A light breakfast when you’re not that hungry or if you’re not really a breakfast person. Both the chia seeds and the walnuts are rich delicious foods.
Dubbed the ancient food of the Mayans, these seeds have become extremely popular I recent years. Their gelatinous, smooth texture when soaked makes them an ideal ingredient for vegan desserts. They are extremely nutritious. Rich in omega 3 and 6 fatty acids, as well as fibre, protein and carbohydrates. They also contain traces of calcium, iron and zinc (the palate resorting mineral). Their high omega 3 and 6 fatty acids content mean that they help the body stabilise blood sugar and slow carbohydrate digestion. They can be ground or soaked and added to many dishes, salted and sweet. They are indigestible if consumed whole and un-soaked, similar to the flaxseed. If store whole in a tightly-sealed container try can last for several years without going rancid.
When I lived for a short time in Mexico, I noticed chia seeds being sold are everywhere as a common staple ingredient. They are often added to licuados in the summer; a blend of ice, fruit, chia seeds and water. To my surprise they are also traditionally added to cold drinks in China! You can try my ‘Chia seed, Papaya & Coconut Ice’ drink recipe in my free ebook Nourishing Liquids for this popular Taiwanese drink available in Chinese sweet restaurants.
Walnuts contain the form of vitamin E known as gamma-tocopherol, good for skin health and omega-3 fatty acids, for fighting inflammation. Very charged, though perishable quickly compared to other nuts. I only use walnuts in hot drinks when they are not as fresh as when I bought them, so it doesn’t matter as much if you choose flavour over nutritional weight! They are delicious in a hot drink, so occasionally, I have them like this, something I picked up in China.
Follow my Plant-based Milks recipe if you prefer to make your own rice milk rather than buy it. This recipe serves 2.
Raw walnuts, 6
Whole chia seeds, 2 tsp
Rice milk, 400ml
Vanilla pod, 1
Ground allspice, 1/2 tsp
Ground cardamom, 1/2 tsp
Star anise, 2
1. In a plastic resealable bag, pound the walnuts with a rolling pin until fine.
2. Add the rice milk, chia seeds, vanilla pod seeds (and pod), star anise and all other spices to a saucepan and slow boil for at least 10 minutes.
2. Taste and if you’re happy with the strength of flavour take off the heat, if you prefer it stronger, boil for a little longer.
3. Take off the heat, remove the vanilla pod and star anise and add the walnuts.
4. Blend until smooth and then pour into cups to serve.
Also add cinnamon if you wish, it goes well with these flavours too. Add a drizzle of honey and/or grate some orange zest at the end if you fancy.