Close up of finished salad.

Sorghum, Apple and Kale Salad

I adapted this salad from a quinoa recipe I found Quinoa salad. The apples and walnuts give this salad a nice, sweet crunch. I added turmeric to the sorghum while it cooked to give it a little extra flavor. I hope you enjoy this easy, nutritious dish!

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • 2 tsp turmeric
  • 2 cups cooked whole grain sorghum
  • 3 medium apples, pealed and diced
  • 3 handfuls finely chopped kale
  • 1 cup onion, chopped
  • 1 cup walnuts, chopped

Dressing:

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp. maple syrup or honey
  • Juice from 1/2 lemon (about 1/8 cup)
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper

Soak 1 cup of uncooked, whole grain sorghum in water for 2 hours. Rinse sorghum grains and cook in 2 cups of vegetable broth plus 1 cup of water and 2 teaspoons of turmeric, until liquid is absorbed and sorghum is tender – about 1 hour. Set aside to cool. This will yield about 3 1/2 cups of cooked sorghum. I only used 2 cups of it for this recipe, but feel free to use more if you like.

Cooked sorghum with turmeric in pan.

The turmeric gives the whole grain sorghum a lovely yellow color.

Ingredients for salad on kitchen counter.

While the sorghum was cooking, I prepared the remaining ingredients.

Sauté chopped onion in olive oil with chopped kale until kale is wilted and onions are translucent.

Washed kale in a colander.

Freshly washed kale.

Set aside to cool. Make dressing while onion-kale mixture is cooling.

Sautéed onions and kale added to the cooked sorghum.

Onions and kale were sautéed and added to the cooked sorghum.

Mix cooked sorghum with kale and onion mixture. Add apples, walnuts and dressing.

Sorghum salad with apples and walnuts added in a brown mixing bowl.

Apples and walnuts added.

Chill salad in refrigerator and serve cold.

Sorghum, apple, kale salad in white serving bowl.

I chilled the salad for about 2 hours so it would absorb the flavors of the dressing.

Milo graphic

Milo says….

Maizy said I will get fat if I eat too many treats. Fat sounds like a LOT of FUN to me!

 

 

 

 

Close up of two buckwheat sorghum biscuits.

Buckwheat Sorghum Biscuits

Despite it’s name, buckwheat is not related to wheat and is gluten free. It is actually related to sorrel, knotweed and rhubarb. The name ‘buckwheat’ or ‘beech wheat’ comes from its triangular seeds, which resemble the much larger seeds of the beech nut from the beech tree, and the fact that it is used like wheat.

Front of package of Arrowhead Mills Organic Buckwheat Flour.

I used regular milk in these biscuits instead of buttermilk and they turned out a little bit crumbly. I think they would be much better with the buttermilk. The buckwheat flour gives these biscuits a hearty flavor and whole-grain texture. These are really good with a little gluten-free cream gravy on top!

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup buckwheat flour
  • 1/2 cup sorghum flour
  • 1/2 cup tapioca starch
  • 1/2 cup potato starch
  • 1 tsp xanthan gum
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 T baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 cup butter, chilled
  • 1 cup buttermilk

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 425º F. In a large mixing bowl, mix together all of the dry ingredients.

Dry ingredients mixed together in a white bowl.

Dry ingredients mixed together – buckwheat flour has a dark brown color.

Cut the butter into small pieces and use a pastry cutter to mix it into the dry ingredients.

Dry ingredients with blobs of butter mixed in.

I used a pastry cutter to blend the butter into the flour mixture.

Add the buttermilk and use a large spoon to mix well. The dough will be thick and sticky.

Buckwheat sorghum biscuit dough in a white bowl.

Add buttermilk and mix until a thick, sticky dough is formed.

For drop biscuits, use floured or moistened hands to form balls of dough and place them on a cooking sheet.

Baking sheet with 14 balls of dough ready to bake.

I moistened my hands with water to form the balls of dough. You can also use flour to coat your hands or to roll the dough out for cutting.

Buckwheat sorghum dough formed into balls on baking sheet.

Bake for 15 minutes at 425º F.
Makes about a dozen 3″ biscuits.

Baked buckwheat sorghum biscuits on baking sheet.

Baked biscuits – crispy on the outside, soft on the inside.

Two buckwheat sorghum biscuits on a small plate with a butter dish and a stick of butter in the background.

Two buckwheat sorghum biscuits cut open with butter on a small plate.

The biscuits were a tad crumbly – possibly because I used regular milk instead of buttermilk.

Recipe from Janice Mansfield

 

Milo graphic

Milo says….

Oh, to be at the dog park, now that June is here!

 

Whole grain sorghum pilaf with toasted corn in a serving bowl with Parmesan cheese sprinkled on top.

Sorghum Pilaf with Pan-Roasted Corn

Here is another whole grain sorghum recipe developed by Barbara Kliment of the Nebraska Grain Sorghum Board. I added chopped kale to the recipe to give it more color and just because I love kale.

Metal bowl containing chopped up kale.

I added chopped kale to add color to this dish.

I soaked my sorghum for two hours before cooking, which made it a little softer and more sticky. I cooked the sorghum for about an hour until all of the broth was absorbed. I think I could have taken 10 minutes off of the cooking time and drained off the excess broth and the texture of the sorghum would have been a bit better.

The chicken broth gives the whole grain sorghum a nice flavor and the almonds give this pilaf a very pleasing crunch. Enjoy this pilaf as a meal by itself or as a side dish.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup uncooked pearled sorghum
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 1 ½ Tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 cups fresh or frozen corn
  • 1 cup carrots, sliced thin
  • ½ cup celery, sliced
  • ½ cup onion, diced
  • 2 cups kale, chopped (optional)
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • ½ cup slivered almonds
  • ½ cup Parmesan cheese, shredded or grated
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions:

Package of chicken broth next to rinsed sorghum grains in a strainer.

The whole grain sorghum absorbs the flavor of the chicken broth.

Rinse and drain sorghum grains. Bring chicken broth to a boil in a 3-quart saucepan, add sorghum and simmer for 45 to 50 minutes, until tender. Drain off any excess broth and set pan aside.

Cooked whole grain sorghum in a saucepan.

I cooked the sorghum until it absorbed all of the chicken broth (about an hour) and it was a little bit mushy.

While the sorghum is cooking, chop the vegetables. Measure out two cups of frozen corn and let it sit out to thaw. I didn’t have slivered almonds so I chopped up some whole almonds in my food processor.

Corn and almonds in measuring cups next to bowl of cut of carrots, celery and onions.

Chopped vegetables, almonds and frozen corn.

Heat olive oil in a large skillet. Add corn and cook until toasted.

Corn sautéing in a skillet.

Sauté the corn in a skillet in olive oil until it starts to brown a little.

Add onion, garlic, celery and carrots and sauté until onions are translucent, 3 – 5 minutes. Add salt and pepper to season to taste.

Carrots, onions, celery and garlic added to the sautéed corn in skillet.

The rest of the vegetables are sautéed with the toasted corn.

Add chopped kale, cover and steam for 2 minutes.

Skillet containing vegetables with glass cover on top.

I covered the skillet after adding the chopped kale to let it steam for a few minutes.

Add almonds, cover and cook for 2-3 more minutes, until nuts begin to toast.

Vegetables and almonds mixed together in skillet.

I steamed the kale until it was wilted (about 3 minutes) and then added the almonds.

Add cooked sorghum and heat through, adding extra broth if the mixture looks too dry. Add cheese and stir until melted.

Skillet containing cooked vegetables, whole grain soghum and parmesan cheese.

Cooked sorghum is added to the vegetables, warmed up, and then the Parmesan cheese is added.

Remove pilaf from heat and pour into serving dish or platter. Garnish with additional cheese and almonds, if you like.

Plastic container of grated Parmesan cheese.

You can use shredded or grated Parmesan cheese.

 

 

Milo graphic

Milo says….

I try to go through life with my ears held high and my nose down low so I don’t miss the important things.

 

Finished sorghum chicken casserole in a bowl.

Cheesy Sorghum Chicken Casserole

Here is another recipe using whole grain sorghum. The green chilies and red pepper flakes give it just a little bit of spicy kick that is absorbed by the whole grain sorghum. I got the idea for the recipe here, but I changed it up a bit.

Here’s a fun little video about whole grain sorghum from Bob’s Red Mill.

I soaked the sorghum for several hours, then cooked it ahead of time in vegetable broth, just like in my pea salad recipe. I hope you enjoy this healthy, spicy recipe!

Ingredients

  • 6 strips of bacon, fried and crumbled into pieces
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 white onion, chopped
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced
  • 3 green onions, chopped
  • 1 large tomato, chopped
  • 1 8oz. can tomato sauce
  • dash of red pepper flakes
  • salt & pepper
  • 2 cups cooked & shredded chicken breast
  • 2 cups cooked whole grain sorghum
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 small can of Hatch diced green chilies
  • 1/2 cup kale, chopped
  • 2 cups grated sharp cheddar cheese, divided

Instructions

Cook the whole grain sorghum ahead of time (instructions here).

Whole grain sorghum in a 2-cup glass measuring cup.

I cooked the whole grain sorghum ahead of time in vegetable broth.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F and spray a 7 × 9 baking dish with no-stick olive oil spray.

Chopped red bell pepper and green onions on a cutting board with other ingredients lined up behind.

While the whole grain sorghum was cooking, I chopped up the vegetables.

Fry the bacon and set aside to cool. Remove some of the bacon grease and cook the chicken breast in the same pan until cooked through. Cut chicken into bite-sized pieces.

Chopped up cooked chicken breast on a cutting board.

After frying the bacon, I cooked the chicken breast in the same frying pan and then chopped it up into bite-sized bits.

In the same skillet, over medium-high heat, add olive oil, garlic and white and green onions. Sauté for 2-3 minutes.

Chopped onions and garlic in a frying pan with olive oil.

After cooking the bacon and chicken, I used the same pan to sauté the onion and garlic.

Add chopped tomato, tomato sauce, red pepper flakes and salt & pepper. Stir and simmer for 5-7 minutes.

Tomatoes, sauce, onions, peppers and garlic in a frying pan.

The tomatoes and tomato sauce are added to the sautéed onion and garlic, plus a couple of shakes of red pepper flakes.

Meanwhile, combine sorghum, chicken, crumbled bacon, red bell pepper, green chilies, kale and 1 cup of the cheddar cheese in a large bowl. Season with salt & pepper to taste.

Chicken mixed with vegetables and sorghum in a large bowl.

Chicken, bell pepper, green chilies, kale and cooked whole grain sorghum, plus 1 cup of shredded cheese.

Add tomato sauce mixture to the bowl and toss to combine.

Pour mixture to the baking dish.

Casserole dish containing all ingredients mixed together.

After combining all the ingredients, adding more shredded cheese on top is all that is left.

Top with remaining cheddar cheese and cover with foil.

Bake for 15 minutes. Remove foil and bake for another 10 minutes.

Remove from oven and garnish with additional green onions, if you like.

Sorghum chicken casserole in a bowl, melted cheese on top.

Finished casserole ready to taste.

 

Makes 4-6 servings.

Milo graphic

Milo says….

Keep an open mind – not everyone smells life the same way.

 

Gluten-Free Cereals Review

I generally try to limit my consumption of processed foods in my quest to get proper nutrition while sticking to a gluten-free diet, but I do enjoy having a plain old bowl of cereal for breakfast every now and then. I admit that most gluten-free cereals aren’t very good, especially for the price, and many of them have a lot of added sugar to help them taste better.

I like to add walnuts and fruit to my cereal to increase the nutritional content. Gluten-free cereals tend to be low on certain nutrients, especially B vitamins, unless they are enriched or fortified.

One of my favorite gluten-free cereals is Perky’s Crunchy Flax with Chia by Enjoy Life. What I like about this cereal is that it’s slightly sweet without being too sweet and it sticks with me throughout the morning. I believe it’s staying power comes from my favorite ingredient – whole grain sorghum flour!

Perky's Crunchy Flax with Chia box front

Sorghum is high in insoluble fiber, which, combined with protein and starch in the sorghum endosperm, makes it more slowly digested than other cereals. The slower rate of digestibility of sorghum products makes them more filling and may be beneficial to diabetics. Enjoy Life is one of the first companies in the U.S. that has used sorghum as a main ingredient.

Side of the Crunchy Flax box showing ingredients and some nutritional information

Sorghum flour is the first ingredient.

 

Another gluten-free cereal I tried recently is Ancient Grain Flakes by Freedom Foods, an Australian company.

Ancient Grain Flakes box front.

Although the flavor of the cereal was ok for a gluten-free cereal, I was disappointed by the misleading description of the cereal on the front of the box. It says the cereal is “made from buckwheat and sorghum”, but when you look at the ingredient list on the side of the box, it has rice and corn listed as the first two ingredients, then sorghum and buckwheat.

Ancient Grain Flakes - side of box showing ingredients and some of the nutrition information.

Sorghum is the third ingredient.

It’s funny to me that the Freedom Foods logo at the top of the box has the words “honest, nutritious & free” underneath. It’s seems like a more honest statement would be “contains buckwheat and sorghum.”

One thing I did like about the Freedom Foods cereals was the allergen symbols at the bottom. This makes it easier to see which common allergens have been eliminated from the product.

Close up of the bottom of the Ancient Grain Flakes box showing FREE FROM and seven icons for various allergens, gluten being the first.

The allergen icons at the bottom of the Ancient Grain Flakes box are a nice idea.

The flakes have a definite corn flavor when you first bite into them. I found that I was hungry again about two hours after I ate this cereal. I probably won’t be getting this one again.

Update: Here is a pdf from the Enjoy Life that has all the nutrition information for Crunchy Flax with Chia cereal. 100 gm breakdown Cereal Crunchy Flax with Chia

 

Milo graphic

Milo says….

Happiness is LICKING the cereal bowl when Maizy is finished with it!

About a dozen bowls from above, each containing a different healthy food like beans, brocolli, blueberries, walnuts, etc.

Healthy Eating Tips for Celiacs

It is important to get enough B-vitamins (thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, and folate), iron, and fiber if you are eating a gluten-free diet. Here are some tips to help you get enough good nutrition.

  • Choose whole grain, gluten-free products whenever possible. Look for products containing whole grain sorghum, whole grain rice, millet, teff, or corn.
  • Choose enriched, gluten-free products instead of refined, unenriched products whenever possible. Here are a few companies providing enriched, gluten-free products:
    Ener-G Foods: Manufactures enriched ready-to-eat, glutenfree bread products
    Glutino: Manufactures enriched ready-to-eat, gluten-free bread products and enriched baking mixes
    Maplegrove Food and Beverage: Manufactures enriched, gluten-free pasta
    Enjoy Life Foods: Manufactures enriched, glutenfree breads, bagels, snack bars, and granola
    Kinnikinnick Foods: Manufactures enriched, glutenfree bread products
    Gluten Free Cafe: Manufactures enriched soups and entrees
  • Eat more foods made with alternative plant foods, such as amaranth, quinoa, and buckwheat. These plant foods are good sources of fiber and iron as well as some B-vitamins.
  • Eat other enriched, gluten-free foods such as enriched rice.
  • Make sure to eat plenty of non-grain sources of the nutrients your body needs. For example:
    – Lean cuts of fresh pork, legumes (dry beans, peas, lentils), nuts, and fish are good sources of thiamin.
    – Dairy products, legumes, nuts, green leafy vegetables, and mushrooms are good for riboflavin.
    – Eat poultry, fish, lean cuts of fresh pork, legumes, and seeds for niacin.
    – Choose legumes, green leafy vegetables, and fruit juices for folate.
    – You can get iron from lean cuts of beef, poultry, seafood, legumes, dried fruits, green leafy vegetables, nuts, and seeds.
    – All plant foods—fruits, vegetables, legumes, seeds, and nuts—are good sources of fiber.
  • Consider taking a gluten-free multivitamin and mineral supplement

Source: The University of North Dakota Dining Services

Milo graphic

Milo says….

Maizy told me she needs more exercise so I have to take her for a walk EVERY DAY. We have fun walking together, so I don’t mind doing this to take care of her.

Finished sorghum salad with lime dressing on a plate ready to eat.

Whole Grain Sorghum Salad with Mango, Black Beans and Avocado

Here is another recipe using whole grain sorghum. I found a new company called Wondergrain that sells whole grain sorghum online, so I decided to give them a try. Their prices seemed very reasonable. I used the pearled sorghum for this recipe, but you could you either one. The whole grain sorghum still has the bran on the outside and is a little chewier. The pearled sorghum is lighter and fluffier, more like white rice.

Two bags of Wondergrain whole grain sorghum.

This is a new brand of whole grain sorghum I’m trying.

I have swiss chard (which I LOVE) growing in my garden, so I used that instead of the cilantro called for in the original recipe.

Fresh picked swiss chard leaves laying on a kitchen towel.

I used swiss chard from my garden instead of cilantro.

The lime juice and the mango in this salad make it very sweet, refreshing and light. You could eat this salad as a meal by itself or as a side dish.

Salad ingredients on counter before chopping them up - garlic, olive oil, bag of sorghum, mango, cucumber, tomatoes, lime, onion, avacado.

Ingredients for this salad, except for the swiss chard and the beans.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups cooked whole grain sorghum (about 3/4 cup dry)
  • 1 mango, diced
  • 1 cup of canned organic black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cucumber, quartered the long way, then sliced
  • 1 cup organic cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1/2 cup chopped white onion
  • 1/4 cup fresh swiss chard, chopped
  • 1 avocado, diced

Dressing:

  • juice from 1 lime
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • zest from 1/2 lime
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Instructions:

Bag of Wondergrain whole grain sorghum next to glass measuring cup holding sorghum grains.

I used about 3/4 cup of dry sorghum, which turned out to be about 1/2 cup too much after cooking.

Soak whole grain sorghum 2-3 hours, then cook in 2 cups of water until soft and all water is absorbed – about one hour. After it is cooked, fluff the sorghum grains with a fork and set aside to cool.

While the sorghum grains are cooling, mix the dressing in a small bowl and whisk well to combine. Mix together all of the fruit and vegetables in a large bowl.

All vegetables and fruit chopped up and mixed together in a white bowl

All vegetables and fruit chopped up and mixed together.

Once the whole grain sorghum is cooled, combine with other ingredients in large bowl. Pour the dressing over top the salad, and stir gently to evenly coat. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Sorghum salad with all ingredients mixed together in a white bowl.

Here it is after adding the cooked sorghum and the dressing.

Chill in the refrigerator for 15 minutes or more so the sorghum grains can absorb the dressing a little bit.

Adapted from Tasty Yummies – Sprouted Quinoa Salad with Mango, Black Beans and Avocado

Since I had about 1/2 cup of cooked sorghum left over I decided to try it for breakfast. I warmed it up in the microwave and then added a teaspoon of honey, a few shakes of cinnamon and some raisins and walnuts. It was really good – and filling!

Warmed up leftover sorghum in a bowl with cinnamon, honey, raisins and walnuts.

Warmed up leftover sorghum for breakfast with cinnamon, honey, raisins and walnuts.

 

Milo graphic

Milo says….

I went for a RIDE in the car with Maizy and it was SO FUN! She made the window go down and I put my head out and SNIFFED everything. The wind blew all the GOOD SMELLS right into my nose!