Since my husband is in charge of making breakfast, he typically makes the quickest and easiest things he can; bacon and eggs or burgers and eggs; these are sometimes served with some sauerkraut and a sourdough english muffin or sweet potatoes. This type of meal is healthy and keeps the kids satisfied until lunch time. But, like everyone, they get tired of the same old, same old. I've tried fixing things like soaked oats, but even with added fat, it does not keep them full for very long.
As I browsed through the aisles at our local co-op, I ran across a few different options that I thought I'd give a try. Teff was the first grain, and it was delicious. Topped with a little maple syrup and butter, it had a nice nutty flavor and was simple to prepare. The next thing I tried was Emmer Farro (riticum dicoccum or farro medio), I soaked the Farro overnight in water and a bit of yogurt, then drained, rinsed, and lightly cooked it the next morning. With just a dash of cinnamon and a little cream (no sweetener needed), this has been, by far, the tastiest grain we've eaten. It is versatile to use as a sweet or savory side dish or main meal (again, the stand alone taste is sweet and nutty and does not need much enhancement, if any).
A few interesting tidbits about Emmer Farro; Farro is actually the name of a group of ancient grains that includes Einkorn, Emmer, and Spelt. Emmer Farro is an ancient grain that originates from the Fertile Crescent about 10,000 years ago. One of my favorite sourdough bread makers uses Emmer in her bread, and it is well tolerated by people who cannot normally handle gluten. This might be due the chromosomal structure of Farro (less than modern day wheat) or the fact that it is lower in gluten or both. Emmer Farro is high in protein and has vitamins inlcuding A,C,D, and E and minerals including zinc, iron and magnesium.
Traditionally, Farro is not grown in the United States, but a little farm over in Washington State is making it happen. Bluebird Grains Farm grows a nice variety of organic ancient grains. They take great care with their soil in order to produce the most nutrient dense product possible. If you are in the area, look them up or take a look at their site for more info.
Like I mentioned above, the uses for this form of Farrow are endless. I'd be curious to try a pudding with it. For general use, I soak the grains in warm water and an acid (typically a 1TB of whey or 1/2 TB ACV) overnight. This helps with digestibility and breaks down any phytates that are in the grain. In the morning, I strain and rinse the grain. I then place the Farro in a deep pan, cover with water, and cook for about 15 minutes. I prefer the cooked Farro to still be a bit crunchy, so please cook to your preference. Top with whatever you like and enjoy!