Buckwheat is a nutritious whole grain that is an ideal part of a healthy diet. Roasted buckwheat, commonly referred to as kasha, is an excellent source of protein and essential vitamins and minerals that are important for vitality. Groats, which is raw hulled buckwheat, is also a popular way to incorporate the plant food into your diet. There is even a variety of buckwheat noodles to choose from at many health food stores, and even some supermarkets.
There are multiple ways you can use kasha in your cooking. One of the easiest ways is to simply add a handful of uncooked kasha to soup about 45 minutes before it’s ready to be served. You can use kasha in place of other things you would usually use such as rice or pasta.
To cook kasha, combine one cup of kasha and two cups of water in a sauce pan. Bring to a boil and then cook for up to 12 minutes or until the water has been completely absorbed into the grains. You can use this base to create a number of recipes. For example, adding onions, bread crumbs, garlic, barbeque sauce and two eggs then combining the ingredients with ground beef makes great burgers.
Buckwheat groats are a hardier version of this whole grain. It’s as easy to prepare as the pasta or the kasha, and it tastes just as good. Many hardy dishes can be created using groats, as they go well with foods like potatoes. Try stuffing cabbage rolls by boiling and mashing two potatoes and then mixing them with one cup of groats. Add salt, pepper, basil and paprika to taste, then fill cabbage leaves with the mixture and roll the leaves up. Place in the oven until cooked thoroughly, about 15 minutes and serve with a fresh salad.
To cook groats, boil two cups of water and then take off of the heat. Stir in one cup of groats and cover for about five minutes, or until the liquid has been absorbed. For added flavor, use vegetable or chicken stock in place of water.
You can usually find buckwheat pasta in large grocery stores in the Asian isle, or at a local health food store (either in the isles or in the bulk bins). You can use buckwheat pasta just as you would any other kind of pasta, and because of its unique color it can add some fun to your usual recipes. This kind of pasta is great with marinara sauce, pesto, Alfredo sauce, and drizzled with extra virgin olive oil then topped with roasted vegetables.
Whether you choose to work with kasha, groats or pasta, all of them provide similar nutrients that are healthy and tasty. Consider experimenting with them all to create recipes you love and that you can incorporate as part of a healthy diet. This food is so versatile that the possibilities are endless when it comes to finding ways to use the grain. Have fun, explore and enjoy your creations.