Buckwheat. Belonging to a group of foods known as “pseudocereals” (along with amaranth and quinoa), buckwheat seeds are consumed like cereal grains, but don’t grow on grasses.[i] Buckwheat seeds may be processed into, groats, flour, noodles or may be used in tea; groats are what I have used in the following recipe and are used in much the same way as rice.[ii]Furthermore, buckwheat is a very suitable substitute (for a grain) for those who find themselves sensitive to wheat or other grains that contain gluten! Perfect!
Nutritionally, buckwheat contains a rich supply of flavonoids, particularly “rutin”; flavonoids are phytonutrients (plant-based compounds) that assist in protecting against disease. More specifically, they act by extending the action of Vitamin C and acting as antioxidants within the body.[iii]
Additional Nutritional Benefits of Buckwheat:
Assists in lowering lipid (cholesterol) levels
Assists in maintaining blood flow
Provides a source of (insoluble) dietary fiber, helping to avoid gallstone formation, contributing to colon health and reducing the risk of colon cancer[iv]
High in manganese – required for a healthy metabolic rate, growth and development and the body’s antioxidant defenses
High in magnesium - - relaxes the blood vessels and lowers the risk of various chronic diseases, such as Type II Diabetes and Heart Disease
High in Phosphorus – plays a critical role in the growth and maintenance of body tissues[v]
*My inspiration to try out a buckwheat groats porridge came from Edmonton raw food blogger Crystal Bonnet of "Raw Revive". You can view one of her buckwheat cereal recipes here.
BUCKWHEAT PORRIDGE RECIPE:
Ingredients (serves 2):
1 cup buckwheat groats (soaked in filtered water overnight)
1/3 cup almond milk (or nut/seed milk of your choice)
1 banana (ripe)
1 tbsp. lucuma powder ( or other superfood powder of your choice, such as maca powder)
1 tsp. vanilla extract
Sprinkling of cinnamon
Sprinkling of sea salt
*Possible toppings: anything you want! (i.e. fresh fruit, unsweetened/shredded coconut, chia seeds, chopped nuts, bee pollen, etc.)
Drain and rinse buckwheat groats.
Combine all ingredients into a high-speed blender, beginning with the almond milk, so as to preserve the integrity of the blender blades by having a fluid circulating closest to them. Blend until smooth. Top with toppings of your choice and enjoy!
[i]-[ii] Authority Nutrition: An Evidence-Based Approach – Buckwheat 101: Nutrition Facts and Health Benefits. Retrieved April 27, 2016 from https://authoritynutrition.com/foods/buckwheat/
[iii]-[iv] The World’s Healthiest Foods: Buckwheat. Retrieved April 27, 2016 from http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=11
[v] Authority Nutrition: An Evidence-Based Approach – Buckwheat 101: Nutrition Facts and Health Benefits. Retrieved April 27, 2016 from https://authoritynutrition.com/foods/buckwheat/