What is Amaranth?
Amaranth, is known as a pseudo-cereal because it's profile is similar to oats, rice, or wheat that has grain-like buds and falls into the "grain" category, but it is not technically a grain. True cereals grow from the Poaceae family of plants. Pseudo-grains grow from other plants. Amaranth is known as one of the ancient grains.
It was thought to have represented up to 80% of the Aztecs energy consumption, prior to the Spanish conquest.
It is still a native crop in Peru, the ancient history of amaranth can be traced to Mexico and the Yucatan Peninsula. Today, it's grown in Africa, India, China, Russia, throughout South America, and emerging once again in North America.
It is gaining popularity in the microgreens community, but it is still not commonly grown.
One reason amaranth is emerging into the forefront among grains is because of its remarkable nutrition. It's higher in minerals, such as calcium, iron, phosphorus, and carotenoids, than most vegetables. Amaranth is a SUPER FOOD!
Did you know?
It is loaded with protein
It is gluten-free
It helps prevent premature hair graying
It provides the essential amino acid Lysine
Works as an appetite suppressant
Improves eye sight
Can help lower cholesterol
Is easy to digest
Just 1 cup contains 28.1 grams of protein, oats contain 21.6. The leaves are high in Vitamin C, folate and Vitamin A.
It is the oils and phytosterols it contains that help lower cholesterol, including LDL and triglycerides.
Amaranth microgreens can be easily added to your diet.
As a microgreen, amaranth is one of the most visually striking additions to add as a salad topper, or garnish.
They taste mild, sweet crisp and earthy, with a grassy finish. Add them to smoothies too!
EASY AMARANTH MICROGREEN RECIPE BELOW
Amaranth Stuffed Peppers
Boil 1/2 C. of Quinoa, combine them with a 1/2 C. of edamame, 1 grated carrot, 2 chopped shallots, 1 C. of red garnet microgreens, and 2 tablespoons of sesame seeds, place in a large bowl. Season the mixture with rice vinegar and salt and pepper to taste.
Gently mix the mixture to stuff 4 bell peppers, place them in a shallow baking dish along with 1/4 cup of water in the bottom. Cover with foil.
Bake 45-50 minutes
Let them cool for 5-10 minutes, then top with a few red garnet microgreen shoots and leaves. Delicious!