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Amaranth – a savory side

Amaranth is an itsy-bitsy grain from South America. Like quinoa, another South American favorite, amaranth is high in the essential amino acid lysine, making it higher in protein than other grains. When cooked, amaranth becomes thick and a little gooey with soft and satisfying pops as you chew. It has a mild, nutty flavor and is quite often eaten as a breakfast cereal or porridge. I think amaranth makes a great addition to a decadent meal or on its own as a quick dish or snack. This particular amaranth I served with breaded eggplant rounds, crumbled Bulgarian feta cheese and a chervil salad with lemon vinaigrette. Try serving it with the goodies in season near you!

Group 1: soak for 12 – 24 hours
2 cups Amaranth
2 cups filtered or de-chlorinated water
½ lemon, juiced
Group 2:
2 Tbs. butter
1 cup chicken stock
½ cup filtered or de-chlorinated water
½ lemon, juiced
1 carrot, grated
½ onion, grated
2-3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 Tbs. fresh rosemary, finely chopped
2 tsp. black pepper
1 tsp. salt/ to taste
In a bowl or saucepan soak group one at room temperature for 12-24 hours, the longer the better.
In a saucepan on medium heat, sauté grated carrots, garlic, rosemary and 1 tsp. pepper. After 2 -3 minutes add onion and salt and mix well. Once the mixture is hot, add the soaked amaranth (pour off excess water), 1-cup chicken stock and 1-cup water. Bring to a soft boil on medium heat; it should look smooth with rolling bubbles. Cook for 10 – 15 minutes, stirring often. The amaranth is done when the excess water and broth has cooked off, slight sticking to the edges of the pan is usually a sign. The amaranth should be thick, but very soft and easy to stir. Add lemon and salt to taste. Serve hot, garnish with rosemary and black pepper.

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