Reviewed by Anna Barker
A couple of weeks ago I was sent 2 packets of Linwoods seeds, an information booklet and some further recipes. Having now consumed approximately half a bag of each, I feel in a position to give an informed review.
Linwoods are a premium manufacturer of health foods. Their products are available online, in main supermarkets and health food stores. The range includes a variety of seed mixes. I was asked to review milled organic flaxseed and milled chia seed.
As a vegetarian for over 30 years, I’m no stranger to the seed. I have bought, cooked and sprinkled most seeds over my food. More annoyingly, I have spent quite a lot of time sweeping the wretched things up when the packaging bursts in my cupboard. Linwoods have made a refreshing change. Their seeds are packed beautifully in foiled re-sealable bags, with a re-seal that actually works. The bags are attractive and not too ‘worthy’, so even my carnivorous husband wasn’t put off.
Flaxseed is often recommended for those of us who would like to improve our Omega 3 intake. It also contains Iron, Zinc, Calcium, and Dietary Fibre. It hasn’t actually got much taste and I regularly add it to my muesli (sorry to sound like the archetypal vegetarian!). I found the Linwoods flaxseed to be slightly finer than other brands but otherwise, I’m afraid I couldn’t really tell the difference between it and other cheaper alternatives.
Chia seed is a relative newcomer to the health food arena. It has only been available in the UK for approximately 3 years and is hailed as a super food. I know this because my 13 year old daughter was able to tell me all about it and she knows her super foods! A quick look at the nutritional information certainly seems to back this up.
As I hadn’t used chia seed before I wasn’t sure what to expect. It looked like finely milled pepper and had a mild powdery nutty taste. It certainly wasn’t unpleasant and I’ve been happy to add it to my muesli with the flaxseed.
My daughter added the chia seed to apple juice and was delighted to find that after a while it swelled up into a sort of jelly like substance. (I thought it looked a bit like frogspawn!).
As this was my first encounter with chia seed, I can’t compare the Linwoods variety to any other. I have read that it is important to get a quality brand as some chia seeds can come from immature plants which do not have the same nutritional benefits.
We have used the flaxseed and the chia seed together in a salad, on muesli, in soup, in a pasta sauce and in a smoothie. On each occasion, it was fine. It didn’t have a particular taste and the texture was lost into the other food (no apparent frogspawn from the chia seed). I haven’t been particularly aware of any health benefits but we’ve only used the seeds for a couple of weeks. The nutritional information tells me that I must have benefitted and I’m happy to believe it. I will certainly continue using the packets and am hoping to try some of the other recipes that Linwoods supplied.
I found the products excellent and the packaging was a real hit. I’m not sure if I would buy them again as the price is a bit steep for me. I may buy the chia seed as I’m not sure of the origins of some of the cheaper brands and I’m confident that Linwoods supply good quality.
For more information or to buy online visit www.linwoodshealthfoods.com.