September is celebrated as Whole Grains Month!
We all love grains. After all, be it your breakfast cereal, your pasta or your bread or your favorite dessert…all seem to have some or the other whole grain component to it. But with the rising number of gluten intolerant people due to celiac disease, going gluten free is not an option anymore- its a must. Research shows that 1 out of 133 people in the United States suffer from Celiac disease. But as we all say, We love our grains!
Here are five gluten free grains which you can enjoy:
Millet: It is the world’s 6th most important grain and has been consumed since as early as 8300 BC! It can be used to make flat breads, brew your gluten free beer, make a pilaf or pop it like popcorn. Try it in baking recipes and even make cookies with it. Try the sticky millet patty or croquette. All you need is:
Boil the millet in the water for about 15 minutes and then let it stand for another 10. Add your favorite finely diced veggies, season with salt and then shape in croquettes and bake in a hot oven.
Sorghum: Sorghum is an ancient cereal grain and is excellent for the celiac diet. These grains are antioxidant rich and contain policosanols, a cholesterol lowering compound which benefits heart health. Sorghum can easily substitute for wheat in a number of baked recipes. Try this neutral tasting grain to make cookies, muffins, breads, pizzas, flat breads pies and even noodles! Just look online and you will be amazed to see the storm you can cook up with these.
Amaranth: Amaranth is actually a herb whose seeds can be used like a cereal grain. It has very high iron content and also contains magnesium, calcium, fiber and almost 13 grams of protein. The peptide, lunasin, present in Amaranth, is said to have cancer preventive capabilities. Try this grain sprinkled on salads, stirred into soups or even add to your cake or cookie mix. Amaranth polenta with porchini mushrooms makes an excellent accompaniment with roasted or braised chicken. Yum!
Buckwheat: Buckwheat is an amazing pseudo cereal and contains high levels of zinc, manganese and copper. Buckwheat groats helps you stay fit and healthy because of its high nutritional and soluble fiber content. Try Korean buckwheat soba noodles or buckwheat flat ribbon pasta in your celiac diet. For an easy buckwheat galette (savory crepes) recipe you will need:
Mix the salt and water in a large bowl. Then add water 1/3rd at a time stirring well. Add the egg or egg substitute once all the water has been added. Cover and refrigerate the batter for about an hour. Voila! Your gluten free galette mix is ready for use. Bake and enjoy them with a sweet preserve topping or make your own savory filling!
Wild Rice: Give your mundane rice dish a nutritional twist by adding wild rice. Wild rice is a nutritional powerhouse rich in fiber, folate, magnesium, zinc, Vitamin B6, manganese and niacin. It takes a little longer to cook but expands to almost 3 times its original size. Go exotic and try a wild rice crusted salmon fillet or try a chicken and wild rice quesadilla.
Which grains are a part of you gluten free diet? Share your recipes with us.