What exactly buckwheat is? Is it wheat? Is it whole grain? Or is just a simple raw food?
Buckwheat is a common ingredient in raw food recipes, with a slightly deceptive name. For starters, it shares no kinship with wheat and like many other so-called ‘ whole grains’, it is not a grass, hence, technically not a grain. In fact, just like a superfood, Quinoa, it is a seed.
The reason behind its confusing taxonomy:
This seeds closely resemble the seeds of the beech tree. Hence the plant has been called beech wheat or buckwheat ever since.
Origin of buckwheat:
Not a native to India, but it is one of the most ancient grains on the earth. It was a staple of Far Eastern cuisine. It was used in a porridge of Romanian and Hunan since ancient times. It is even used in some rural authentic Italian cuisine It is a primary ingredient of Japanese soba noodles.
It was a plant used for green manure cycle. Being a quick maturing plant, it produced huge biomass in a lesser time. It would be planted and then turned back to the soil, for replenishing the potassium and keeping out the weeds. Its magic was neglected after 1900, because of petroleum-based fertilizers that provided soil essential nutrients. Thanks to the sustainable farming, it is back in the limelight.
Is it gluten free?
It is all seed and no grain, hence it is Gluten-free.
Taste of buckwheat:
It has a pleasantly bitter flavour with a toasty nuttiness.
Nutrition credentials of this seed:
It is a rich source of trace minerals including copper. It is a good source of Vitamin B’s. It contains resistant fiber and novel nutraceuticals such as bioflavonoids.
Are you eating this seeds?
It is one of the healthiest food you are not eating. Besides, It is tasty and easy to cook also.
Cooking with buckwheat:
It is the best ingredient for raw food diet. It is a good binding agent. Raw groats work great as a grain free cereals. You can also cook cold grain salads and hot grains casserole with it. If you have the flour, you can cook some delicious dosas, kebabs, and parathas.
Fun fact: It is used to prepare gluten free beer.