It’s funny how I learn about some of the most amazing health things while Trying to learn about things I don’t do. For example, while
reading–listening to Born To Run on audiobook (I don’t run & also don’t really feel like I was born to do it–although after ‘reading’ this, I want to!!), I was surprised to hear about a little superfood that I always thought belonged on the back of a terracotta animal: The Chia seed!
Apparently this little seed has more of a history than being a novelty item in millions of homes across North America; it goes all the way back to the Aztecs, when it was considered a staple to their diet. The mexicans still ingest this today– mostly in a drink called Chia Fresca.
Approximately 1 oz of chia seeds (which are about the size of poppy seeds) contains more Omega-3 and fiber than flax (just 25g = 6.9 g of fiber)–and doesn’t have to be ground down in order for the body to absorb it; they contain more antioxidants than blueberries; it is said to reduce the symptoms (fatigue, irritability etc.) of thyroid medication; they have more calcium than milk; contain magnesium, iron etc. etc.
This great for runners (hence the mention in the book) because it slows the process of breaking down carbs and turning them into sugar. Plus it is said to increase saliva production and when immersed in water, juice or anything moist, they grow to become 9x their size with a gelatinous exterior (refraining from ‘That’s what she said’ joke– Oops 🙂 . This means it will help to make you feel fuller– a great addition to a smoothy, yogurt, oatmeal, etc. In this case I added them to a loaf and they resemble nothing more than a poppy seed so I don’t think anyone would know the difference.
I bought some of the seeds in bulk at Sprouts for very cheap ($7.99 a lb or aprox.1 1/2 cups= $1.20). I assume you can get them at any whole-foods-type market or online. And just for kicks, I planted some and they grew like weeds in a couple of days. You can also use the actual plant in a salad, sandwich, or give to your bunny.
This recipe I got out of a southern-living cookbook, however I have modified it so much I don’t think Southern-living would even recognize it. I did this because I didn’t have any milk, but I had sour cream, so I had to make do. This would also make a great muffin, so instead of using a bread/loaf pan, use muffin pans (obviously) and just modify the baking time to less than an hour– I’m not sure to what, so you’d just have to keep an eye on it. Anything marked with a * was added in place of 1 1/2 cups of milk. (i would have used less milk also because of the tangerine juice)
- 3 cups of flour (i used a little bit of buckwheat flour because I had some & didn’t want to use all white flour)
- 1/2 cup of sugar (if you have honey, you can use this too.)
- 4 Tsp of Baking Powder
- 2 pinches of salt
- The zest of 1 Tangerine (or orange)
- 2 tbsp of Butter* (this is better used at room temperature– or just melted all together)– I wouldn’t have used this if I had bothered to see the vegetable oil a few ingredients down
- 1/3 Cup of Sour Cream*
- 1 Cup of Water*
- 1/2 Cup of vegetable oil
- The juice of 1 Tangerine (or orange, but if you use a tangerine, take the seeds out first because there is, like, 400 seeds in 1 tangerine)
- 1 Tsp Vanilla Extract
- 1 Egg (lightly beaten)
- handful of dried cranberries
- handful of sliced almonds (and some for the top of the loaf)
- about 1/3 Cup of Chia seeds (and some for the top of the loaf), you can add more if you want.
You will need:
- greased loaf-pan (I found this spray, which has changed my life; it’s normal greasing spray but has flour in it. The bread/cake falls out of the pan faster than the Kardashian wedding)
- A large mixing bowl (or mixer and attachment for mixing…)
- Fork and bowl for beating the egg
- Measuring items
- An oven
- Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees
- Mix the DRY ingredients together in your mixing bowl (zest included) but NOT including Cranberries, Almonds or Chia.
- Add the WET ingredients and stir in together until all things are touching & wet– sounds like a Brittany Spear video…
- Mix in the Cranberries, Almonds & Chia. <- I’m sure your loaf won’t spontaneously combust if you add these at the same time as the dry ingredients, but for once I was following directions.
- Pour the mix into the bread/loaf pan, using the spatula to get the rest out (incase you are 4 and have been using your fingers to get cake remanence out of bowls before…)
- Sprinkle the top with some more almonds and chia seeds.
- Bake for about an hour (no cheating time here–it really does take that long) &/ until your toothpick comes out clean (you might need a BIG toothpick, this loaf rises alot)
- Let cool awhile before trying to get it out of the pan; it’s very moist inside and crumbly on the outside…
- You can eat it however you feel, but I would recommend slicing.
Sprinkle with Love and Enjoy