Weekend Batch Cooking: Whole Grains
With the rise of paleo-style diets one might wonder if whole grains should be part of a healthy eating plan. For most people eating whole, unprocessed grains can be included in a supporting role along with vegetables, fruits, grass-fed meats, pastured poultry or wild fish. This is assuming, of course, that there are no food reactions or intolerance to a particular type of grain, like wheat (or gluten grains), for example. It is important if you want to enjoy whole grains, that you be sure to make time to soak them the night before cooking. Soaking neutralizes phytic acid, an antinutrient that binds with minerals, thus preventing their absorption, and improves the grains overall digestibility. Preparing a batch of grains in advance is a simple way to have them ready for muliple meals throughout the week. Here's what to do...
The night before: Wash the grains and drain. In a medium-large glass bowl cover grains by 1-2 inches with filtered water, add 1 tablespoon lemon juice or apple cider vinegar and soak 8-24 hours. Drain and rinse. Cooking: For every 1 cup of grains, add 1 1/2 cups of filtered water (or other liquid such as broth or nut milk) & 1/2 teaspoon mineral salt. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer covered until water is absorbed. Store refrigerated in airtight glass container for 1 week. Give some of these a try this weekend!
Grain (1 cup dry) Cooking Time (soaked) Appx Yield
Brown Rice 20-30 min 3 cups
Quinoa 12-15 min 3 cups
Millet 12-20 min 3 1/2 cups
Wild Rice 20-30 min 3 1/2 cups
Buckwheat 10-12 min 4 cups
Amaranth 10-12 min 2 cups
*recipe adapted from My New Roots: Inspired Plant-Based Recipes for Every Season by Sarah Britton, Clarkson Potter Publishing, 2015