It’s hard to ignore all the buzz regarding the health benefits of ancient whole grains. And why would you? Amaranth and quinoa are touted as “super foods” that supply many important nutrients, including fiber, iron, calcium, and protein. If you think incorporating these grains into your diet means eating food that tastes like cardboard, think again!
Here a beautifully seasoned four-grain pilaf is prepared with long-grain rice, amaranth, quinoa, and millet, then mixed with creamy Italian fontina. The grain mixture is then stuffed into vibrant, steamed bell peppers and baked in the oven until the peppers are just tender. The result is a stunning dish that satisfies both body and soul.
Whole grains can be purchased, often in bulk, at most grocery stores or ordered online from various vendors, including Bob’s Red Mill®. Other grains that I like to have on hand are polenta, barley, oats, farro, and a number of rices: basmati, jasmine, brown, and risotto. All of these pantry staples can be stored, tightly sealed, at room temperature for up to 6 months.
—By Joanne Weir. Reprinted with permission from Joanne Weir’s Cooking Confidence (Taunton Press, 2012).