Isn’t Valentine’s Day the new Halloween? The sugar quotient that my boys will consume at school today frightens the dickens out of me. (Don’t even ask me about the 8th grader who left the house today with his Basketball Valentine Box, and a full bag of Smarties for everyone in his class.) Every single Valentine has candy attached, as the candy companies have pre-packed them for this big LOVE fest, in the same way they do at Halloween. Plus, the parties… and plus whatever mom feeds them at home.
The last part is the only part I have control over. Yet, I can’t become The Grinch of Valentine’s Day, can I? Because Green just won’t match anything.
So, I’m serving them this amazing sugar-free Strawberry Jam, using Stevia — which is a zero calorieÂ sweetener.
But alas, there is the problem of getting the jam to “set.” Sugar is fantastic for that…
So, that’s where Chia Seeds come in. Chia seeds are starting to appear in mainstream grocery stores, like my Kroger, because they have been identified as one of the great super foods. How super?
Chia seeds (yes, that one! from the Chia pet!) Chia seeds are a concentrated food, low in cholesterol and sodium, a good source of calcium,Â healthy omega-3 fatty acids, carbohydrates,Â protein,Â fiber, antioxidants, fiber and Manganese.
So in addition to a sugar-free treat, I’m adding a lot of nutrients with the addition of Chia Seeds.
They taste kind of “nutty.” Plus the seeds are just like real strawberry seeds.
But the real benefit, is that they turn into gelatin when mixed with liquid. Nature’s pure jello. Just pour aÂ tablespoonÂ in a half a cup of milk, let it sit, and voila, you’ll have pudding. (Add chocolate andÂ sweetener, and yummy!)
So, this makes Chia the perfect ingredient for sugar-free jam. Just mash strawberries withÂ sweetenerÂ and Chia seeds. Let “set” atÂ leastÂ 20 minutes — or longer, even days! Instant, healthy jam.
- 1 cup strawberries (frozen or fresh)
- 1 Tablespoon chia seeds
- 1 Tablespoon water
- Let frozen strawberries thaw a bit at room temp.
- Mash strawberries by hand, or with a food processor.
- Mix in chia seeds, water andÂ sweetenerÂ Sweeter strawberries? LessÂ sweetener.