I’ll never forget our car journeys from our farm home in the Dargle, KZN South Africa to our schools in Howick, 45km away, and back again in the afternoons. Potting along the dusty dirt road in my mums cobalt blue little Ford Laser. I would always be ravenous by the time we got home after a long tiring day of school. My go to snack before dinner was predominantly peanut butter toast and jam. The highly processed florescent purple jam that came in a tin and was sweet as pure glucose! (*Insert yuk face here*) It was called Hugo’s if I remember correctly. Aaahhh adolescent bad food choices, how things have changed! Now this chia jam recipe is a totally different story!
Anyway, in my current nostalgic faze, I’ve been sifting through old childhood memories and finding inspiration in the foods that I used to eat. Finding ways in which I can replicate them by using wholesome nourishing and healthy ingredients. This Grape and Apple Chia Jam recipe is a product of that inspiration and I really am so happy with how it turned out.
This jam seemed to hand in my mind, and it just so happened that I had a beautiful bunch of deep purple grapes, freshly picked from our vine in the garden. These little morsels of sweet deliciousness had been staring at me for couple of days, while I was deciding what to do with them. And so I decided that jam they would become! Yum!
To get the similar consistency of regular jam, I used Chia seeds. These tiny little superpower seeds are amazing and are able to soak and swell up ten times their weight, leaving a beautiful gel globule which resembles regular jam consistency incredibly. Not only are these seeds able to swell, they are also loaded with amazing nutritional benefits.
Benefits of Chia Seeds
- Loaded with antioxidants
- Full of fibre
- High in quality protein
- Awesome for weight loss
- High in omega-3 fatty acids
- Help lower cholesterol
- High in many important bone nutrients
- Help to lower blood pressure
- Great for endurance athletes
- Super versatile
- Egg replacement and so much more …
I was so happy with how the recipe turned out, and the fact that the grapes came off the vine in our garden made it that much more special. I cannot wait until I have a thriving vegetable garden! The flavor really stood out and I can compare it to that of the fizzy drink Fanta Grape, funnily enough. It must be the variety of grape that gives it that distinct yummy grapey flavor. Too tasty!!! Now in this recipe I did leave the seeds in because I couldn’t be bothered removing them, and they don’t really faze me. I couldn’t even taste them, and they must have softened in the heat. However if you do mind seeds, then by all means try to use seedless grapes.
- 3 1/2 Cups fresh Red/Purple Grapes (preferably seedless)
- 1 Large Apple (De-cored, peeled and grated)
- Juice of 1/2 Lemon
- 4 TBS Chia Seeds
- 2-4 TBS Rice Malt Syrup (Depending on how sweet you want it)
- In a medium pot, lightly saute the grated apple on a medium heat until they reduce and their own juices begin to form.
- Pluck the grapes off their stalks and chop in half. Add them to the pot and allow to reduce.
- Add the lemon juice and rice malt syrup. Continue to let the mixture reduce until all the grape have broken down.
- Add the chia seeds and remove from the heat. Stir them into the grape apple mixture and allow to sit for about 10 mins, stirring occasionally. They'll begin to swell and absorb any excess moisture.
- Eventually you'll be left with a beautiful thick jam like consistency.
- Store in an airtight glass jar in the fridge. It should last around a week or so.
- Try use organic seedless grapes, although if you don't have a problem with the seeds, leave them in. I did and you could hardly taste them.