I'm so excited to share this easy, delicious chia seed pudding recipe with you guys and introduce you to Victoria Moran's latest book: The Good Karma Diet.
I was delighted to get a review copy of Victoria Moran's The Good Karma Diet! The book is all about the health and spiritual benefits of a vegan, plant-based diet. It's an inspiring read and includes a collection of Good Karma recipes from vegan chefs and nutritionists.
The cherry-vanilla chia seed pudding below is a modified version of Doris Fin's recipe from the book, used with permission from the publisher, Tarcher/Penguin.
The book calls for unsweetened milk plus stevia or maple syrup to sweeten. Since the milk I used was sweetened already, I skipped the extra sugar. The recipe offers a lot of fun variations, and I chose cherries because I had a bag of them in the freezer.
The chia seed pudding recipe below my review of the book is Darrol Henry approved. He's been pretty picky lately, but he ate a huge bowl of this pudding for his after school snack. I was delighted to get some healthy grow food into this kid!
Good Karma Diet Review
What I really loved about The Good Karma Diet is that it's more than a cookbook. It's sort of a compassionate eater's manifesto. Moran goes beyond the how and talks about why plant-based vegan eating is ethical and healthy.
The way she and her daughter talk about food is so in line with how I want Darrol Henry's relationship with food to grow. I talk to him a lot about eating "grow food" to get healthy, and Moran's approach to healthy eating aligns beautifully with that. Here's an excerpt from the book, where she talks about the two weeks of raw eating that she and her daughter do every year:
When my daughter, Adair, was a tween and teen, we devoted two weeks every summer to eating only raw food: fruits, salads, crudités, and sprouts; dressings, dips, pâtés, and cheeses made from nuts and seeds; vegetable juices and creamy smoothies. When a friend asked her why we did it, she said, “Because everyone deserves to be gorgeous at least two weeks a year.” She was talking about the clear eyes, luminous skin, and well-known “glow” that come from eating fresh, raw foods.
But wait a minute: everyone deserves to be gorgeous all year long, every day and every decade. This is what happens with Good Karma dining, upgraded with lots of color (much of it green) and fresh foods that have never seen a processing plant or a cooking pot. Impressive results show up quickly: weight loss, plenty of steady energy, a rested look so people ask if you’ve been on vacation. You’re eating foods that grew. Foods that are, for the most part, in season, so they nourish you right now. Foods with vivid colors that don’t start with “FDC#.”
The Good Karma diet is about choosing food that does as little harm as possible and supports as much good as possible. It looks at how our food choices impact our health, the health of others, and the health of the planet.
It's not a 100 percent raw diet plan, but it is a raw-heavy food philosophy. Moran explains:
The sweet spot for well-being comes from finding the ideal balance of bright, brilliant foods just as they come from the orchard and garden, while allowing for cooked foods, as well, with their variety, leeway in social situations, warmth in the winter, and some comforting nutrient insurance.
Beans and whole grains are rich in certain minerals, amino acids, and B vitamins that can be tricky to get with all raw food; and a few phytonutrients – the lycopene in tomatoes, for instance -- are actually more accessible when you eat the food cooked. Grounding cooked dishes provide staying power and needed calories that fruits and vegetables don’t always have, and that you don’t want to get from an excess of high-fat foods – nuts, seeds, avocado – even though these are highly beneficial in moderation.
An appreciation of raw foods, but without taking any vows or signing any pledges, qualifies as person as a “raw enthusiast.” That’s the category into which I put myself and to which I extend you a cordial invitation.
While I'm far from a whole food, plant-based vegan, I do appreciate the way that eating fresh, healthy food makes me feel. I like the low-pressure way that Moran introduces you to this way of living. I feel like we share another core belief: that we should stop and give ourselves credit for what we are doing sometimes and not just focus on what we're not doing yet.
I'm also a big believer that good vegan food is the best way to introduce people to the world of veganism, and this chia seed pudding recipe has all of the best qualities in a recipe: it's simple, delicious, and healthy. Any recipe checking those three boxes is sure to become a staple in my kitchen.
Cherry-Vanilla Chia Seed Pudding
Adapted from The Good Karma Diet by Victoria Moran; original recipe by Doris Fin. Printed with permission of Tarcher/Penguin, a division of Penguin Random House. Copyright © 2015.
You can make your chia seed pudding in the evening to enjoy the next morning, or make it in the morning to serve it as dessert after supper. The possibilities!
Yield: 2 servings
- 3 tablespoons chia seeds
- 1 cup vegan milk of your choice (I used my homemade cashew milk.)
- 1/3 cup fresh or frozen pitted cherries
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- In a pint-sized mason jar, combine the chia seeds, vegan milk, cherries, and vanilla extract. Stir well - those chia seeds love to stick together!
- Close the jar up tightly, give it a good shake, let it sit for 5 minutes and shake again.
- Wait 5 more minutes, and shake again, then 5 minutes later shake one last time, and stick your jar into the fridge for 8 hours, or overnight. In the morning (or that evening, if you started in the morning), you can feast on chia seed pudding!