Welcome to November's Recipe ReDux - "a whole new grain."
And welcome to amaranth - which is *technically* not a grain after all, but most people refer to it as such (including me). One to never let the facts get in the way of a good story, I'm going with "grain" for the purposes of this post.
When we set the theme for this month's ReDux, we wanted to explore "whole grains" in a way that would challenge people to move beyond their comfort zones - whole wheat flour & oatmeal. You'll note that my recipes do in fact use whole wheat flour & oatmeal - no need to abandon our favorites... we simply wanted to explore additional choices.
I experimented with amaranth a few months back with moderate success. Using it in a polenta type preparation, I thought it quite tasty. My husband wasn't quite so convinced. So I decided this time around to give it sweeter treatment.
Amaranth Holiday Bread is semi-sweet quick bread. It's the perfect partner to a cup of coffee, side of fruit and a leisurely morning enjoyed in the company of family and friends.
[click image for recipe]
The benefit to baking with amaranth is without a doubt the nutritional boost it adds to your baked goods. Higher in protein than wheat, richer in lysine (an amino acid notoriously low in many grains) than most grains, higher in calcium than any other grain (with the exception of teff)... and the list goes on.
If you're not ready to bake your way into a whole new grain, maybe you can ease into amaranth at breakfast. The Whole Grain Breakfast Bowl shown below was a simple combination of 2 tablespoons quinoa, 2 tablespoons amaranth, 2 tablespoons old-fashioned oats, 1 tablespoon brown sugar & 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon, placed in a rice cooker and topped with 3/4 cup water. I cooked until water the water was absorbed (you may have to add additional water, depending on how thick you like your breakfast grains), then toped with a splash of milk and raspberries.
I always love to hear from you when ReDux time rolls around... and this is a topic that I really would love your thoughts. Please be sure to visit all the other ReDux posts - especially Emma Stirling from The Scoop on Nutrition who was the inspiration behind this month's theme - and then come back and let me know what you think about this:
Have you branched out beyond whole wheat and oatmeal to use any new "whole grains" in your kitchen?
What are your favorite whole grains recipes?