Friday, March 6, 2009

Delicious Buckwheat Hot Cereal (Kasha)!

This is part of the Nourishing Gourmet's carnival of frugal recipes, and I'm so excited to share because it's one of my favorite hot cereals ever! When I went gluten free a year ago I found a similar recipe in one of Bette Hagman's books, and I was intrigued because she said it will smell like chocolate while it's cooking. I don't know that it's exactly like chocolate, but seriously, I can't get enough of how this yummy cereal smells! (I've been known to walk by the empty pot in the kitchen after breakfast and stick my face down in and take a deep breath! It's that yummy!)

Buckwheat groats can be purchased raw, which have a lighter shade and more of a raw, slightly bitter taste. I buy these and grind them for buckwheat flour, which is great in muffins, pancakes, and waffles. You can also find the groats toasted, or a darker red colour, which is called Kasha in Eastern Europe. The reason this cereal is so frugal for me now is that I just started toasting my own raw groats and it's so easy! I used to buy them already toasted at the health food store, and they were kind of pricey, but raw buckwheat is cheap and easy to find at most grocery stores in with the dry grains and beans. To toast them, just put in a dry pan over medium high heat and stir occasionally until they start to turn reddish brown and become fragrant. The picture above is how they looked after I toasted them.

Delicious Buckwheat Hot Cereal (Kasha)
2 1/2 cups water
1 1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup toasted buckwheat groats
1 t cinnamon
dash of salt

Bring the above ingredients to a boil and then simmer uncovered at a low heat for about 40 minutes, stirring occasionally to keep the bottom from browning and sticking. This will thicken considerably and the buckwheat will soften and split open. The cooking time will vary depending on how thick you like your hot cereal. When it's almost reached the consistency I like, I add.......

2 T honey (or sweetener of choice)
1/4 cup butter (yes, I know it sounds like a lot, trust me!)
handful of dried cranberries

and then cook a bit more, stirring.
In my bowl I add a bit of milk and some sliced banana. Yum!

This recipe makes enough for my family of 4.

I've experimented with soaking this cereal the night before, as it would cut down the cooking time quite a bit and neutralize the phytic acid, but I haven't figured out the exact liquid to buckwheat ratio. I was hoping to do so before I posted this recipe, but we finished off the last of our toasted groats last week! :) They're just that delicious! If anyone tries soaking, let me know. Enjoy!


Gilly said...

I AM SO GOING TO DO THAT. I ATE KASHA EVERY MORNING IN RUSSIA!!! Thanks for posting it - I might even have some buckwheat lieing around to try it tomorrow morning...

Romerils said...

Wow Megan that sounds so good. My mouth was just watering reading this. I will have to get the ingredients and try this out!

CrystalHW said...

Glad you are able to still find great recipes to keep variety in your diet. They look so Yummy!!

Andrea said...

This is delicious!

I did soak it overnight. I replaced the milk with kefir and used the full amount to soak it. In the morning, I just added the water and followed the rest of your directions. I have never had it before, so I don't know if you would like it like this, but I thought it was very yummy!

Emily Joy said...

Will it still help reduce the phytic acid to soak the buckwheat after toasting? Won't toasting kill the enzymes that neutralize the phytic acid during soaking?