Today I have a recipe to share with you that well, I have mixed feelings about. I am not sure that I like it so much but I am also not sure that I hate it either. So why share it with you then? well I think the reason for me not being sure if I like it or not may have to do with my palette not being familiar with the main ingredient, Buckwheat groats. In Mexico Buckwheat is something I was never exposed to nor do I know if people even eat it there. During my time in the USA I also never tried it , actually I never even knew what it was until I lived in France. I knew Buckwheat as one of the batter types used for French Crepes,( which were never my favorite ones), so I still didn’t really know exactly what it was until coming to Czech Republic. Buckwheat in the Czech Republic is used in breads, porridge (kaše), crepes ( Palačinky) or as a side dish accompaniment to meats, and sold at all grocery stores and markets. The first time I tried Buckwheat it was prepared like a salad resembling Tabbouleh and it was quite tasty. So I decided to try it again prepared a different way.
Since I became familiar with Buckwheat here in the Czech Republic I thought I would pay tribute to it by using Czech spices in my Buckwheat recipe. The two spices are Marjoram and Caraway seed, both very commonly used in Czech cuisine. Actually I think these are the two defining spices of Czech cuisine because they are used in most of their dishes including their most popular ones like Goulash, Bramborak -Potato Pancakes, Breads spiced with Caraway (which are some of my all time favorite breads), both are used in one of the best soups ever invented Czech potato soup. So you see I thought this was a perfect way to go with the Buckwheat.
A great thing about the recipe is that it makes a Vegan meal and is also Gluten-free. Also it’s super easy and you can have the whole meal done in 20 minutes. Well here is the recipe and let’s see what you think.
1 cup or 180 grams Buckwheat groats
2 cups or 500 ml vegetable broth, low sodium no MSG
40 grams dried wild mushroom mix, soak in hot water
1/2 tsp. ground caraway seed
1 tsp. dried marjoram
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 small yellow onion
1 TBS. vegetable oil
1. Soak the dried mushrooms in hot water for 10 minutes and set aside. Sort the Buckwheat. Heat the oil and fry the onion until it is transparent, about 5-8 minutes. Drain the mushrooms then add them to the onion and fry for 3 minutes. Next pour in the Buckwheat and add all of the spices , stir to well combine the ingredients. Lastly pour in the vegetable broth and give the ingredients a stir. Leave uncovered and under medium low heat cook until all the broth is absorbed and the Buckwheat is cooked. Mine took 10 minutes.
Serve as a side or as a main course. Serves 2 main courses or 4 side dish servings.
A note on the caraway seed , it should be available at most supermarkets. But if it is not please do not use cumin seed , as many people suggest. Trust me before I knew that Kmin, the Czech word for Caraway, was not Cumin seed as I was told I ruined what would have been a great pot of chili. You may be thinking, duh! why didn’t you taste it or smell it first? I was just beginning to teach myself how to cook and didn’t know the difference – now I do!
Well let me know what you think and if you have any tips on preparing Buckwheat let me know or post a link to your recipe in the comments.