I just enjoyed a new breakfast cereal that tastes great, is easy, and best of all – is healthy, nourishing. Unlike many morning cereals, this one doesn’t come in a box, ready to eat. However, with less than 5 minutes prep and a rice cooker, you can get it started, go take your shower, and come down to a fabulous breakfast in twenty minutes.
My cereal today included Amaranth, a less common food that packs a big nutritional punch with a slightly sweet, nutty taste. Often thought of as a grain, amaranth is actually the seed of a plant used by the ancient Aztecs.
Nutritionally, amaranth is a great source of protein (7g in 1/4 cup uncooked), high in iron (21% RDA in 1/4 cup uncooked), vitamin B5, phosphorus, zinc, copper, and magnesium – all of which contribute to giving you high energy levels, healthy cell growth, strong bones, an improved immune system, and proper muscle and nerve function. It is also easily digestible which means the body will absorb most of its nutrients.
To cook this seed in general, combine 1 part raw seeds to 2 1/2 parts liquid and simmer for 18-20 minutes.
Try the recipe below, which combines basmati rice with amaranth, dried fruit, nuts and sweet spice, to create a naturally sweet and delicious breakfast.
Because of the sticky nature, this breakfast grain is more balancing for vata and pitta dosha than kapha dosha.
Do you have a favorite way of cooking amaranth? Please share!
Amaranth Rice Pilaf
- 1/3 c. white basmati rice washed
- 1/3 c. amaranth seeds
- 1 ¼- 1 ½ c. water more if you desire a mushier texture
- 1 Tbs. raw cashews, pecans or almonds (can leave out if have nut allergies or sensitivities)
- 1 Tbs. dried figs, apricots or currants
- ½ tsp. cinnamon
- ¼ tsp. cardamom
- ½ tsp. fresh ginger grated or chopped finely
- 1/8 tsp. salt
Combine all ingredients in a rice cooker and press cook (or put in a regular pot, bring to a boil, reduce to low and cook for 20 minutes covered).
When done, let sit for 5 minutes then top with a teaspoon of ghee and enjoy.
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