp vanilla extract
Pinch salt

Blend all ingredients on high for a minute or so. Strain through a cheesecloth or nutmilk bag, and serve. Will keep for 3-4 days in the fridge.

True to the plan, I blended 3/4 cup of my (very tasty) hazelnut milk with the chia seeds and 2 tbsp of carob (but you could also use cocoa powder). I tasted the pudding, realized it needed a bit of sweetness, and added a few drops of stevia; if you have a sweet tooth, you could add agave, dates, or raw honey to this recipe!

The result was a simple, tasty chocolate pudding. Now, I have to warn you: this is not a super-sweet indulgent treat like my chocomole. I liked it a lot, but I would describe it as “plain” — not too vibrant in flavor. You could definitely add sweetness to it, or additional chocolate flavor; you could also spike it with peppermint or orange extract. But I enjoyed the simple, nutty taste just the way it was; it was a perfect, mellow flavor profile for breakfast.

Lately, my girl Angela has been whipping up some crazy cool breakfast parfaits in all sorts of charming glassware. Inspired by her efforts, I decided to serve my pudding as a parfait, layered with slices of my fave fruit. After dusting off a wine glass — those babies don’t get much use in this non-drinker’s apartment — I came up with this:

OK. So maybe this “parfait” wasn’t quite as perfect as one of Ange’s creations:

In fact, it was a bit of a hot mess:

But hey, I tried. And it tasted great.

My favorite thing about chia seeds? Calcium! 1 oz, my friends, contains about 180 mg calcium, which is about 18% of your daily recommendation. This is especially cool for those of us who don’t rely on dairy to meet our calcium needs. Chia seeds also boast Omega-3s (which I’ve written about here) and a ton of fiber, so they’re pretty worthy all around. No wonder that, when I recently gave away a shopping spree at iHerb, so many of you wrote in to say that chia seeds would be your purchase of choice.

Guess what? You’ve got another shot at getting some for free! The kind people at Chia Seeds Direct — who are my go-to source for chia seeds — have offered one of my readers a 2 lb bag of chia seeds. These seeds are high quality, inexpensive, and shipped quickly, so it’s my pleasure to support them with this giveaway! To enter, simply do one, or all, of the following:

  1. Leave a comment on this post, telling me what sort of chia recipe you’re dying to try
  2. Tweet this giveaway, and leave a new comment to tell me you did
  3. If you’re not following me on Twitter yet, please do, and then leave me an additional comment to say so.

Good luck! I’ll announce the winner next Saturday, the 22nd.

On that note, I’m off to enjoy the rest of my day. Have a great night!


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