Millet…A Great Grain That Doesn’t Get Much Attention

Millet is a very small, round grain with a history that traces back thousands of years. It was the chief grain in China before rice became popular and continues to sustain people in Africa, China, Russia, and India, among other places. Millet is an extremely nutritious and hardy crop that grows well under harsh or dry conditions, both of which contribute to its widespread use and popularity around the world.

Characteristics

  • Gluten-free
  • High in protein, fiber, iron, magnesium, and potassium
  • Contains silica, which helps keep bones flexible in aging process
  • Soothing, especially for indigestion or morning sickness
  • Anti-fungal; helps ease Candida symptoms
  • Improves breath
  • Warming; good to eat in cool or rainy weather
  • Supports kidneys and stomach

    Uses

    Millet can be used in porridges, cereal, soups, and dense breads. It is a delicious wheat-free substitution for couscous, as it has a similar consistency. In parts of Africa, millet is fermented to make beer.

    Buying & Storing

    Look for yellow colored, raw millet in health food stores. Millet is often found in the bulk section of the health food store and is generally not sold in regular supermarkets. Store in an airtight jar or glass container for six to nine months.

    Preparation

    Rinse millet before cooking, and use one part millet to two parts liquid.

    Basic Millet

    Prep Time: 2 minutes Cooking Time: 30 minutes Serves 4

    Ingredients:

    1 cup millet, 2 cups of water
    a few grains of sea salt

    Directions:

  • Rinse millet in a grain strainer.
  • Place all ingredients in a pot with a tight fitting lid.
  • Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low.
  • Simmer 30 minutes.

    More water may be added to make the millet a softer consistency. Millet can also be lightly toasted before cooking to give it a nutty flavor.

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