They are the latest super-seed, and are said to help with weight loss, blood-sugar control and flu prevention. It’s just a pity they have the texture of frogspawn
Flax, chia, hemp, pumpkin … you name a seed, I have probably sprinkled it on a bit of yoghurt in the hope of gaining eternal life. In a way, seeds are the ultimate food fad – you get into them obsessively for a while, soaking up the literature that proudly flaunts their cancer-fighting, stress-busting, skin-improving qualities. And then, after a week or so, you lose interest – partly because you have not witnessed any evidence that you are transforming into a disease-resistant superhuman with a life expectancy of 150 (in fact, you have a cold). But also because, well, they don’t really taste of much, do they?
The latest seeds to enjoy a moment in the spotlight are basil seeds, which are popular in south-east Asia where they are known as sabja seeds. You will often find them marketed as the “new chia seeds” and also “the latest digestive hack”, which sounds frankly painful. A quick tour of the internet reveals the following claimed benefits: weight loss, blood-sugar control, flu prevention, bloating relief … and on and on. They reportedly have antioxidant, antiviral, antibacterial, antispasmodic and antifungal properties, and can help with psoriasis and eczema.
Basil seeds are enjoying a moment – but can we enjoy eating them?