Chia seeds, an ancient stable of the legendary Aztecs and Mayans, are quickly becoming the new “it” ingredient for health fanatics and nutritionists around the world. The ancient Mayan name Chia, translated into English means “strength”. The food has long been praised for its ability to rejuvenate the body and act as a long lasting energy source, which is low in calories. It is also rich in antioxidants, high in fiber, high in omega-3 fatty acids and is a rich source of protein - in other words, Chia Seeds are our modern day superfood!
I've combined the South American staple with delicious tropical Trinidadian ingredients to create my tasty treat: Tropical Trini Chia Pudding.
4 Tablespoons Chia Seeds
1 Cup Coconut Milk
1 Teaspoon Ground Cinnamon
Pinch of Ground Cardamom
1 Tablespoon Honey
1 Cup Papaya cut into small cubes
Pinch of Ground Clove
Splash of Lime Juice
1 Basil Leaf Chopped
1 Cup Pineapple cut into small cubes
Two Stalks Lemon Grass Finely Chopped
Splash of Orange Juice
· Place chia seeds in a mixing bowl. Add ground cinnamon, ground cardamom, honey and coconut milk. Stir well.
· Once combined, cover and let sit in the refrigerator for at least 15 minutes.
· In a small bowl, combine papaya with ground clove, chopped basil and lime juice.
· Allow to sit for a minimum of 5 minutes before assembling the dish so that flavours can blend together.
· Add chopped lemon grass to orange juice and allow flavors to steep for a minimum of 5 minutes or as long as possible.
· Once the orange juice is fully perfumed with the flavor of the lemon grass, strain and add to chopped pineapple.
· Add zest of orange and mix well. Allow to sit for 5 minutes before assembling.
· Place half of the chia pudding into serving dish.
· Layer with spiced papaya.
· Add remaining half of chia pudding
· Top with pineapple compote.
· Serve immediately or allow to sit in the refrigerator overnight for an ideal texture and flavor.
This recipe yields one extra-large serving or can be individually portioned to create a maximum of four servings.
To make this recipe fully vegan, you may substitute honey for agave nectar or 100% pure maple syrup.
Make fresh coconut milk by blending dried chopped coconut with water and straining well with a cheese cloth.
You may also use canned or even powdered coconut milk if making your own is not an option.