Sunday, April 22, 2012
Cooking Savory Amaranth
What the heck is Amaranth? Ya, I had no idea either a few weeks ago. I was at Whole Foods in the bulk section and was looking for the Farro, which is another amazing grain. I asked the very knowledgeable young lady if she had any other "favorite" grains and she turned me on to Amaranth. She was right! Amaranth is a grain originating from the Aztecs...a looong time ago. It is boiled with water or broth to make an almost, grits-like consistency. It has a nutty sweetness to it that makes it even great in the morning as a hot cereal with nuts and fruit! This recipe is a more savory recipe with a touch of butter and parmesan cheese. I served it as a bed to sauteed kale and grilled squid. The amaranth was my favorite part of the dish!
P.S. This is a great gluten-free option and is LOADED with protein - nearly 14 grams per serving!
-1 cup amaranth grains (not flour)
-2.5 cups water or broth (veggie or chicken)
-1 Tbsp butter, optional
-1/8 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
In a medium saucepan, add your 1 cup amaranth and 2.5 cups of water with some salt or broth. I used my homemade vegetable stock made from old scraps! Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 25 minutes or until the water is absorbed. It will be a consistency of grits or hot cereal.
Once the amaranth is done cooking stir in the 1 Tbsp butter (you can use less or none at all) and 1/8 cup shredded Parmesan. Again you can use more or less of the cheese as well. Stir until blended and serve warm as a side dish with fish, chicken or meat. It makes for a very pretty presentation as a "bed" to your main dish. If you're stuck on boring pasta or rice, try this much lower carb, protein-packed and gluten-free grain as an alternative. Just go to the bulk section of your local Whole Foods or health food store.