One of the richest plant sources of omega-3 fatty acids, flax is also high in fiber, lignans and other vitamins and minerals. In addition, this unassuming little seed is associated with lowering cholesterol, fighting cancer and controlling blood glucose levels - not to mention it is an easy substitution for unhealthy saturated fats in the diet. Give these flavorful flax recipes a taste - and be sure to use the following substitution guidelines to incorporate more flax into your everyday family meals.
Flax recipesCourtesy of FlaxUSA.com
Serves 8 Ingredients:
2 pounds lean ground beef
1 cup skim milk
1/2 cup ground flax seed
1/2 cup dry breadcrumbs
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 egg, beaten
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon dry mustard
1/2 teaspoon celery salt
1/4 teaspoon ground thyme
1/4 cup ketchup Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a large bowl, combine beef, milk, ground flax, crumbs, onion, egg, Worcestershire sauce, pepper, garlic, mustard, celery salt and thyme and mix well. Pat mixture into a 9x 5x3-inch loaf pan. Spread ketchup over top of loaf.
2. Bake 1 to 1-1/2 hours or until no pink remains. Remove meatloaf from oven and let stand 5 minutes. Remove meatloaf from pan and place on platter to slice and serve.
Farmland Flax Cookies
Makes 9 dozen cookies Ingredients:
1-1/3 cups butter
1-1/4 cups granulated sugar
1-1/2 cups ground flax seed
3 large eggs
1-1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
3-1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking soda
3 cups oats Directions:
1. In a bowl, cream butter and sugars. Beat in flax seed. In another bowl, beat eggs and vanilla together. Combine with flax mixture. Sift together the flour and soda. Mix in oatmeal and combine with other ingredients.
2. Form dough into 1-1/2 inch round logs. Place in freezer and chill. When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Slice logs into 1/4-inch medallions. Place on baking sheet leaving about 2 inches between cookies. Bake 13 to 15 minutes. Remove from sheet and cool.
How to substitute flax for butter and oil in recipes
Ground flax seed can be used to replace butter, margarine and other oils as well as eggs in many of your everyday dishes. Fat:
When baking, you can replace part of all of the fat, depending on the recipe. If you substitute flax for all of the fat, be sure to increase the liquid in the recipe by 75 percent as ground flax absorbs liquid. Be aware, too, that baked goods that include flax will brown more quickly – you may need to adjust cooking time or loosely cover baked goods with foil towards the end of the cooking time. Substitute:
3 tablespoons ground flax seed for every 1 tablespoon butter, margarine or oil. Eggs:
For vegans or vegetarians who don't eat eggs, ground flax is a suitable substitution in baked goods. Substitute:
1 tablespoon ground flax plus 3 tablespoons of water for each egg. Let flax and water mixture sit for several minutes before adding to your recipe.
Other ways to add flax to your diet
Ground flax can be added to practically any food and drink. FlaxUSA gives the following recommendations:
· Stir ground flax into a glass of juice or water
· Add ground flax to smoothies
· Stir ground flax into yogurt and cottage cheese
· Sprinkle on cereal, apple sauce, pasta, or vegetables
Whole flax seeds can be added to baked goods, hot cereal, pasta, rice and vegetables for added crunch, but keep in mind that ground flax is more digestible and, thus, delivers more of the seed's health benefits.
Flax oil – a delicate oil – can be drizzled on cooked foods as a finishing splash or whisked with vinegar and your favorite herbs to make a healthy omega-3 rich vinaigrette.
More facts on flaxFlax seed recipes for the whole family Potential side effects of flax