I forgot to invite you to join me on this weekly journey of trying new grains. I’ve written a blog about how to repurpose foods that includes grains but did not give you an official invite to join me as I try these grains. Full disclosure. I was facetiming with my daughters on Friday and they wanted to know why I didn’t have the grain recipes on my website and why I haven’t invited anyone to join me on my grain journey…cooking a different grain each week?
So here’s an official invitation! Join me as I explore a new grain each week accompanied by a delicious (I hope and pray) recipe. If you try any of the recipes, please leave a comment. I would love to hear your likes or dislikes, challenges and triumphs as we journey together. I don’t know how long we will be on this journey but here’s to hoping that we can enjoy it, learn something, and improve our overall health.
Whole grains are loaded with good nutrients including fiber. We usually think of dietary fiber as a good way to help lose weight by helping to reduce snacking because it keeps you full longer. It also help to reduce risks for many health conditions such as heart disease, helping to lower blood pressure, and regulating blood sugar. In addition, research shows that fiber helps to improve good gut health? Adequate fiber facilitate the growth of good gut bacteria. Research has shown that when your gut is healthy, it leads to reduction in inflammation throughout the body. Not to mention that eating an adequate amount of grains will help to keep you regular.
So just to be clear. I’m not talking about eating a high fiber diet. I’m talking about eating more fiber as most Americans don’t even come close to eating enough in their daily meals. The daily intake of fiber for women should be as much as 25 grams, or 21 grams if they’re over 50 and 38 grams for men, or 30 grams if they’re over 50.
So here’s a few housekeeping rules that I recommend:
1. Do it with a friend or other family members. It’s more fun. Choose a day during the week or weekend that’s best for your schedules. And be led by the Holy Spirit. Sometimes when we do something, we don’t realize that it has other benefits as well. My daughter, a mutual friend and I meet once a week at my house to do the cooking. As I was doing some prepping for our time together, an idea just came to me: Since we meet, why not spend some time in prayer and pray for each other? Find out their needs, their concerns and take them before God.” I sense that God was well pleased with those thoughts. So in addition to having fun, and watching a good movie while we eat, we pray together before everyone leaves. My friend remarked: “Food for the body and food for the soul.”
2. Be committed to doing the search for different recipes, doing the shopping and creating the recipes. There's tons of recipes on line. If you like to have a book in hand and don't want to buy one, check out your local library. My friend checked out a book called Amazing Grains by Ghillie James. We just go through and find recipes that we like to try.
3. Divide the duties. My friend recommended that I do the shopping and I volunteered to do some of the prepping so the event doesn’t take too long. It was also her idea that she pay for the ingredients since I was doing the shopping and the prep work and for the most part, we have been doing two recipes, and I usually have one already done by the time everyone gets off work and come by my place. So, yes, divide up the duties to make it easier on everyone. Your rules, your kitchen! I actually have a bowl that says that!
4. Be open to trying new recipes and new grains and keep an open mind. When my friend first tried farro, she said, when asked what she thought of it, she said, “The only thing I have to say about farro is to keep it far (get it) away from me!” Three or four days later she said, “It’s growing on me.” I liked it from day one. It’s chewy, no matter how long you boil it you won’t boil away the chewiness. It has a strong flavor so you have to give it some time. You might want to try it in different recipes to see how it pars up. Don’t discard it right away! The Rye berries have a mild flavor. My friend mentioned that the flavor was buried in the ground lamb we added to the eggplant and the tomato sauce and onions so we tasted less of it. It was there but hidden so to speak. There was a lot going on in those stuffed eggplants but oh so delicious! The next day I tried the rye berries as a breakfast cereal. I put it in my mini food processor, added some nuts, raisins and blueberries and chopped them for a few minutes. I tasted it before I warmed it in the microwave and decided that it is good either hot or cold. A really good breakfast cereal if you’re looking for something different to do for breakfast. I’m sure you can use any fruit or nuts that you like. I give this grain a thumbs up in terms of flavor and versatility.
Since we’ve already gotten started, you can go to my blog page and check out my recipe for the farro. The title is Leftovers Repurposed. I'll send out the recipe for the rye berries in a few days. As I said, I’m not sure how long I will be doing this, perhaps to the end of this month January 31st, but for now, join me and let’s have fun!
You should receive an email notification when I post a new grain. Let me know if you tried any of the recipes and how they turned out. I would love to hear your story so I can share it to inspire others!
Here’s to a positive New Year!
Helping you to discard your past to embrace your future,
Health and Wellness Educator, Author and Speaker
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