I came across an interesting substitute for fruit-flavoured yoghurt one day when experimenting with various smoothie recipes. I usually add a few tablespoons of flax seed into my smoothies for added vitamins and nutrients, protein, fats, and fibre, but this time I decided to replace the flax seed with chia seed – with wonderful results.
Chia seeds have a great congealing effect, which was what makes it possible to create easy chia seed puddings, and in this case worked with the pureed fruit and soy milk to create a delicious mixture with a very similar flavour and texture to regular fruit-flavoured yoghurts. I decided to use my newfound yoghurt-substitute in a vegan version of a fruit parfait.
While you could use any kind of fresh fruit you like to layer in the parfait – fresh berries, pears, nectarines – I decided to use some delicious, fresh Ontario peaches; they have the most amazing flavour this time of year!
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– 1 cup non-dairy milk (soy, almond, oat, rice, etc.)
– 1 ripe banana
– 1 cup mixed fresh berries
– 2 tbsp. chia seed
– ½ cup rolled oats
– ½ cup chopped nuts (almonds and/or walnuts)
– Sliced fresh fruit for layering
Blend all ingredients for yoghurt in a blender until smooth. Transfer to a glass bowl and cover. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours – preferably overnight – until mixture sets and takes on the right consistency.
When you’re ready to assemble the parfaits, gently toast the oats and nuts in a stainless steel pan over medium heat until golden and fragrant. Set aside.
In your chosen serveware, layer a little bit of the ‘yoghurt’ followed by some of the fruit and continue layering until full. Top with a little bit more of the fresh fruit and a generous amount of the granola. Serve immediately.