Buckwheat

Introduction:

Buckwheat is not a true grain, in the botanical sense of the word.  Like quinoa, buckwheat is a dicot and not in the monot/grass family like the majority of the grains we eat: barley, oats, rye, wheat, millet, and corn.  So, unlike the true grains, pollination depends on pollinators and less so on the wind.  It sends forth flowers: beautiful, delicate, white, aromatic flowers.  The sounds and smells emanating from a blooming buckwheat field are reason to pause and be in awe.

Culture:

Buckwheat is exceptionally important in our rotation.  As mentioned above, it blooms and provides pollinator food, unlike the many other grains we eat.  We plant it in the summer, post-harvest of the spring grains, providing diversity to the rotation, pollinator food in the dearth of southern Maryland summers, and, in the end, protein-rich food for human consumption.  Buckwheat has history in Russia, the Balkans, and Quebec.

Availability:

Un-hulled buckwheat: These would serve useful for sprouting or planting.

Buckwheat groats: With hulls removed using a specialized de-huller, buckwheat can be eaten as a whole grain, like rice.  The groats are light grey in color and high in protein.  Ratio and cooking time: 1 cup groats to 2 cups water, 20 minutes.

Buckwheat flours:  Flours are stone-milled and available in rustic grade, for pancake, crepes, pastries, or breads, and available in fine grade for noodle-making.

Buckwheat hulls:  As a by-product of the hulling for groats, we may provide cleaned hulls for stuffing pillows, hand-warmers, and other crafty-wise projects.

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