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Marian Blazes

Kiwicha: The Mini-Quinoa

By June 26, 2011

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Kiwicha (also known as amaranth) is another Andean supergrain like quinoa - an ancient crop cultivated for thousands of years by civilizations like the Incas, but one that we are only just now rediscovering. Like quinoa, the seeds of the kiwicha (kee-wee-cha) plant are very high in protein, with a more complete compliment of amino acids than most other grains.

Kiwicha seeds are much smaller than quinoa - more the size of poppy seeds. The colorful plant is hardy enough to grow well high in the rugged Andes, an area inhospitable to conventional farming. The seeds are popped like popcorn and sold as cereal and snacks in South America.

Kiwicha is widely available (usually labeled "amaranth") in health food stores and supermarkets. Jen Hoy, About.com's guide to macrobiotic cooking, has several excellent recipes for this healthy grain on her site, such as Cinnamon Amaranth Grits and Amaranth Scallion Pancakes.

More About Amaranth...
The Origin and Use of Amaranth in Ancient Mesoamerica
Amaranth Domestication
Gluten-Free Herb Cracker Recipe with Amaranth Flour

Comments

January 5, 2013 at 11:35 pm
(1) criolla says:

I am Bolivian,and I remember that at home we had this for breakfast,also as powder mixed with raw sugar as sweets.
There are so many ways to eat the grains from Bolivia.
At my British bording school we also were served Bolivian grains,my father made sure to have them shipped, I am 69 and to this day,i continue with my Bolivian meals.

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