I also was able to pack it up and bring it to a meeting for dinner-- it's surprisingly transportable.

Am I sick, or did I just discover a funny new (ancient) grain? A take on Amaranth

Posted on Posted in Culinary Science, Nutrition Information, Recipes

Amaranth!

Confused looks  …Bless you??

What the heck is amaranth?  According to the Whole Grains Council, it’s not actually a grain (ironic, no?), it’s a seed, like quinoa.  It also is a complete source of protein, like quinoa!

It’s actually the smallest seed that we cook and eat as a grain-like thing.  It has a similar nutritional profile to whole grains, and it’s so tiny that it’s almost always found in whole form.  I made some for the first time recently (I bought it from my local co-op, but Bob’s Red Mill has some so it’s probably in supermarkets too).  It was so easy!

Amaranth Dinner | foodsciencenerd.com
I also was able to pack it up and bring it to a meeting for dinner– it’s surprisingly transportable.

While amaranth can be eaten as a seed, like poppy seeds, I prefer not eating bird food for dinner.  To cook amaranth:

Combine seeds and boiling water in at least a 1:3 ratio, up to a 1:6 ratio.  I think I used 1/4 cup seeds.  Gently boil for 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Not all the water will be absorbed, but amaranth releases starches as it expands and softens which thicken the water a lot, not unlike risotto.  The seeds will still be slightly crunchy (they’ll “pop”) so don’t wait until they get completely soft!

I added some shredded parm, which melted nicely and created a thick, stringy, mac n’ cheese-like texture (hungry yet?).  I also pan-seared some zucchini, tomatoes, and kalamata olives, but you could add pretty much any vegetable you’d like (except maybe spinach… those textures wouldn’t be so nice together).

I'd love to hear your thoughts!