As we all know small grains are gaining more importance these days for the simple fact their nutritive value are becoming evident. I am sure you are familiar with some of the millets that are still in our kitchen shelves like Ragi, Bajra, Jowar etc.
There are few other cousins of the more popular ones and they have slowly disappeared from our kitchens and menus but I feel it is time for us to bring them back and letting the world know their original glory.
There is evidence to prove that millets have been in use especially in Tamil Nadu nearly 6500 BC. Millets are glutin free and pesticide free..:)
They are incredibly resistant to drought and insects, sowed and reaped withing 6 months durations, does not require high quality support, grows in almost any soil type excepts water logged ones and when stored properly it remains in good form for more than 2 years.
Having said that millets are fortified with all the essential vitamins and minerals, iron, calcium, zinc, protein and slow release sugars. It is also so much cheaper than rice and wheat. They can be consumed by anyone even from the tender age of 4 months to 60 years.
Consumed regularly there is no need to be dependent on any commercial "fortified breakfast cereals or drinks" for good health.
Thinai is known as Foxtail Millet in English and goes by the Botanical name of Setaria italica. In China it is known as " Little Rice". It is known as "Korra" in Telugu, "Navane" in Kannada and "Kakum" in Hindi.
Personally for me they are "Miracle Millet", a boon to our country but sadly there is a decline in their production simply because of decreased demand.We can have our occasional KFC's / Dominoes / Mc Dee's etc but we need to embrace out own home grown grains to protect our farmers and for our own good health...:)
For more info visit here .
For the payasam
Thinai [foxtail millet] : 100 gms.
Powdered jaggery: 120 gms.
Milk : 200-250 mls + extra for serving.
Ginger powder [sukku]: 1 pinch.
Cashews: a few.
Raisins: a few.
Ghee : 1 tbsp.
1.Roast the thinai grains on slim flame until just heated through.
2.Add the milk [200 mls] and ginger powder and simmer until just cooked. This will take around 15- 20 minutes.Add the remaining 50 mls if required.
3.Add the powdered jaggery and stir continuously until the mixture thickens. Remove from heat.
4.Heat the ghee in another small pan and roast the cashews and raisins.
5.Add this to the payasam.
Serve the payasam either warm or cold in individual bowls with extra helping of the milk.
Note: The amount of jaggery given here imparts mild sweetness to the payasam. You can increase or decrease the amount according to your taste. You can substitute caster sugar, muscavado sugar if you prefer to. Do not over cook the millet as it will turn mushy. Cook the grains until soft.The addition of ghee, cashews and raisins is a luxury factor but you can skip it if you prefer to.
Scribbled by Reva