I have recently made a huge parenting leap: I am now the mother of a child with braces.
I knew it would come some day; taking my preteen to the orthodontist feels like a whole new era in parenting. What's next, driver's ed? The thing about having orthodontic work at this age is that the need for soft foods coincides with the preteen "Eat All The Things" growth phase. For the first few days his teeth were sore and chewing was difficult, but he was So Very Hungry All The Time. While I am a bit of a (self-described) Smoothie Queen, after the sixth smoothie in two days, I thought I should switch it up a little.
This chocolate chia pudding is nutritious and delicious; chia is rich in Omega-3s, fibre, potassium, calcium, and iron. Since I can't help myself, I blended spinach leaves into the pudding for a little extra nutrition - and it was completely undetectable! But the very best thing about making chia pudding is that the Chia Pet theme song gets stuck in my head for days after. Oh, wait. That's really more of a downside.
In a blender, blend together spinach, almond or coconut milk, cocoa, honey, cinnamon, and vanilla until smooth. Pour into a medium bowl.
Whisk in chia seeds. Place bowl in the refrigerator to chill, for a minimum of 3 hours.
When the pudding is well-chilled and thickened, whirl it in the blender until smooth.
Serve topped with fruit, chocolate chips, or coconut whipped cream for a special treat!
This keeps in the fridge for up to three days.
Yield: 4 servings