I’ve recently discovered a bizarre love of Buckwheat, a love completely unique in my family, it would seem. Other than sneaking ground kasha into my kids’ breakfast oatmeal, there’s no way to coax it past their grimacing little mouths.
Yet I love its nutty flavor, unusual texture, and high nutrient value (easily googled). It’s filling, satisfying, and almost as good as a fruit or vegetable, especially if it’s sprouted. Here’s a list of ways to use buckwheat, easiest first. 🙂
- Simple Kasha: Roasted or raw buckwheat groats can be purchased through health food and bulk food stores. 1 cup of groats to 2 cups of water or broth makes about 3 cups of the finished dish: something between a pilaf and a porridge. Season with salt and pepper and add butter or coconut oil if desired.
- Sprouted Kasha: Raw buckwheat grouts sprout quicker than most seeds I’ve tried: 1/4″ sprouts growing in as little as 2 days. To start, the groats need to be soaked overnight, then drained, rinsed thoroughly, and drained again. A 1/2 gallon sprouting jar with a stainless steel mesh lid works great! They need to be rinsed and re-drained 3-4 times a day, and it helps to turn the jar occasionally to encourage drainage.
- Once sprouted, the groats need to be dried at a low temperature to preserve the enzymes created by germination. The best drying method I’ve found is spreading the sprouted buckwheat on cookie sheet lined with parchment paper, and placing in a conventional oven set to 200°. When dry to the touch, they’re done.
- Cream of Buckwheat: Scornfully referred to as “Baby Cereal” by my 7-year-old, this simple porridge is actually quite tasty (and I theorize, if the little buggers were started on it young enough, they’d never know the difference). I’m happy to say my 5-year-old is more accepting.
Lightly chop sprouted dried buckwheat in a blender or food processor. Using 1/4 cup chopped buckwheat to 1/2 cup water, boil water in a small saucepan. Add chopped buckwheat and turn off heat. Stir constantly until the cereal thickens and water is absorbed. Sweeten with maple syrup or honey and enjoy.
- Bone Broth Kasha: My favorite, because of the health benefits of bone broth, this dish is prepared just like the Simple Kasha recipe above. For added flavor, saute chopped onions in grapeseed or coconut oil, add minced garlic, and, when fragrant, add bone broth and bring to boil. Skim off any foam that rises, add sprouted buckwheat, reduce heat to low. When thick and soft, toss with a fork, adding butter or coconut oil, and herbs and spices if desired.
- A more traditional recipe calls for toasting the kasha in the bottom of a heavy pan or skillet, and includes a beaten egg scrambled into the buckwheat and cooked. In a separate pan, broth is brought to a boil, butter and seasonings added, and the buckwheat-egg mixture is added to this. It’s then cooked on low heat, covered, for up to 30 minutes.
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