Buckwheat is an ancient ‘grain’ and one of my best buds. It’s taken over as the primary grain in my kitchen because it rocks the quick weeknight dinners because it cooks up in 15 minutes. Although very similar in texture to a true grain, buckwheat is actually a seed from a flower and is what I like to call a ‘pseudo grain’ making it the perfect match for those that are gluten intolerant or for those who are celiac.
Want to cook buckwheat as a side dish?
- 1 and 3/4 cup water or broth
- 1 cup coarse grind buckwheat
Add both to a pot. Bring to a boil, then simmer for 15 minutes.
You may have heard the word ancient grains thrown around lately and for good reason. Ancient grains are higher in fibre, and they naturally retain their vitamin and mineral content. The opposite of ancient grains are refined grains which run rampant in our food supply. White rice/flour, white bread, white pasta and white flour and products made from these are some examples. But, refined wheat is also found as fillers in frozen meat products, frozen pre-prepard foods, canned foods and definitely in fast foods. They go through extensive processing stripping them of their vitamin and mineral content and fibre content. However in Canada, at the end of processing, white flours have to be enriched with some (but not all) vitamins and minerals due to health regulations. But there’s a big difference in consuming an ‘enriched’ product compared to consuming an unaltered product. Eating whole grains (or pseudo grains) which have not been processed such as barley, wheat berries, kamut, quinoa, farro, buckwheat or spelt can provide much more nourishment to our bodies than we may be aware of. For example, 1 cup of buckwheat contains almost 25% of our need for magnesium, a mineral that is estimated to be deficient in up to 75% of the Western population. Want to know how cook and bake with more ancient grains? Check out these recipes too:
- Kamut Dark Chocolate Energy Bars
- Warm Wheat Berry Salad
- Lentil and Barley Salad with Tomatoes, Spinach, and Feta
The one question I get asked all the time is, “how do I cook with them?” And, by all means, that is the most important question. So, on with the show! The key to making clusters like you see in store bought granola is to lay the granola in a THIN layer as you bake it. It will look like one giant granola bar. After you let it cool, break it bite size pieces as you prefer.
- 1 2/3 cups certified gluten free oats
- 1/3 cup buckwheat groats
- 1.5 tsp ground ginger
- 1.5 tsp ground cinnamon
- 3 tablespoons chia seeds
- 1/2 cup coconut
- 3 tablespoons coconut oil
- 1/4 cup honey
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup toasted walnuts, roughly chopped (do not put this in until the end)
- 1/2 cup dried currants (do not put this in until the end)
- Preheat oven to 325F and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper
- Mix all ingredients into a bowl except the last two
- Lay onto the cookie sheet in a thin layer
- Bake for 10 minutes. Then take and and flip the granola (make sure it goes back in a thin layer). Bake for another 15 minutes.
- Let cool completely before breaking into chunks. Then add currants and walnuts.