Monday, January 30, 2012

Fun With Flax

Sometimes I feel like I'm turning into a weird hippy-version of myself. One day I woke up and decided that I needed to jump on the flax train.

Right around the beginning of high school, I noticed that I just could not make it from breakfast to lunch without feeling like I was starving by 10am. I decided to save breakfast as the last thing to do before I left for school, but even that didn't help. Now, how many years later? I've finally got my solution (yeah maybe my metabolism is a little crazy but this works).

Flax. This simple little seed that makes me feel so full! I love it! And I can't even taste it! After I got my urge to jump on the flax train, I went down to our local (aka next door) health food co-op store and scooped up some flax meal. I started adding it to my bowl o' Vanilla Honey Greek Yogurt with added assorted berries. I couldn't taste it and I made it until lunchtime! So amazing! Yes, I am really excited.

There are lots of other blogs and websites out there where you can read about the benefits of flax. So go do that. I just love that it's high in omega-3s and fiber. Woot!

Once flax became acceptable as a "good food" to me, I couldn't wait to try it out in other things. I found a recipe via Pinterest for different kinds of granola. I'd been buying granola for my yogurt and the good stuff was getting expensive. My mom-in-law made an awesome granola for us for Christmas and it inspired me to try to make my own!

I made an almond vanilla granola which came out... not too tasty (still eating that mistake - I'm too cheap to throw it away!). Then I tried this recipe from Always Order Dessert for Triple Chocolate Quinoa Granola. Holy chocolate granola goodness. It was sooo delicious. I brought some to work and they demanded more. I sent some to my mom for her birthday and she demanded the recipe. I have yet to sit down and eat some myself (remember, eating the first mistake) so I'm pretty excited to get to it! The recipe calls for chia seeds (which are supposedly even BETTER than flax) but I substituted in my amazing flax meal instead. I had some leftover quinoa so I was able to throw that in. The only things I had to buy were the rolled oats and raw cocoa nibs (which my husband recommends you do NOT eat by themselves, haha!). Give this a try! I want to experiment with subbing in coconut oil for the olive oil since I have a lot, maybe throwing in some wheat germ, sunflower seeds, and more chocolate chips? :)

I also had to give a cookie recipe a try. And I saw this in my very first copy (thanks, Mom!) of the Food Network Magazine. This picture pretty much enticed me:

That and the fact that I already had all the ingredients! Love it when that happens.

Let me tell you that these cookies are a match made in heaven for K and I. For some weird reason, he loves crunchy cookies. I love delicious, soft n' chewy cookies! Whenever I make cookies for us I have to do some juggling to make sure we both get our fix.

These cookies are baked perfection, for both of us, all in one go. Crispy on the outside, chewy on the inside. Wow! And ya know, "semi-healthy" with the addition of the flax. TRY THEM!

Oatmeal-Flax Choco-Chip Cookies
Adapted from Food Network Magazine
Makes 32 small or 15 big cookies

- 6 oz (12 T) unsalted butter, softened
- 1 c granulated sugar
- 3/4 c packed brown sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 c all-purpose flour
- 1 c quick cooking oats
- 1/4 c flax meal
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1 c (or more!) semisweet chocolate chips

1. Preheat oven to 350F.
2. Cream butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Add vanilla, mix and scrape the bowl.
3. Add the eggs one at a time, letting them incorporate fully.
4. Mix the dry ingredients in a separate bowl and slowly add to the mixer, on low speed.
5. Mix until just combined and fold in chocolate chips.
6. Drop by rounded teaspoonfuls onto baking sheet. Bake for 10-12 minutes until golden brown. Let cool on baking sheet for three minutes before transferring to a wire cooling rack.

Notes: I decided to go against my "small cookie" routine and go BIG! using my cookie scoop. These took a bit longer in the oven (13-16 minutes). Not sure the small cookies will be as chewy but it's worth a shot! I would love to try this recipe with whole wheat flour and maybe bigger chocolate chunks!

These also fit perfectly in my snazzy ant-proof cookie jar (thanks FSIL!!). That chalkboard part is just too much fun!

So, try some flax. And these recipes. Got any more to share? I'm game.


Patti MacLeith said...

Yes please with more chocolate chips! I like flaxseed in my daily oatmeal along with the berries. I have to try those cookies!

Marnely Rodriguez-Murray said...

Oh I'm with you sister! I'm starving by 11am (I blame the CIA for this!)...I've used flax seeds in things, and not my favorite...kinda gooey, but after reading a little, I see you need to GRIND the seeds (flax meal), so I will give it another try! Your cookies look PERFECT!

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