I know school is out but can we have a little history lesson? I promise there won’t be a quiz. :)
Chia seeds are a big food trend on the rise and all for good reason. These liiiittle seeds have a biiiig history… which I happen to find very interesting and wanted to share with you!
Chia seeds were sort of like the Clif bars of the ancient Aztec and Mayan cultures (except 10x better for you and 10x more versatile). They were used for sustainable energy, hydration, medicine, grown as crops, and used as currency. Now that’s an impressive resume.
If they were so important, why haven’t we always known about them?
That’s because Spanish conquerors came in, took over, and banned chia seeds because they were also used frequently in religious ceremonies. Bummer. We could have been eating chia seed pudding our whole lives.
It wasn’t until a little exploration was done by some scientists and nutritionists that chia seeds were brought back into the picture.
And now here we are with articles sprouting up (I <3 seed puns.) about how nutritional they are… which is also for good reason. Chock full of fiber, omega-3’s, calcium, minerals, and blood sugar regulating properties… chia seeds’ nutritional resume is just as impressive as its history.
We’re taking this small but mighty seed and giving it a modern look. The texture of this pudding is comparable to tapioca pudding with just the slightest crunch. The seeds soak up the liquid and turn into a gel-like consistency. The lemon and vanilla give it a really light, summery flavor. Top it with your favorite summer fruit and you’ve got a great breakfast, afternoon snack, or dessert.
Lemon Vanilla Chia Seed Pudding
1/2 c. chia seeds
3 T. maple syrup
zest of one lemon (should be about 3/4-1 t. zest)
juice of half the lemon
3/4 t. vanilla extract
2 c. milk of choice (I used almond milk.)
In a bowl, stir together the chia seeds, maple syrup, lemon zest, lemon juice, and vanilla. Pour in the milk and carefully stir all the ingredients together. Cover the pudding and let it set in the fridge for 2 hours, stirring it once after 1 hour. Top with your favorite fruit and enjoy!
Chia seed history and health lesson brought to you by the following sources: