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What is it?

Despite its name, buckwheat (also known as kasha) is not related to wheat. Buckwheat is gluten free, full of nutrients and easy to use in baking.

The buckwheat plant is a green, leafy plant related to rhubarb. It is thought to have originated in China. Buckwheat is a fruit producing plant and it is the seeds in the fruit that are used to make buckwheat flour. The inner section of the seed is milled to produce buckwheat flour. The outer hull of the seed is also milled and included in varying amounts. The more hull that is included in the flour, the darker the flour. The darker the flour, the heavier and more dense it is when cooking (much like the difference between white and whole wheat flours). 

Cooking with buckwheat flour

Buckwheat has an earthy, nutty flavor. When using this flour in your baking, it is best mixed with other grains or gluten free flours. The lack of gluten requires the addition of eggs, chia seeds, xanthan gum or guar gum in your recipe to help it all stick together.

Some flours that mix well with buckwheat flour are: soy, rice, chickpea and quinoa. The nut meals such as golden flax meal and almond meal will also produce a nice result.

Use a couple of tablespoons of arrowroot or potato flour/starch per cup of flour mix for a lighter texture and to help the mixture rise.

Buckwheat Groats

Buckwheat can also be used as a groat (whole, hulled) to make tasty and nutritious side dishes or breakfast. Mix with water to make an alternative to quinoa or rice. Or add uncooked groats to chia pudding, yogurt, salads, soups and trail mixes. Experiment with different savory and sweet spices. Want an even more nutritious version, soak grouts overnight, rinse and allow to sprout for a few days. Sprouting increases nutrients and allows for easy digestion and assimilation.

Nutritional Facts

Buckwheat is an excellent source of protein. It is one of the few sources of plant protein that contain all essential amino acids, in particular the amino acids lysine, threonine and tryptophan.

It is low in fat and high in fibre. It is also a good source of complex carbohydrate and has a low simple carbohydrate (sugar) content.

Buckwheat is rich in iron, potassium, calcium, phosphorus, zinc, selenium, manganese and magnesium. It also contains the antioxidants vitamin E, rutin and quercitin.

The following recipes work well with Buckwheats unique texture and taste

Buckwheat Gingersnaps

3/4 cup coconut oil

1 cup or Less Palm sugar, agave or maple syrup

1 egg / Flax egg

1/4 cup molasses

2 cups buckwheat flour

2 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp ginger

1/2 tsp cinnamon

1/4 tsp cloves

1/4 tsp nutmeg

1/4 tsp salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In large bowl, cream coconut oil and sugar, beat in egg and add molasses.

Mix together all dry ingredients. Add to wet ingredients and mix thoroughly.

Roll dough into 1 inch balls and place 2 inches apart on cookie sheet.

Bake 8-10 minutes until light brown and cracked. Makes 4 dozen cookies.

Banana Muffins

1 egg/ flax egg

¼ cup coconut oil

¼ cup non dairy milk

1 tsp vanilla extract

½ cup or Less palm sugar, agave or maple syrup.

½ cup mashed ripe banana

1 ¼ cups buckwheat flour

¼ tsp salt

½ tsp almond extract

1 tsp baking powder

½ tsp baking soda

½ cup chopped nuts

Preheat oven to 350°F/190°C.

In a large bowl, beat eggs. Add oil, milk, vanilla, almond extract, banana and sugar. Beat well.

Sift together buckwheat flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add to banana mixture. Mix well.

Stir in nuts. Pour into a muffin tray lined with muffin cups and fill each to the top.

Bake for 20 minutes. Add 5 minutes longer if using a Chia egg.

Makes approximately 7 large muffins.

Pumpkin Muffins

3 eggs / flax eggs

½ cup coconut oil

1 cup non dairy milk

1 tsp vanilla

3/4 cup or Less Palm sugar, agave or maple syrup

2 cups pureed pumpkin

2 ½ cups buckwheat flour

1 tsp baking powder

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp cinnamon

½ tsp ground cloves

½ tsp ground ginger

1 cup raisins

Preheat oven to 350°F/190°C.

In a large bowl, beat eggs. Add oil, milk, vanilla and sugar. Beat well. Add pumpkin puree and beat again.

Sift together buckwheat flour, baking powder, baking soda and spices. Add to pumpkin mixture. Mix well. Stir in raisins.

Pour into a muffin tray lined with muffin cups and fill each to the top. Bake for 20 minutes. Add 5 minutes if using chia eggs

Makes approximately 20 muffins.

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