Natural Health and Wellness for the Whole Family

Millet- a Super Grain

By Sarah Axtell, ND July 24, 2008


Millet is an ancient whole grain and has many uses beyond what we typically know it as, which is bird seed. It is widely consumed around the world in many dishes, ranging from breads, soups, muffins and flat breads. It is one of the least allergenic grains (no gluten!). It is not only easy to digest, but it is also a good source of fiber, B vitamins, and essential amino acids. Of all grains, it is highest in protein and iron. Millet is a good source of phytic acid and phytate, phytonutrients found to be beneficial in lowering cholesterol and decreasing your risk of cancer.

It has a mild nutty flavor and is very versatile. Cook millet in vegetable broth for added flavor (1 cup of millet: 2 cups liquid; cover and simmer). The more liquid you cook it in, the fluffier and softer it will become. It only takes about 15-20 minutes to cook. It’s cheap too- only about $1.50/lb.

It makes a great first cereal for your baby. See pooridge recipe below.

For the rest of the family, add sun-dried tomatoes, olives, basil, oregano, fresh or frozen spinach and crumbled goat cheese for a greek twist. Or black beans, cumin, mushrooms, corn, red pepper, and salsa for a mexican variety. Make a breakfast cereal out of it-cook it in your favorite milk subsitution (I like almond milk), add raisins, chopped nuts, and maple syrup. The possibilites are endless. See below for a delicious muffin recipe.

As a finger food or snack, give your child Millet puffs. You’ll find this in the cereal section of your health food store. Nature’s Path makes a good one. Can be eaten alone or added to yogurt.

Super Millet Pooridge- appropriate for 6 months and beyond
-1 cup water
-3 tbsps millet
-1 organic egg, hard boiled
-frozen organic spinach

1. Boil water. While it is boiling, put 3 tbsps millet into blender or coffee grinder. Grind for 2 mins.
2. Whisk the millet powder into boiling water and let sit over low heat for 10 mins. Whisk frequently.
3. Add hard boiled egg YOLK (do not feed white to your baby until 12 months)
*Can add your pumped breast milk at the end to sweeten it a bit!

Millet Mashed “Potatoes”- appropriate for 8-9 months and beyond
If you’re in the mood for comfort food (like mashed potatoes) but don’t want to eat the high glycemic potatoes, then try this recipe. Its kind of like my Cauli mash recipe but with millet added.
Ingredients:
-2 tbsps oil (coconut, grapseed or olive)
-2-3 cloves garlic
-1 medium onion, chopped
-1 tbsp butter or Earth Balance
-1 cup millet
-2 cups cauliflower, chopped
-3 cups vegetable broth
-nutritional yeast
-salt and pepper

1. Saute onion and garlic in oil for 5 mins.
2. Add all the remaining ingriedients except for seasonings (S+P and nutritional yeast)
3. Cover and bring to a boil.
4. Reduce heat and simmer for 20-25 mins.
5. Remove from stove. Season. Mash with potato masher or spoon.
6. Serve with your favorite gravy or top with shredded cheese. Yum!

Millfins (makes 12 muffins)
can be served as snack or desert; appropriate for kids 12 months and older

Ingredients
-1 organic egg
-3 tbsps organic butter, melted (or Earth Balance)
-1/2 cup milk subsitute (almond, rice or soy)
-1/2 cup honey
-2 cups oat flour (throw 2 cups rolled oats in food processor and blend)
-1 tsp baking powder
-1/2 tsp soda
-1/2 tsp sea salt
-1 cup millet, uncooked
-1/2 tsp guar gum (a thickening agent used in gluten free baking)

1. Preheat oven to 375 F. Mix all wet ingredients together in a large bowl.
2. Still mixing, add the dry ingredients slowly. Add millet last, and stir through the mixture.
3. Spoon mixture into greased muffin tin
4. Bake for 17-20 mins.

Recipe from: The Anti-Inflammatory Diet and Recipe Book

Editor’s Note: The information in this article is intended for your educational use only. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health practitioners with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition and before undertaking any diet, supplement, fitness, or other health program.


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