Superfood GREEN Smoothie +
How to Make Chia Seed Gel and Goji Berry Juice
Benefits of chia seeds and gel:
The health-promoting qualities of chia seed are very attractive– rich in Omega 3 essential fatty acids, it is also an excellent source of protein, calcium, phosphorous and dietary fibre. Along with the stellar nutritional aspects of chia seed is its wonderful gelatinous nature when mixed with water. Easily-made “Chia Gel” has many applications for gluten-intolerant bakers and raw vegans looking to expand their food repertoire.
Water retaining benefits of the Chia Seed for you:
1. Keep the entire digestive process hydrated:
Because the water absorbed by the seed is somewhat difficult to remove, it takes the digestive process a while to break down the soluble fiber and absorb the water. This means that as the seeds pass through the colon, they are slowly irrigating it on the way through. Keeping food moist is an important way to prevent maladies such as constipation and diverticulitus. The soluble and insoluble fibers act as a ‘sweeper’ to keep food moving easily.
2. Calorie Replacement:
Because Chia seeds have no flavor of their own, they distribute and take on the taste of whatever food or drink you add them to. If you want them to taste like orange juice, just mix them in. They’ll hydrate with the OJ and taste just like it. It’s the same with any beverage of your choice.
Because of the dramatic increase in size, when you eat the hydrated seeds you feel full.
- Place 1/4 – 1/2 C. of organic chia seed (I used MUM’S ORIGINAL) into the bottom of a glass jar.
- Fill the jar with filtered water.
- Gently whisk the chia seed (for a few minutes) to disrupt clumping of the chia seeds. Let the gel sit for a few minutes (about 15) and stir again.
- Use in recipes after 15 minutes of gel time. Store in a covered glass jar in fridge.
How To Use Chia Gel in Recipes
As mentioned above, chia seed gel is full of nutrients like brain-food Omega 3 essential fatty acids, protein (20% of the seed), calcium, phosphorus and fibre. Your baking and raw vegan recipes will contain much less fat than usual recipes. If you use all plant-based, whole foods your recipes will contain NO cholesterol. A good idea is to have some water based chia gel on hand in the fridge to add as an egg substiute to cakes or cookies, one tablespoon of gel replaces one egg. Prepared chia gel will keep for up to 2 weeks. **Of couse, my FAVORITE WAY is in SMOOTHIES!!**
Goji Berry Benefits and Juice:
Originating in China, tea has been regarded as a beverage linking good health and happiness for thousands of years. Recent studies have established that flavonoid compounds and phytochemical found in tea are good for the heart and can help bolster immune defences. Similarly, tracing back 2000 years for use in traditional Chinese medicine, goji berries are gaining popularity in North America as one of nature’s superfruits for their vitamin and nutrient rich qualities. Obtaining all the health benefits of the goji berry from drinking goji tea may be a good supplement to your diet.
Tea contains antioxidants just like the nutrients found in goji berries such as beta-carotene and other essential fats, minerals, amino acids and proteins, which studies have suggested help to boost health and energy levels. Early research has also found positive results for the health benefits of these berries that are rich in vitamin A, B complex, C and E, as well as calcium and fiber, such as helping to lower cholesterol.
Containing far less caffeine than coffee, drinking a mug of warm tea is a great way to relax and nutritionists seem to agree that any type of tea is beneficial. That’s why you should consider adding goji tea to your list of daily beverages. These dried red berries produce a mild tasting brew, which is simple to make and a quick alternative to regular tea. Just toss about 6 to 8 dried goji berries into a cup of boiling water. You can also add a teabag containing your favourite regular or herbal tea to the mixture for a refreshing flavour and nutritional boost. Allow the tea to steep for 5 to 10 minutes. Once the berries become plump in the hot liquid, the tea is ready to drink.
Improvement in eyesight, immune function and overall well being are some of the numerous health benefits attributed to goji tea, which is also fat free and low in calories, unless of course you decide to add milk or sweetener. There is no need to add more berries when you are ready for a refill, just top your cup with boiling water. When the liquid portion is finished, you can chew the remaining soft red berries to obtain all the antioxidant properties they provide. (source)
Goji berry juice/tea is as beneficial as any other herbal plant tea and above all, the swollen berries can easily be eaten (which I love to do) and used to top salads, raw ice creams, homemade granola, raw puddings, and again! (No Surprise here!) SMOOTHIES!
Watch the video below for details and how to make an amazing GREEN smoothie using chia gel and soaked goji berries. Enjoy!
Superfood GREEN Smoothie
- 2 1/2 cups water
- LOTS of greens (your choice: organic spinach, parsley, cilantro, kale, romaine, beet greens, etc.)
- 1 organic apple
- handful organic dried apricots (substitute dried figs, or FRESH)
- 2 bananas
- 2 -3 TB. chia seed gel (I used Mum’s Original Organic White Chia Seeds)
- 1/2 tsp. spirulina (optional)
- aloe vera gel (otional)
- stevia (sweetener of choice)
Blend all ingredients in a high speed blender (I use a Vitamix). Top with your favorite choice of toppings. I used fresh, local bee pollen, Mum’s Original Organic Coconut Cacao Nibs (LOVE these!) and coconut macaroon flakes. I forgot to use them in video, but I added Mum’s Original Premium Goji Berries (soaked) and took the smoothie up a notch. LOVE my green smoothies everyday!
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May the GREENS be with You! and Be Inspired! Kibby