Kamut: An Ancient Whole Grain Making a Comeback

Ingredient Spotlight

091012-kamut.jpg Kamut sounds like a swear word said quickly or something in a foreign language. It surely doesn't sound like something that comes from your pantry. We've been talking about whole grains this week and kamut is a highly nutritious, but often unheard of option! Want to know more?

Kamut is an ancient grain that as rumor has it, was almost extinct. As internet legend goes there were 37 seeds found in an Egyptian tomb that were mailed back to the United States by an Air Force pilot who had family in Montana. The kernels looked like wheat, but were twice as big!

After a few years of planting and reseeding, this once old, and now new again grain, is making a viable comeback. It's a brand of khorasan wheat but offers more protein, vitamin E, thiamin, riboflavin, phosphorus, magnesium, zinc, pantothentic acid, copper and fat than its more well known counterpart. In addition and oddly enough, it's also highly tolerated by those who are traditionally allergic to wheat, making it a great option for some people intolerant to gluten.

Although you can use it in place of regular whole wheat in your recipes, it does contain less gluten, so you'll need to adjust your recipes accordingly. It's perfect for homemade pastas and is starting to be found at markets around the country with ease. To cook, soak 4 cups of kamut overnight and then boil for 40-60 minutes. Your end result will be 3 cups of slightly chewy whole grain goodness.

Are you using kamut in your home? What dishes are you putting it to use in? Let us know in the comments below!

Related: Get Your Freekeh On: A Guide to Old-World Grains

(Image: Flickr member Satoru Kikuchi licensed for use by Creative Commons)

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Sarah Trover has lived all across the Midwest and currently calls the hot dog-laden city of Chicago home. She rides scooters and seeks out kitchens that make the best pie.

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