An exotic plant that gives delicious fruit. It is amaranth, a pseudocereal that is obtained from the seeds of the homonymous shrub cultivated in Latin America since the times of the Aztecs. Also, in Italy, we can find the plant that grows as a weed in gardens. Much re-evaluated in recent years as it is rich in fiber and protein and, above all gluten-free; amaranth is an excellent ingredient in the kitchen to keep in the pantry.
Amaranth seeds are cooked for a long time, about 40 minutes in boiling water with a ratio of one cup of seeds to 3 of water. Before immersing them, it is important to wash them well with running water. If you want to shorten the time you can use the pressure cooker, in which 20 minutes are enough. After cooking, the seeds must be left to rest for about ten minutes so that they can swell. Finally, according to the recipes, they can be toasted in a pan with a drop of oil.
Amaranth has a slightly nutty and very delicate flavor and is excellent when paired with cereals and vegetables for which it is particularly appreciated in soups and salads. You can also experiment to prepare sweet or savory croquettes and flans and combinations with dairy products and eggs are also highly recommended.
The seeds can be used in cereal and sesame bars and biscuits or, if reduced to powder, they can be partially substituted for the flour for cakes.
Amaranth is particularly suitable to accompany vegetables, in bread making and breading. Let's see how amaranth soup is prepared using vegetable scraps in the fridge