I make different combinations of chia pudding. I’ve made chia pudding with mango and lime, pomegranate and hibiscus tea, carrots and bananas and almonds. Chia pudding makes me feel like I’m starting my day right, and I find myself throwing whatever we have in our ‘fridge into it to see what works. Today’s chia pudding is a mango pomelo chia pudding that I was inspired to make from one of my favorite Asian desserts.
When we lived in Malaysia, I loved tapioca desserts with fresh tropical fruits. Tapioca pudding is kind of a standard dessert at Chinese restaurants. I loved the citrusy tang of pomelo (a kind of large citrus fruit with a fleshy meat that’s a touch sweeter than grapefruit) when mixed with sweet, ripened mango and a creamy tapioca; it’s just a nice finish to the oiler main courses in most Chinese meals.
Chia pudding is a much easier endeavor than tapioca, though, and quite filling as a breakfast food. I love chia pudding in lieu of custardy yogurts, which have an astonishing amount of fat and sugar when they’re pre-flavored and come in fancy glass jars. Don’t get me wrong — I love a good glass jarred yogurt. I’m just not sure that I need to be consuming all of my day’s fun calorie allotment towards yogurt. The world is full of far more interesting food.
The best thing about pomelo is that its large size makes it easy to remove the pith (the bitter white parts on all citrus fruit). I slice the skin on my pomelo in long, vertical strokes, then unwrap the peel away from the fruit before breaking up the pith. After that, it’s just a matter of peeling away the pith from the pulp of the pomelo and breaking up the pomelo into chunks for the chia pudding.
I’m not the best at weekday breakfast prep, so sometimes I’ll even prep and chop up the fruit for my mango pomelo chia pudding the night before and store it separately from the chia pudding in a plastic container. Then, in the morning, I’ll spoon out chia pudding into individual bowls and top with the fruit. The bright colors and the individual servings just make it seem like I did a lot more than I actually did to make a great breakfast.
And really, isn’t that what it’s all about? Faking it until we make it?
- 2 14-ounce cans of coconut milk (Whole Foods brand or Thai Kitchen; do not use Goya)
- ¼ cup chia seeds
- more coconut milk (optional), for thinning
- 1 ripe mango, peeled and cut into chunks
- 1 pomelo, peeled and pith removed
- The night before you plan on eating the chia pudding, open both cans of coconut milk and pour into a medium bowl. Stir thoroughly to incorporate the cream with the liquid that may have separated in the can. Add chia seeds and mix thoroughly. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
- In the morning, spoon chia pudding into small bowls. Add a little coconut milk (around 1 tablespoon) to thin out the chia pudding if necessary and top with mango and pomelo. Serve immediately.
- Note: we've used Goya brand coconut milk a few times and the consistency of their milk does not work well to help the chia seeds expand. Try either Thai Kitchen or Whole Foods brand instead.