Millet Pie with Greens & Feta

Hello,

Here is a quick way to make a festive, vegetarian friendly meal with little more than greens and pantry staples. The recipe is based on one from Whole Grains Every Day, Every Way, which is a great resource for those who wish to incorporate more grains in your diet.

Millet is a small, typically golden colored grain that you can usually find in the bulk section of the grocery store. It is known widely in the US as bird food but the cooking properties and health benefits make it great for us, too. Check out this site to learn more about the heart-protective benefits and more that make this a great grain to integrate into your meals.

You can switch this recipe up in any number of ways: use various types of greens, use a different type of cheese, add more spices or different herbs, or use roasted red peppers instead of sun-dried tomatoes. Play around and have fun!

Millet Pie with Greens & Feta
serves 4-6

Recipe notes: 1) you can use a different sized container depending on how thick you would like it to be; the end result is about an inch or so thick in a 9×13 baking dish. 2) use any type of green you have on hand but I would recommend pre-cooking sturdier greens as they may not cook down enough to be done when the millet is finished.

Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, cut into a small dice
  • 1 large garlic clove, minced
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 cup hulled millet, rinsed
  • 6 ounces Swiss chard (about 12 medium leaves), de-stemmed and chopped (see recipe note)
  • 4 ounces crumbled feta (about 1 cup)
  • 3 ounces sun-dried tomatoes, rinsed and dried if packed in oil, thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons chopped freshly parsley
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Directions:

  • Lightly grease a 9×13 baking dish and set aside.
  • Heat the oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat until shimmering. Add the onion, 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until spotty brown and soft, about 8-10 minutes. Add the garlic and oregano and cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add 3-1/2 cups of water and bring to a boil.
  • Stir in the millet, reduce heat to medium, cover and cook for 10 minutes. Uncover and boil the mixture, stirring occasionally, until most of the remaining water evaporates, 5-8 minutes.
  • Continue cooking over low heat until the millet becomes very soft and the mixture is thick and porridgy, about 5 minutes more. Add the Swiss chard and cook, stirring frequently, until the greens are wilted and soft, another couple of minutes. If the mixture becomes dry before the millet is tender, add 1/4 cup boiling water at a time.
  • Turn off the heat and stir in the feta, sun-dried tomatoes and parsley. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed. Pour mixture into the prepared baking dish and smooth surface. Set aside to cool until set, about 1 hour.
  • To serve, cut into squares and serve at room temperature. For a bit more flavor and texture, pan fry the squares in a little oil until browned and slightly crispy on each side. Enjoy.

Millet Tabbouleh

Hello!

Tabbouleh is an incredibly fresh Lebanese salad traditionally consisting of bulgur wheat, tomatoes, cucumber and lots of parsley and mint. It sometimes seems like an herb salad with some bulgur thrown in. My version, however, swaps the bulgur for millet, making it compatible with gluten-free diets. I kept the tomatoes, cucumber and herbs (although not quite as much as some recipes call for) but tossed in some chickpeas and feta to make it a full meal.

If you aren’t familiar with millet, read more about it here. Millet can be prepared for salads, per my instructions below, or as a porridge, similar to polenta. However, it is very easy to cross the line from individual grains to a mass of millet. To make sure you don’t end up with porridge, keep these tips in mind: 1) it does not cook evenly – you will be left with some cooked grains while others will be a little toothsome; 2) you need to spread out the cooked millet to cool otherwise the starch from the popped grains will make it impossible to use in a salad.

Enjoy!

Millet Tabbouleh
makes 4-6 servings

Ingredients:

  • 1-1/2 cups millet
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup + 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium cucumber (about 10 ounces), peeled if thick skinned, and cut into 1/2″ pieces
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes, cut in half if larger than 1/2″
  • 1 cup thinly sliced scallions (from about 3 large scallions)
  • 1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons minced parsley
  • 2 tablespoons minced mint
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1-15 oz can chickpeas, rinsed and drained, and crumbled feta (optional)

Directions:

  • To cook the millet: first, toast the millet by adding it to a medium saucepan over medium heat. Stir constantly until it smells toasty and the grains are starting to brown, about 4-6 minutes. Add the water and salt, bring to a boil, then cover and reduce heat to medium-low. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the water is absorbed and around two-thirds of the grains are cooked through, about 15-18 minutes. Remove from heat and immediately transfer to a rimmed baking sheet. Spread evenly and allow to cool. Transfer to a large mixing bowl, breaking up any clumps of millet.
  • Whisk the lemon juice and olive oil together in a small bowl and set aside. Add the remaining ingredients and the lemon juice/olive oil mixture to the millet and toss to combine. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed.

Recipes From Around the Web :: Greens Edition

Hi everyone!

We are knee deep in delicious greens so thought I would share some tasty recipes that are on my “must-try” list. The greens in most of these recipes are interchangeable with each other so feel free to experiment. We would love to hear how you use them!

Greens of All Kinds!

First up: you will come to realize that I rely on Cook’s Illustrated/America’s Test Kitchen for the basis of a ton of recipes (not to mention their equipment reviews and taste tests). It just so happens they are coming out with a cookbook titled The Complete Vegetarian Cookbook and have asked numerous food bloggers to test and post recipes from the book. Below are two that use greens and look amazing!

There are a lot of things I wish I thought of first – one of them being collard green wraps! Seriously, they don’t take much time and you can stuff them with just about anything. They are a great gluten-free option, too.

I think this next recipe would be great with the tender collards we are getting right now. Add in other colorful veggies from the market, plus this tahini based dressing, and you can’t go wrong!

Sometimes, you don’t need much to put together a healthful and satisfying meal. It’s just pasta, greens and cheese but it’s sure to satisfy.

Until next time, enjoy your greens!


Millet & Quinoa Patties with Curried Swiss Chard

I grew up with finches (the small gray birds with orange cheeks) and thought millet was just birdseed. I had no idea people all around the world ate it until just a few years ago! Millet has been cultivated in Eastern Asia for 10,000 and it is staple crop in parts of India and Africa. After reading about the numerous health benefits, not to mention the fact that it is gluten-free, I think it’s about time it became a part of our everyday diet.

This recipe was inspired by Hillary’s Eat Well veggie burgers which I found in the freezer section at Whole Foods. While I love their version, I thought I could come up with my own that wouldn’t take much time and allow me to add the ingredients and flavors I like. I started with this recipe but then made some changes based on a couple of trials. Add your own twists with different greens and spices. We hope you enjoy!

Millet & Quinoa Patties with Curried Swiss Chard
makes 10 patties

Recipe notes:  1) I stopped short of calling these “burgers” because I don’t think they are sturdy enough but I do think they would be good in a wrap with greens and a simple sauce; 2) I used Tant Hill’s rainbow Swiss chard but feel free to use most any green you have available; 3) psyllium husk is used a lot in gluten-free baking as it is hygroscopic, which means it absorbs water and becomes sticky, thus holding the patties together. It can be online or in well stocked grocery stores (I found it at Whole Foods).

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup (3.5 ounces) raw millet, rinsed and drained
  • 1/2 cup (about 3 ounces) raw quinoa, rinsed and drained
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 5 ounces Swiss chard, stemmed, leaves finely chopped (3 cups) and stems minced (see recipe note)
  • 1 medium shallot, minced
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons curry powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon garam masala
  • 2 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tablespoon psyllium husk (see recipe note)
  • 1 tablespoon brown rice flour
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt

Directions:

  • To cook millet: add millet and 1-1/3 cup water to a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer over low heat for 13-18 minutes, or until the grains are tender and all of the water is absorbed. Remove lid and boil off excess water if needed. Turn off the heat and let stand for 10 minutes. Transfer to a large mixing bowl and set aside.
  • To cook quinoa: add quinoa and 1 cup water to a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer over low heat for 12-15 minutes, or until the grains are tender and the water is absorbed. Remove lid and boil off excess water if needed. Turn off the heat and let stand for 10 minutes. Transfer to bowl with millet and set aside.
  • For remaining ingredients: heat coconut oil in a large skillet over medium heat until shimmering. Add shallot and Swiss chard stems and cook, stirring frequently, until softened and starting to brown, about 5 minutes. Add curry powder and garam masala and cook, stirring frequently, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add garlic and cook, stirring frequently, until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Remove from heat and transfer to the bowl with the millet and quinoa. Add the psyllium husk, brown rice flour, vinegar and salt to bowl and stir to combine. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed. Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil and using a biscuit cutter or your hands, form into 3-1/2″ wide by 1/2″ tall patties (about 1/3 cup of the mixture per patty). At this point, I would recommend you place the baking sheet directly into the freezer for a few hours until frozen through and then transfer frozen patties to a ziperlock bag.
  • To cook: heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet over medium heat until shimmering. Cook a few patties at a time until brown and crisp, about 5 minutes, then flip and cook an additional 5 minutes and serve.