Saturday, January 9, 2010

Back To Basics

Well, now that the first week of January is well and truly behind us, I'm sure that the intensive drive behind all our New Year's resolutions is about as robust as the helium filled balloons still hanging around from my stepdad's birthday. At least mine are (more or less) out the window - I know enough to not bother making any pledges regarding my blogging (because really, that's just asking for failure, isn't it?) but I had vowed to get myself more organized personally. In essence, I really wanted to get my appointment book in order and updated (something I haven't done since October!), put away my Christmas gifts (errr... not yet), file all my schoolwork from the last three semesters (um, not that either... but I did catch up on the 2006 papers!) and if the planets aligned, get the 20 or so cookbooks in my room off my floor and into some sort of system (uh huh... still # 7 or 8 on the list!). So yeah, I fall into the category of the "nonstarters" when it comes to that kind of thing!

I guess I'm can say that for the past 7 or 8 years I've been lucky enough to have escaped making the most popular resolution out there - the one to eat healthier, lose weight, yadda yadda yadda. Yeah, you know that one, right? Don't get me wrong... I still aim every day to eat a healthy diet (it's not just a weight-loss or New Years thing... it's a forever thing!) including lots of fruit, veggies, limited processed and prepackaged stuff, and definitely cutting down on the salt that's in everything these days! I also aim to practice what I call "true healthcare" daily: focusing on staying healthy (i.e. caring for my health) as opposed to only treating the problems that arise (the traditional approach taken by the government and insurance agencies, or what I call the "sick-care system" in Canada). I truly believe that the government and insurance companies out there could be saving money if they subsidized things like healthy food, regular chiropractic and naturopathic appointments, even nutrition consultations and massage therapy for office workers - it has to be less expensive than the days of missed work and prescription refills they cover now!

So I figured that a good way to give both myself, and anyone else who needed it, a little bit of a resolution kick is to bring it right back to basics: the 1-2-3's of cooking a variety of whole grains (that we're all supposed to have more of, right?). Once the master recipes are at your grasp, they can be jazzed up a dozen different ways, from pilafs to salads to stuffings... the possibilities are endless!

Each ratio is for one serving, and makes approximately 1 cup cooked grains.

Spelt
1/3 cup spelt berries
1 cup water

Add grain to 1 cup salted, boiling water.
Cover, reduce heat and simmer for 1 1/2 hours.

Amount Per Serving
Calories: 172.0
Total Fat: 1.3 g
Cholesterol: 0.0 mg
Sodium: 0.0 mg
Total Carbs: 43.7 g
Dietary Fiber: 7.9 g
Protein: 6.6 g

 
Millet
1 1/4 cups water
1/3 cup millet

Bring water to a boil, add salt to taste.
Add grain, cover and reduce heat to low.
Cook for 35-40 minutes.

Amount Per Serving
Calories: 240.0
Total Fat: 2.6 g
Cholesterol: 0.0 mg
Sodium: 0.0 mg
Total Carbs: 48.0 g
Dietary Fiber: 10.6 g
Protein: 8.0 g


Pearled Barley
1/3 cup pearled barley
1 cup water

Bring water to a boil and add salt to taste.
Add grains, reduce heat and simmer uncovered for 50-60 minutes.

Amount Per Serving
Calories: 211.0
Total Fat: 0.7 g
Cholesterol: 0.0 mg
Sodium: 5.0 mg
Total Carbs: 46.6 g
Dietary Fiber: 9.4 g
Protein: 5.9 g


Quinoa
1/4 cup quinoa
3/4 cup water

Rinse quinoa in a fine strainer until water runs clear (not soapy-looking).
Bring water to a boil, add salt to taste.
Add grain, reduce heat to medium-low.
Cover and cook 20 minutes.
Let stand off the heat, covered, for 10 minutes.

Amount Per Serving
Calories: 172.0
Total Fat: 2.8 g
Cholesterol: 0.0 mg
Sodium: 1.0 mg
Total Carbs: 31.0 g
Dietary Fiber: 3.0 g
Protein: 6.0 g


Kamut
1 cup water
1/3 cup Kamut berries

Bring water to a boil and add salt to taste.
Add grains, cover and cook on low heat for 2 hours.

Amount Per Serving
Calories: 213.0
Total Fat: 1.3 g
Cholesterol: 0.0 mg
Sodium: 0.0 mg
Total Carbs: 42.6 g
Dietary Fiber: 5.3 g
Protein: 9.3 g


Amaranth
1 1/4 cups cold water
6 1/2 tbsp (2/5 cup) amaranth

Whisk together water and amaranth in a pot. Add salt to taste.
Bring to boil, then reduce heat and cover.
Simmer 25 minutes.

Amount Per Serving
Calories: 253.0
Total Fat: 4.7 g
Cholesterol: 0.0 mg
Sodium: 13.3 mg
Total Carbs: 45.3 g
Dietary Fiber: 9.3 g
Protein: 10.6 g


Buckwheat Groats
1 1/4 cups water
6 1/2 tbsp (2/5 cup) buckwheat groats

Bring water to a boil, add salt to taste.
Add grain, reduce heat and cover.
Simmer 15 minutes

Amount Per Serving
Calories: 200.0
Total Fat: 2.0 g
Cholesterol: 0.0 mg
Sodium: 0.0 mg
Total Carbs: 41.6 g
Dietary Fiber: 6.5 g
Protein: 7.8 g

4 comments :

kat said...

We've been doing a lot more whole wheat breads these days & I'm addicted to spelt

Caleb said...

You can't just make up foods and their health information. I think that's against the law.

J/K :P I hadn't heard of a few of these. I'll definitely give em a try.

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Mrs. L said...

What a great post. Thanks for the information.