I don’t put coconut oil in my mouth and swish it around for 20 minutes every single morning like I’m a real life lattè foaming wand because I love the taste and texture of pure oil in my mouth.
I can’t even come up with anything cheeky to compare it to. Placing a tablespoon of pure oil in the mouth is bad enough.
I don’t pulverize and drink cabbage and leafy greens everyday because it’s the yummiest thing since tiramisu (nothing is yummier than tiramisu, and green smoothies should never be compared to Italian desserts).
I don’t try to limit sugar because “sugar is evil and giving me belly fat”. If I really wanted my paunch to go completely away, I would never eat after 6pm and I would spend 14 hours in the gym per week, which is exactly 13 more than I’m currently spending in the gym.
I don’t drink green juice on a regular basis because I’m gearing up for that green juice yoga retreat where clothes are optional, “karma baths” are guaranteed, and the color of your poop will be monitored.
I’m doing good if I manage to get to a yoga class, when I hear the word “retreat”, my palms get sweaty and Charles Manson comes to mind, and if someone even thinks about coming close to my poop, we have much bigger problems than the color of my load.
I don’t drink an entire glass of warm lemon water each and every morning because I like assaulting my taste buds with sour first thing in the morning.
And for the love of little baby jesus, I don’t avoid cheese because I don’t like it. I love cheese.
I love cheese maybe more than I love my cat, Panda. And I heat up a hot water bottle for that cute fucker every night. I also put him in a cat sling so I can work and cuddle him at the same time. There’s something seriously wrong with me.
The reason I do all this stuff is because there was a time in my life when I gave zero thought about what I put into my body. Kraft mac and cheese was always in my cupboard, Boston Market seemed like an acceptable place to eat, fruit wasn’t part of my diet, I would have rather poked my own eyeball out with a finger vibrator than learn about cruciferous veggies, ranch dressing was a requirement when eating cheese pizza, I would rather drink Guinness followed by shots of Jagermeister than have dinner, and I loved to smoke cigarettes with a passion.
So I swish my coconut oil, drink my green smoothies, take it easy on the sugar, drink lemon water and green juice and avoid animal protein as a love letter to my body, in the hope that it will forgive me for the shit I’ve put it through (and at times, still put it through).
If how I currently feel both mentally and physically is any indication of how well it’s working, I don’t think my body is holding any grudges.
If you’ve put your body through hell and want to start your own love letter, I suggest starting out with small healthy additions, instead of going full on Rambo and waking up tomorrow with the intention of being a raw vegan.
First of all, people who turn into raw vegans get weird and can only communicate efficiently with other raw vegans. Secondly, eating raw 100% of the time is about as satisfying as trying to pee when you have a bladder infection.
When you consistently add more healthy things into your diet over time, you will eventually start to eat less crappy stuff without even thinking about it.
To help you slowly incorporate more healthy things into your diet, I’m starting a new thing.
Each week I will give you ideas about how to add healthy, but mysterious ingredients into your life. If you have any suggestions, email me at [email protected] and talk to me.
Today I’m starting with the Chia Seed. I was inspired to do this because one of my favorite people in the whole world (and I’ve never even met her), Ash Ambirge, the genius behind The Middle Finger Project, posted THIS on Facebook recently and I wanted to help her out (Ash, you sexy beast. You have no more excuses. Read this and then go eat your chia).
Side note: If you do any form of writing for your business or your job, you would be doing yourself a disservice if you did not check out The Middle Finger Project. I took one of Ash’s copywriting workshops last year and it blew my mind. My writing would be as boring as a tire store and not worthy of your precious time if it wasn’t for Ash Ambirge.
On to chia.
Let’s take a look at why you would want to do anything with them in the first place.
First let me say that magic bullets are awesome if you’ve just freed your unicorn, Buttterlily from being captured by dinosaurs and pirates AT THE SAME TIME and now you have T-rex and drunk Captain Black Beard on your tail.
Thank GOD for those magic bullets, if that’s the case.
But If anyone ever tells you that you only have to eat or take one thing and all your health woes will be over, you’ll magically be your perfect weight, and there will be no more starving children in the world, introduce them to Butterlily and move on.
There will never be ONE miracle solution that replaces consistently eating well and exercising.
And chia seeds are no exceptions.
Yes, they have heart protecting Omega-3’s, cholesterol lowering fiber and cancer fighting lignans, but keep in mind that it’s the combination of lots of healthy whole plant foods that make our bodies run as smooth as my legs right after I get them waxed.
So yes – eat the hell out of chia seeds, but remember to eat other whole plant foods from time to time as well.
Here are 10 ways to get turned on by chia seeds and what to do with them.
1. Put a tablespoon or so of chia seeds in your smoothies and / or green juices. You won’t even know they’re there. And if you don’t currently drink veggies from time to time, it’s time to get on that. There are phytochemicals just waiting to repair your cells.
2. Add them to oatmeal or whatever breakfast cereal you like to eat. Because they have no flavor, they won’t fuck up the taste of your morning bowl of whatever you’re eating.
3. Add them to muffins. They will add extra protein and fiber, and nothing screams sexy like a Fiber Muffin.
4. Make pudding. Chia seeds expand with liquid so making a tapioca-like pudding is a must. Add 3/4 cup of almond milk, a couple teaspoons of pure maple syrup (none of that crappy Log Cabin crap, k?), a teaspoon of vanilla, and 1/4 cup of chia seeds to a mason jar. Put the lid on the jar and shake until the ingredients are combined. Put it in the fridge for 6 hours and then eat with your fave toppings. Toasted coconut, blueberries and almond slivers just popped into my head and now I can’t stop thinking about this.
5. Chia Toast. Toast some bread, slap on some almond butter and top with bananas and chia seeds. Ready in a hot second and full of oomph.
6. Make the perfect pre-run hydration boost. Pour some water in a tall glass, add a few tablespoons of chia seeds, some fresh squeezed grapefruit juice and a few mint leaves. Stir and allow the seeds to expand for 20 minutes and then drink 20 minutes before you put sneakers to road. Your morning run will never feel the same.
7. DIY Chia Jam. Add 1 cup of berries, 1 tablespoon of chia seeds, 2 tablespoons of water and a couple teaspoons of brown rice syrup to your blender or food processor and blend until everything is combined. Slap that shit on a fresh baked scone, pour yourself a cup of tea and start talking in a English accent. You’ve deserved it, dahling.
8. Sprinkle on your fave salad. This doesn’t have to be complicated.
9. Use them as an egg replacer in baking. For one egg, grind one tablespoon of chia seeds in a spice grinder or mortar and pestle (or with a hammer if you have nothing else <—– Serious). Add the ground chia seeds to 3 tablespoons of water, stir well and place in the fridge for 15 minutes. Add to your recipe just as you would the egg.
10. If you don’t like any of these ideas, maybe chia seeds just aren’t your thing. If this is the case, you can always use the stash that’s been in your fridge for the past 6 months to use in place of bandages / plasters to stop wounds from bleeding. This is what the Aztecs used to do. I’m tempted to try it just to see how well it works. Expect that shit to get Instagrammed if I do.
So you might think this is the perfect segway to share a delicious and easy chia seed recipe with you. And if I followed a perfectly organized content calendar for my emails, you would be right.
But I work better without a set schedule, and since I’m still traveling my ass off in Southeast Asia, I’ll have to give you a recipe that I created for you before my trip.
Here’s the perfect oil free Baked Tofu recipe that will make you weak in the knees.
I guarantee you will make this recipe more than once.
In fact, I recommend doubling or tripling this recipe from the get go.
Sesame Ginger Baked Tofu – Whole Food Plant Based
1 package organic extra firm tofu (14oz)
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 teaspoons peeled and grated ginger (8g)
2 tablespoons soy sauce (30ml)
2 tablespoons rice vinegar (30ml)
2 tablespoons water (30ml)
2 teaspoons sesame seeds (10g)
10 or more turns of cracked black pepper
Okay – so baked tofu without oil isn’t only possible, it’s freaking delish. Even if you’re a bacon and eggs type, there’s a 94% chance that you will happily eat this tofu.
Here’s the trick:
- Before you do anything, you must get as much liquid out of the tofu as possible. There is such a tool as a tofu press, but I find that a pie pan, a plate and some fruit does the job just fine (my hippie, teepee roots are showing again).
- Take the tofu out of the package and rinse with water. Place the block of tofu in the pie pan, cover with a plate and then cover the plate with something heavy, but not so heavy that it squashes the tofu and breaks it apart.
- Allow the tofu to set like this for 30 minutes to an hour. You can drain the water and flip the tofu midway to help get as much liquid out as possible.
- While this magic is happening, you can make the marinade by placing all the marinade ingredients into a bowl and using a fork to combine.
- Once the water has been pressed out of the tofu, cut it into thin slabs. You can make them any size in length you want, just make sure they are at least 1/2 inch thick or so. This is also a good time to preheat your oven to 350° (175°C)
- Arrange the pieces of tofu in the same pie pan (but make sure all the water is out of it and the pan is dry) and pour the marinade over the tofu (be sure to add the sesame seeds, the garlic and the ginger along with the marinade. You might think that they will burn, but because they are wet with marinade they will not.)
- Now, the tofu can marinate in the fridge overnight, or you can marinate it for as little as 10 minutes and your baked tofu will still be super tasty. Just make sure that you turn over the tofu so that each piece soaks up some marinade.
- Now, the next trick is to line a baking sheet with parchment paper so that the tofu doesn’t stick to the baking sheet.Place each piece of tofu on the parchment paper in a single layer and bake for 20 minutes.
- Flip the tofu over and bake for another 20 minutes.
- Allow to cool and dig in, or store in the fridge for up to a week.
Use it for sandwiches, top salads with it, add it to stir fry’s, add it to wraps, or just eat plain as a snack.
You can change the marinade if you like, or you can even add some chia seeds to the marinade, just make sure you follow this method, and you will have yummy baked tofu with the perfect consistency every time.
I hope you have a lovely week, may it be filled with lots of rest, unicorns and Chia Seeds.