Got to be honest: when I first heard of chia seeds all I could envision was that I would turn into one of those hairy pets touted on those cheesy infomercials. You know, the one where this silly animal called a Chia pet grows a green carpet of “hair.” Really–what were chia seeds and why should I eat them?
Well, as it turns out, I need not be afraid of growing some furry extensions. Chia seeds are truly a nutritious food. High in protein, omega 3 fatty acids, calcium and they keep you well hydrated. It will help to increase the fiber content of any dishes you may be preparing. And from a culinary point of view, as Olga so deftly discovered when she reproduced these for photography, is that they have a delightful crunch similar to poppy seeds.
My favorite brand that I recently discovered is the Tru Roots company. The chia seeds are delightfully nutty and add depth and texture to baked goods like these muffins. And after adding them steadily to my diet now for a few weeks, I’m happy to report I haven’t turned into a “fluffy green pet”.
BLUEBERRY LEMON CHIA SEED MUFFINS
½ cup unsalted butter, softened
½ cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 1/3 cup all purpose flour (use half whole wheat if desired)
3 Tbsp Tru Roots Chia Seeds
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
the zest of 1 lemon
1/4 tsp salt
½ cup reduced fat sour cream or Greek yogurt
2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
1 tsp pure vanilla
3/4 cup washed fresh blueberries
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Coat a 12 cup muffin tin with cooking spray . Set aside.
2. In a large bowl, beat together the butter and sugar until fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time beating well after each addition.
3. In another bowl, combine the flour, chia seeds, baking powder, baking soda, lemon zest and salt.
4. Mix together the sour cream, lemon juice and vanilla in another bowl. Add the flour and sour cream mixture alternately to the sugar butter egg mixture and mix just until blended. Fold in the blueberries.
5. Divide the batter between the muffin cups. Bake for 20-25 minutes until lightly browned. Remove the muffin tin form the oven. Let the muffins cool in the pan for about 5 minutes. Run a knife around each muffin to loosen and turn out onto a cooling rack. Let cool completely or serve warm.