I think Angela believes I’ve abandoned my attempts at classic French cuisine (as if or if ever) to somehow…descend to the cuisine of my genetic ancestors of Eastern Europe. You know, all those Slavs whose mainstay meal would be boiled cabbage, onions, bread and road kill.
Seriously! While one can conclude that Eastern European cuisine isn’t yet elevated to the status of certain other countries own, they all have a basic peasant charm which I like. I don’t have to wear a babushka to cook, and while I never grew up eating buckwheat groats, they are a nice and pleasantly crunchy grain to fill up on. And they’re nutritious, as well.
Wifey said, “Its filling.” Hardly high praise, but for a Monday night, I’ll take what I can get.
I started with buckwheat groats or kasha, if its toasted, and measure it out. I sautéed a shallot and some prosciutto in some olive oil with half a dab of butter for more flavor, then added the kasha to the mix, sautéing the groats for a few more minutes. I then added one and a half cups of low-sodium chicken broth and brought the entire pot to a rolling boil. I left it there for a few minutes until most of the liquid seemed absorbed, then turned down the temperature and simmered it for another several minutes.
Once it seemed pretty well cooked, after adding a bit more broth a couple if times, I turned off the heat, sprinkled diced parsley, bits of feta, and a squeeze of half a lemon into the pot. Then served it.
It was, as my wife put it, filling. The kasha was nutty with a distinctive flavor, the feta and prosciutto added a measure of flavor as well, and it wasn’t bad at all. I think that a bit more onion and prosciutto couldn’t have hurt, but much like oatmeal, this is the sort of grain that generally doesn’t elicit a whole lot of excitement. I have no doubt that a chef of some greater skill than I could have coaxed more intrigue from this, but…it was decidedly ok.