Creamy Clouds

I polished off the container as I reached the front of the security line at JFK. I usually opt for candlelight, even with breakfast, and more space between bites and courses, but this was an exception. I couldn’t let the viscous gold go to waste, and had a creeping feeling it wouldn’t make it through the security gods.

As smooth as I can be when it comes to authority figures, I was sure they would spot my secret stash and confiscate it, whole and untouched.

02I’m talking about chia pudding. A bit dramatic, you say?

No. Chia seeds are heaven-sent, and when coaxed to their full tapioca-esque potential with creamy coconut milk, some even consider the resulting pudding a dessert. As a chocolate fanatic and all-around dessert connoisseur, I wouldn’t take it that far.

That said, chia pudding is a delicious and incredibly nourishing snack. It’s really the perfect canvas – you can top it with so many different adornments, whether you want a full-on breakfast or quick and simple snack.

13One of my favorite combinations is macerated blueberries and super fresh mint. When rich pudding mingles with bright blueberries and a pop of mint, you’ll probably abandon yogurt and other traditional creamy snacks.

Chia seeds boast fiber, protein and healthy fat. That means they provide slow-release energy and keep you full for a long time – great for busy days. A lot of people don’t realize our bodies require healthy fat – the brain is nearly 60% fat, after all, and requires dietary fat to function.

Incorporating chia seeds weekly or even daily will improve digestion, provide high-level energy and mental clarity, make your skin glow and hair shine. Bingo.

With incredible flavor and a high nutrition profile, how could you say no? You don’t have to, because chia seeds are super easy to work with and really satisfying – you’ll become addicted to their simplicity.

Basic Chia Pudding

Ingredients

5 T chia seeds
1 ¾ cups pure full-fat coconut milk
1 T maple syrup or coconut palm sugar
1 t vanilla extract
1 t salt

Technique

Combine chia seeds with coconut milk, maple syrup or coconut palm sugar, vanilla and salt. Mix vigorously in a large container or glass dish. Store in the fridge for three hours, or preferably, over night.

Macerated Blueberries

Ingredients

4 cups fresh blueberries
1 cup water
1 T maple syrup
1 t sea salt

Technique

Add blueberries, water, maple syrup and sea salt to pot and bring to a boil. Simmer for 10-15 minutes, or until desired thickness is reached. Layer chia pudding with blueberries and fresh mint.

Photos: Elene Damenia

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