Jam - packed with Nutrition !! (Chia Jam)
I LOVE JAM ! But since I pretty much completely avoid sugar, its something I had avoided for a while since choosing a plant-based lifestyle. But there's hope ... actually there's more than that! Home made chia jam is not only packed with nutrition and fiber, it also so quick and easy to make at home, with minimal and easily available ingredients. Add to that the fact that it tastes absolutely AMAZING and you can custom make it for flavor, texture and sweetness of your choice.
Customize your Chia Jam
Fruit - You can use pretty much any berry (Strawberries, Blueberries, Raspberries, Blackberries, or a mix of any berries you like), or pulpy fruit like mango or apricots.
Sweetener - Use as much sweetener of your choice (if at all) depending on how sweet you like your jam. I like to use raw honey, which I add after the jam is cooled down but some other options are maple syrup, organic agave or even stevia.
Texture - Make the jam as smooth or chunky as you like. Grind the chia seeds before adding, and completely puree the fruit if you like it smooth. Leave the fruit chunky and chia seeds as is if you like a more chunky consistency. Or you can have the best of both by grinding up half the chia and leaving half as is.
So many options! Lets get started. :D
This recipe makes : About 1.5 Cups of cooled jam
- 2 cups berries of choice (Strawberries, Blueberries, Raspberries, Blackberries, or a mix of any berries you like)
- 1/4 cup chia seeds (divided in 2 parts)
- Rind of 1 lemon
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- 2 tbsp < or more> liquid sweetener of choice ( Raw honey to be added after jam is taken off heat, maple syrup, organic agave) OR Stevia drops or powder to taste.
- 1/2 tsp Vanilla extract (optional)
- Wash and prep the berries by removing the stems or deseeding/peeling.
- Blend 1/8 c the chia seeds to make a powder and set aside.
- Blend the fruit to your desired consistency. ( I like to leave it slightly chunky or add in small pieces of fruit later on).
- In a saucepan, heat the fruit and let it cook until the juices start rendering.
- Add in the zest of 1 lemon, 2 tbsp of lemon juice and sweetener of choice and mix.
- Now you can add in the 1/8 c ground chia seeds along with 1/8 cup whole chia seeds.
- Let the jam cook for about 5 minutes on low-medium heat. Make sure you keep watching it closely so it doest stick to the bottom of the saucepan.
- At this point it wont quite reach the firm consistency of regular jam, but it will noticeably thicken because the chia will begin to absorb the moisture from the fruit. It will thicken even more when cooled and refrigerated.
- If you use raw honey to sweeten, I suggest adding it when the jam is taking of the heat - this is because cooking/boiling honey is not known to be good and is best avoided when possible.
- You can use frozen fruit in place of fresh fruit too!
This is the best part! Using your chia jam !
- On sprouted toast with organic peanut butter or almond butter - PJ and I LOVE Silver Hills Bakery bread or bagels (wait for our product review on this)
- Add to chia puddings
- Use while cooking/baking
- Add a little to a savory salad to bring in a slightly sweet element and some texture
Storage and Shelf-life
Bottle in a container (preferably glass container) and refrigerate for up to 2 weeks.
We love this so much. Hope you will try it at home.
To know the benefits of chia seeds and to shop online, click here