Remember that time?
So, so long ago?
Just after Al Gore invented the Interwebz?
When I was a food blogger?
Sincerest, sincerest apologies friends and hungry people. What can I say?
Life… it won’t stop happening to me!
Someone please make it stop!!
But I’m seriously back in action with some serious foodstuffs that I want nothing more than to share with you.
So let’s start at the very beginning.
A very good place to start.
When you read you begin with A-B-C.
When you eat you begin with break-break-breakfast.
Which brings us to these Chia Flapjacks topped with a sweet and spicy Strawberry Salsa!
Take that, life!
I really am a huge fan of these flapjacks, and I have a feeling that you will be too.
Don’t be intimidated by the chia: they’re nothing more than the newest superfood rocking the block. My local national chain market recently started stocking chia next to the wild rice and quinoa. And all you need to do (I insist!) is lightly toast the seeds in a dry pan for 3-4 minutes, or until the seeds have darkened slightly and become fragrant. To my eye, chia seeds resemble poppy seeds. To my nose and palate, they have a lovely nutty aroma and a crunchy, satisfying texture. They’re really nice stuffed into fluffy, warm morning flapjacks.
And don’t forget the strawberry salsa!
So pretty. So colorful. So spicy with a bit of minced serrano and chopped basil.
It’s just super isn’t it?
Super chia in some super flapjacks taking over your super Monday. So super, Al Gore must have invented it!
Either way, thanks for your super patience. I’m glad to be back in the super saddle again.
Chia Flapjacks With Strawberry Salsa
For the salsa:
1 lb. strawberries, hulled, diced
1 tbsp. lime juice, freshly squeezed
1/2 tsp. white sugar, granulated
1/4 tsp. salt
4 large basil leaves, chopped
2 serrano chiles, stemmed, diced (Note that you may remove the seeds from these chiles before chopping if you prefer to lessen their heat.)
For the flapjacks:
1/3 c. chia seeds
1 1/4 c. all-purpose flour
3 tbsp. white sugar, granulated
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/4 c. whole milk
1 large egg
2 tbsp. vegetable oil + more for frying (optional)
1 tsp. vanilla extract
To prepare the salsa, place the strawberry pieces, lime juice, sugar and salt in a large bowl, stir together, and set aside to macerate for 30 minutes. After half an hour, stir in the basil and chile pieces. Note that this salsa may be stored in a covered container, preferably a glass jar, for up to two weeks in the refrigerator, and, in fact, its flavor improves and deepens with time.
To prepare the flapjacks, place the chia seeds in a dry pan over a medium flame and, tossing frequently, toast for 3-5 minutes or until the seeds have deepened in color and are fragrant. Remove from heat and set aside to cool.
Meanwhile, whisk the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt together in a large bowl. Set aside.
Whisk the milk, egg, two tablespoons of vegetable oil and vanilla extract together in another large bowl. Whisk the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, mixing just until you have a smooth, uniform batter. Fold in the chia seeds.
To fry the flapjacks, heat a large, heavy-bottomed skillet over a medium flame. Note that preparing perfect pancakes depends to a large degree on the type of cooking vessel you are using: if you are using a nonstick griddle or pan, you will likely not need to grease it with any additional oil. If you are using cast iron or stainless steel, you may want to consider adding one tablespoon of oil to the pan before frying each batch of pancakes. Either way, be sure not to heat your pan over too high a flame or the cakes will burn on the outside without cooking through on the inside.
Once your pan or griddle is heated, portion the batter out onto the cooking surface (I chose to make larger cakes by using a quarter cup measure here). Cook for just one to one and a half minutes on each side; finished cakes will be puffed and golden brown across their tops and bottoms. Remove cooked flapjacks and repeat with additional batches as necessary. These flapjacks are best served straight from the pan or griddle, topped with strawberry salsa.
YIELD: 8 large flapjacks and approximately 2 cups of salsa