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Wednesday, 30 December 2015

Vegan Coconut Cream Chia Seed Pudding + Recipe

I'm on my vacation from work now, and my sleep cycle is completely out of sync. I've had runs of two to three days of sleeplessness followed by a full day of sleeping. I put it down to the fact that I'm barely challenging my brain, and been moving at sloth-like pace when I can actually bring myself to move.

I had to meet a friend this evening, however I know his schedule is constantly moving, so I gave myself a 30-minute buffer and wandered around the shopping centre at Liljehomen. Weeeell, this was a ruse; I actually wanted to go into the larger ICA there for as I genuinely enjoy strolling through big supermarkets. When I first moved to Stockholm, I had to pass the centre on my commute to work so was a little bit spoiled by the choice - NOT the price - that was there. If I'd known I would never live near a supermarket like that again, I'd have probably indulged in the wider variety that was there more often.

Today, wandering round wasn't as exciting as I wanted it to be, but I did manage to pick up some Taylor & Jones  sausages, a nice self-serve salad, a small frying pan, and some chia seeds. I was in disbelief that my small basket cost me nearly 500 SEK, and actually became one of those customers I used to roll my eyes at in my own supermarket cashier days, and scrutinised the receipt visibly in front of the cashier before I shuffled off. Horrifying.

By the time I got home it was quite late, and although it would probably be better in the long run, I thought it would be weird to go to bed after only being up for five hours. Which is why I am writing this now.

While I'm waiting for a 'decent' time to sleep, I decided to make a gluten free coconut chia seed pudding I'd seen on Pinterest. It called for sweetened coconut so I was desperately searching for my coconut flakes to sugar up, only to realise I'd used them for the Coconut Maple Bites a couple of weeks ago. Fortunately, my compulsive grocery purchasing often means I buy ingredients that I have plans for, I then forget what plans they are yet the ingredients remain; however this meant I was certain that I had a bag of dessicated coconut somewhere, which I was able to locate fairly easily.

I sweetened the coconut in a simple sugar syrup that I gently boiled over the stove, then added it to the coconut cream and milk mixture that I had. The recipe calls for coconut milk, however I only had a can of coconut cream, so I added ordinary milk to thin it out (this version wasn't quite vegan, but it is lactose free!).

I changed the ratios of sweetened coconut and honey as I prefer a sweeter taste; after a quick taste of the mixture, I felt it was nice, but it still needed something. That something, ladies and gentlemen, was sea salt. I crumbled some over it, mixed it in, and my goodness... It was elevated!

Groupie Selfie!

It's currently setting in the refrigerator, but I'll update once it's done. Cannot wait!

All done, topped with some frozen blueberries
quickly defrosted under the cold tap

This was a fairly full teacup portion, and I would actually recommend a marginally smaller serving, especially if you use coconut cream as the dessert is surprisingly filling.

Here's the recipe, heavily adapted from Eazy Peazy Mealz

Vegan Coconut Cream Chia Seed Pudding

Time: 10 minutes preparation + minimum 6 hours chilling time
Yield: Serves 4
Storage: in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup sweetened coconut*
  • 400-500 ml coconut cream (substitute some or all coconut milk for a lower fat version)
  • 1-3 tbsp runny honey
  • 4 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract (can be substituted for equivalent of vanilla alternative)
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • Fresh and/or dried fruit and nuts to top when serving

Method

  1. If you have to sweeten the coconut*, start that off while you get on with step 2
  2. If using coconut cream, mix it in a medium size tub to ensure any coconut water is reabsorbed by the solid cream, and you have a smooth consistency. I recommend topping up a 400 ml can of coconut cream with 100 ml of coconut milk, however if you're not using coconut cream, 400 ml of coconut milk is fine.
  3. Add the remaining ingredients except the honey and salt, and mix thoroughly
  4. Add the honey, one tablespoon at a time, testing after each addition until it suits your taste
  5. Crush a small pinchful of salt between your fingers over the mixture. Mix, taste, and adjust, if necessary.
  6. Give it a final mix. If desired, separate into individual portions and cover with clingfilm - or simply cover the tub - and refrigerate for at least 6 hours or overnight.
  7. When serving, give it a quick stir, and if desired, top with dried or fresh fruit, and or nuts
Serving suggestion: top with Berry Fruit Sauce
*see post to see how to sweeten coconut