Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Cañahua: The close cousin of the Quinoa, even higher in protein


                                CAÑAHUA
One of the many varieties of cañahua. Photo: W. Rojas
I am happy to introduce to you a cousin of the  QUINOA, the CAÑAHUA. It is little known outside of the Bolivian Andean Altiplano where it grows and harvested by indigenous peasants. Canahua is related to quinoa – its more recognized cousin – and is characterized by its high protein content and its complete amino acid profile. It is also high in magnesium.
Like its cousin quinoa it is 100 % gluten-free and as opposed to quinoa, cañahua does not have the protective saponin layer, making it easier to work as an ingredient in soups, bakery, cold salad dishes and many more.
Canahua is most frequently offered as a powder (or flour) made from the crushed, toasted grains. A versatile additive, canahua essentially is a supercharged, allergen-free supplement to mix in with smoothies, shakes, hot cereals, soups, stews, juices or for any addition of protein and for a nutritional energetic. It could also be added to flours for breads, bars, energy drinks. The grains are tiney, smaller than quinoa and dark, it is a good idea to grind them into a powder/meal and use like a flour or nutritional powder.

Upper photo taken from:
fanaticcook.blogspot.com
309 × 233 - Cañahua Facts:1, 2. Indigenous to the harsh plains of Peru
Lower photo taken from:
http://www.agriculturesnetwork.org/magazines/global/valuing-crop-diversity/canahua-deserves-to-come-backm :

To prepare Cañahua hot cereal:

1 cup of Cañahua
2 cups of water
Sea salt, a pinch (optional)

On low heat, roast the cañahua in a pot stirring continously. Add the water and salt and let it cook/simmer for 10 minutes, turn off the heat and let it finish cooking in the steam for 10 more minutes.
Serve as a warm cereal, or use it later as a cold grain. You can add maple syrup or pure raw organic honey for those who are sweet tooth.

http://fanaticcook.blogspot.com/2010/09/canahua-quinoas-cousin.html

Information about Quinoa Saponins:  http://www.ccbolgroup.com/saponinsquinoa.html

Cañahua is for sale at Whole Foods Supermarket or online.

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