Sour Cherry Chia Pudding with Dark Chocolate Super Seed Crisps (Vegan, Gluten Free)
1. I started teaching yoga at my local gym (if you're ever in Charlottesville drop in on my class and say hey!!!). Long story short, I've been practicing ashtanga there since January and the program director asked me to teach a Hatha class on Tuesdays at 9AM. And I was like HELL YES. And then I was like, oh dear god I haven't taught a pro class in 3 years. I took a break from teaching to focus on my own practice and figure some life things out, occasionally teaching one-on-one classes to friends and family. I can't tell you how stoked I am to get back into teaching. It feels right.
2. I'm writing some test content for a local magazine I'm dreaming someday will hire me part- or full-time as a food writer. Yes, I'm saying that out loud on the internet in hopes that I can The Secret my way into making that happen. Really.
Those two new life things conspired to make it really hard to get my brain into a place where this post could be released into the web-o-sphere. But it deserves to exist, y'all. If it were a lady walking down the street we would all turn our heads and be like, oh damn girl you lookin' fiiiiiiiine.
This pudding is silky smooth and creamy with a tangy-sweet twist. And we all know cherries and chocolate are a fabulous pair, as are cherries and almonds. Toasting the sunflower seeds and unsweet coconut releases their wonderful, nutty aromas. I tend to think that toasted sunflower seeds are even more nutty in flavor and aroma than toasted almonds, which is why I've chosen to use them here. The flavor really comes through even coated in chocolate. It makes for a delicious pairing, all in all. You can eat it as a dessert as-is. But I also make it for myself as a pre-yoga breakfast (sub cacao nibs for the chocolate crisps). It's nourishing, light, and quells my hunger. At least until after class!
And hey shout out to the 2015 Saveur Blog Award Winners! If you aren't already following these blogs, don't walk, RUN to their sites! Find the full list of winners here.
- 6 tablespoons chia seeds
- scant 1 cup almond or coconut milk
- 1 cup sour cherries
- 1/4 cup honey or agave if vegan
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon room temperature coconut oil
- 1 teaspoon lemon zest
- chocolate super seed crisps
- Combine the chia seeds and scant 1 cup almond milk in a medium bowl and set in the fridge -- covered -- for a minimum of 1 hour (it's best overnight).
- Pour the gelatinous chia and milk mixture into the bowl of your high powered blender, and add the cherries, honey, vanilla, coconut oil and lemon zest. Blend until smooth and creamy.
- Serve in small dessert cups with the chocolate super seed crisps to garnish OR eat as you would a smoothie bowl, topped with the chocolate crisps and your favorite nutty granola.
- 1.5 oz semi-sweet dark chocolate (60% or higher)
- 1 teaspoon coconut oil
- 1 tablespoon shredded unsweet coconut
- 1 tablespoon sunflower seeds
- pinch Celtic sea salt
- Melt the chocolate with the coconut oil in a double boiler (or a glass bowl over a pot of boiling water). Once melted, stir to combine everything then remove the chocolate from heat and set aside.
- In a small pan toast the unsweet shredded coconut and the sunflower seeds together on medium high heat until aromatic and gently browning, stirring constantly, about 2 minutes.
- Remove from heat and add the hot coconut and sunflower seeds to the chocolate and stir to combine.
- Pour the chocolate mixture onto a sheet of parchment paper, spreading it out to about 1.8 inch thick. Place it into the freezer, laying flat, for about 10 minutes to firm it up.
- Remove from the freezer once the chocolate has hardened.
- Break into even pieces to garnish your dessert, or chop up to top ice cream or whatever you like!