How to process/use the grain? Do we need to do anything to make it suitable for consumption?
Plants based foods like seeds, roots, stem, leaves, and flowers requires compulsory cleaning. They are grown in open space, and it may have a lot of dust and other particles stay on the layers. Also, farmers may use biochemicals and fertilizers to protect the plants. There is a possibility of those elements stays on the outer layer of the food. Cleaning the outer layer with fresh water or warm water removes all these dust and then they are safe for consumption to some extent. How it has to be cleaned? By just showing the food before the tap water for a few minutes does not clean anything, it wets the surface and does nothing. Take water in a bowl or container then put the grains in that. Rinse thoroughly with hands. Repeat the process until the water is clean or the color of the water remains unchanged. If cleaning is not properly done, then there is a chance of the external particles to get into our stomach. They are not easily digestible by the stomach and results in stomach pain or indigestion. Cleaning helps in avoiding an upset stomach as a very first step.
Soaking place an important role in food processing. Many grains are tough to breakdown or cooking. For example, certain varieties of rice, pulses requires soaking, that will help us to ease the top layer and makes grains little soft and that enables faster cooking. On the other side, soaking separates anti-nutrients from grains. Soaked water contains anti-nutrients and that should be thrown out. Never use the soaked water for cooking. Always rinse the soaked grains and use fresh water for cooking. This is a special step helps the grain to get rid of anti-nutrients, and shortens the cooking time. The soaking time is different for each grain ranges from 2 to 12 hours based on grains.
Sprouting is a process of transformation from grain to live plant. After soaking, water should be drained and the wet grains are tied in a cloth allowed to stay like it for a day or two. Small buds called sprouts are grown over a period of time. Similar to Soaking, this process uses natural yeasts to convert anti-nutrients into vitamins/minerals in the grains.
As the process is time-consuming and tedious to be done on a daily basis, it used to be done once in a while and they preserve and use that powder. Sprouted grains do not stay from a couple of days and not much longer. The same can be extended by roasting. Roasting the sprouted grains till golden brown color smells good and stays longer. While roasting, you can feel the aroma of the grain, that indicates the right time to stop roasting. Avoid storing hot roasted grains immediately, allow the roasted grains to get cool naturally and then store it for later use.
Styles of Cooking
After all these steps, it needs a final step to get consumable. We can ground it to powder and use it for baking. We steam, or pressure cook and make a delicious recipe and consume the grains, as convenient…