This was my first time experimenting with the Ancient Grain called Kamut®Khorasan Wheat, generally defined as ancient, because it has generally not been hybridized or genetically modified over the last several hundred years. “It is prized for its nutrition, ease of digestibility, sweet nutty-buttery taste and firm texture. Compared to most modern wheat it has more protein, amino acids, vitamins and many minerals, especially selenium, zinc and magnesium.” (see links below).
The Kamat Grain, also called Kamut Berries was up first. It looked like a large-grained rice. And although many on google said it cooked up like rice, it resembles rice only in its shape.
Unlike rice it takes a long time to cook, doesn’t plump up like rice and is very chewy. So let’s stop comparing it to rice. Actually when cooked it more closely resembles the texture and feel on the tooth of whole kernel corn – only denser, chewier corn. It has no flavor by itself, so needs added flavorings. I know that ‘clean’ isn’t a flavor, but that’s how I perceived the berries when cooked in water – ‘clean’. Because of its high protein content and texture I would use this grain (the berries) as a meat substitute rather than a rice sub.
A benefit I noticed with leftover soup, was that the grain didn’t absorb all the liquid when refrigerated overnight as other grains do, so I didn’t have to dilute the soup and re-season to enjoy it again.
The more I ate this grain the more I liked and appreciated it. The chewy factor turned quickly to a plus factor. The more you chew the quicker your brain tells you you’re full. You eat less, which diet-wise is a good thing.
However, rather than cook the berries from scratch, which takes much longer, simply soak it overnight like you would a dried bean to reduce cooking time later.
Next I tried the Kamut Flakes that look like rolled oats, but unlike oats, they don’t gum up when cooked and don’t clump together when chilled – and the pan is easy to clean, unlike oatmeal. The flakes pretty much stay separate – tender, but chewy also. When I made the hot cereal from the flakes, and refrigerated the leftover, to my surprise when I took it out the next day, I could eat it cold and it was just as good – especially for a between meal, nutritious, satisfying snack!
Kamut Spaghetti is not starchy, so it won’t gum up either. It doesn’t plump up as much as traditional pasta, but it is soft to the tooth, although chewier than what you might be accustomed to. I enjoyed it – thoroughly.
The pasta doesn’t leave you feeling stuffed after eating it, and I actually liked the chewy part – strange for pasta, but new and likeable.
The one draw back, is that the spaghetti strands break in the boiling water as they’re stirred.
The first time I cooked it, I stirred it like regular pasta, and it broke into about 1-2 inch lengths – still good, but not something you’d be twirling around your fork.
The second time I cooked it, I let it slip into the water as it softened on its own, stirring very little, with better results. This is a worthy pasta that I will enjoy again.
Kamut Flour textures like a fine cornmeal and cooks up like cream of wheat – the longer cooking variety. It thickens considerably when cooked in water, which surprised me, since the berries and the flakes didn’t. And it doesn’t take long to cook. With the cooked flour I did perceive a buttery taste as the Kamut® people indicated.
Although there are many recipes on the internet using Kamat flour, I decided to do one that I hadn’t seen anyone do: Indian pudding. Coming from New England I enjoyed it many times over the years when I lived there, but had never developed a recipe absent the animal products. So in this recipe I not only left the milk out, but used Kamut flour in place of the cornmeal with excellent results. It isn’t your traditional Indian pudding, but the grainy texture of Indian pudding was preserved perfectly by substituting Kamut flour. Great for people who don’t or can’t eat corn.
Lilly Belle is our vegan dog and of course I couldn’t leave her out of my Kamut experiments, especially since Kamut is nutrient dense and high in protein. I cooked up a batch of dog food using the Kamut spaghetti and the Kamut flakes and she loved it!
Ancient grains are making a comeback and I’m glad they are. I’m looking forward to trying more Kamut products and experimenting with the berries, flakes and flour in other recipes.
See the recipes below I developed using Kamut. Each one links to the corresponding recipe on this site.
Also check out the websites for Shiloh Farms, Grain Place Foods and Eden Organic Pasta. All are committed to better nutrition and more pristine foods.
Then read about Kamut from the Kamut® people themselves in the links provided below.
About KAMUT® KHORASAN WHEAT
Put a high price tag on this soup. Sell only by the cup. Rich. Wow. Whoa. From another planet. Ancient inspired by the grain. You won’t recognize it. Rare.
Makes 8-1/2 cups
Kamut grain and sweet corn stewed in a thick tomato and white miso broth with garlic, smoked paprika, rosemary and coriander. Garnished with orange zest and served with a side of ciabatta bread spread with miso and extra virgin olive oil!
Makes 8-1/2 cups
Spaghetti made from the ancient grain called Kamut – higher in protein and fiber than traditional grains, that may also be used by some with a sensitivity to gluten. Sauced with a rich Smoky Marinara and topped with sauteed baby bella mushrooms!
Makes 5-1/4 cups sauce
Ancient Kamut grain cooked like rolled oats. Golden raisins, flaked coconut, brown sugar and maple extract used as flavorings. Topped with orange zest and cinnamon. A delightful ‘feel good’ cereal!
Makes 4-1/2 cups
This stove-top Indian pudding swaps in Kamut flour and swaps out the cornmeal, creating a perfect grainy texture that is the hallmark of Indian pudding. Big, bold spicy flavors, soft, melt in your mouth textures! Oregon sweet cherries and cashew butter are the surprise ingredients!
Makes 4-1/2 cups or 9, 1/2 cup servings
Blackeye peas, carrot and okra combined with TVP, Kamut Spaghetti and Kamut Flakes – a perfect combination for a nutrient dense dog food! Seasoned with turmeric, allspice, vegan yeast and sea salt!
Makes 15 cups