Those funny flax seeds just might save your life
A new book about the wonders of flax includes more than 100 recipes to help you lower your risk of heart disease and cancer.
Maybe you’ve seen it on “black” sushi or idly wondered what it was when faced with one of those mysterious wraps at a café.
Flax is valued by health-food junkies for its fibre content and prized omega-3 fatty acids.These unsaturated fats are commonly found in oily fish, and can help prevent certain types of cancer, lower the risk of heart disease, and stabilize blood-glucose levels. As a bonus, with flax, you don’t have to risk mercury poisoning to get your fatty-acid intake. And the protein in flax is similar to that found in soybeans, making it an important addition to vegetarian diets.
The seeds can be added to baked goods, cereals, smoothies, and rice dishes—all of which can be found in a new cookbook, Everything Flax: More Than 100 Easy Ways to Work Flax Into Your Everyday Diet (Whitecap, $24.95).
Canada leads the world in flax exports, with Saskatchewan producing four times more than any other province. For a tasty snack, follow the Everything Flax recipe below for a poached-apple salad with a flax-dusted roll of goat cheese.
Flax-coated Goat Cheese and Apple Salad
1 cup (250 mL) water
2 Tbsp (30 mL) fresh lemon juice
1 Tbsp (15 mL) granulated sugar
1 red apple, cored and sliced into 12 wedges
1 green apple, cored and sliced into 12 wedges
1/4 cup (60 mL) poaching liquid from apples
2 Tbsp (30 mL) pure maple syrup
1 Tbsp (15 mL) apple-cider vinegar
1 Tbsp (15 mL) flaxseed oil
1/4 tsp (1 mL) crushed dried thyme
1 pinch ground cinnamon
4 cups (142 g bag) packed baby salad greens
5 ounces (140 g) goat-cheese roll
2 Tbsp (30 mL) whole flaxseed
In a large saucepan, bring water, lemon juice, and sugar to a boil.
Add apple slices and gently poach until they’re tender-crisp, about four minutes.
Carefully lift out apple slices with a slotted spoon. Set aside to cool. Reserve poaching liquid.
In a small bowl, whisk together poaching liquid, maple syrup, apple-cider vinegar, flaxseed oil, thyme, and cinnamon.
Divide salad greens among four serving plates.
Roll goat cheese in flaxseed to coat it evenly. Cut it into 12 slices.
Place three slices of cheese on top of each salad portion.
Arrange three slices each of red and green apple on each salad portion.
Drizzle two tablespoons of dressing over each plate.
Adapted from Everything Flax, edited by Linda Braun (Whitecap, 2009). Reprinted with permission. All rights reserved.