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Chia Seed Breakfast Pudding


The texture, much like a fine tapioca, and the coconut flavor are a sublime match making this dish just right for a Special Occasion Breakfast or, with added sweetener, a dessert. Either way, its interesting garnishes make the pudding even more delightful.


130 g 130 grams whole dried apricots (about 20), more as needed
⅓ cup passion-fruit juice or nectar (I used pear juice)
50 g50 grams sugar (3 tablespoons)
1 ½ teaspoons lemon juice
Fine sea salt, as needed
470 ml2 cups unsweetened almond milk
½ cup coconut milk
85 g85 grams chia seeds (1/2 cup)
45 g45 grams toasted kasha (1/4 cup), optional (see note)
Roasted whole almonds, coarsely chopped, as needed
Toasted unsweetened coconut flakes, as needed
Sliced banana, as needed, optional


Coarsely chop half of the dried apricots. Place chopped apricots in a small pot with passion-fruit juice, 25 grams sugar (1 1/2 tablespoons), lemon juice and a pinch of salt. Simmer very gently over low heat until apricots are soft and liquid has turned syrupy, about 30 minutes. (mine was done in 15 minutes on low heat--watching and stirring frequently).
While chopped apricots cook, put remaining whole apricots in a bowl and cover with boiling water. Let soak until plump, 10 to 20 minutes. Drain and reserve plumped apricots and the apricot sauce for garnish.
Meanwhile, in a quart container with a lid (As far as I could tell, the lid is needed for storing the pudding if you don't eat it all), combine almond and coconut milks, remaining 25 grams sugar (1 1/2 tablespoons) and a pinch of salt. Stir in chia seeds and kasha, if desired; shake thoroughly so that seeds are evenly hydrated (this can be accomplished by thorough stirring if you are not using a lidded jar). Let rest at least 20 minutes or until pudding has a rich, creamy texture (my pudding needed 30 minutes for the initial soak). Seeds should be fully hydrated. (Pudding will keep for up to 3 days but may require rehydrating with more almond or coconut milk as the seeds continue to absorb liquid.)
To serve, spoon pudding into bowls. Top with apricot sauce, plumped apricots, almonds, coconut flakes and sliced banana, if desired.

TIP: Toasted kasha, also known as buckwheat groats, can be hard to find. But you can easily toast raw kasha in a dry skillet for 2 to 3 minutes, stirring often. Or leave it out.


I once tried a chia seed pudding and didn't care for it, but the ingredients in this recipe sounded promising. Melissa Clark, the author, suggests that the pudding can be served as dessert by adding more sweetener and topping it with whipped coconut milk or cashew cream. I don't think it needs more sweetening, though the topping would be nice but completely optional. The pudding makes a great breakfast, and that's how I think of it. You can find many ways to add color and texture with the suggested garnishes or come up with your own, but the pudding can stand on its own. My garnishes were the whole apricots, the chopped apricots with syrup, some lightly toasted, blanched and chopped almonds, and a left-over half banana that I had stored in the refrigerator--I puréed it with an immersion blender and added a teaspoon of maple syrup. If I had had coconut flakes on hand, I would have used them too.