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Hard Core Grains


bavila
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Hubby and I just signed up for this big deal 90-day fitness challenge at our gym. Part of the initial materials includes some menu suggestions from the staff nutritionist. Here is the list of grains/cereals he reccomends:

oats

quinoa

buckwheat

amaranth

millet

brown rice

wild rice

I love quinoa, and know what I'd do with oats and rice, but I've never done anything with the others. Any suggestions?

Bridget Avila

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Ask him about barley. I never had it (outside of soups) until recently, and really fell for it (and I generally don't do "hard core" grains). Fool-proof to cook, pleasantly chewy, with real flavor, and it doesn't seem to take much to jazz up into a grain salad of sorts that i found works well with fish. surprisingly filling.


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Every single one of those grains is excellent in a salad. Millet, I have to admit, not my favorite thing, it gets kind of mushy. In my home we eat a LOT of steel cut oats. They have a chewier texture than rolled oats. Rolled oats are for cookies! We throw steel cut oats into pilafs, soups, and salads. I've also made a side dish of them, using the oats just like rice. Kiddle likes them with milk and honey, too. I will eat them any way you serve it. We also eat brown rice for breakfast a lot. We make it and eat it just like it's oatmeal. Yum.

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Had my homemade mushroom barley soup for dinner tonight. Yum!

Buckwheat: Not really a grain (indeed, it has no gluten) but it's used like a grain. It's probably most familiar as buckwheat groats, a.k.a. kasha, an Eastern/Northern European and Jewish staple. (It's also what's used by the Japanese to make soba noodles, iirc.) In fact, I had kasha yesterday in the form of a store-bought kasha knish. Last week I made a meal out of it by topping it with a mushroom/onion gravy I concocted. The classic Jewish preparation is kasha varnischke (kasha and bow-tie egg noodles). Kasha ranges from "fine" to "medium" to "coarse" to "whole" granulation; unless you're using in in buckwheat pancakes, I'd go for the "whole".

Bob Libkind aka "rlibkind"

Robert's Market Report

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We throw steel cut oats into pilafs, soups, and salads. I've also made a side dish of them, using the oats just like rice.

In Scotland, oats are the base of skirlie, which can be used as a meat stuffing or a savory pilaf-like accompaniment to meat and poultry dishes.

Bob Libkind aka "rlibkind"

Robert's Market Report

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they sell puffed millet in bags at the health food store for a cold breakfast cereal, and that's pretty much the best way to eat millet. salads are also good, i like to put quinoa in a salad with tomatoes and kidney beans, it's so easy and i can eat it for every meal of the day.

yum, quinoa is so cheap and good. that should be what kids make in dorm rooms instead of grilled cheese and whatever else.

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Thanks for all the tips. Though I have seen millet in grocery stores, it always surprised me, since a friend who was in the Peace Corps in Africa (Cameroon?) described it as something you would eat only if you had to.

Maybe I should delve into the Bob's Red Mill site for ideas.

Bridget Avila

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I've never read a more amazing book of recipes for whole grains than this one:The Splendid Grain. (It even appears to be on sale now on Amazon. . . :biggrin: ). Wait a minute. There is another book that is as amazing for whole grains. This one:Mediterranean Grains and Greens by Paula Wolfert.

Between these two books, there is a lifetime's worth of recipes to explore without ever being bored and probably rarely being disappointed with the idea of "whole grains". Amazing.

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Hubby and I just signed up for this big deal 90-day fitness challenge at our gym.  Part of the initial materials includes some menu suggestions from the staff nutritionist.  Here is the list of grains/cereals he reccomends:

oats

quinoa

buckwheat

amaranth

millet

brown rice

wild rice

I love quinoa, and know what I'd do with oats and rice, but I've never done anything with the others.  Any suggestions?

As for brown rice and wild rice, they both take about 45 to hour to cook properly, but, IMHO, they are worth it. You have to watch them or they become mushy, much like the instant brown(parboiled/dried) variety is. I haven't tried amaranth or millet.

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amaranth:

I add this in with other grains to give a bit of variety.

In regards to millet. I can be great for salads and can als be made into a risotto (same with Barley). However, I recommend that you dry roast it to give it better flavor.

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I just toss handfuls into stews. They add body and thicken the soups or stews nicely.

I always attempt to have the ratio of my intelligence to weight ratio be greater than one. But, I am from the midwest. I am sure you can now understand my life's conundrum.

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Corn and Barely Salad!

Corn, shucked, barley, sweet red peppers, sweet tomatoes, cilantro, green onions - in a rice wine vinegar, lemon olive oil dressing.

Eating pizza with a fork and knife is like making love through an interpreter.
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We adore Basmati brown rice that we buy in #10 bags at Indian markets. Kiddle is in charge of cooking brown rice. She measures the water into a pot, brings it to a boil, then adds the brown rice and covers, turning the heat to it's lowest reading on whatever stove we are using. 30 minutes in, she turns off the heat. About 10 minutes later, the rice is ready. We never check it, we can't afford the counter space for a rice maker, and the rice always comes out wonderful. Nutty and earthy.We refrigerate lots of times and scoop it out as wanted. Kiddle is amazing! :wub:

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Buckwheat is great - I've been discovering it this year. And really good for hearty carb meals if you're doing a lot of exercise. You certainly won't feel starved.

You could try Pizzocheri - an italian dish involving buckwheat pasta & potatoes with savoy cabbage, sage and cheese - great winter comfort food.

Or Breton style buckwheat pancakes.

Or dishes involving soba noodles.

Or kasha with pasta and puy lentils and sauerkraut works very well for me.

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Don't forget the teeniest hard core grain: Teff!

I'm cooking some up for breakfast porridge right now, and despite its diminutive size, it takes a LONG time to soften up.... its been going at least a half hour and I think it needs at least another 10 minutes.

Then again, after I started cooking it (whole grains in water), I went online and found two recipes for porridge, one of which started with teff flour, and the other had you toasting/popping the grains before cooking. :huh:

Oh well, I'll see how it turns out. I'm starting a batch of teff flour soaking today so I can make injera in a few days. Mmmmm... sour bread.... :wub:

Andrea

http://tenacity.net

"You can't taste the beauty and energy of the Earth in a Twinkie." - Astrid Alauda

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