Dusty has been getting really curious about cooking; he loves helping out in the kitchen, stirring food and handing over utensils. it’s the cutest thing ever! Earlier his year we enjoyed a weekend escape at a beautiful property in Conondale, which is about 45 minutes from Noosa. We stayed in a gorgeous Queenslander with a verandah wrapped around the house, which sits on top of a hill, offering stunning views of the working cattle station below and the hinterland beyond.
We knew this getaway would be the perfect excuse to introduce Dusty to cooking outdoors. We love making our easy berry chia jam, and Dusty eats it by the spoonful, so we thought this recipe would be the perfect using our two-burner gas stove. Below are the ingredients and recipe for our Easy Berry Chia Jam, which you can make with the kids on your next outdoor adventure.
- Two cups of frozen berries of your choice.
- 4 tbsp chia seeds. We used white and black chia seeds.
- 3 to 4 Tbsp sweetener of your choice. We used FODMAP friendly maple syrup, but you can also use honey, coconut syrup or rice malt syrup. Or coconut sugar to make it vegan!
- ¼ Cup of water
- 2 Tsp vanilla extract
- Squeeze of fresh lemon juice
- Place the frozen berries in the pot with ¼ cup of water over a low heat on the stove top. Gently stir the berries until they break up and turn into a slightly rustic, chunky puree.
- As the berries are warming up and softening, add the vanilla, chia seeds and sweetener; in our case, this was the maple syrup. Stir to combine and taste test. Add extra sweetener and chia seeds if you need to. Remember, chia seeds soak up a lot of liquid so it’s ok if the jam is a bit runny because the chia seeds will thicken the jam.
- Squeeze a dash of fresh lemon juice into the pot.
- Once all the ingredients are combined, turn the stove off.
- Pour the berry chia jam into a clean jar (we got ours from Ikea) and refrigerate. The jam actually thickens even more as it cools and should keep for two weeks.
- Serve with sourdough (or any other bread) toast. Add butter before the chia jam if you'd like!
If you want a completely sugar free berry chia jam, but still want it to taste sweet, use Stevia! Just add a little bit at a time until it tastes right.
Outdoor cooking tips
Get your kids to help measure the ingredients and mix them together in a bowl. The messier the better because you are outdoors!
Keep your kids a reasonable and safe distance away from the stove whilst you turn the gas on and off, and whilst you are cooking. Never leave a gave stove unattended.
Once the jam is made and cooled, place the pot on a bench seat for your kids to eat straight from the pot using a wooden spoon.
We also made a really simple creamy porridge with berries with coconut yoghurt, fresh mint and our berry chia jam.