CHIA SEEDS (Salvia columbariae):
November  2015 Issue / Vol. 3, No.20                                              Can they wake the dead? 

Olympian Michelin Chef
Daniel Schmidt

Chef de Cuisine
Cord Chatham

Sushi Master
Masa Shimakawa

 Certified Wine Educator
Gary Spadafore gives the Skivvy on Sparklers


Chia Seed Crusted

Tomatoes from the

Che-Ah-Chi 2015
Sedona, Arizona

East Side Sushi
Anthony Lucero gives the story behind his award-winning film.

Westlake Village, CA

Mona Gonzales
AJ's Finer Foods
What's Hot in Cheese

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Chia Seeds - Strong enough to wake the living dead. When the Spaniards first eyed the Aztec city of Teotihuacán, Bernal Díaz del Castillo (who wrote an account of the conquest under Hernán Cortés) gushed, “we were amazed and said that it was like the enchantments they tell of in the legend of Amadis . . . And some of our soldiers even asked whether the things we saw were not a dream . . . I do not know how to describe it seeing things as we did that had never been heard of or seen before, not even dreamed about (Garcia, 1898).” The mystical city, a bit smaller than classical Rome and bustling with 200,000 residents, introduced many things to the Spaniards. The most enduring, perhaps, was the tiny chia seed. The Old World never heard of the Mint Family member, but the chia seed popped up in unrelated uses all over the Aztec kingdom. It appeared on banquet tables, in a drink combining corn and chia with chiles or honey, and as a coating for things like locusts. Chia oil was used as a base for perfumes, and added to paints. The 16th Century codices created by the Spaniards with paints made by the indigenous with chia seed oil remain, “even after five centuries, unsurpassed for their brilliant colors and clarity” (Ayerza, Coates, 2005). The oil, which does not yellow with age, protects colors from air and water and imparts “a shine to colors” (Ibid) much like the flaxseed oil, so familiar to the Spaniards.