Dairy Free Mandarin & Lucuma Chia Parfait
By Amy Crawford
I've said this before and I'll say it again, many of the very best kitchen creations arise out of (almost) empty fridges, fruit bowls and freezers. You're forced to look outside the square and come up with alternatives, alternatives such as mandarin parfaits...who would've thought? All you need is a blender and the right side of your brain (the creative side) and off you go.
We don't often think to blend whole mandarins (or oranges) but we really should. In doing so your body enjoys the full benefits of the fibre, including the pith. Did you know that by removing all the pith of the mandarin you are throwing away much of its goodness? The pith has almost the same amount of vitamin C as the flesh, it's rich in bioflavonoids (antioxidants), can help lower blood pressure and regulate cholesterol AND acts an immune system stimulant. It may not be as tasty as the flesh but it's well worth reconsidering before you strip your mandarin bare.
In today's recipe I also include lucuma, a superfood I don't use often but love when I do. In case you've not heard of lucuma, this is a naturally low GI sweetener with a creamy, citrusy taste. High in antioxidants (flee you nasty free radicals, flee in fear!) and rich in healthy carbohydrates, it's also packed to the brim with vitamins and minerals AND has the same amount of calcium as a glass of cow's milk - go figure!
You will need:
1 cup rice milk (or milk of choice)
¼ cup chia seeds
1 dessert spoon lucuma
1 heaped tablespoon buckwheat
1 heaped tablespoon coconut yoghurt
1 teaspoon maca powder
½ teaspoon vanilla powder
Place the peeled mandarin, buckwheat, milk, lucuma, maca, chia and vanilla into a food processor and combine until smooth and creamy. Pour into a glass and allow to stand for a few minutes, allowing the chia to thicken the parfait. Spoon on a healthy dollop of yoghurt and swirl through. The addition of some homemade granola on top gives this parfait the all important crunch factor.
How do you include lucuma in your diet?