Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Alternative Grains

This week our Optimal Wellness Program focus is Alternative Grains. We coach the patients of our practice, as well as each other, to seek low inflammatory food options. Gluten free alternatives can be a particular challenge. For many this is an exploration into a whole new world.

The alternative grains list includes millet, quinoa, amaranth, teff, tapioca, buckwheat, arrowroot and rice. Many people ask “What exactly is quinoa anyway?” Quinoa is usually considered to be a whole grain, but it is actually a seed, but can be prepared like whole grains such as rice and added to soup or chili. Of all the whole grains, quinoa has the highest protein content.

There are many alternative grains all with their unique benefits. The best way to get started is to try a simple recipe that includes one of these grains. Once you try it perhaps you will find other ways to incorporate these grains into your favorite recipes. Below you will find a simple recipe for amaranth.

Apple-Walnut Amaranth
1 cup amaranth
3 cups plain almond milk (or other milk substitute)
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
Pinch kosher salt (optional)
1 large apple, skin on, cored and diced
½ cup chopped walnuts

Place the amaranth, almond milk, cinnamon, salt (if using), and apple in a medium saucepan.  Bring to a boil, stirring frequently. Cover pan and reduce heat to low. Simmer for 20 to 30 minutes until amaranth is soft. Top with chopped walnuts and serve.

Adapted from “The Ultrametabolism Cookbook”

Give this recipe a try and let us know what you think. We are posting recipes on our Facebook page all week. “Like” us on Facebook and follow along for more alternative grain ideas.

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