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Thousands of years ago, chia seed was a staple in the diets of ancient Mayans and Aztecs. The word chia is derived from the Mayan word for “strength,” and Aztec warriors relied on chia seed to boost energy and increase stamina. Today this tiny seed is a favorite of athletes, especially distance runners, who tout it as an endurance-enhancing superfood. The mild, nutty flavor goes well with both sweet and savory dishes. Use chia seed in puddings and smoothies, sprinkle on top of porridge and salads, and add to baked goods in place of flaxseed meal or poppy seeds.
Lemon Chia Fresca Recipe
This refreshing spritzer is a bubbly adaptation of a traditional Mexican beverage.
• 1 tablespoon chia seed
• 1/2 cup water
• Juice of 1 lemon
• 1/2 cup sugar
• 32 ounces club soda
• Lemon wedges, to garnish
Combine chia seed and water in a bowl. Refrigerate overnight. Combine lemon juice and sugar in a saucepan and heat just until granules dissolve. Remove from heat and let cool completely. Fill 4 tall glasses with ice. Divide chia seed and lemon syrup evenly between the glasses. Top with club soda. Garnish with lemon wedges. Makes 4 servings.
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