Savory Amaranth Fritters

This season I’m working on a recipe series using Bob’s Red Mill Grains of Discovery.  You can watch the video of Bob taking you around the World to take a peek at 9 of the most ancient grains. Each bag of Amaranth, Chia, Quinoa, Teff, Sorghum, Millet, Kamut and Farro has the history of the grain and a recipe on the back. I’ll be making the vegan version all of the recipes this season, starting with Amaranth this week.

This tiny “grain”—actually a seed—has a rich history dating back 8,000 years, when it was first cultivated in Mesoamerica. The ancient Aztecs relied on amaranth as a food staple and used it in religious rituals, earning it the names “super grain of the Aztecs” and “golden grain of the gods.” In the 1500s, Spanish conquistadors attempted to outlaw amaranth in an effort to convert and control the Aztecs. Lucky for us, their efforts proved unsuccessful due to amaranth’s amazing ability to grow quickly and thrive in less-than-ideal soil, making it nearly impossible to extinguish.

Savory Amaranth Fritters
These savory cakes make a delicious appetizer or side dish.

Ingredients: 

1 cup Amaranth
1 Tbsp diced Onion
1 clove Garlic, minced
1/2 tsp Sea Salt
1 1/2 cups Vegetable Stock
1 Egg* (vegan egg = 1TBSP ground flax meal + 3 TBSP water mixed)
1 Tbsp Unbleached White Flour
1 Tbsp chopped basil
Oil, to fry
Directions: 
Place amaranth, onion, garlic, salt and stock in a saucepan. Bring to a simmer over medium heat. Cover, reduce heat and cook until all liquid is absorbed, about 40 minutes.

Transfer amaranth to a bowl and let cool.
Add egg*, flour and basil; mix well.

Heat 1/4 inch of oil over medium-high heat in a wide skillet. Drop batter into hot oil 2 Tbsp at a time. Cook until browned, turning once, about 2 minutes per side. Remove from oil and drain on paper towels. You can also try baking the fritters by dropping the batter on a lightly oiled baking sheet, oven set to 350-400. Turn once the bottom had browned and bake until lightly crisp and browned on top.

Makes 15 servings.

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