Ask Amma

Posts Tagged ‘coarse grains’

Ragi Makes the World Go Round

In Recipes on 3 February 2017 at 8:00 pm

In between sessions at the Human Rights in Childbirth conference a young woman approached me and said, “Are you Amma?”  Not quite believing my ears I looked startled.  “From Ask Amma?” she continued.  Turns out, she learned to make ragi porridge right here on Ask Amma and her daughter enjoys it to this day.  What music to my heart!

https://www.facebook.com/plugins/video.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2Fneha.chopra%2Fvideos%2F10157909990610538%2F&show_text=0&width=560

When it comes to ragi, our enthusiasm knows no bounds!

Advertisements

Proso Millet Idlis (and Dosas)

In Recipes on 6 July 2015 at 6:23 pm

My friend Hema in New Jersey asked me, how can I use local grains in the United States?   While there are several wonderful cookbooks featuring such American staples as buckwheat, barley, rye it is not as easy to find recipes using millet and many recipes using these traditional yet less common grains call for even more specialized ingredients.  Of course it is well worth the effort, but what if you want to make something simple with millet right now?

Proso Millet Idli

Proso Millet Idli

One way to jump right into using locally grown millets is to make idlis with them.  Black gram, water and salt are the only other ingredients you need.  Read the rest of this entry »

Millet-wheat waffles or pancakes

In Recipes on 5 July 2015 at 4:00 am

Are you torn between buying one more appliance for the kitchen, and one more box of store-bought waffles?

If you need one more reason to start making fresh home-made waffles, here you go:  millet waffles!

Millet-wheat waffle topped with blueberries.

Millet-wheat waffle topped with blueberries.

Millet-wheat waffles, that is.  These are easy to make and use equal parts of millet and whole wheat flour.

(And if you aren’t interested in waffles, use the same batter for millet pancakes.)

In the waffles pictured above I used sprouted millet flour which I got from a company called To Your Health in Alabama. Read the rest of this entry »

What can we make with Millet in the United States?

In What on 4 July 2015 at 3:29 am

For amber waves of grain …

So I have waxed enthusiastically about sama, korra, kodoragi, and other millets grown in India.  Readers in the US have asked, how can we use local grains?  What can I do with the millet available in the grocery stores?  And:  what kind is the millet available in the grocery stores in the US?  And is it as wonderful for our people and planet as all the millets we hear about in India? Read the rest of this entry »

Gestational Diabetes – what to eat?

In What on 9 May 2012 at 3:52 am

Dear Amma:  My doctor has put me on medication for gestational diabetes.  I have tried to keep my glucose levels down but it is very difficult – the other day I ate just a couple of spoons of potato and the level shot way up.  I get hungry all the time and I am running out of ideas for things to eat that will keep me full.

 – Eating for 2

Dear Eating for 2,
You know the drill:  Eat a variety of foods that are high in fiber, have a low glycemic index and are nutritious.  National Institutes of Health offers these diet recommendations.

To start, consider that whole foods tend to have a lower glycemic index than their refined counterparts.  Or in the words of The World’s Healthiest Foods,  “Foods that are white tend to have a higher glycemic index.”  So make sure whatever you are already eating is whole.  Your rice is brown, your bread is whole-grain or sprouted grain, and your fruits and vegetables, mung dal, urad dal, etc are unpeeled.  Want even more fiber?  Stir some wheat bran or oat bran into the batter you use for dosa or pesarottu.

Next, try to diversify your grain basket, with barley, ragi and other varieties of millets, oats, and quinoa.  Kamut and amaranth (राजगिरा or चौलाई) are available puffed, for easy snacking.

Let’s not forget omega-3 fatty acids, found in a variety of vegetables and notably in flax seeds, walnuts and their oils.  Your entire family will benefit from these improvements, and baby will be used to a healthy, diverse, whole foods diet from the start!  Note that flax seeds are so small that you have to take care to chew them. If you don’t they may pass through undigested.  If you grind your flax seed, you should eat it the same day – or within a few days if you refrigerate it.  Ground flax seed makes a decent dip for idli, dosa, etc.

Though I did not have GD, I too remember hungering for new and different foods in the third trimester.  After eating one dosa I would still be ravenous, but not want another dosa.  Repeat with one hummous sandwich, one plate of vegetables, and so on.

One trick that helped me stay full longer was adding wheat germ to whatever I was eating.  I would add a spoon or two to my rice and sambar, or sprinkle it on bread along with a spread.  Stir some into a bowl of oatmeal or upma.  A tablespoon of wheatgerm contains 2 grams of protein, so a little goes a long way.

Are your idli and dosa whole grain?   You can increase their protein content by using 1 cup dal per 1 cup rice.  A treasure trove of recipes using several varieties of millets includes simple preparations like కొర్ర పెసరోట్టు – see korra pesarottu on the site of Earth360.

Looking for ways to eat oats?  Try Oatmeal Sabzi or steel-cut oats.  How about quinoa?  Here is a simple recipe for delicious quinoa upma.

%d bloggers like this: