Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Easy Ways to Add Whole Grains

The following are whole grains that can easily be added to your diet.
· Barley
· Brown rice
· Buckwheat
· Bulgar (also called cracked wheat)
· Oatmeal
· Popcorn
· Quinoa
· Whole wheat pasta or cous cous
· Wild rice

Serve brown rice in place of white rice. Because it takes longer to cook, I usually prepare 4 servings at a time in my rice cooker and reserve the extra for another meal or freeze it.

Start your day with a whole grain cereal such as oatmeal. Instant oatmeal usually contains added sugar.

Instead of rice, add barley or wild rice to hearty nourishing soups. Hulled barley is the most nutritious form. Pearled barley has had the husk removed and cooks faster. Barley is high in fiber and adds a chewy texture to soups.

Whole-wheat cous cous is one of my favorites. It’s a whole grain version that is quickly prepared and has a mild nutty flavor. I’ve always used cous cous often because it’s ready in 5 minutes.

When you bake, replace some all-purpose flour with whole-wheat flour. Start with substituting small amounts and gradually increase it. I don’t recommend using more that half whole-wheat flour because the end results will be dry and heavy.

Curried Cous Cous

Whole wheat cous cous has great nutritional value. Depending on the main dish, I often add chopped peanuts and a few raisins if I’m serving this with a simple entree. This is the perfect side dish for grilled chicken or salmon.

Makes 2 servings

1 cup chicken broth
1/3 cup whole wheat cous cous
1/4 cup frozen peas
1/2 teaspoon curry powder
1/4 teaspoon coarse salt
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley

Heat the chicken broth to a boil in a small saucepan. Add the cous cous, peas, curry powder and salt. Let stand about 5 minutes or until the broth is absorbed. Add parsley and fluff with a fork.