All Entries For grains
Quinoa pronounced KEEN-Wah has quickly become a staple in my cooking. I love that it is quick and easy to prepare, has outstanding nutritional value and is allergy-free. Since it cooks through in less than 20 minutes, it is a useful grain substitute in just about any recipe. A single serving is high in healthy fats, fiber protein, iron, magnesium phosphorus, and riboflavin. Quinoa is also gluten free! Increase your nutritional grain options with these quick and convenient Quinoa recipes. Read More ›
When I was growing up, my parents kept our pantry stocked with at least five different kinds of cereal, and I spent many a Sunday morning eating it out of a bowl the size of my head while reading the comics. I got smarter about portion control in college, but cereal remained my favorite sweet and crunchy breakfast and late-night studying snack. I would try to gravitate toward healthier, whole-grain varieties, and two of my favorite old standbys were Kashi GoLean Crunch and Barbara's Peanut Butter Puffins. These seemed to be good choices, as both of them boasted all-natural ingredients and whole grains. However, despite the health claims that these two cereal boxes tout, both of them still contain some sugar—and one contains much less than the other. Out of these two seemingly healthful cereals, which one is the ultimate low-sugar winner?
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Nothing makes me crazier than investing money and time in a recipe only for it to fail. Even chefs aren't immune to kitchen disasters. I took upon a challenge to come up with some simple recipes for cooking grains in the slow cooker. Well, after lots of testing, reading about how other people do it and talking to my "chef" friends, I've come to the conclusion that cooking plain rice or pasta all day long in the slow cooker is not a good idea.
But if you're a slow cooker lover, don't fret. Not all hope is lost. I was able to cook brown rice in the slow cooker using a "stalling method," and I found that oats and quinoa steam nicely in the slow cooker, too.
The slow cooker provides a moist environment for cooking. It's wonderful for simmering cheaper cuts of meats that have tough connective tissue; I love it for keeping warm mashed potatoes, and its genius for making soups that are waiting for you as you walk in the door after a long day.
That cozy, warm, moist environment is exactly what made it a bad choice for cooking whole grains. Brown long grain rice after three hours was sticky and clumpy--a real mess. Read More ›
Just like the boy of the same name would say, buckwheat is o-tay! I recently became a big fan of the triangular grain that is growing in popularity. Buckwheat is actually not part of the wheat family, which means it is gluten free. It also provides eight amino acids, plus plenty of fiber and protein.
To learn more about this unfamiliar, trendy grain, I phoned my agriculture expert. He is actually on my speed dial under "Daddy."
Turns out, my dad has been growing buckwheat for years, which was a surprise for me. I know the farm and its fields well, and he has never mentioned buckwheat! Part of the reason I had never heard of the harvest was that my family does not harvest the crop. My Dad grows it as a source of food for the deer and doves that call our farm home as well. Buckwheat, as my Dad explained, is a short crop that does not require pesticides or fertilizers. Because it is a short crop, meaning that the plant matures in about 30 days, farmers can come in after its harvest or consumption from animals and then plant a second crop during the same season. The short season makes it perfect for climates with shorter growing seasons like the upper Midwest of the United States. Read More ›