Buckwheat Kasha Recipe
A century ago, Russia was the world leader in buckwheat production. Growing areas in the Russian Empire were estimated at 6.5 million acres, followed by those of France.
In the north eastern United States, buckwheat was a common crop in the 18th and 19th centuries. Cultivation declined sharply in the 20th century due to the use of nitrogen fertilizer, to which maize and wheat respond strongly.
Buckwheat groats are commonly used in western Asia and eastern Europe. The porridge was common, and is often considered the definitive peasant dish. It is made from roasted groats that are cooked with broth to a texture similar to rice or bulgur. The dish was brought to America by Russian and Polish immigrants who called it "kasha" and mixed it with pasta or used it as a filling for knishes and blintzes, and hence buckwheat groats are most commonly called kasha in America. The groats can also be sprouted and then eaten raw or cooked.
The classic recipe, an integral filling of buckwheat porridge consists of butter, onions, dried mushrooms and chopped boiled eggs.
1. To cook kasha from buckwheat you will need to buy roasted or raw buckwheat. If the grouts are raw you can roast them on a dry pan for 5-6 minutes until the turn slightly brown, be careful and do not over-roast the grains.
2. The proportion of water to buckwheat is 1:2. Buckwheat requires a tight lid, a heavy fire during the first 3-5 minutes to boil water and then a calm, moderate fire. The important rule for buckwheat, and for most cereals: not to get in the way of the process, not to raise or lift the lid.
3. After the first 3-5 minutes you may lift the lid just to add chopped onions and mushrooms.
4. As a result, all the cooking is completed within 15-16 minutes. Keep the buckwheat in the fire longer and its flavour will deteriorate.
5. Remove from heat, leave for another five minutes for the so-called "uprevaniya", that is the full development of its taste. Only after that mix with butter and eggs, and salt if you wish and immediately serve hot.
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