MILLET -- IT'S NOT JUST FOR THE BIRDS


from October 1986 "Drying Times"


by Barb Moody

Millet is a wonderful grain overlooked by most Americans. Most people consider millet to be little more than bird food as it is the major ingredient of bird seed mixes. However health conscious people have long recognized the wonderful attributes of this grain. Millet is a nutritionally balanced grain that is non-allergenic. It is a versatile grain that can be used as a cereal, flour, or rice substitute. It can be used an an ingredient for main dishes as well as desserts. Millet can be found in most health food stores and some grocery stores (and all pet stores).

To cook millet add 3 cups water to 1 cup millet. Bring to a boil then reduce heat to low and cook tightly covered for 30 minutes. Gen often substitutes juice, broth, or whey for the water. She finds this adds a marvelous taste to the grain. If you are using millet in a main dish, try using chicken broth or vegetable broth instead of water. Millet is a staple in the MacManiman kitchen. Those of us who work with Gen have had the privilege of sampling and enjoying her millet creations. Here are a couple of favorites:

Millet 'n Fruit

Blend 2 cups cooked millet with 2 eggs and 1 cup milk. Sweeten to taste with honey or your favorite sweetener. (Add salt if you wish). Blend until smooth. Prepare a baking dish with a light coating of butter. Place half of the batter in the baking dish. Add 1 cup chopped, dried fruit (we love to use dried prunes), 1 cup date pieces, and 1 cup nuts. Stir slightly, folding the fruit and nuts into the batter. Pour the remaining batter on top of the fruit-nut mixture. Drizzle a little honey, fruit concentrate, maple syrup, or pureed fresh fruit on top and swirl gently into the batter. Bake at 300° F. for approximately 30 minutes or until firm in the middle.

Millet-Fruit Leather Ripple

Prepare millet batter. Lightly butter a baking dish. Cut a fruit leather to size and place on the bottom of the dish. Pour half of the batter over the leather. Add another fruit leather and the rest of the batter. Top with chopped nuts and perhaps a sprinkle of cinnamon. Bake at 300° F. for approximately 30 minutes or until firm in the middle.