Roasting or toasting flaxseeds not only adds a nutty flavor to the flaxseed, it helps break the hard outer shell, making the inner nutrients accessible for our bodies to absorb; otherwise the seeds pass though our digestive system as insoluble fiber. High in omega-3 fatty acids, flaxseed may have a highly positive impact on helping to stave off cancer.
When I purchase flaxseed I only purchase it in seed form, not ground, as the omega-3 fatty acids are prone to degradation. If you are looking to benefit from the omega-3s, do not buy it pre-ground; grind the flaxseed at home and only just before you need it. I have a simple coffee grinder that I use. A mortar and pestle can work as effectively, giving the added advantage of a bit of an arm muscle workout. 🙂
Sometimes I am looking for both the healthy aspects of flaxseed as well as for presentation, as is the case for the Roasted Flaxseed and Sugar Snap Peas recipe. For this recipe I want some of the seeds whole, as well as some cracked and more grounded.
- In a dry fry pan put in the quantity of flaxseed that you require for the recipe then put the fry pan over a medium heat.
- Keep an eye on the pan and toss or stir the seeds every 30 seconds or when you start to hear cracking noises. If you are toasting a small amount in a large fry pan it could take as little as 3 minutes; if the fry pan has a complete single layer of flaxseeds it will take about 8 minutes.
- When about two-thirds of the seeds are a darker hue, remove from the heat and let cool, tossing / stirring once more about 30 seconds after being removed from the heat (the pan is still hot so toasting is still occurring).
- Coarsely grind the now-cooled flaxseeds in a mortar and pestle or a coffee mill until desired consistency is reached.
- Use as detailed in recipe.