Whole Grain Sorghum
Sorghum is a major cereal grain that grows in hot, semi-arid and dry temperate areas of the world including Mexico, Africa, India, China and the USA. The round red or white sorghum seeds are slightly smaller than peppercorns. New food-grade varieties of sorghum have been developed in the USA. These American varieties have a hard white seed that is free of any bitter flavors or dark colors often associated with non-food grade sorghums. Sorghum is available as a whole-grain seed or can be milled into flour and grits. Twin Valley Mills in Nebraska sells both the whole grain seed and flour. Contact www.twinvalleymills.com to purchase. The flour is also available from companies such as Authentic Foods, Bob’s Red Mill and El Peto.
Whole Grain Sorghum
Soak the grain overnight in water. Drain and combine 1 cup of sorghum with about 2 ½ - 3 cups of water in a heavy-bottomed saucepan with a tight-fitting lid. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer, covered, for about 30-45 minutes. Turn off heat and let stand 5-10 minutes. Drain any excess water. Combine with herbs and/or spices and use as a side dish such as pilaf or in casseroles, stuffings, salad, as well as a thickener for soups and chili.
Can be used as an alternative for rice in puddings.
This light tan-colored flour has a slightly nutty, earthy flavor.
A combination of sorghum flour and other gluten-free flours, especially bean flour or amaranth flour, works well as sorghum’s bland flavor and light color does not alter the taste of baked goods.
Sorghum is high in phosphorus and potassium. It is also a source of fiber, protein, thiamin, niacin, vitamin B6, magnesium, zinc and iron.
Here is a French Bread recipe from gluten-free culinary expert Carol Fenster.
Here is the link for the recipe.
Put this bread into a COLD oven for a crisp crust and nice texture. If this doesn’t work in your oven, let the bread rise until level with top of pan; then bake in preheated 425ºF oven 25 to 30 minutes. Use a pan specially designed for French bread.
- 2 tablespoons active dry yeast
- 1 1/4 cups warm (110ºF) milk of choice
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 2 cups Carol's Sorghum Blend (see below)
- 1 cup potato starch
- 1 teaspoon xanthan gum
- 1 teaspoon guar gum
- 1/4 cup nonfat dry milk powder (not Carnation) or Better Than Milk soy powder
- 1 1/4 teaspoons salt
- 1 tablespoon butter or buttery spread, softened
- 3 large egg whites
- 1 teaspoon cider vinegar
- Egg wash (optional - 1 egg white, beaten with 1 tablespoon water)
1. Dissolve sugar and yeast in warm water. Set aside 5 minutes.
2. Grease French bread pans or line with parchment paper.
3. In bowl of heavy-duty stand mixer, combine all ingredients (sorghum blend through vinegar) plus yeast-milk mixture. Beat on low speed to blend, then beat on medium speed for 30 seconds, stirring down sides with spatula. Dough will be soft.
4. Divide dough in half on prepared pan. Smooth each half into 12-inch log with wet spatula. Brush with egg wash for glossier crust. Make 3 diagonal slashes (1/8-inch deep) in each loaf so steam can escape during rising.
5. Place immediately on middle rack in cold oven. Set to 425ºF and bake approximately 30 to 35 minutes, or until nicely browned.
6. Remove bread from pans; cool completely on wire rack before slicing with electric knife. Makes 2 loaves. Serves 20 (1-inch slices).
Calories 83; Fat 1g; Protein 2g; Carbohydrates 17g; Sodium 159mg; Cholesterol 2mg; Fiber <1g>
Carol's Sorghum Blend
- 1 1/2 cups sorghum flour
- 1 1/2 cups potato starch
- 1 cup tapioca flour
Whisk together and store, tightly covered, in a dark, dry place.
Article by Shelley Case, RD
Shelley Case, RD is a consulting dietitian, speaker and author of the national best seller Gluten-Free Diet: A Comprehensive Resource Guide. See www.glutenfreediet.ca