Bon Appétit in 2014

For Christmas I gave my sister, and myself, a subscription to Bon Appétit magazine. I thought it was going to be just a bunch of pretty pictures of food that I would never make because I don’t have the urge to cook a standing rib roast with confit potatoes. Nor do I have a reclaimed barn-wood table to serve it on. Also, children.

Low and behold the January 2014 issue has arrived and to my delight it is an entire publication of recipes I may actually make from foods I recognize. The issue is dubbed, “Bon Appétit’s Cooking School 2014: The New Healthy” (you can also view the articles on their website). They describe The New Healthy as “definitely opinionated, completely manageable, and utterly delicious.” I think the recipes may live up to their hype. Their menu even includes some rather indulgent looking flour-less chocolate cookies, the image of which I can’t seem to shake. The recipe looks way too easy…

Halfway through the enticing glossy pages I found “A Guide to Identifying Grains, from Amaranth to Sorghum.” Laid out on the page were 11 adorable little piles of grains (some are seeds). Of the 11 pictured I have eaten a few and cooked even less. Awhile back I toyed with the idea of presenting a series on grains. After about a minute of musing I relegated the thought to the dusty corner of my brain where the “Wouldn’t that be fun?” project ideas live. Thanks to the unexpected reminder, I decided to make preparing all 11 grains (and perhaps a few more) a goal for the year.

Bon Appétit’s List Grain Cheat Sheet features Millet, Wild Rice, Barley, Wheat Berries, Freekah, Amaranth, Sorghum, Farro, Rye Berries, Spelt and Black Rice. If you click the link above it will take you a slide show of the various grains with pictures and a short description of each one. If there is one thing the gluten-free trend has made clear to me, there is a wealth of delicious grains beyond white and brown rice, couscous and quinoa. I am excited to dig my fork into this project and share my findings with you.

Have you tried any of the grains on Bon Appétit’s list? Which are your favorites and how do you prepare them at home?

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